18. Audible, Audible
Download: "Sunday Bell"
Pleasant murmurs and domesticized distortion? It's crisper than Matt Pond PA and most of their Intelligent Adult Contemporary ilk, but it looks like I'm still an indie kid after all. Philly represent!
19. Caesars, Paper Tigers
Download: "It's Not The Fall That Hurts"
When I first heard these guys on the radio I thought they were British assholes ripping off Smashmouth. Turns out they're from Sweden and that "Jerk It Out" has been on their last three albums! The reason the gloppy, echoey production never drowns the songs is that, unlike a lot of Elephant 6, they've got melody and energy worthy of '60s Ray Davies. Like a lot of Elephant 6, I couldn't care less what they're singing about.
20. 50 Cent, The Massacre
Download: "Gunz Come Out"
I wonder if the reason 50 Cent got less love from my fellow blogger-crit tpyes than most criminals is that he's singing all the time. It's funny, because that's why I love it so much. Rapping that flirts with melody, melody that flirts with rapping - I like it when the line blurs. I also like when hooks and gregariousness distract me from the uninspired amorality. I'm surprised others prefer dollops of emo - or like to take it straight.