Friday, December 31, 2010

Best Music of 2010

As is always the case, I find an album that I get excited to put atop my Best Of list, only to discover that it was released the previous year. So, before I start, let me give a little shout out to the 2009's "Weathervanes" by Freelance Whales, the album that I loved the most in 2010.

And now back to the list for this year, though I'm sure I left some things out.


Best repeat listen 
Tokyo Police Club - Champ
Long a fan of Tokyo Police Club, I was disappointed with the almost childlike feel of their new record. But when I saw them perform the material live, my mind was instantly changed. I have been singing "Favourite Colour" ever since.
Favourite Colour

Best 32 minutes of getting yelled at
The Thermals - Personal Life 
Shouty and brash, the best albums by The Thermals always feel like a pummeling. The band has smoothed out some of the edges over the years but "Personal Life" still operates in verbal attack mode.
Never Listen to Me

Best invitation to the dance floor
Taio Cruz  - Rokstarr
Taio Cruz may need some spelling lessons, but he's teaches the class on getting the party started. "Rokstarr" is textbook good times -- big beats, bigger hits, and an ultra-trashy duet with ultra-trashy Ke-dollarsign-ha.

Best turning of that frown upside down
Rogue Wave - Permalight
Rogue Wave is usually so delightfully melancholy. "Permalight" shows the band is just as impressive when they channel their efforts into upbeat, danceable indie rock. 
Solitary Gun

Best solo album that sounds like a full-band album
Brandon Flowers - Flamingo
It's a bit softer and a bit twangier than a Killers album, but Brandon Flowers brings the same knack for high drama and catchy hooks to his debut solo release. 

Best local band hitting the big time
Neon Trees - Habits
It's great to have known them as a local band, but it's even more exciting to see our very own Neon Trees hit the big time, with huge singles "Animal" and "1983." 

Best hip-hop crossover
B.o.B. - The Adventures of Bobby Ray
Mr. Ray is just as comfortable gettin' down and dirty with rap heavy hitters like T.I. and Lupe Fiasco as he is singing with Paramore's Hayley Williams or Weezer's Rivers Cuomo. 
Magic (feat. Rivers Cuomo)

Best getting back to basics
Alkaline Trio - This Addiction

This may not be the best record Alkaline Trio has put out in the last few years, but it's nice to hear them strip some of the goth away from their once-raw sound.
American Scream 

Honorable Mentions

Motion City Soundtrack - My Dinosaur Life
Streetlight Manifesto - 99 Songs of a Revolution: Vol. I
The National - High Violet
Matt & Kim - Sidewalks
Jimmy Eat World - Invented
Gaslight Anthem - American Slang
Four Year Strong - Enemy of the World
Deftones - Diamond Eyes
Bad Religion - The Dissent of Man
Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
Apache, The - Apache, The 


Best thing to come out of Utah County
Drew Danburry - Goodnight Dannii
The curiously titled "Nirvana, by Kurt Cobain" is not about Nirvana or Kurt Cobain. But both the band and the deceased icon should be pleased to be connected to such a beautifully sad song about giving your love to music and not getting any in return.
Nirvana, by Kurt Cobain

Best use of a Rihanna hook
Eminem Love the Way You Lie
Rihanna is the best part of any song. She's even better when she's teamed up with the only artist in a more dysfunctional relationship than herself. (Second best use of a Rihanna hook; Kanye West, "All of the Lights.")
All the Lights

1 comment:

Cheeseboy said...

That Freelance Whales album is great all the way through.

Tokyo ruled my playlists too this year. Actually, many of these albums will be on my Top 40 of 2010 which I think I post in a couple days.

The Brandon Flowers album didn't get the best reviews (except from you) that I saw, but I think it's terrific.