Drowned in Sound's Albums of The Year 2010

Original Source

50. Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network

Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network
October 15, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
73
4 reviews
User Score
84
10 reviews

49. No Age - Everything in Between

No Age - Everything in Between
September 28, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
80
22 reviews
User Score
82
41 reviews

Everything In Between is undoubtedly a step onward from its predecessors – it’s more developed in every way, though admittedly lacks a little of the sheer raw bite that made Weirdo Rippers in particular so exhilarating.

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48. Ikonika - Contact, Love, Want, Have

Ikonika - Contact, Love, Want, Have
April 6, 2010
Dubstep
Critic Score
77
8 reviews
User Score
NR

47. Four Tet - There Is Love in You

Four Tet - There Is Love in You
January 26, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
83
23 reviews
User Score
83
103 reviews

46. Gil Scott-Heron - I'm New Here

Gil Scott-Heron - I'm New Here
February 9, 2010
Soul
Critic Score
79
21 reviews
User Score
81
40 reviews

45. Broken Bells - Broken Bells

Broken Bells - Broken Bells
March 9, 2010
Indie Pop
Critic Score
71
21 reviews
User Score
73
47 reviews

As musical collaborations go, the one embarked upon by James Mercer, mercurial singer/songwriter with esteemed Portlanders The Shins, and Brian Burton, better known as producer extraordinaire Danger Mouse, has to go down as one of the most unlikely. While perhaps not in the sublime bracket of ridiculousness inhabited by Burt Bacharach's mutual love-in with Elvis Costello and Dr Dre that reared 2005's ill-advised At This Time or Bing Crosby and David Bowie uttering Christmas carols to one another, it certainly set the proverbial cat amongst the pigeons late last year when Mercer announced Broken Bells was a fully projected work in progress and an album would be imminent.

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44. Forest Swords - Dagger Paths

Forest Swords - Dagger Paths
March 1, 2010
Psychedelic
Critic Score
77
5 reviews
User Score
81
13 reviews

43. Liars - Sisterworld

Liars - Sisterworld
March 9, 2010
Experimental Rock
Critic Score
80
23 reviews
User Score
81
29 reviews

42. Janelle Monáe - The ArchAndroid

Janelle Monáe - The ArchAndroid
May 18, 2010
Soul
Critic Score
86
23 reviews
User Score
85
137 reviews

It may not seem restrained, but trust when I say that nothing less than a dissertation or thesis will suffice for such a mind-bogglingly massive album.

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41. Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti - Before Today

Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti - Before Today
June 8, 2010
Psychedelic Pop
Critic Score
79
19 reviews
User Score
83
113 reviews

There’s a passage in Bill Drummond’s The 17 where he recalls traveling to Los Angeles in the mid 1980s, ostensibly to oversee the work of a hair metal band in his capacity as an A&R man for WEA. While trying to find the group in a labyrinthian studio complex, Drummond stumbled across a bloated Stevie Nicks, who was dancing eyes-closed to one of her own songs, lost to herself and the world. Ther e are many styles covered on this, the first album by Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti since signing to 4AD, but that glassy Fleetwood Mac production, which flourished on Rumours, gloriously saturated their sound on Tusk, and continued to be an obsession for Lindsey Buckingham on later hits such as ‘Big Love’, is glazed all over Before Today.

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40. Sleigh Bells - Treats

Sleigh Bells - Treats
May 11, 2010
Noise Pop
Critic Score
84
29 reviews
User Score
81
127 reviews

39. Gold Panda - Lucky Shiner

Gold Panda - Lucky Shiner
October 12, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
77
21 reviews
User Score
79
29 reviews

Whatever angle you examine it from, Lucky Shiner is an impressive statement, especially for a debut, and when Gold Panda lets the house beat sink into the background and experiments a little more with space and structure the results are gorgeous.

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38. 65daysofstatic - We Were Exploding Anyway

65daysofstatic - We Were Exploding Anyway
May 11, 2010
Post-Rock
Critic Score
83
4 reviews
User Score
83
10 reviews

37. Marnie Stern - Marnie Stern

Marnie Stern - Marnie Stern
October 5, 2010
Experimental Rock
Critic Score
80
15 reviews
User Score
81
7 reviews

36. Richard Skelton - Landings

Richard Skelton - Landings
January 19, 2010
Critic Score
80
2 reviews
User Score
NR

35. Uffie - Sex Dreams and Denim Jeans

Uffie - Sex Dreams and Denim Jeans
June 22, 2010
Electropop
Critic Score
44
10 reviews
User Score
60
9 reviews

34. Joanna Newsom - Have One on Me

Joanna Newsom - Have One on Me
February 23, 2010
Indie Folk
Critic Score
84
23 reviews
User Score
85
101 reviews

33. Foals - Total Life Forever

Foals - Total Life Forever
May 11, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
79
24 reviews
User Score
80
112 reviews

Where Antidotes had blitzkriegs, Total Life Forever has drawn-out hypnoses; where Antidotes was furious and muscular and destructive, Total Life Forever is quiet and sinister and inconsolable.

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32. Los Campesinos! - Romance Is Boring

Los Campesinos! - Romance Is Boring
January 26, 2010
Indie Pop
Critic Score
78
18 reviews
User Score
77
19 reviews

31. Erykah Badu - New Amerykah Part Two: Return of the Ankh

Erykah Badu - New Amerykah Part Two: Return of the Ankh
March 30, 2010
Soul
Critic Score
82
17 reviews
User Score
81
35 reviews

30. Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest

Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
September 28, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
84
28 reviews
User Score
87
298 reviews

Yet I think conversely it’s Cox’s inability to totally connect to an audience that makes him such a spectacularly special songwriter.

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29. Max Richter - Infra

Max Richter - Infra
July 20, 2010
Ambient
Critic Score
79
14 reviews
User Score
81
9 reviews

Infra was originally conceived as a 25-minute score for a Royal Ballet collaboration between composer Max Richter, choreographer Wayne McGregor and visual artist Julian Opie which premiered in November 2008 and was also broadcast on BBC2. Fleshed out to just over 40 minutes through the inclusion of outtakes and extended sections, the soundtrack was recently revisited and recorded by Richter and a string quintet with a view to documenting the ballet and giving the musical accompaniment a life of its own. Unsurprisingly, he achieves this and more with his fourth studio album on FatCat's classical imprint 130701, further solidifying his reputation as one of Britain's most versatile and identifiable classical voices.

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28. White Hinterland - Kairos

White Hinterland - Kairos
March 9, 2010
Indie Pop
Critic Score
75
10 reviews
User Score
82
2 reviews

27. Errors - Come Down With Me

Errors - Come Down With Me
March 1, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
75
9 reviews
User Score
82
4 reviews

26. The Phantom Band - The Wants

The Phantom Band - The Wants
October 25, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
77
9 reviews
User Score
79
3 reviews

25. Blood Red Shoes - Fire Like This

Blood Red Shoes - Fire Like This
March 1, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
69
11 reviews
User Score
78
6 reviews

24. Villagers - Becoming a Jackal

Villagers - Becoming a Jackal
June 8, 2010
Folk
Critic Score
77
15 reviews
User Score
79
16 reviews

23. Oneohtrix Point Never - Returnal

Oneohtrix Point Never - Returnal
June 21, 2010
Drone
Critic Score
82
9 reviews
User Score
82
26 reviews

Both beautiful and terrible at once, Returnal is the aural equivalent of a scuba dive in the open ocean.

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22. The Besnard Lakes - The Besnard Lakes are the Roaring Night

The Besnard Lakes - The Besnard Lakes are the Roaring Night
March 9, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
78
17 reviews
User Score
81
11 reviews

21. Flying Lotus - Cosmogramma

Flying Lotus - Cosmogramma
May 4, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
86
27 reviews
User Score
85
213 reviews

To paraphrase Joseph Goebbels, when I hear the words 'space opera' I reach for my revolver. Or perhaps, given the way in which Flying Lotus reflects a modern vision of the same combined spiritual ritual and synapse-frying freak-out expressed by Parliament-Funkadelic, the weapon of choice should be a bop gun. It’s staying holstered, though: while in science fiction the term denotes melodramatic claptrap, and its musical relation the rock opera is always melodramatic claptrap, FlyLo’s so self-described third album is a serious proposition. In fact, for over half its length it’s masterful.

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20. Kelis - Flesh Tone

Kelis - Flesh Tone
July 6, 2010
Electro House
Critic Score
71
11 reviews
User Score
79
9 reviews

19. Caribou - Swim

Caribou - Swim
April 20, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
83
26 reviews
User Score
84
174 reviews

18. Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles

Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles
May 25, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
74
20 reviews
User Score
82
165 reviews

It’s pretty good, but as with any punks gone pro, Crystal Castles have lost something – attitude, fire, aggression, danger; the usual stuff.

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17. Mount Kimbie - Crooks & Lovers

Mount Kimbie - Crooks & Lovers
September 14, 2010
Dubstep
Critic Score
80
13 reviews
User Score
84
26 reviews

16. Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
November 22, 2010
Hip Hop
Critic Score
92
33 reviews
User Score
89
691 reviews

For rap fans it's both a testament to the versatility of the genre and Kanye's own brilliance that he can make something so refreshingly different which still fits comfortably in the rap canon.

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15. Pantha Du Prince - Black Noise

Pantha Du Prince - Black Noise
February 9, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
81
17 reviews
User Score
82
27 reviews

14. Rufus Wainwright - All Days Are Nights: Songs For Lulu

Rufus Wainwright - All Days Are Nights: Songs For Lulu
April 20, 2010
Folk
Critic Score
68
11 reviews
User Score
71
5 reviews

13. Weezer - Hurley

Weezer - Hurley
September 14, 2010
Alternative Rock
Critic Score
63
23 reviews
User Score
57
38 reviews

Those who optimistically purchased Make Believe and Raditude will know that a good first single does not a great Weezer album make, but Hurley is packed solid, with a sense of fun and good-time melodies cropping up at every juncture.

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12. Big Boi - Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty

Big Boi - Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty
July 6, 2010
Hip Hop
Critic Score
87
23 reviews
User Score
83
82 reviews

Detroit owes the dirty south. For, as Detroit's slump has hit the headlines, the Dirty South has hit a very different kind of headline: a movement of new hip hop artists, spearheaded by the inimitable L'il Wayne, has renewed airtime given to one of Detroit's finest and most American exports: the Cadillac. As more than one hip hop blog has announced: this Southern shit is getting out of hand.

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11. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs

Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
August 3, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
88
30 reviews
User Score
86
523 reviews

A few nights ago, I decided that it would be a brilliant idea to write my review of Arcade Fire’s third album in real time. I would allot myself its not inconsiderable running length to bash out this article, whilst also, crucially, knocking back a finger of beer for each mention of “the kids” or “the suburbs” in Win Butler’s lyrics.

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10. Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz

Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz
October 12, 2010
Chamber Pop
Critic Score
77
23 reviews
User Score
85
198 reviews

The Age of Adz is not an unqualified success; occasionally it does feel like a little too much, and until the dust has settled it is difficult to say where it will sit in his discography as a whole.

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9. LCD Soundsystem - This Is Happening

LCD Soundsystem - This Is Happening
May 18, 2010
Dance Punk
Critic Score
85
28 reviews
User Score
87
320 reviews

If Sound of Silver was the sound of someone reaching far enough to make something just plain great, then This is Happening is the sound of a man with great taste who really understands music, making dumb body music with hidden depths if anyone cares to investigate.

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8. Yeasayer - Odd Blood

Yeasayer - Odd Blood
February 9, 2010
Experimental
Critic Score
77
28 reviews
User Score
77
59 reviews

7. Shearwater - The Golden Archipelago

Shearwater - The Golden Archipelago
February 23, 2010
Folk
Critic Score
77
16 reviews
User Score
81
3 reviews

If you’ve visited Shearwater’s website over the last couple of months, you’ll have been greeted by an arresting, scratchily-filmed series of images – of mist over mountains, damaged flags and roiling sea-waters; of travel journals and captains’ logs, bloodied bird carcasses and satellite grabs. It’s all part of the story.

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6. These New Puritans - Hidden

These New Puritans - Hidden
March 2, 2010
Art Rock
Critic Score
82
20 reviews
User Score
83
42 reviews

At some point in the planning stages, These New Puritans front man Jack Barnett must have said: 'Okay, we can either stick to our guns, make another pretty-decent record, or we can go for broke'. I mean, how else does writing a collection of songs around a bassoon come about? Bravado is always easier from the sidelines; that is, don’t dismiss the idea of making Beat Pyramid Part 2 out of hand. After all, TNPS’ debut was actually better than pretty-decent, ticking all the right electro-pop boxes. Mark E Smith vocals, scratchy Gang of Four guitars and strident synth rhythms jostled for space in a strangely evocative way. To be sure, Beat Pyramid was a promising shot across the bow, but no one could have predicted the carpet bombing TNPS intended to unleash.

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5. The Knife / Planningtorock / Mt. Sims - Tomorrow, In a Year

The Knife / Planningtorock / Mt. Sims - Tomorrow, In a Year
March 9, 2010
Electronic
Critic Score
71
15 reviews
User Score
73
16 reviews

4. Perfume Genius - Learning

Perfume Genius - Learning
June 21, 2010
Indie Pop
Critic Score
79
10 reviews
User Score
79
27 reviews

When I was at university my friend and I would play each other music constantly, usually accompanied by a Super Nintendo, a worn copy of Mario Kart and countless rolled up cigarettes. We had this running joke where every so often one of us would put on Grandaddy’s ‘Underneath the Weeping Willow’, leading us to engage in various stages of mock grief, staunching the imaginary tears that coursed down our cheeks. Of course, this wasn’t the only song that brought about such a reaction, and it wasn’t really a joke as such; more us amusing ourselves while tacitly recognising its parent album The Sophtware Slump as one of the saddest and most beautiful of the previous decade.

Full Review →

3. Deftones - Diamond Eyes

Deftones - Diamond Eyes
May 4, 2010
Alternative Metal
Critic Score
75
15 reviews
User Score
77
38 reviews

2. The National - High Violet

The National - High Violet
May 10, 2010
Indie Rock
Critic Score
86
30 reviews
User Score
87
313 reviews

It is a wild, vivid romance that The National make their own, and on High Violet it sounds just as striking, just as wild, just as vivid as ever.

Full Review →

1. Emeralds - Does It Look Like I'm Here?

Emeralds - Does It Look Like I'm Here?
June 8, 2010
Drone
Critic Score
82
8 reviews
User Score
81
25 reviews
Original Source: http://drownedinsound.com/lists/bestof2010

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