Sunday, January 02, 2011

Best LP’s of 2010
“The Year of the Raga”
or “How I learned to love Pandora”

Just as the title says, this year was a big Pandora year for me. It infiltrated everything, my computer both at work and home and in my car with my space phone. Plus this year, I was able to see Tim, the founder of Pandora, give a talk at W+K. Having said that, it really cut down on the time I would listen to my mp3 collection, even with 8 gigs of music on my space phone, I would choose Pandora. It’s a great tool for listening to music, that is until it is inundated with advertisement. So, onto the list...

10. Charanjit // Ten Ragas to a Disco Beat
From the first listen I knew I would love this LP. Brother Dan showed this to me one day last spring. I’m sorry to say I never posted it... So Charanjit Singh is a Bollywood film score composer. In his spare time, he would play with a synthesizer and create some really experimental, avant-garde records. This was taking place in 1982, well ahead of his time. Its mesmerizing and it reminds me of a Wes Anderson film, mostly Life Aquatic.

09. Adam’s Castle // Vices
Vices is a great LP and I wish Adam’s Castle nothing but the best. If I could sign one band to a major label, I would choose them. As a junior release, Vices doesn’t fall short, it may not be as “math-rock” as previous contenders, but it sure is well put together. A+

08. Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros // Up From Below
I first saw this group on Tiny Desk Concert. Great LP all the way through but they are mostly known for “Home”, a super catchy tune that begs to be sang along with. This is a great gettin’ things done LP and I can’t wait for a 2nd release from them.

07. Eels // Tomorrow Morning, Endtimes & Hombre Loco
I went ahead and chose the entire eels trilogy for my 7th place. I really didn’t get into this too much this year (which leaves plenty of listening time with it...) it just didn’t fit my listening mood  this past year. Even the up tempo rock songs seemed too depressing. All in all, I still liked every record of this trilogy cause it’s E...

06. We Were Promised Jetpacks // The Last Place You’ll Look
While this EP had new and newly rewritten tracks, it was still thunderous in my queue this year. I was sad that I had to miss them early in 2010. But back to this mini-album... It was a totally different approach to their freshman LP “These Four Walls”. It wasn’t as post-rock but it was very well written. The newly reworked tracks were great. Why don’t more bands take a fresh look at old tracks. Put out an LP, then put out a complete rewrite of all the tracks. 2 LP’s same material... WWPJ rocks this EP and can’t wait for 2nd LP!!

05. MGMT // Congratulations
I wasn’t too keen on this LP when it first came out. I wanted it to be great, much like Oracular Spectacular was. It is a complete departure from that single driven LP, and it shows. This was space rock at its finest and I love the direction MGMT went with Congratulations. Although I have yet to see them live as I have heard they aren’t the best. Maybe that has changed since they have been touring for a few years now. Siberian Breaks was the best song I thought...

04. Delta Spirit // History from Below
I know you can’t get away from the sound of this band. You want to love them. you know you do... They have a great alt - country - esque - cowboy - moonlight - awesomeness. They also put out an EP this year, Waits Room. Which was great as well. They are almost lullabies in a way. Better than Baby Jams, or what ever those CDs are called. Yes, Listen to this band.

03. Megafuan // Gather Form and Fly (2009) & Heretofore (2010)
I really wanted this band as my number one of 2010 and it was hard to put it down, but there are parts of it where I loose interest, albeit 5% of the LP, it was still enough to not give it a number two or number one spot. This tends to be when the songs end, they seem to trail off with their instruments. Sometimes it works and sometimes it just doesn’t. Heretofore was a great EP though, sounds much tighter than Gather, Form & Fly. And what I love about GF&F is how different each song sounds. It goes from Beardrock to Japanese sounds to acoustic harmonies. Love this band.

02. Frightened Rabbit // The Winter of Mixed Drinks
I got to go to my first FR show this year at the Wonder Ballroom. I loved the fact that FR was really into the show and played an amazing set, feeding off the energy of the crowd. It was a special show, they played “Fun Stuff” a super rare B-side that they have never played live. I knew this LP would rock and it does, I almost think it’s flawless. It’s uplifting and depressing in one fell swoop. Their lyrics remind me a Louis CK bit in that he nails the human psyche. This band was opened up to me after I started exploring who influced MOGWAI. Frightened Rabbit was a major influence on them, along with We Were Promised Jetpacks, The Twilight Sad and Brakes Brakes Brakes.

01. Mumford and Sons // Sigh No More
And here we are at the number one LP of 2010. This LP got more airplay than most of this top ten list combined. Bonus, it;s the only LP on this list that someone else introduced to me, and that would be Anna P. Cheers to that. The rest of you better butter up and find better music!! (jk, there was a ton of great music this year on Subundare)

Mumford and Sons absolutely exploded this year and they should have. I am being as bold as to say this is one of the best albums that has ever been released on any major label anywhere in the world. I shit you not. I would say its almost a Beatles-esque empire they are going to create. They music spans all demographics. Everyone loves them … I had mentioned Mumford and Sons when I was home for holiday and Clint, goddamn Clint goes “.. you really fucked it up this time … he-he, I like that band...” I predict them to be huge. So KUDOS to the best band of 2010!


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