2010 – My Favorite Albums

Posted: December 21, 2010 in Favorites

This took a while but here’s the list of my favorites albums of 2010.

My Favorite Albums of 2010 (alphabetical order by band)

Arcade Fire – Suburbs

Pretty good album overall would be a great album if they cut a few songs. Not my favorite Arcade Fire album but even a weak Arcade Fire album is better than most of the other stuff out there.

The Black Keys – Brothers

One of my favorite albums of the year start to finish. I pretty much love every song on here. You can’t listen to these album without having a good time. This also happens to be their best album.

Broken Social Scene – Forgiveness Rock Record

I wasn’t too familiar with this band before this album but I listened to their latest album a ton during the summer. They were playing Pitchfork so I wanted to see what all the hype was about. I don’t remember much of their Pitchfork performance but I’m glad I listened to this album.

The Dead Weather – Sea Of Cowards

This year I listened to a lot of the Dead Weather and saw them live twice. Their second album kind of came out of nowhere, coming less than a year after their first.  It has a good sound and I enjoyed it more than their first one. The band now seems more like a cohesive unit rather than a few musicians jamming together for a one-off. It’s not the most commercially appealing of Jack White’s bands but I certainly enjoy it.

Tim Kasher – The Game of Monogamy

It seems lately that every other thing I say is about Tim Kasher. By the end of the year I will have seen four Tim Kasher shows plus one Good Life show and one Cursive show. Obviously, I am a big fan of his. I wasn’t sure what to expect from his solo stuff. It’s very emotional like his other music but just a little softer. It’s not too much of a leap from his work with the Good Life. This album is full of regret, nostalgia, and self-doubt. The songs are well-written with lyrics that feel so personal you can only hope that they are mere fiction. Anyways, it’s a really good album if not a little depressing and cynical.

LCD Soundsystem – This Is Happening

I don’t think I listened to this album much until right around Pitchfork. I wasn’t really familiar with LCD Soundsystem but I thought I should listen to him since I already had a ticket to the show. I was little more intrigued once I learned that James Murphy produced the Rapture’s “House of Jealous Lovers,” a song that I listened to often in college. Given that, it wasn’t a stretch to get into infectious songs like “Dance Yrself Clean.”  Anyways, along came Pitchfork and LCD Soundsystem gave the best performance of the weekend. After the amazing performance at Pitchfork, this album went into heavy rotation. I’ve probably listened to this one about twenty times and I like it more each time.

Robyn – Body Talk

This album (or is it three mini-albums?) is one of my guilty pleasures. I’ve been into Robyn since Cobrastyle but her performance at Pitchfork this year reignited my interest. Some of these songs are a little too much dance pop for me but overall it’s a good album.

Rogue Wave – Permalight

I didn’t even hear about this band until shortly before SXSW but I’ve liked everything I’ve heard by them. Their latest album has a lot of good, poppy songs. I’m not really sure how this band isn’t bigger. Anyways, Permalight is definitely worth picking up.

Spoon – Transference

It took me longer to get into this album more than any other Spoon album but it eventually grew on me. It’s not the best Spoon album but it’s worth a listen.

Sundowner – We Chase The Waves

Over the past three years, Sundowner has become one of my favorite bands. I’ve listened to their first album well over a hundred times. Needles to say, I had very high expectations for the follow up. Thankfully, the second album did not disappoint. We Chase The Waves is just as good if not better than the first album. Chris slowed down his guitar for this one, making for a poppier, catchier album. Although there is less frenetic strumming, there is no less emotion on this follow up. A must buy, especially if you live in Chicago.

Superchunk – Majesty Shredding

I didn’t listen to Superchunk too much in their heyday but I had been listening to them a lot over the last five years. When they went on tour and came out with a new album this year, I was pretty excited. They hadn’t put out a new album since 2003 but there was no rust to shake off for these guys. Superchunk’s latest is full of energy and sounds great just like their old ones. It just as easily could have come out in 1990, and that’s a good thing.

Surfer Blood – Astrocoast

This album is fun, poppy, indie music. I saw these guys open for Art Brut last year and I really liked their sound. Their songs were super catchy so I was able to recognize them after a few listens. Astrocoast, their first album, came out in January of this year. It’s kind of hard to believe how big they are getting in such a short time. They were packing crowds in at SXSW and Pitchfork this year but I guess that’s what happens when you write good music.

The Tallest Man On Earth – The Wild Hunt

I wasn’t too familiar with this guy until the Pitchfork line up was announced. His music was pretty good and fit in with a lot of the folk stuff I’d been listening to at the time. It’s nothing ground-breaking but it’s good, well-written music. It also doesn’t hurt that he performs well live.

Rocky Votolato – True Devotion

I spent a lot of time this year listening to Rocky Votolato and I ended up seeing him play three times. I didn’t buy this album until the latest time I saw him but by then I pretty much knew all these songs. It’s not too different from his earlier albums but it’s still quality music. “Sparklers” is one of my favorites in particular.

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