William’s Top 10 of 2010
I feel that 2010 was a great year for music as I debated between over 40 records for my top 10. It’s always hard to compile your favorite records of the past year because each hits you at a different moment of your life and affects you in certain way. Some of those albums I keep going back to and others get tossed aside after a month or so. Below is what I have concluded to be my top 10 based on the records I think will stick with me for years to come.
10. No Age – Everything in Between
The most memorable lyric of “Glitter” is “I want you back underneath my skin” and that’s exactly where the songs on this record go. While some may find it hard to get past the noise samples or singing (or lack thereof) there are some real pop punk gems on this album.
Tracks to listen to: “Glitter”, “Fever Dreaming”
9. Coliseum – House With a Curse
Coliseum reworked their crushing sound to be a bit more dynamic with the help of J. Robbins (Jawbox) producing and the outcome was incredible. I think this record is only a small taste of where this band plans to go.
Tracks to listen to: “Lost In Gronigen”, “Skeleton Smile”
8. Band of Horses – Infinite Arms
I wrote this record off at first as it didn’t hit me as immediately as their previous releases. After seeing Band of Horses perform at Grand Central Terminal I was a bit more excited about the album, but later in the year I went on a road trip through the Pacific Northwest with my girlfriend and we picked up a copy of the CD to listen to in our rental car. The album resonated perfectly through the car speakers as we drove through the mountains and along the coast, making this a very special record to me.
Tracks to listen to: “Compliments”, “On My Way Back Home”
7. Best Coast – Crazy for You
On the surface you can write this off as very simple record about missing boys who smoke all your weed, but there is something very gratifying and instantly familiar about this album that made it perfect soundtrack this past summer. While the songs may get samey, they are all super catchy and fun to listen to over and over. This album is proof that you don’t need to be overly complex to write great songs.
Tracks to listen to: “Crazy For You”, “When I’m With You”
6. LCD Soundsystem – This Is Happening
Two of the best shows I saw this year were LCD at Webster Hall and Terminal 5 (yes they even made Terminal 5 sound good!). This record is full of great moments from the straight forward dance pop of “Drunk Girls” to James Murphy’s pleas to make love work in “I Can Change.” I would be disappointed if Murphy sticks to his plans of ending the band’s touring, but equally excited of the possibilities of him making good on previous opportunities that included producing albums by Arcade Fire and Spoon which could make for some very interesting records.
Tracks to listen to: “I Can Change”, “All I Want”
5. Arcade Fire – The Suburbs
Arcade Fire clearly established themselves as one of the most important
Tracks to listen to: “Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)”, “Modern Man”
4. The Screaming Females – Castle Talk
To truly appreciate this band they must be experienced in a live setting and seeing them perform all of Castle Talk at their record release show in September was the perfect introduction to the album. The riffs are chunky and the solos are fast and screeching often making early Dinosaur Jr. sound tame in comparison. To quote Ted Leo, the Screaming Females are “the best new band in America.”
Tracks to listen to: “I Don’t Mind It”, “A New Kid”
3. Ty Segall – Melted
This record includes several of my favorite songs of the year including “My Sunshine,” “Girlfriend” and “Sad Fuzz” which features some great Beatles-esque moments. Ty wrote a great garage rock record with the perfect balance of fuzz and hooks.
Tracks to listen to: “Sad Fuzz”, “Girlfriend”
2. Superchunk – Majesty Shredding
This record rips from start to finish and is just plain fun which is sometimes exactly what you need. The best pop punk record in the past decade. Each song packs a punch and the album goes by so quickly and still leaves you wanting more.
Tracks to listen to: “My Gap Feels Weird”, “Crossed Wires”
1. Deerhunter – Halcyon Digest
This is one of those albums that you find a new favorite song with every listen because every track is brilliant in it’s own way. This album combines well-crafted songs that are dense and textured with great melodies while still having a weird and noisy edge at times. Of all the albums on this list, this could very well be the record that we are still listening to 10 or 20 years from now in awe.
Tracks to listen to: “Memory Boy”, “Desire Lines”, “Basement Scene”
Best EPs / 7″
The Get Up Kids – Simple Science
OFF! – First Four Eps 7″ Box Set
Kate Sikora – Aparto (Cassette)
Colleen Green – Milo Goes To Compton (Cassette)
forgetters – Too Small To Fail
Frank Turner – Rock & Roll Ep
Just missed the cut
Deftones – Diamond Eyes
Beach House – Teen Dream
Phantogram – Eyelid Movies
Titus Andronicus – The Monitor
Standard Fare – The Noyelle Beat
The Soft Pack – The Soft Pack
Ted Leo and the Pharmacists – The Brutalist Bricks
Wavves – King Of The Beach
The King Left – Perfect Without People
The Loyal We – Homes
Jonsi – Go
Noun – Holy Hell