Feeling lazy so I'll just copy and paste this article from an old website last year. Here's a list of the CDs I enjoyed the most from 2004. Note, they don't have to be new releases, the only requirement was that I had to like 'em.
1. CAKE - Pressure Chief
CAKE returns with the kick-ass Pressure Chief CD. If you like CAKE you will enjoy this album from start to finish. All songs are good. You will sing and chant along with the band, particularly with songs such as 'No Phone', 'Carbon Monoxide', 'The Guitar Man', and others. Excellent to listen while coding or driving.
2. Barenaked Ladies - Everything to Everyone
This most highly anticipated CD came out last year and was the most collaborative effort of the Ladies. All songs are good, well worth your money. The longer you listen to the tracks, the more they grow on you. I was surprised that it didn't sell as well as previous BNL albums. Lyrics are very deep and meaningful as is the Barenaked Ladies' style.
3. Barenaked Ladies - Gordon
This was Barenaked Ladies' first commercial album and contains some of their best, most inspired songs. I love listening to 'Hello City' and 'Box Set' on quiet Saturdays or early morning drives. For some reason I can relate a lot to those two songs. It has a more acoustic or jazzy style as compared with their later releases.
4. Frente - Marvin the Album
I remembered that the band Frente had a few minor hits back in the 90's. Angie Hart has a killer voice that will make you fall in love with her. Their music is raw, crazy, and touching. 'Ordinary Angels' and 'Labour of Love' are the best tracks here. If you like something sickeningly sweet, listen to 'Accidentally Kelly Street'.
(Update: I still occasionally listen to the two Frente albums up to now. They really are good.)
5. Paperboy - Nine Yards
This is a classic. It's rap, but it's good rap. I ordered it mainly because I recalled the song 'Ditty' from college days. And was pleasantly surprised that many of the other songs were good too. Good driving and programming music. It contains a considerable amount of profanity and explicit lyrics which you will love to rap along with.
6. Tears For Fears - Everybody Loves a Happy Ending
Tears for Fears evokes fond memories for many of those who grew up in the 80's. I didn't share that nostalgia, but still found this CD very inspiring and entertaining. I like the first song which starts with the line 'Wake Up' as if Orzabal was speaking directly to me. 'The Devil' and 'Call Me Mellow' are my other faves. If you like the style of the Beatles, you'll like this one.
7. Barenaked Ladies - Barenaked for the Holidays
Barenaked Ladies needed some extra cash so they recorded this special Christmas album. What a bonus! I even got into the Christmas spirit for the first time in a long while. The original BNL songs are what makes this great. In particular I enjoyed the country-style song 'Footprints' though I'm still trying to figure out what it's about.
(Update: I'm convinced that 'Footprints' is a Christmas song about stalking.)
8. Frente - Shape
This was Frente's second and last CD. Very underrated album. This was very CAKE-like. Just replace John McCrea's monotone voice with Angie's sweet angellic tone. More low-key and serious than their first release. 'Horrible' (a tongue twister-like song) and 'Jungle' (60's-style) are the tracks that stand out.
9. Marc Almond - The Stars We Are
I had this on cassette tape back in high school. Lots of nostalgia while listening to this one. 'Bittersweet' and 'The Very Last Pearl' are so good, you will listen to them over and over again. Perfect to play in the afternoon with the sun out and the windows open.
10. CAKE - Motorcade of Generosity
CAKE's first album. For some reason I kept playing this CD over and over last summer. The music is pure and raw. Very underrated. Good to listen while working on the computer. Lots of good songs: 'Ruby Sees All', 'Jolene', 'Rock n Roll Lifestyle', and my fave 'You Part the Waters'.