That's right. It's my own damn list. Feel free to post yours below. It's rather comprehensive, but it was a pretty eventful year, so deal with it. Next year will obviously have a 'doomsday' theme... what will annihilate us in 2012? Aztec mystics? Republicans? Zorp/Reasonablists? Massive corporations? Only time will tell. Place yr bets.
FAVORITE RECORDS (in no order):
HONORABLE MENTIONS: JESUS LIZARD, "Club" (Since it's a live record of a reunion tour, does it count? Either way, still middle-aged men putting on a better show than most bands in their prime), TRAP THEM, "Darker Handcraft" (a fully realized bludgeoning to the face from beginning to end, non-stop riff fest), NIGHT OWLS, "Rapture" EP (swan song for this Syracuse group, all-around super catchy, but aggressive, punk/rock jams), YOUNG WIDOWS, "In and Out Of Youth and Lightness" (Enthralled by their progression, and all the great sounds they always conjure up, but doesn't supply quite the kick I was hoping for)
BEST SHOWS OF 2011 (in no order):
1.) ANOTHER BREATH final show(s) weekend, 8.26.11-8.28.11 with Achilles, Oak & Bone, Engineer, Soul Control, Victims, Whiskey, Mayflower, Night Owls, and more in Syracuse and Fulton, NY: A really fun way for a really great band to go out. A total weekend rager.
2.) GAINESVILLE FEST 2011, Gainesville, FL, 10.28.11-10.30.11: tons and tons of bands, great weather, fun people, good times, exhausting weekend. The only reason to really miss Halloween at home.
3.) GREAT FALLS & ENGINEER, 8.9.11, Syracuse: So all of about 20 people were there, but to hear Engineers new full length the whole way through live was inspiring. And to see the Seattle dudes in Great Falls just destroy the place (as it is rare to see these dudes at all) was an extra-special treat.
4.) PRAYERS FOR ATHEISTS, 5.26.11, Syracuse: Sometimes you like a band so much that other people really don't get, and you wish there was a show where people really 'get it' and all go nuts and have fun? This was that show. Maybe 50 people there, but every last person was having fun, dancing, going off, singing along, and having a blast. Plus, drinking smoothies and watching "Dune" late at night with Jared was pretty fun too.
5.) OAK & BONE/ LIKE WOLVES record release show, 7.24.11, Syracuse: It's nice when you have great faith in a couple bands, feel really confident about their new records, and then over 100 people show up in a small venue to share that as well and go totally bonkers for all the bands playing.
BEST OTHER STUFF (in order):
1.) Getting engaged: it only took 6 years
2.) Seattle vacation in April: most relaxed time in my favorite region of the country with great people
3.) Involvement with the Occupy movement: Finally, a populist movement that draws from the experience and energy of many different sub-sections of the activist community under one umbrella to really work for change in desperate times
4.) Flyerstorm: My first art show, a history of Syracuse flyer art from the last 20 years. The crew involved were the best ever to work with and the whole thing went off really great
5.) Great garden harvest this year: If we planted it, it grew. And we ate well. Up the compost soil.
1.) Getting my wallet stolen in Alexandria Bay, the safest, whitest place in the Northeast on the 4th of July
2.) R.I.P. Chocolate. Our poor, young foster cat got sick and died within a couple of days, right in our arms. He was a good little fella.
3.) Having an ulcer most all of the Winter and giving up coffee because of it (see Translate #6)
4.) My car suddenly died out on me at only 90,000 miles when the timing chain snapped and destroyed my engine.
5.) Delta Airlines canceling my flight to NYC (connecting to Seattle) and upon my return as well as a week later. Bastards.