Tonight in Seattle:  

Three Imaginary Girls Best Northwest Releases of 2005 Readers' Poll Results {20-11}

TIG Best of 2005

{50-41} * {40-31} * {30-21} * {20-11} * {10-1}
{top 100} * {imaginary picks}

Math & Physics Club#20 Math and Physics Club — Weekends Away/Movie Ending Romance EPs (Matinée)
Blending the equal parts Belle & Sebastian, Magnetic Fields, and The Lucksmiths, this Seattle band write songs to comfort the saddest of hearts, or skip with the gleeful. Without depending on depression-filled admissions or teenage angst, they tug at your heartstrings with their warm landscape of timeless melodies. {igLiz}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review} * {interview}

 

 

Pale Pacific, Urgency#19 The Pale Pacific — Urgency (Sidecho)
While changing their name to avoid a lawsuit, The Pale Pacific crafted a worthy successor to their 2002 masterpiece, Gravity Gets Things Done. Urgency is a much darker album, with denser instrumentation. "Identity Theft" — a tale of a father trying to enlist his son into a life of crime that shifts perspectives and tempo frequently — is one of the best pop songs of the year. Or any other year. {ChrisB}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review} * {interview}

 

Schoolyard Heroes, Fantastic Wounds#18 Schoolyard Heroes — Fantastic Wounds
(The Control Group)
Schoolyard Heroes' frontwoman Ryann Donnelly roars, soars, and frightens us in the best of ways with her astonishing vocals and her bold stage presence. Through 2005, she has led Schoolyard Heroes like a demonic prom queen through a frighteningly great release and a staggering number of off-the-hook live shows. {igDana}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review}

 

 

The New Pornographers, New Cinema#17 New Pornographers — Twin Cinema (Matador)
While mucking with weird timing signatures and a diminished role for Neko Case, it would be easy to write off the latest from Vancouver's best pop band. Fortunately, Carl Newman understands the craft of pop songwriting better than anyone since Brian Wilson. The songs here are as catchy as those on their past releases, and the harmonies from singers Newman, Case, Dan Bejar and the Newest Pornographer Kathryn Calder (Newman's long-lost niece) are irresistible, too. {ChrisB}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review}

 

The Purrs, The Dreams Our Stuff Is Made Of#16 The Purrs — The Dreams Our Stuff is Made Of (Self-released)
The darkly tinged dour-rock of The Purrs has enamoured fans and DJs alike this year, with nearly unprecedented local radio support and opening spots for luminaries like The Wrens, The Heavenly States, and Voyager One. Their brand of acerbic guitars, inky vocals, and broody atomospherics and themes propelled The Dreams Our Stuff is Made Of to the top of the local rock pack. Meow! {igDana}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review}

 

 

The Divorce, The Gifted Program#15 The Divorce — The Gifted Program (Made in Mexico)
It's a lot to ask, to follow up an album as brilliant as 2003's There Will Be Blood Tonight, but the Divorce has answered our cries with a release full of catchy guitars and confident vocals that become more addictive with each listen. They've not only grown in size (from a trio to a four-piece), but their more mature sound also combines our fave moments of the 80's and 90's into a glossy package worthy of a Spin cover in 2006. {igLiz}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review}

 

Tea for Julie, Division#14 Tea for Julie — Division
(Self-released)
This Portland, Oregon band wails and rocks straight through 13 tracks of swirly, poppy, heavy bliss. Their buoyant energy and surreal melodies mesh to form biting and experimental songs. Anglophiles will likely find this Britpop-roots debut especially captivating. {Stella}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review}

 

 

 

Daylight Basement, Any Kind of Pretty#13 Daylight Basement — Any Kind of Pretty (Self-released)
Daylight Basement blazed onto the field during the last minutes of 2005's 4th quarter with their game-winning, effervescent debut. Bre Loughlin come-hithers her way through jarring vocals, while new wave sugar-pop melodies muddle with murkier twinges of post-punk abrasion. And faux horns! Highly danceable, highly enjoyable, and highly recommended. {Stella}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review} * {interview}

 

The Long Winters, Ultimatum#12 The Long Winters — Ultimatum (Barsuk)
The range of emotion found within the confines of this five-song EP follows suit with what we've come to expect from John Roderick, a guy who makes McSweeney's feel low-brow. With beautifully dancing layers of acoustic harmonies melted over intricate guitar arrangements, this immaculately produced release makes water taste like wine. {igLiz}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review}

 

 

The Hot Rollers, Got Your Number#11 The Hot Rollers — Got Your Number
(Sweaty Betty)
More than just sassy garage rockers, this all-girl Seattle trio has up'd the Joan Jett ante with sixties flirts and L7 gut-punches. Their sound is, at once, cheeky, clever and crafty. We love good girls gone bad. Or are they bad girls, gone good? {igLiz}
{official website} * {buy it} * {review}

 

 

 

 

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