Okay, maybe not the most depressing one, but still… Stereogum has printed a clean, reader-friendlier version of Hype Machine's "blogger-sanctioned meta-list beast," which is as good an indicator as any of what indie kids listened to in 2008.
And what a sad, sad sight it is.
The top five albums are by Fleet Foxes, TV on the Radio, Vampire Weekend, Bon Iver and MGMT, in descending order. Just looking at these names makes me want to poke a stick in my eyes. And one in my ears too, for good measure.
There's plenty to say about the list, but I'll focus on one aspect of it: Where are the women? Out of 50 entries, seven bands (Portishead, She & Him, Crystal Castles, Beach House, Ra Ra Riot, Mates of States, the Kills) include women in prominent roles, and then there's a grand total of three female solo artists (Santogold, Lykke Li, Jenny Lewis). Just pathetic.
Seriously, what is wrong with hipsters that they can't relate to women making music? Nowadays, the indie charts are dominated by dudes with beards, whereas the Billboard Hot 100 is a lot more hospitable to women making smart, chart-friendly pop music. I guess that's okay in a way: Taylor Swift, Lady GaGa, Miley Cyrus and Rihanna are the ones laughing all the way to the bank. Still, it'd be nice if they could get the critical respect they deserve, too.