Welcome to Check Your Mode

The all-inclusive, ever-changing, and uncomfortably flexible guide to all things music in the 2010's.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

December Is Modicums Month!

What a year this has been. So many things in my life have changed (mostly for the better), and, as such, this blog has seen its fair share of alterations in layout, format, style, viewership, output, input and so many other things. I have tried my best over the last year and a half to provide a varied, eclectic view of the current musical landscape with inventive and insightful reviews, a service which I personally see very little of in most critical formats. From guitar to xylophone, from Portland to Osaka, I’d like to think I have and will continue to provide as many people as possible with an enveloping experience of what the 2010’s have to offer.

Through these incredible 18 months, one particular post has stood out from the rest. That being “We Begin at the End,” the ginormous year-end list I compiled of all the 2010 records I had rated ranked from worst to greatest, with greatest songs and performances featured as well. The fact that it is by far the most viewed post on Check Your Mode is understandable and incredibly encouraging to me, because, to be honest, all this work I’ve been doing really does come down to the year-end lists that I obsessive over daily. The writing is a very important part of this blog as well, but I’m a lists guy at heart.

So, some of you may have noticed that one of the tags on that post was something called “Modicums 2010.” And perhaps some of you wondered what that meant, considering I never used such a phrase throughout the entire post. Well, I am incredibly pleased to announce what The Modicums are: They are Check Your Mode’s month-long countdown of the greatest albums, singles and musical performances of the year!

Doesn’t sound that radical, right? I mean, “We Begin at the End” was basically that in one big post. Well, unfortunately, I didn’t have the time or the resources to go through the whole shpeal of organizing a month-long event. But, now, a year later, I have made those very preparations, and I am quite proud of myself for that in case you were wondering. Hopefully, this year will see the spurring of an annual tradition/blowout that will be a fun, interactive experience for all following along.

So how will it work? Well, starting December 1st, we will post ten slots a day, five for albums and five for songs. Each day, we will count down from #50, until December 9th, when we get to the top 10. Then, there will be a two-week gestation period for the suspense to build for the musical event of the year. From the 22nd onward, we will count down the best albums and songs one by one. Then, on December 31st, The Modicums will be posted, in which the number one album and song will be revealed, and all of the other Modicum awards will be posted for greatest guitar, bass, percussion, other instrument and male and female vocal performance on an album and song.

Then, after that epic climax in the post-coital days of early January, I will post some stuff about the albums I missed (Because there are always albums I miss), an update on albums released in November and December, and maybe even a Couldawouldashoulda for the entire year. I’m not so certain about that whole period, though; the stuff posted then might end up being more of a surprise.

But what IS certain is that The Modicums 2011 are totally going down, and you should totally be as excited as I am. I have literally been planning this thing for two years, so I’m really excited to get around to doing it. In the meantime, I’ll try to write more reviews, but I hope you forgive me if I continue the lull that’s been going on since August in preparation for this great feat. If that ends up being the case, I’ll see you in December, fuckers! But seriously, thank you so much for reading, and I hope to continue to expose you all to some new and interesting music. That’s what I’m here for.

Below is a more organized write-up of the Modicums schedule and the awards that will be given. Have a great November, everyone, and stay awesome. Peace.

Modicums 2011 Schedule
Dec. 1st:             Albums/Songs #50 – 46
Dec. 2nd:             Albums/Songs #45 – 41
Dec. 3rd:            Albums/Songs #40 – 36
Dec. 4th:            Albums/Songs #35 – 31
Dec. 5th:            Albums/Songs #30 – 26
Dec. 6th:            Albums/Songs #25 – 21
Dec. 7th:            Albums/Songs #20 – 16
Dec. 8th:            Albums/Songs #15 – 11
Dec. 22nd:            Album/Song #10
Dec. 23rd:            Album/Song #9
Dec. 24th:            Album/Song #8
Dec. 25th:            Album/Song #7
Dec. 26th:            Album/Song #6
Dec. 27th:            Album/Song #5
Dec. 28th:            Album/Song #4
Dec. 29th:            Album/Song #3
Dec. 30th:            Album/Song #2
Dec. 31st:            Album/Song #1 and Modicums 2011

Modicums Awards
Best Vocal Performance on an Album (Male)
Best Vocal Performance on a Song (Male)
Best Vocal Performance on an Album (Female)
Best Vocal Performance on a Song (Female)
Best Guitar Performance on an Album
Best Guitar Performance on a Song
Best Bass Performance on an Album
Best Bass Performance on a Song
Best Percussion Performance on an Album
Best Percussion Performance on a Song
Best Other Instrument Performance on an Album
Best Other Instrument Performance on a Song


Couldawouldashoulda's October 2011

Yeah, there were a few records that just barely didn't make the final cut.

And that's a shame, because all three of those records are awesome. But there is one Couldawouldashoulda that I am quite excited about:

Who's not putting a Radiohead album on his Top Fifty List? THIS GUY. I was really nervous as the months went on and it still remained there, but now it's gone so you can rest assured that it will be nowhere on my year-end aggregate. Isn't that fantastic?!!!!

Nevertheless, I cannot deny it is an excellent album. Review Here