Best of 2008: #17, Gnarls Barkley

Rank: #17
Album: The Odd Couple
Artist: Gnarls Barkley
Label: Atlantic

Checking in at #17 on our countdown is Gnarls Barkley's The Odd Couple.  The second album from the duo, comprised of Cee-Lo and Danger Mouse, The Odd Couple fuses a rock, hip hop and soul for yet another set of catchy and universally appealing tracks.  Am I the only one who thinks that this record was better than St. Elsewhere?  It's possible, but either way, you're looking at a Grammy-nominated record.  Though I'm supportive of that fact, if The Odd Couple beats out In Rainbows for Best Alternative Music Album, it'll just be another reason to scoff at the Grammy's (lack of) credibility.

So what's so great about this record?  I have a hard time putting my finger on it with this one.  It could be the atmosphere created by it.  Starting with opener "Charity Case," you can't help but feel good while listening to this one, even with the jumps from relaxed to hyper (see "Run").  It may just be the enjoyment I get out of listening to alternative hip hop acts.  Either way, I can't help but get a lot out of hearing this one.  Have you ever listened to an album a ton, and yet still not been able to pinpoint its flaws and weaknesses?  I think this may be a first in my book.  It's mind boggling still, as I'm writing about it, that I cannot seem to peg what draws me in about The Odd Couple.  Puzzling, to say the least.  Besides that, I get lost in this record very easily.  Every few tracks I'm broken out of it, but for the most part, I am seemingly entranced when listening.  It's just occurred to me that it reminds me of Jimi Hendrix, in vibe only.  Strange.  Comparisons, besides that, would be N*E*R*D, Outkast and The Roots.

Best Track: "Going On"

Going On(LIVE) - Gnarls Barkley

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