It's that time of year again. Yes it's time for End of Year lists; a time you either devour avidly or will want to run to the hills to avoid. Guess where I sit on this one?
There are two I always look out for. The first is the Piccadilly Records Top 20 Albums of The Year booklet. That's right a booklet - in these digital-only days it's refreshing to have something tangible and lasting. Especially since this year is the 30th anniversary of the record shop.
So in addition to the Top 20 of the Year (actually they list their whole 100) you get the history of the shop across its three locations plus staff and friends picks of the Top 20 albums from the last 30 years. And it's free. The list only is here.
The other list is the Rough Trade Top 50 Albums (here) - again another record shop which feels like it is run by fans for fans. I don't always agree with either of these two lists but they are never less than interesting and frequently inspiring. And both stores are offering various discounts and selections from their lists (here and here). You can also vote for your top three on the Rough Trade list with Drowned In Sound here - and so stand the chance of winning all fifty albums.
Last.fm for the first year is showing aggregated results of the song, album and artist of the year with Top Tens for each based on number of listens (here, here and here). You may find the results depressing or obvious ...
Some of you and others out there like Catbirdseat (here) ponder the point of End of Year lists. And I have to admit as much as I love 'em, I spend plenty of time railing at the stupidity/obviousness/pointlessness of many (mainly the mainstream print media).
But putting aside all reservations OF COURSE I am compiling my own Top Ten (to be posted here on 12 December) and will be submitting it to the DEFINITIVE blog site for year-end best-of lists: Large Hearted Boy (already well under way here).
Now this is where you can really lose yourself. Or be inspired. Or have you already run to those hills?