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5 Best albums of the year

Metro editors were divided on Kanye West the person, but the strength of his album is hard to argue.

The Top 5

1 Kanye West, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy”
2 LCD Soundsystem, “This is Happening”
3 Sleigh Bells, “Treats” / Ar­cade Fire, “The Suburbs” (tie)
4 Girl Talk, “All Day”/ The Roots, “How I Got Over” (tie)
5 Big Boi, “Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty”

Editors’ Panel

» I’d like to go on record as probably the sole Metro staffer who has no idea why people like Kanye West’s music. –Monica Weymouth

» I think the Kanye album is just as awesome as he says it is, musically, at least. But with some of his lyrics, it’s like he doesn’t respect how good the music is, which is part of the weird contradiction that I think somehow makes us all so interested in him. Take “Runaway” — why rap about sending photos of his genitals in a song that is so much more powerful than that? –Pat Healy

» I’ve got to say I wasn’t a Kanye believer until this album. Even though his incredible narcissism shows up all over this record, the songs were somehow so amazing that you could get over that. Also, I would like to elevate The Roots and kick Girl Talk clear off the list, considering this is his third album of doing the same kinds of mash-ups that other people mastered 20 years ago. –Heidi Patalano

» Kicking Girl Talk off the list? You can’t. He’s too important to what music is today. Yes, people were doing mash-ups 20 years ago. But if that’s your sticking point, that’s like complaining that a Ferrari is derivative of a 1920 Model T Ford. –PH

» I can’t listen to Girl Talk for more than five minutes, but I can run to it for 45, which is saying a lot. Anyone who can make me enjoy being on a treadmill is a god in my book. –Dorothy Robinson

» I just have to register my annual “Why don’t you guys love The National as much as I do?” complaint. –Amber Ray

» As for Arcade Fire, they just can’t stop making music that is perfect for white people in their 30s, which I happen to be. –DR

» “This is Happening” makes me incredibly, outrageously, thoroughly happy in a way an album hasn’t in a while. –MW

» Everybody loves a good underdog story, and Big Boi’s “Chico Dusty” sticks it to those big labels who continue to only back cookie-cutter, sure things — and it’s sad to say Big Boi is an underdog, considering the Grammy-winning rapper has sold more than 30 million albums and wears just as kooky outfits as the more popular Andre 3000. –Tina Chadha

» By the way, I really think in five years, those who voted for Kanye for No. 1 will feel foolish. It just won’t withstand the test of time, like, perhaps, Wilco’s “Yankee Hotel Foxtrot” has. –DR

» It will be interesting to see how time treats this album and how time treats Kanye West. He recently wrote on his Twitter page that he has put on his lifetime to-do list to become the greatest rapper of all time. I believe him, but the rhymes on this album are not those of the guy who has become the greatest rapper of all time, but of the guy who just might. –PH

»It’s crazy how much we all analyze Kanye. –TC

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