2008: your best bits


You've watched, listened and danced. Our On The Record blog was inundated with reader comments on the movies and music of the year. Here's a selection

Tom Waits in the Phoenix Park was the highlight gig of my year. After all the hullabaloo with tickets and IDs, getting into the venue was a breeze and the staff were very polite. Amazing. - Sean D

Waits was very possibly the best musician I saw all year. However, the venue and surroundings were the clear and absolute winner of year's worst. - Peter81

Leonard Cohen. The most wonderful gentleman to ever perform in Ireland. Not even the rain dampened that concert. - Brian

At a combined age of 132, the return of still alive and still living legends Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen must be at the top of this year's live highlights. Lowlight: Prince. - James D

Movies:The Orphanage, Iron Man, Gone Baby Gone, Wall E, Burn After Reading. - Gary M

Album:Early contenders include Portishead, Parenthetical Girls, Sigur Rós, Foals, Bon Iver. - mreeyore

Gig:Animal Collective - Whelans May 19th 2008. Was right up front for this, it was awesome. New album is a killer record too. - Pedro

Live:I saw Bruce and I saw Built To Spill. Both reminded me why I picked up a guitar in the first place , and why I continue to reach for it. On Record: TV On The Radio and Parenthetical Girls pushing themselves beyond anything they'd tried before and pulling it off. Fuck Buttons showing me that I don't hate all noise. No Age, wow. Frightened Rabbit and Bon Iver reminding me that if you've got the songs you don't need much else. Any words that fell from Yoni Wolf's lips. - Ian

Best gig:Leonard Cohen at IMMA. Breathtaking. Best album: The Raconteurs Consolers Of The Lonely. Rock music at its best. Best movie: The Orphanage. A horror movie that is actually scary. - Noise Annoys

Irish album of the year came late in the form of Messiah J The Expert From the Word Go. Stunning release with a lot of legs. Festival of the year for me goes to Castlepalooza in August. Stunning location and one of the best festival crowds of the summer. - Le catch

Gig highlights include Felice Brothers in May and Dengue Fever a few weeks ago in the Sugar Club - both brought the place to life in completely different but very enjoyable ways. Favourite films were The Visitor, a really nicely told tale, and The Dark Knight. A big and quite clever film. - Lorelei

Gig of the year for me was Mr Cohen, by a mile. In a hype-filled year, the album I've enjoyed most has been Shearwater's Rook. A good year for film; my personal fave was Man on Wire. - Tony S

This year was the year Gerry Godley got me into world music. Faves were Astor Piazzolla and Asha Bhosle (old stuff, not released in 2008). Fave new album was Strings Tradition by Mamadou Diabate, Ustad Shujaat Husain Khan and Lalgudi Gjr Krishnan. - Mumblin' Deaf Ro

Primordial in the Button Factory in January was pretty special. Not just an amazing performance but the atmosphere was electric too. The place was rammed, their biggest album (so far) had just come out, rave reviews all over Europe so there was a real homecoming vibe to the gig. - Crunch

Musicwise, because I don't care about anything else, the release of Chinese Democracy was probably the fulfilment of my sole aspiration in life, but Adebisi Shank, Butch Walker, MJEX and Have A Nice Life put out records I'll probably listen to for the rest of my life. If music still exists then. - Dave

Albums:Late of the Pier: Fantasy Black Channel. Glasvegas: Glasvegas. Tabocco: Fucked up Friends. British Sea Power: Do You Like Rock Music? David Holmes: The Holy Pictures. Elbow: The Seldom Seen Kid. Friendly Fires: Friendly Fires. Fuck Buttons: Street Horrrsing. Hercules Love Affair: Hercules Love Affair. Koushik: Out My Window. Lykke Li: Youth Novels. Primal Scream: Beautiful Future. Sigur Rós: Med Sud I Eyrum Vid Spilum Endalaust. - petee

Favourite tracks this year would be: 1. Blitzen Trapper - Furr (Also my favourite album). 2. Bon Iver - Stacks. 3. Vampire Weekend - A-Punk. 4. Elbow - Grounds for Divorce. 5. Santogold - Lights Out. 6. The Black Keys - Psychotic Girl. 7. The Raconteurs - Old Enough. 8. Fleet Foxes - He doesn't know why. 9. Dr. Dog - Hang On. 10. Radiohead - Jigsaw Falling into Place.

Favourite movies - In Bruges and The Dark Knight. - Jack

The Dark Knight will obviously get a lot of very deserved attention in all the end of the year lists, but I think Wall-E is this year's masterpiece. - Vincent

I find it impossible to choose between Leonard Cohen and Tom Waits for the Gig Of The Year title. In any other year, Sigur Rós at EP would win this category hands down, despite great shows from Neil Young, Muse, Grinderman, My Bloody Valentine and Wilco at EP. - John Lynskey

Best Films: Gomorrah, The Orphanage, Hunger, In Bruges. - NiallFor the first time in a few years, I don't have a clear winner for my favourite album. In fact, none has completely knocked my socks off . . . so the second best is albums that have given me a sustained warm feeling that I played over and over and over again . . . these have been Sun Kil Moon, Jape, High Places and Bonny Billy. - Ally

Albums:No Age, Times New Viking, Bon Iver, Why? Vivian Girls, Mogwai, M83 . . . ah jesus there's a lot. Gigs:Bon Iver, Animal Collective, No Age upstairs Whelans (was that this year too?), Wilco, Bonnie Prince Billy, Cool Kids, Plastic Little (for sheer entertainment) - adam

Wall-E, The Lives Of Others, Lars The Real Girl, No Country For Old Men, The Diving Bell The Butterfly, Der Baader-Meinhof Komplex, Hunger, Standard Operating Procedure, Iron Man, In Bruges, Kung Fu Panda, Hellboy II, Gommorah - Conor Furlong

Richard Hawley stunned me at his Vicar Street show back in Feb. Hugely entertaining and what a guitar player! Summer kicked off early with three heroic nights with the Boss. Blue-collar rock roaring loudly into the wealthy D4 neighbourhoods. Looked like he was having the time of his life also. The EP was hugely underwhelming, apart from a triumphant return from That Petrol Emotion. MBV and Underworld were also fantastic. Was very low on quality acts this year! Bon Iver + Fleet Foxes in Tripod + Vicar Street respectively were both excellent. Funny fuckers also! - Lynam

Movies:Man on Wire, Hunger, No Country for Old Men. Albums:MGMT, Fight Like Apes, Joan as Policewoman. Gigs: Leonard Cohen in Kilmainham. Ruby Sessions 9th Birthday with Cathy Davey/Lisa Hannigan/Gavin Glass and One Day International. Bell X1 in Vicar Street. Róisín Murphy at Oxegen. - fionaoc

Film:3 months, 4 weeks, 2 days. Albums:The Walkmen You and Me. Stereolab Chemical Chords. Dodos Visitor. Gigs:MBV in London and EP. Animal Collective in Whelan's last May. - Seán C

Non-Irish albums I liked: Wolf Parade - At Mount Zoomer (in fact, this is my favourite anything of the year) Deerhunter - Microcastles. In fact, they might be the only two that I really liked, rather than just admiring (eg Fleet Foxes) or tolerating. - Pádraig

Nobody has yet managed to mention Glen and Marketa winning an Oscar for Falling Slowly! A song that ages brilliantly, and an unforgettable moment when Marketa was invited back onto the stage to give her bit of the speech. - Gav

As it seems highly unlikely that they will get a mention, thought I might nominate Yazoo for a fantastic gig in the Olympia in June. - Oxygene

Albums:Vampire Weekend, Bon Iver, Foals, Sigur Rós and Fleet Foxes. Gigs: Sigur Rós @ EP, Mercury Rev @ Roisin Dubh, Radiohead @ Malahide. Film: There Will Be Blood, The Dark Knight, In Bruges (great use of Raglan Road). Irish Album: Fight Like Apes. Well worth the wait. - guckletis

Films: Paranoid Park. No Country for Old Men. - cletus_buckley

Bruuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuce. I'd never seen him before and was blown away by the unexpected adrenalin rush. Fantastic. And what a lovely bottom. - Liz

Most Underrated album of the year: Beck - Modern Guilt. Discovery of the year: Primavera Sound. THIS is how to do a festival. Insane gig of the year: Dan Deacon at the Picnic. - Joe

I've not seen half the films that most people mentioned so my favourites will probably not be mentioned anywhere else: Son of Rambow and Female Agents. Big hurrah for the return of the Lighthouse. - Colette

Fine, I missed Leonard Cohen but still some some spectacles. Greatest gig of my life: Tom Waits at the Ratcellar. Second best gig of my life: Duke Special vs Divine Comedy. My first festival ever: Oxegen 2008. - Darren

review of The year