2006: Bought a ridiculous amount of records. Sold lots too. Went to Europe. Had a blast. Discovered tons of great music from France (both new and old). Started a small label. Helped set up a handful of shows. Saw some great ones too. Appreciated the fact that there were an absurd number of great singles put out this year. On with the lists.

Best Singles/EPs of 2006:

20. Anteenagers MC “Let’s Not Have a Party” 7” (Plastic Idol)
Not as jaw-dropping as their debut single, but a pretty strong record, no less.

19. The Hipshakes “Not Oblivians E.P.” 7” (Goner)
Too short, but it’s the best I’ve heard from these blokes yet.

18. The Feelers “Just Can’t Get Enough” 7” (Contaminated)
I thought their earlier records were pretty good, but “Just Can’t Get Enough” and “Heads Off” coupled with a production that better suits their sound makes this my favourite Feelers record yet.

17. The Black and Whites “Fucked Up Heart” 7” (Shattered)
Nothing fancy about this one. Just some pop songs extremely well written, played, and recorded.

16. Lamps “Fred Astaire” 7” (Solid Sex Lovie Doll)
Loud, lurching and sounding as if it’s been recorded at the bottom of the ocean, this record is brutal.

15. Angry Angles “Apparent-Transparent” 7” (Plastic Idol)
The streak of extremely high quality releases from this band continues.

14. The Intelligence “I’m Your Taxi” 7” (Holy Cobra Society)
Took me a while to get past the wall of muck that envelopes these songs, but once I did I couldn’t stop listening.

13. Cheveu “Dog” 7” (S-S)
Further proof that the French know what the fuck is going on.

12. Volt s/t 7” (Hozac)
A bit more Lili Z. sounding than the 12” EPs, this is still one hell of a record. And even though the band called their performance “the worst show we’ve ever played” I still thought seeing them in Belgium this summer was amazing.

11. Rat Traps “New Flesh” 7” (Shattered)
I’m glad I got to see these guys play a few times before they called it a day. This is their best record, and it’s a hate filled scorcher.

10. Fuck Me Dead “Circling Ahead” 7” (Clarence Thomas)
I’ve lived in Vancouver for four years. This is the first local band who’s put out a record in that time that has absolutely killed me. Sucks that they’re no longer.

9. Home Blitz s/t 7” (self-released)
Not much to say about this one that hasn’t been said already, other than I really, really like it.

8. Spider s/t 7” (Hozac)
I was won over when I heard the superb Redd Kross cover, and then somehow the next two songs were even better. Along with the Volt record, an incredibly strong one-two punch to start off a label with.

7. The Time Flys “Reality (Is a Rock Band)” 7” (Birdman)
Their fourth record, and the fourth time they’ve hit the ball out of the park. The b-side is bordering on ridiculous and I don’t think any other band going today would be able to pull it off as well.

6. Psychedelic Horseshit “Who Let the Dogs Out” 7” (Columbus Discount)
Raw, shambling, blown out pop songs and this year’s answer to Times New Viking. Haven’t heard the split between those two bands yet, but I can hardly wait to.

5. The Busy Signals “Can’t Feel A Thing” 7” (Shit Sandwich)
God damn is the title track ever fucking catchy. And while the flip isn’t quite as, uh, absolutely perfect, it still kills anything by all the other pop-infused punk bands going.

4. Cheveu “Clara Venus” 7” (SDZ/Royal)
The quality control at both SDZ and Royal is astounding so it’s no surprise that this single is as great as it is. Punk guitars and driving electro beats combine to make one total mindfuck of a record.

3. Pink Reason s/t 7” (Savage Quality)
Eerie bedroom psych that I can’t stop listening to. And although Pink Reason sounds completely different live (Punk Reason!) than on this record, they still put on one of the better live shows I saw all year.

2. Wooden Shjips “Dance, California” 7” (Sick Thirst) + s/t 10” (self-released)
I’m sort of cheating listing both of these together like this, but fuck it. Every time I listen to these it feels as if someone’s either dropped a bomb on my head or I’m being haunted by ghosts. I also can’t stop watching the video for “Dance, California”.

1. Tyvek “Mary Ellen Claims” 7” (X!)
Two songs, both fairly different from each other, both perfectly executed, in a sleeve that matches the madness between the grooves. As close to perfect as a single can get. More, please.

Best Full Lengths of 2006:

10. Blank Its “Happy Accidents” LP (Empty)
Even though the production could be way better, and I’d heard all of these songs before, “Happy Accidents” is still a good record filled with great songs.

9. Fe Fi Fo Fums “Shake All Night” LP (Boom Boom)
Further proof that you don’t need to reinvent the wheel to make a great album.

8. Headache City s/t LP (Shit Sandwich)
The title track is only one of the many huge pop anthems found on this record.

7. Live Fast Die “Bandana Thrash Record” LP (Dead Beat)
Troglodyte rock with retarded (read: perfect) production. Great songs don’t hurt either.

6. Sic Alps “Pleasures and Treasures” LP (Animal Disguise)
Haunting, atmospheric, blown out psych done extremely well. The 12” EP is no slouch either.

5. Mika Miko “C.Y.S.L.A.B.F.” LP (Post Present Medium)
The best modern day take on the early Rough Trade/Fast Product sound that I’ve heard in a while.

4. Jay Reatard “Blood Visions” LP (In the Red)
A pretty impressive feat for just one dude. “Nightmares”. Wow.

3. Country Teasers “The Empire Strikes Back” LP (In the Red)
No surprise here. It’s the fucking Country Teasers!

2. V/A “Tete de Bebe” LP (S-S)
French weird punk. Best comp I’ve heard in years.

1. The Rebel “Brown Girl in The Ring” CD (self-released)
As much as I like the Country Teasers LP, this one tops it. It’s a shame more people haven’t heard this as it’s truly a remarkable record. The Rebel live, outside, at dusk, in Texas was also quite amazing.

Best Reissues of 2006:

5. Cigarettes “Gimme Cigarette” 7” (S-S)
I think I told a few people this was a Sparks related band, before I found out the truth. Either way, this is weird and awesome.

4. Ich Bin “Obeis” LP (Poutre Apparente)
Two things. First, French people, and French speaking (poorly) English people like me get equal enjoyment out of phrases like “Danger, prepuce” and “Danger, ordinateur” sung by a guy with a ridiculous voice over top of pulsating synths and beats. Secondly, the cover art on this thing generated more discussion and laughs than any other from this year.

3. The Maggots “(Let’s Get, Let’s Get) Tammy Wynette” 7” (Discourage)
Umm, the song’s called “(Let’s Get, Let’s Get) Tammy Wynette”. Do I need to say more?

2. Pointed Sticks “Waiting For the Real Thing” CD/LP (Sudden Death)
Zulu never should have let this thing go out of print in the first place. I’m glad it’s back.

1. V/A “BIPPP” LP (Born Bad)
Had no idea music like this (synthwave) existed during this time period (‘79-‘85) in France, but I’m glad I do now. Supercool.

Best Internet Only (for now) Songs of 2006:

10. Psychedelic Horseshit “Can’t Get Enough”
9. Wax Museums “Cathode Love”
8. Pink Reason “Motherfucker”
7. The Normals with Aline Wild “So Fleshy”
6. The Electric Guitars “Joystick”
5. No Feeling “Torture”
4. A.H. Kraken “Cette Fille Est A Genoux”
3. Black Lips “Buried Alive”
2. Tyvek “Still Sleeps”
1. The Anals “Commando of Love”

Contact Jeff via his Sweet Rot label