Here it is, for what it’s worth: My favorite albums of 2008. I listed them in no particular order – however, I really, really liked those with an asterisk beside them. I also included a link to a sample song from most albums.   

* The Gaslight Anthem – “The ’59 Sound” (listen: “The ’59 Sound“)
Bon Iver – “For Emma, Forever Ago” (listen: “Skinny Love“)
Fleet Foxes – “Fleet Foxes” (listen:”White Winter Hymnal”)
She and Him – “Volume One” (listen: “You Really Gotta Hold On Me“)
* Delta Spirit – “Ode to Sunshine” (listen: “Trash Can“)
* Noah and the Whale – “Peaceful, the World Lays Me Down” (listen: “Shape of My Heart“)
Juliana Hatfield – “How to Walk Away”
Vampire Weekend – “Vampire Weekend” (listen: “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa“)
Blind Pilot – “3 Rounds and a Sound”
The Black Keys – “Attack and Release” (listen: “Remember When (Side B)”)

Honorable Mention:

Kings of Leon – “Only By the Night” (listen: “Sex on Fire”)
Cat Power – “Jukebox”
Various artists – “Juno” (motion picture soundtrack)
Okkervil River – “The Stand Ins” (listen: “Lost Coastlines”)
Ryan Adams & The Cardinals – “Cardinology” (listen: “Go Easy”)
Ani DiFranco – “Red Letter Year”
Watson Twins – “Fire Songs” (listen: “How Am I To Be”)
The Weepies – “Hideaway” (listen: “Antarctica”)
Fleet Foxes – “Sun Giant” (EP) (listen: “Mykonos”)

Best song of the year: “White Winter Hymnal,” Fleet Foxes

Best re-issue of the year: “Murmur, 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition,” R.E.M.

Best return to form: “Accelerate,” R.E.M.