Best Albums 2008: 1 – Fleet Foxes

Fleet Foxes have everything going for them. They’ve got amazing vocal skills. The multi-part melodies and powerful lead parts are unmatched in all of music (sorry Aretha – you’ll have to move over for a bunch of guys from Seattle). Fleet Foxes also play great music, with excellent guitar lines and brilliant drumming.

And then there’s the atmosphere. Fleet Foxes is a very organic album, full of natural imagery and a timeless scope. Open spaces fill out with the gorgeous echoes of guitar and crooning in “Tiger Mountain Peasant Song.” Yet no particular era or location seems to account as the source of such beauty. You can’t seem to pinpoint a winter theme, a spring awakening, a summer journey through the night, or an autumn jaunt through the leaves in a forest. But it all seems so natural, so perfect, for whenever you are.

Fleet Foxes released this debut in June to much fanfare and its power is such that it still feels fresh in the frigid climates of December. This is a magical album that enchants the mind with every listen. Very few releases in the past twenty years have held such a distinction. Yes, Fleet Foxes is the best album of 2008. That was easy – there was no competition. This is miles ahead of any followers.

More importantly, Fleet Foxes is the best album of the decade, eclipsing even the majesty of The Moon and Antarctica and the stunning urgency of Kid A. It’s absolutely priceless in every way, representing the height in folk music and the true power of “indie” rock. Emotions and music combine here in the best way – get this and treasure it forever. Fleet Foxes is a keeper.