Best albums of 2010


It is the closing of 2010 and with that end, we must reflect on all that was good during the past year in the world of music. For those who are interested, here is Belsito’s Top Ten list of favourite albums of the year with a brief commentary after each: 10) Gaslight Anthem – American Slang. With a pinch of punk ethos, a walloping dose of Bruce Springsteen and his Jersey shore characterizations and enough sing-a-long anthems to keep a summer camp full of children happy, the Gaslight Anthem’s latest is another recipe for crossover success; 9) Jonsi – Go. He left a few of the magic spells behind at the Sigur Ros camp, but Jonsi’s voice and mystical approach can still give us the shivers; 8) Joanna Newsom – Have One  on Me. Harps, pianos, and a sometimes shrill vocal all conjure up the best of early Kate Bush if she were a folkie; 7) Neil Young – Le Noise. Neil always get our vote, but Le Noise whips up a sonic frenzy that only Crazy Horse could muster, only he does it without the band. Strong songs and a sonic lushness help this album not only prevail, but conquer; 6) Beach House – Teen Dream. With an overall 4AD flavour, haunting vocals and dizzying, hypnotic music-scapes, Beach House create a sexy, if not at times, simplistic summertime album; 5) Mumford and Sons – Sigh No More. One of the surprise punches from this year’s batch o’ newcomers. English folk-rockers take a strong collection of songs with soaring vocals and pumped-up melodies, and deliver one of the year’s most memorable albums; 4) Black Keys – Brothers. The Keys fresh approach to off-centre, American blues rock, have brought them to the forefront of the indie music scene and made them a live attraction not to be missed; 3) Arcade Fire – The Suburbs. Sprawling, infectious and brilliant songs that worm into your subconscious, make The Suburbs, one of the year’s most anticipated releases, worthy of the hype; 2) Midlake – The Courage of Others. Jazz experimentations, pop sensibilities and folk harmonies spread over a pre-Sabbath canvas from the renaissance court. The love child of Fleetwood Mack and Fairport Convention as birthed in the home of Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson; and the number one album of the year in Belsito’s world is: 1) The National – High Violet. Melancholy harmonies, gigantic-yet-somehow-understated choruses, and enough lyrical quirks and ticks to provide one of the catchiest and most pleasantly depressed albums of this year.  Runners-up: Crystal Castles – Crystal Castles: Melancholic lo-fi electronica for the bedroom and Accept – Blood of Nations: A strong return to form by German metallers (replete with a new singer who can stand up to Udo – figuratively and literally). Like or hate metal, there’s no denying it is exactly what it should be. Happy New Year and happy listening!

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011 by MBM Staff

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