By Lauren Wise
By New Times
By Amanda Savage
By Jason P. Woodbury
By Troy Farah
By New Times
By Derek Askey
And, with Cocktail Nation still so prevalent among you youngsters, surely those bent on emulating their parents have room in their hearts for a band like Zumpano, which goes out of its way to pay tribute to Jim Webb with obscure cover versions and originals that follow the same ornate pop credo.
Each of these albums is truly one of a kind and worth hunting and clawing to get a copy of. (Dominic)
Best Last Album: The Ramones' Adios Amigos. The band's best effort in the studio since Rocket to Russia is a fitting adieu for punk's progenitors. Standout cuts: a blitzkrieg cover of Tom Waits' "I Don't Wanna Grow Up" and the Spiderman TV theme as only the Ramones could slice and dice it. It's time for the band to hang it up, but it will be missed nonetheless. (Holthouse)
Best Classical Album: Ancient Echoes. With Górecki getting old and the mood for monks fading, the closest thing to a trend in classical music this year was choral music--specifically, Russian choral music, with its edgy Eastern mysticism (like Górecki) and monkish male-choir drone. This anthology of nine spiritualist composers beautifully illustrates the music's magic.