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|Favourite Albums Of 2010|
My favourite albums of 2010, and it has been a great year for me. After
the mixing pot that was 2009, this was a bit more... bam. For me.
You give a band some hype, and how do they repay you? It's easy to be hyped
up in the UK, given the amount of absolute bull that has come out of here for
the past couple of decades. Luckily The Drums didn't cave, and they simply
continued to do what they do best, and this album (although perhaps slightly out shaded by it's preceding EP) just screams fun.
My my, Justin Vernon sure got about this year, didn't he? Whilst he did
exceptional work with The National, and Kanye West, he shines on this album
that completely takes you into the world that Anais Mitchell intends to transport
you to. Great for easy listening, it managed to grab your attention, and doesn't
let go until you release the album has finished.
I was rather hoping that Panda Bear would put something out in 2010, but that
will have to wait for 2011. Although in Animal Collectice Avey Tare's musicality
thrives, on his own I've felt his past works a little bit crowded from something
that you'd prefer as something a bit more personal. Down There does not suffer
in this way, and instead it forgets what it should be, and just shows you what it
does. There's enough here to make any fan of Animal Collective find something
they like, and with repeated listens, opens itself up to show you Avey Tare's
wishes, and deepest dreams. It also, sadly, shows you just how magical Animal
Collective actually is, as the amalgamation of this and Panda Bear's work isn't
even worth sitting in the shadow of the epic's the band have put out. Still, it's
|9||The Tallest Man on Earth|
The Wild Hunt
Simply put, a lovely folk album. It's not ranked higher by me for a couple of
reasons, the way in which it's happy to roll along at a purely conventional pace,
and the obvious vocal comparisons to Dylan, which although are not band
things either way, don't surprise me either way, which is something that I
always hope an album will do. It is still ranked this highly by myself, however,
just because it is a perfect example of conventional folk, and when you see
something at the top of it's genre, and revel in it's excellence, you cannot help
but enjoy what you're listening to. A fine album the works very well.
Romance is Boring
Hitting me, again, relatively early in the year, this album has stuck with me and
remains a point to which I can return and lose myself to the art rock stylings of
this eclectic band from Wales. I remember buying their first album, and
unfortunately it didn't act as polished a work that allowed me to remain
interested in them. This latest from them, however, completely is deserving of a
band who are often lost in the crowded UK scene, which is often filled with tripe
that the radios deem worthy enough to play. With this under their belt, I am
not more than ever excited by the future of this band.
Have One On Me
When I heard Joanna Newsom was doing a triple album, I was a bit worried by
the fact that in her previous release she had only managed to set down five
tracks she was happy with putting out in one go. Putting out three albums'
worth in one go could have gone either way. Luckily, the album comes together
very well, and the highlights are triumphs that add to an amazing catalogue of
music. The only downside is that this perhaps marks the point at which we
won't have Joanna Newsom singing like she does on Inflammatory Writ every
Having never listened to Deerhunter before, I gave this album a go going on
what I'd heard about the band from Sputnik. It was refreshing to have a lo-fi
sound that surrounded itself with warmth, which wasn't what I was expecting
at all. It's an album that deserves to not just be put on as background music,
but one that demands to be allowed into your life, if only for a while, to help you
see beauty in the subtleties of music.
I had the pleasure of seeing The National at Glastonbury this year, and, for me,
they were the best band I saw. High Violet is an album that works
tremendously, and doesn't allow any skip fodder. From the opening moments of
Terrible Love, you know you're in for a good time. The only criticism I could
have for this album is that I was lost on repeat with the opening track for so
long, I didn't give this album enough time on the rest until much later in the
year. Still, exceptional stuff.
Noise. That's sometimes all you want. Sleigh Bells create a lot of it, and implore
you to enjoy what they're doing here, and it's just so easy to give in, sing along,
stuff your earphones into your ears, and forget about everything else going on
around, and surrender to the music for a little while.
Every time I hear that Arcade Fire, The White Stripes, Radiohead, or Joanna
Newsom are going to release new albums, I take it as a given that I will
undoubtedly love their new stuff. However, Arcade Fire are more than a given in
their position here. On The Suburbs they once again show that they aren't just
striking lucky on each new release, but that every single song deserves a whole
amount of attention from the band, and although they don't waste time with
new releases, every song is filled with passion, with strength given to them by
an incredible band who aren't going to release something they aren't 100%
behind. And for the first time, Arcade Fire just want to make you dance.
Whilst my number one album of the year fit together as a whole more than this
one, this album managed to fill itself with various sounds which lended itself to
creating brilliant songs. There's a lot of tracks here which I'm sure will stay with
me for a long while. But just having great songs on an album wouldn't justify
making this my second favourite album of the year, if it weren't for the fact that
those songs are complete works of pure musical craft, each one giving
something different to the feel of an album which more than anything just
wants to entertain you.
My favourite album of last year was Animal Collective's and this album came
early on in the year, and completely blew me away in a completely different
way. I listened to this album with my Dad, who had heard it once before and
wasn't taken on it. I asked him halfway through listening to the album why he
didn't like it much, and he explained that so far the album was pretty 'down' but
it was picking up at the midway point to be more cheery. I never really split the
album in this way, and herein lies its strength. I took this album as a whole, as
one sprawling journey, where it completes itself perfectly with the final track.