Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Top Albums of 2010.10. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
I wrestled with what to put in this 10th spot. Other contenders included Band of Horses or Dr. Dog. Ultimately, I decided on The Suburbs, not because I enjoy the album that much, but because Arcade Fire at least attempted to sound differently. I was disappointed in this album- I think it's definitely too long, and I don't think commenting on suburbia is very novel, but I can't deny they are some good songs on it. I may not have listened to this album with any frequency this year, but if you were out in the world at all, you couldn't avoid it.
9. Best Coast - Crazy For You
True, Best Coast isn't particularly deep, but it's fun, poppy, catchy, etc. Between Best Coast and Sleigh Bells (and the semi-disappointing Corin Tucker Band album), I was glad to have some new girl rock.
8. Titus Andronicus - The Monitor
Titus Andronicus' 2nd album seems more mature to me than their debut, and the literary and historical themes lend weight to their anger and indignation. Thusly, I enjoy this album a good deal more than The Airing of Grievances. Plus, you have to admire a bunch of civil-war-loving punks.
7. Vampire Weekend - Contra
Vampire Weekend proves they're more than just a gimmick. It took me a while to get into this album, but it's just as good or better than their first. And I'm always impressed with how tight they are as a band.
6. Wolf Parade - Expo 86
Never was much of a Wolf Parade fan. Almost could say I actively disliked them. But holy hell, this is a good album. It's totally changed my mind about them.
5. Tallest Man on Earth - The Wild Hunt
I came into this album late in the year, but it immediately captivated me. Folky but not quiet or boring, it's a perfect winter soundtrack. Swede Kristian Matsson is not new to the music scene, just new to me. And what a lovely discovery.
4. Superchunk - Majesty Shredding
Superchunk took 9 years off after a mediocre 8th album, during which members fostered some of the most important indie rock of the past decade with Merge Records, then came back to record an excellent record that rivals some of their best. In a music scene overwrought with blippity blops, chillwave, and glo-fi bullsh*t, it's refreshing to hear a band with guitars just have fun and rock out. I also find it reassuring as I head further into my 30's, that just because they're older, doesn't mean they rock any less.
3. Sleigh Bells - Treats
Simultaneously loud, fuzzy, poppy, and fluffy, Sleigh Bells charted pretty new territory this year. They may have been much hyped over the year, but this is one instance where the hype is merited. I probably listened to this album more than any other this year.
2. The National - High Violet
I've always like The National, but never considered them a truly essential band. With High Violet, they've launched themselves into the top tier of indie rock that I love. This album refines what they're best at- moody rock without frills or whistles- and I find that quite refreshing.
1. Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
I am fully willing to forgive Kanye West's enormous ego if he keeps making albums like this. I really haven't been listening to much hip hop lately, but this album is good enough to shake my white-girl bias. Plus, he collaborates with Bon Iver in one of the year's most unlikely pairings. People would probably frown upon the amount that I sing some of these songs to Lucy.
Carrie at 12/29/2010
- at 10:37 AM said...
Very nice list and great call on posting so many live versions.