Best Folktronica Artist - 2005
n.Lannon (Nyles Lannon)
Lannon's Chemical Friends (released last year on Badman) is kind of like those old Reese's peanut butter cup commercials -- you know, the ones where two people bump into each other while eating snacks, and one says, "Hey, you got your peanut butter in my chocolate!" and the other says, "You got your chocolate in my peanut butter!" and then they taste them and cry, "Yum!" The San Francisco-based artist (who's also the guitarist in local noise-pop band Film School) makes folk and electronic music sound that much better by putting them together. His gauzy synthesizers and pitter-pattering drum machines make his delicate guitar-strumming and reedy voice more complex, while the acoustic instrumentation adds an earthy texture to his computerized concoctions. To top things off, Lannon writes thoughtful, melancholy lyrics -- similar to what Elliott Smith might've come up with if he'd discovered Paxil and a drum machine instead of the sharp end of a knife.