Annal: 2005 Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album

Results of the Grammy Award in the year 2005.

Album:Get Behind Me Satan

Get Behind Me Satan

The White Stripes

Their fifth album, Get Behind Me Satan is the strangest and least focused effort by these unlikely garage rock superstars to date. It’s also their finest, an Exile on Main Street-ish mish-mash where the sum is greater than the parts. In a market increasingly driven by singles and downloads, it’s nice to be reminded how exciting an album can be, especially one where you really don’t know what to expect next. There are a lot fewer pounding guitars on this album. They’ve largely been replaced by pounding pianos. Most songs sound like rough mixes at…

Album:Funeral

Funeral

Arcade Fire

“Wake Up,” a track from, Funeral, the debut full-length by Montreal’s Arcade Fire, builds from a midtempo strum into a “You Can’t Hurry Love” gallop, which singer Win Butler interrupts with a yell: “You better look out below!” Somehow, none of this hits the ear as over-emotional. Throughout Funeral, the band augments its five-piece line-up with string sections, weaving a near-cinematic, folk-influenced chamber pop that slots in somewhere between Belle and Sebastian’s delicacy and the robust classicism of ‘80s New Zealand bands such as the Chills and…

Album:Guero

Guero

Beck

Now that Beck has effectively exorcised his personal demons with 2002’s hyperconfessional Sea Change, he can get back to the business of being a total fruit loop. We all know what that involves: videogame sound effects, random shouting in Spanish, and rhymes about popsicles and vegetable vans. And that’s just the second track. Guero is like every Beck album condensed into one, a no-holds-barred collision of two-turntables and a microphone with the added bonus of guitars, bossa-nova beats, Jack White, lyrics about spaceships, and dumptrucks full of…

Album:Plans

Plans

Death Cab for Cutie

When an indie-rock band as intimately and fiercely loved as Death Cab for Cutie makes the inevitable major-label jump, it often telegraphs a painful death. Witness Husker Du, the Replacements, Nirvana—hell, even R.E.M. After a successful four-album run on tiny Seattle imprint Barsuk, however, Death Cab for Cutie just might buck the trend on its Atlantic premiere. Yes, you can grumble about the production (a little too slick), the proportion of ballads (a little too many) and the overall feeling of restraint (a little too much), but ultimately the album delivers…

Album:You Could Have It So Much Better

You Could Have It So Much Better

Franz Ferdinand

After more than a year spent on the road behind their breakthrough self-titled debut—just how many times can Alex Kapranos sing “Take Me Out” without getting his skinny tie into a knot, anyway?—you might expect the members of Franz Ferdinand to feel a little frayed around the edges. But if You Could Have It So Much Better was supposed to be a bloated sophomore album focusing on bad airline meals and cold hotel swimming pools, somebody forgot to tell the Mercury Music Prize winning Scottish quartet. Instead, the Franzies return with a disc packed with…

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