Thursday, December 16, 2010

Top Albums of 2010!

Hey everyone!

As we get closer and closer to the end of the year, it's time for my year end recap of the Top Albums of 2010! 2010 was another awesome year for music as we saw big comebacks from some high profile artists (Eminem, Sade), spectacular albums from breakout indie artists (Mumford & Sons, Florence & The Machine) and career defining discs from some familiar faces (Arcade Fire, The Black Keys). This list here represents the 10 best albums that have made it into the upper echelon of the musical consciousness this year. Keep in mind that these albums aren't ranked in any particular order, as I feel that every artist on this list is equal and should be honored to be chosen as one of the Top 10 albums of the year, out of the thousands of records that came out this year! And without further ado, here is my list:

Vampire Weekend- Contra

The kings of the NYC indie rock scene returned with their much anticipated sophomore release this year. The album is a mixture of African rhythms and classical music, much like the sound of their self-titled debut only this album hits at a much higher level than the previous one did. Lead singer Ezra Koenig's calm and relaxing vocals gave listeners a fun and laid back experience that will be remembered as their artistic achievement! Some highlights from the album include songs such as "Cousins", "Giving Up The Gun", "Holiday", and "Horchata".

Arcade Fire- The Suburbs

The Canadian indie rock powerhouse return with what is perhaps their career defining album. The follow up to 2007's Neon Bible finds the group delving deep into art rock rhythms and baroque pop arrangements that make this disc one of Arcade Fire's most cohesive and emotionally resonating albums to date. Lead singer Win Butler's hauntingly beautiful vocals are best highlighted on the disc's soaring first single "Ready To Start". Other standouts from the album include "Month of May", "We Used To Wait", and "Empty Room".

The Black Keys- Brothers

The Black Keys exploded their way into the mainstream this year with their latest effort "Brothers". The band have been together as a group since 2001, but this was the year that they exploded in the mainstream consciousness. Lead singer Dan Auerbach and drummer Pat Carney blend together their blues inspired rhythms to create an album that is raw, authentic, and straight to the point. Some highlights from the disc include: "Tighten Up", "Everlasting Light", "Howlin' For You", and "Next Girl".

Minus The Bear- Omni

Straight out of Seattle, WA Minus The Bear made a breakout effort this year with their latest effort, Omni. This effort finds the group abandoning the sound found on their earlier albums for a slightly more commercial sounding record. This album was recorded in the style of a live show, where all the songs were played straight through without any breaks in between the songs, giving it the feel of a live concert setting. Some highlights from this stellar disc include "My Time", "Summer Angel", "Secret Country", and "Dayglow Vista Rd.".

Broken Bells- Broken Bells

One of the most anticipated albums of 2010, Broken Bells delivered big with their debut release! The side project of The Shins frontman James Mercer and producer extraordinaire Danger Mouse came together with a indie rock delight that combined together space rock rhythms and an indie rock sensibility that made this album unlike anything else released this year in the musical landscape. Some highlights from the disc include "The High Road", The Ghost Inside", "Sailing To Nowhere", and "October".

Eminem- Recovery

Marshall Mathers AKA Eminem made a comeback to remember with his latest effort, Recovery. The follow up to 2009's ill fated comeback attempt Relapse finds Em doing much better second time around with an album that is nearly as good as 2000's The Marshall Mathers LP, and shows Eminem in a more mature and confident frame of mind this time around. Some standouts from the disc include "Not Afraid", "Love The Way You Lie" (f/Rihanna), "No Love" (f/Lil' Wayne), and "Won't Back Down" (f/Pink).


Circa Survive- Blue Sky Noise

Doylestown, PA's finest Circa Survive flew back onto the map this year with their latest release! Lead singer Anthony Green is absolutely marvelous as his voice permeates every crevice of each song with remarkable strength and versatility, a true testament to the extraordinary amount of talent that he displays on this record. Some highlights from the album include: "I Felt Free", "Get Out", "Through The Desert Alone", and "Strange Terrain".


Sade- Soldier of Love

Sade made a huge comeback this year with her first album in 10 years, Soldier of Love. Not much has changed from Sade since 2000's "Lovers Rock" as Sade and her band return to the same R&B styled jams that launched Sade into stardom int the mid 80's with "Smooth Operator". It's very rare for a star to maintain a strong following after several years away from the music scene, but Sade has made it look almost easy. Some of my favorites from this one include "Soldier of Love", "The Moon and The Sky", "Babyfather", and "Morning Bird".

Underoath- Ø Disambiguation

Jacksonville, Florida's finest Underoath returned big with their latest effort,  Ø Disambiguation! The first record since original drummer Aaron Gillespie left earlier this year finds the group sounding harder, faster, and stronger than they ever were before. Lead singer Spencer Chamberlain screams his heart out on many of the disc's ear splitting tracks and cements Underoath as one of the premier metal groups out there today! Some highlights from this great disc include "Illuminator", "In Division", "Paper Lung", and "Catch Myself Catching Myself".

Trapt- No Apologies

Los Gatos, California's own Trapt returned back on the scene with their latest, No Apologies! The band is best perhaps known for their 2002's smash hit "Headstrong", but this record proves that this group is far from being classified as a one hit wonder. The record packs in a massive amount of guitars, drums, and lead singer Chris Brown's melodic and ripping vocals to wow the listening audience. Some tracks to check out include "Sound Off", "End of My Rope", "Get Up", and "No Apologies".

And there you have it, my list of the Top 10 Albums of 2010! What do you think of my choices? Were there any albums that I may have missed? Leave a comment here on the blog and also let me know what albums you enjoyed the most this year!

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