10 Best CDs of 2006 Page 3

0701_music_decemberists200Brett Milano's Top 10 of 2006 Best Sound on CD

1. The Decemberists: The Crane Wife (Capitol). Nothing beats a roomful of beautifully recorded, brilliantly arranged, real live instruments.

2. Bob Dylan: Modern Times (Columbia). "Modern" or not, nobody has gotten this much mileage out of brushed drums in decades.

3. Mission of Burma: The Obliterati (Matador). As rich and overwhelming sonically as it is musically.

4. David Gilmour: On an Island (Columbia). A musical disappointment, but it's the mythical Floydian studio textures straight from the source.

5. Robert Pollard: Normal Happiness (Merge). No kidding: The former king of low-fi gets some of the warmest guitar sounds around.

6. TV on the Radio: Return to Cookie Mountain (4AD). So beautiful sonically that nobody bothered to write any songs.

7. Lindsey Buckingham: Under the Skin (Reprise). Whether solo or Mac, his writing and recording knacks are inseparable.

8. New York Dolls: One Day It Will Please Us to Remember Even This (Roadrunner). That full-throttle Jack Douglas sound proves as timeless as the band's.

9. The Dresden Dolls: Yes, Virginia ... (Roadrunner). Or, how to make a Give 'em Enough Rope out of a band with a piano-slinging frontwoman and no guitars.

10. Dixie Chicks: Taking the Long Way (Open Wide/Columbia). Rick Rubin's trademark audio-verité is a key to the trio's reinvention.