5. Led Zeppelin II — Listening to this again with
stereo changed everything. Between Jimmy Page’s guitar
shredding and Robert Plant’s patented howl, blues metal never
sounded so good.

Mira Levitan
(Courtesy of HBO)

4. “Batman 5”/“Spider-Man 2”
Yes, it’s a bit early, but with Christopher Nolan
(“Memento”) on as director and Christian Bale
(“American Psycho”) cast as The Dark Knight as well as
an enticing preview poster for “Spider-Man 2” things
seem to be back up for the superhero genre

3. Kanye West – “Home” — West’s
allegorical tale of leaving home and loved ones over a ridiculous
beat and hook that must be sung along with, shows why he is one of
the best producer/rappers out now. College Dropout may already be
the album of next year.

2. “The Matrix Revolutions” — I still
have faith. Give the fights some meaning and use the characters for
more than pretty action and this could be a classic. I’m
calling it now — Mr. Smith is one of the old Neos.

1. “The Sopranos” Season 4 DVD — New
Jersey never looked better. Tapping perfectly into post 9/11
Tri-State angst without maudlin attempts for sympathy and
sentimentalism; every aspect of this season works in unison. Deep
continuity, constantly developing characters, deft writing, Meadow
and a friend from high school in the show make the countdown to
Season 5 that much harder.


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