2006 Reader's Choice Awards
Worst Critically-Praised Album
Joanna Newsom - Ys
If you've read about Joanna Newsom's album "Ys" then you probably expressed feelings of intrigue, excitement and eagerness to listen. If you've listened to Joanna Newsom's album "Ys" you probably expressed a similar feeling to that of when KISS first removed their makeup: disturbed, disappointed, and left asking "Why?". Why are all these critics praising a woman whose voice is so is so irritating that upon listening to it you would rather be at a three hour lecture on the biology of laughter taught by Fran Drescher? Why are all these critics praising songs over ten minutes filled with pedantic (the album's named Ys.) lyrics about nature and animals on top of monotonous harp twanging absent of any form of rhythm or melody?
What is happening is the general public is getting to close to the esoteric indie crowd, which is increasingly becoming less esoteric. "Uncultured boors" are attending their "Clap Your Hands Say Yeah!" concerts, so they had to take the unlistenable and pop-insensibility to the next level. They crowned Joanna Newsom's Ys as a masterpiece simply so when detractors question their judgment they can utter one of their favourite platitudes with a smirk: "You just don't get it." Which I would reply with a fist in their black thick rimmed Lisa Loeb glasses. Joanna Newsom's album deserves none of the praise it had received the past year; it's an annoying bore that is only being pushed by a very sinister indie agenda. It's only fitting to give it Worlds Greatest Dad: Worst Critically Praised Album.
-Basil "Zorg" Andrews
Worst Album Made by an Actor
Kevin Federline – Playing with Fire
Since the dawn of time actors and actresses have had the urge to not only entertain us in films and television, but also bring us joy with the art of song. Whether it be Richard Harris singing the classic 'MacArthur Park' or Brian Dennehy's groundbreaking rap album 'Den of Iniquity', celebrities have taken aim at our music charts with their death lasers (metaphorically) and have burrowed their ways into our hearts with their so-called sound. Who was the absolute worst actor/musician in 2006? Well none other than Kevin Federline, unleashing his album 'Playing with Fire' onto the world. I know exactly what you're thinking: "First of all, that guy's not an actor, and B, jokes about Kevin Federline are really old and stale and you're lame and I hate you. Fuck off." Well the joke's on you sucker, because you're wrong. Kevin Federline was in an episode of CSI, and if Chingy's appearance in a stage production of 'A Midsummer's Night Dream' counts as an acting job, then I think we can count K-Fed's single TV appearance and declare him a true thespian.
But TV actors making awful rap albums isn't anything new (for some reason, Brian Austin Green wasn't able to parlay his fame from Beverly Hills 90210 into a successful rap career), an album like 'Playing with Fire' is more than just some typical shitty celebrity cash-in. It's an unflinching look at the state of our culture. We think it's over, but Kevin was just the first of the white trash, Wal-Mart loving, watcher of
According to Jim rappers. There's many more to come, each less talented then the last, each wearing a wifebeater stained with even more with ravioli. And in 200 years, when the world is nothing but a Sizzler parking lot, TV is nothing but The War at Home reruns, and music is the descendants of Kevin Federline and Kid Rock singing duets with the half-frozen body of Chad Kroeger...you will see. Kevin Federline wasn't a flash in the pan. He was the pan, and he was about to spill it's hot grease all over the world and eat it's deep fried remains (non-metaphorically).
Worst Song about Buttsex
John Legend – Save Room
Ugh. This song was drilled into my head by the muzak machine at work, and with each passing play the irritating imagery got worse and worse. It doesn't take much of a stretch (ew pun) to see what creamy cinnamon-colored stains Legend was dreaming about when he wrote this:That plus a chorus chanting "save room for my love"? The only other conceivable possibility is that Legend is singing about the hardships of having a massive dick, which isn't quite as bad, in the sense that having someone shit in your ears isn't as bad as having them jam a screwdriver into them.
This just might hurt a little
love hurts sometimes when you do it right
Don't be afraid of a little bit of pain
pleasure is just on the other side
don't let this moment slip by tonight
you never know what you are missing untill you try
The Killers vs. Green Day
In late 2006, Brandon Flowers had only one thing left to do in order to complete his metamorphosis from meek, skinny dodgeball target to Rock Star [TM]: He needed to start a fight with someone. But who? Despite having grown a rudimentary beard, he still resembled a sullen 14-year-old girl; to ensure his victory, the other party had to be even goofier than he. After considering Moby, Hawthorne Heights, and JoJo, Flowers settled on the biggest, smelliest fish in the barrel: Green Day. He is apparently one of two people (the other being Gladys Smith, age 83, of Atchison, Kansas) to have been offended by the band's DVD, "Bullet in a Bible." As he told Rolling Stone, "I saw it as a very negative thing towards Americans. It really lit a fire in me."
I'm sure we all agree that Green Day is offensive, if not for the reasons Flowers mewled to Rolling Stone. However, that is an award for another year - like so many easily-offended housewives, Flowers is so out of the loop that he criticized a DVD that came out in late 2005. Green Day didn't bother to respond; they were too delighted that someone had finally - finally! - taken their bait. And that's why I nominate the episode as "Dumbest Feud of the Year."
First Annual “Chinese Democracy” Lifetime Achievement Award
Axl Rose/Gun 'n Roses - Chinese Democracy
Like an ever-flowing sewer, popular music represents to the discerning observer an eternally changing river of shit - there's always something different coming down the pipe, and it's usually going to stink. In such a climate, it is occasionally reassuring when a particularly nasty turd one has been expecting fails to materialize.
In this spirit, we inaugurate the "Chinese Democracy" Lifetime Achievement Award to recognize those artists who have mercifully spared us time and again from the inevitable suffering that would have accompanied the release of any new material of theirs. Be it through neurotic nitpicking, crippling drug addiction, or even a simple moment of clarity and self-awareness, these individuals have chosen the path of delay, procrastination, re-re-re-recordings, and even occasional dissolution of all future musical ambition, and for this they deserve our gratitude.
For over a decade much of the world has waited in fear, dreading the day when firebrand dwarf Axl Rose would once again be seen and heard on mainstream radio and television in the context of music. To our great relief, this Sword of Damocles has remained suspended, above our heads to this day, awaiting only the slightest of whims by Mr. Rose to be released, impaling us all and sweeping away our dreams like so many guitar solos in the desert. For his seemingly interminable delay in delivering the long-promised, long-dreaded Chinese Democracy, there can be no doubt that Axl Rose of Guns 'n Roses deserves to be not only the namesake, but also the first recipient of this prestigious award.
Note: Axl Rose has once again promised that Chinese Democracy will be released in the upcoming year. While recent favorable comments by Sebastian Bach confirm that there remains an enthusiasm for this amongst NASCAR fans, emotionally stunted reality TV schlubs and Gilmore Girls bit players, the civilized world remains hopeful that the spirit of this award will not be lost on Axl, and that he will once again prove himself worthy of the honor here bestowed.