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Music

2008: The best & worst in music

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Most anticipated album: Guns N’ Roses, Chinese Democracy.

Most disappointing album: Guns N’ Roses, Chinese Democracy.

Weirdest celebrity project: Scarlett Johansson’s Tom Waits covers collection, Anywhere I Lay My Head.

Best album by nine dudes in weird masks: Slipknot, All Hope Is Gone.

Best album by one dude in a weird mask: Buckethead, Albino Slug.

Best European dance-pop album that took three years to reach the U.S.: Robyn, Robyn.

Best European dance-pop album that will probably take three years to reach the U.S.: Alphabeat, This Is Alphabeat.

Best cameo: Elvis Costello, on Fall Out Boy’s “What a Catch, Donnie.”

Most welcome reunion: My Bloody Valentine.

Most unnecessary reunion: New Kids on the Block.

Most overrated new band: Vampire Weekend.

Most underrated old gal: Emmylou Harris.

Riskiest move: Kanye West ditching rhymes for Auto-Tune.

Stupidest move: Rolling Stone magazine’s downsize.

Best Miley Cyrus song (Miley Cyrus division): Miley Cyrus, “7 Things.”

Best Miley Cyrus song (non-Miley Cyrus division): Demi Lovato, “Get Back.”

Best viral hip-hop video: 50 Cent (holding a mock funeral—and crying real tears—for Fat Joe after the latter’s album debuted with weak sales figures).

Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor.

Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor.

Coolest online development: The launch of Pitchfork.tv.

Saddest online development: The death of StylusMagazine.com.

Best live light show: Nine Inch Nails.

Lamest Vegas cancellation: My Morning Jacket.

Most significant venue closure: Jillian’s.

Most distressing development: Vegoose’s pullout.

Best Vegas residency—ever: Prince, Club 3121 at the Rio.

Breakout new local act: Afghan Raiders.

Least welcome local breakup: Sparkler Dims.

Best local EP: Caravels, Hunt Things.

RIP: M.I.A. frontman Mike Conley.

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