"Every (Hipster) Music Critic’s Year-End Top 10 List Explained"

January 26, 2011

Upon reading this article on the predictability of year-end top 10 lists, I decided to make my own. Because someone called-out Pitchfork (and me) for being as predictable as the year-end top 10 lists referred to in that article.

10. Any self-respecting egoist music critic is going to pick his/her personal favorite as #1. Also, Mumford & Suns is a hipster Dave Matthews Band, and fuck them.

9. If the author didn’t understand Four Tet’s latest record, there is little hope for him as a music critic, because it’s not dense. He’s dense.

8. This is America, and it’s OK to hate other countries (ironically (unironically), of course). So, fuck all foreign records. Exception: British bands. Because they speak our language, wierdly.

7. Any self-respecting hipster music critic will not include any breakout successes. Rather, they must deride the band’s rise to the top and declare them to be uncool sell-outs. Especially if they have penned many positive articles about that band in the past. Arcade Fire? Yeah, they used to be cool, back when they were unknown and in that one Apple commercial. Now, they’re in many commercials and movies, so they sound like shit, retroactively.

6. Obama is President of the USA. Whites don’t have to go on pretending to like hip-hop anymore. It’s a post-racial world. Let’s all eat spaghetti and Braunschweiger, folks.

5. The old-timer records belong further down the list because they’re only even on the list for irony’s sake. Everybody knows a good hipster has no sense of history, and everybody knows that music only got really good since you started writing top 10 lists. Oh, and in the 80s.

4. Yes, Kanye West does deserve his own spot, despite hip-hop having no place on a modern hipster music critic’s top 10 list. Because Kanye transcends hip-hop. His beautiful dark twisted fantasy is our beautiful dark twisted fantasy.

3. This is the slot for the obvious sub-mainstream hit, actually, the one that almost made it, but didn’t. Because bands who almost sell-out but have to lick their wounds and come crawling back to college radio are the best. MGMT, it’s nice to have you back, you shitty disco hacks.

2. This is the spot for whichever album everyone else chose as #1, obviously. Let’s call this spot “Your Favorite Record is Only my #2 Pick”.

1. And finally, a good hipster music critic is going to put his/her personal favorite here. This is for the album that he/she either a) lost his/her virginity to, b) imagined losing his/her virginity to, c) listened to the most while high, d) listened to while sitting on the hood of a car looking at the night sky pretending to be in some John Hughes movie or something, hoping that someone would pass by and see it, and think “that dude’s pretty cool. It’s like he’s in a John Hughes movie, or something.” For example: 2008–M83, 2009–Animal Collective, and 2010–Beach House.