I'm still working on my epic post about the RZA's production style and the brilliance of Inspectah Deck's wordplay on Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), but in the meantime, a couple of quick comments about the Grammys and the shocking (!) upset by the Arcade Fire, Texplush's most hated of bands.
I actually watched the whole show last night for the first time in years. The Grammys are kind of hilarious. They go out of their way to make themselves as irrelevant as possible, starting with the idiosyncratic eligibility period of September - September. So you get Grammys in 2011 for Lady Gaga's album from 2009.
Then there's the fact that the nominations/winners have very little correllation to either critical acclaim (ie, music publications' year-end best-of lists, etc) or sales/popularity. No knock against Steely Dan, but Two Against Nature was far from the best album from 2000-1, but neither was it the best selling. So then what was it? I'm not saying it was bad, but what does it mean to have an "Album of the Year" that's neither critically acclaimed nor popular.
Anyway, Arcade Fire's win is a rare nod to the critical community-- it might not have been the critical consensus favorite of the year (Kanye will have to wait until next year's awards, because his album came out in November), but it definitely appeared on all of the usual lists. I liked how genuinely surprised they were-- they even *gasp* smiled!
And the thing is, despite Arcade Fire selling out MSG, having a number 1 album (which at this point, seems like one of the less impressive achievements out there), and now Album of the Year, most people still don't know who they are!: