Because I bought hardly any new music this year, it’s time to review the best albums that never got made in 2008. I started the list, and James took it away. Let us know in comments what you haven’t enjoyed!
1. Rick Rubin’s archived sessions of the late Don Ho, which posthumously rehabilitated the Hawaiian singer’s career.
2. Sufjan Stevens’ 36-song Hey, What About Indiana? The seven-disc box set of outtakes, released a week later, also includes some gems.
3. Testicle Sandwich, the disappointing, long-overdue Smiths reunion record featuring Buckethead and no Johnny Marr. Morrissey insisted just two years ago that he’d “rather eat his testicles” than re-form the Smiths.
4. The second half of Santogold’s double album, named for her alter ego Agnes Bland.
5. Rourke’s Drift, the Eno/Byrne soundtrack to Mickey Rourke’s loose, booze-soaked adaptation of the classic British military epic Zulu.
6. No one expected that Super Furry Animals would team with Train to ironically cover the adult-contemporary record R.E.M. abandoned before returning to form this year, but Rings Around the Milky Sun is a truly unexpected delight.
7. Halleluja! A triple-gatefold collection of every cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Halleluja” ever made!
8. Chris Cornell’s followup to the ironically under-the-radar Carry On, including “Quantum In My Hand,” rumored to have been Cornell’s rejected attempt at his second Bond theme.
9. Smakkkadelica, the smash hit Prodigy album that’s four times platinum (in Slovakia).
10. That Was It, the occasionally brilliant, rather abbreviated Strokes retrospective.