Thank God I don’t work in a music store any longer. Not that I didn’t love it, but this task was stupid hard.
As you may have noticed, I posted a recommended media for the year and NOT a music list this time because I was lacking in new releases for the last year. I only had one, and though it was amazing, it doesn’t make a whole list.
I decided to do a decade long list. Recommendations that have come out in the last decade: break it into years, and that equals ten! That sounds like a good idea right? RIGHT?!
Wrong. There are several albums that I go back to over and over, and there are multiple years that, though they had a few good releases, don’t hold my attention.
With much blood (and tears) I managed to get my list down to 50ish. I picked the best release that a band had that decade, which is harder than you might think. Some of the bands had a good portion of their discography come out during this time! So, instead of doing an in-depth dive into what makes each album amazing, I’m going to try to sum it up in a sentence or two, and link to a good (if not the best) song from each album.
BEFORE I START THIS LIST! I am so sorry for any advertisements that play at the beginning of songs. I tried as hard as I could to find ad free versions, but I was unsuccessful most of the time.
HERE WE GO
Adam Evers — Moments
You have heard me done on and on about this EP over the last couple of months. It belongs on this list for many reasons. Read my full review here.
Balance & Composure — Separation
A grunge throw-back. I saw them open for Touchè Amourè a few years ago, and fell in love.
Bloc Party — Four
What pop-rock can be. The classiest vulgar that you can find.
Song: We Are Not Good People
Boards of Canada — Tomorrow’s Harvest
Ambient electronica. Incredibly peaceful and beautiful. Sounds like the tracking from a ’70s movie, and it’s amazing.
Song: Reach For the Dead
Broken Bells — Broken Bells
I love this album. There is something enchanting about it
Song: The High Road
Cage the Elephant — Thank You, Happy Birthday
It’s a shame that this album wasn’t bigger. I would argue that it is one thousand times better then their first, but the public has spoken.
Song: Always Something
CFCF — Radiance & Submission
Two ambient electronica albums in one list? I’m loosing my edge! In my defence, this one is French
Song: In Praise of Shadows
Chon — Grow
NO ONE SHOULD BE THIS GOOD AT INSTRUMENTS. PERIOD.
The Contortionist — Language
What the latest Tool should have been. Complicated, but not unattainable. Absolutely beautiful.
Counterparts — Prophets
I’m going to be that guy: I played with them around the release of this album. Nicest. Guys. Ever.
Song: Goodbye Megaton
Crosses — Crosses
Deftones without Deftones. Very different from Team Sleep, though the same idea.
Cursive — I Am Gemini
I have trouble putting how I love this album into words. Smart, but not arrogant. Self deprecating, but not pathetic.
Song: Twin Dragon/Hello Skeleton (I really love from the 4 min mark on)
Dead Weather — Sea of Cowards
I was a moderate White Stripes fan, and I never listened to The Kills before this came out. This album, turns out, to be a great blend of the two. Cool drums, as well.
Song: Die by the Drop
Deerhoof — vs. Evil
Just cool. Oh, and fucking complicated. It is truly amazing what you can do with music, and this band proves it time after time.
Song: The Merry Barracks
Deftones — Diamond Eyes
Not their best, but far from their worst. Almost didn’t make the list, but it has my third favourite Deftones song on it.
Die Hexe — Die Hexe
This was a surprise that I didn’t realize that I needed in my life. Might be one of my favourite albums of all time.
I reviewed this one, as well.
The Dø — Shake, Shook, Shaken
Just a good ol’ pop album! So damned catchy, so damned cool!
Song: Despair, Hangover and Ecstasy
Fall of Troy — OK
I am going to try to describe this without swearing, so I will just say that it’s the best album they have released since Doppelganger. I’m not going to say their best, but very close.
Song: Inside Out
Hail the Sun — Wake
WHAT DO YOU MEAN THE DRUMMER SINGS? Think Mars Volta meets Circa Survive… BUT ADD A SINGING DRUMMER!
Song: Human Target Practice
Heart & Harm — Damage
Think A->B life by mewithoutyou. Now, forget that.
Hot Hot Heat — Future Breeds
Such a good departure for this band. So many interesting takes on music but without reinventing the wheel.
Song: Times A Thousand
Invent, Animate — Everchanger
A more intense (better?) Misery Signals.
Song: Nocturne: Lost Faith
Kennedy — The Guilty Poor
The album opens with a monologue from 1984. It sets the mood for the entire album.
Song: Stillborn Believer (any album that opens with a monologue from the 1984 film automatically wins)
Livestalk & the Bodies
Okay, I put one of the albums I performed on this list. To be fair: it’s here because the rest of this album is amazing which does not have me.
Just go listen to the whole thing.
Melody’s Echo Chamber — Melody’s Echo Chamber
Psychedelic and ’60s sounding. I don’t know why I went through this phase where everything had to sound old, but I’m happy I did.
Song: Quand Vas Tu Rentrer?…
Minus the Bear — Infinity Overhead
Not my favourite MtB album, but Listing IS one of my favourite songs of all time.
New Design — Far From Home
I was contacted to review this album around its release. I was not prepared for how good this group is. Also, they remind me of what emo was when I was in high school,
Song: I’ve Never Seen the Ocean
OK GO — Of the Blue Colour Of the Sky
I was on the fence if I was going to include this album, then I realized that there is nothing quite like it. Don’t get me wrong: I love this album, it just doesn’t quite measure up to the one prior.
Periphery — Periphery
Never has a band started so strong to end up so pathetic. At least we will always have this banger of an album!
Song: The Walk
Rah Rah — Breaking Hearts
Probably one of the best bands that I have ever seen on stage. This album is just so damned cute!
Ratatat — Magnifique
I hate everyone for not telling me about this album when it was released.
Song: Cream on Chrome
Regina Spektor — What We Saw From the Cheap Seats
There seemed to be this time in music where there was an influx of “girls-sining-and-playing-piano.” We are past this time, and this was actually a pleasant surprise. It doesn’t help that she comes off as incredibly condescending.
Song: All the Rowboats
Respire — Gravity & Grace
Metal and trumpets? Yes: metal and trumpets.
Samsaris — Samsaris
Sick of me banging on and on about this album yet? TOO BAD! I loved it when I picked it up, and I still love it to this day! I want to compare it to Bjork? But that might just be because of the Iceland comparison.
Song: Goda Tungl
Sigur Rós — Kveikur
SPEAKING OF ICELAND! Haunting. Incredibly beautiful. Heavy lyrically without me even looking into translations. Even if I found out that he was talking about how much he loved petting dogs, it would not change the fact that the first time I heard the first track, I almost cried from the intensity.
A Silver Mt. Zion — Kollaps Tradixionals
I BUILT MYSELF A METAL BIRL I FED MY METAL BIRD THE WINGS OF OTHER METAL BIRDS…
If those words intrigue you in the slightest, I found your new favourite album.
Song: I Built Myself A Metal Bird
Sleigh Bells — Treats
What happens when you cross metal and pop? Something beautiful yet horribly disfigured, and I love it.
Song: Infinity Guitars
Slender Loris — World Tour
I am proud of myself for not loading this list with friends releases, but this is one of the greatest albums I have ever heard of ever.
Song: (not as hardcore as) Dismantle
Squarepusher — Ufabulum
I hate that I love this album so much. It’s electronica. No other caveats there.
Song: The Metallurgist
Stayce — Huck Dunter
When I was writing for Mind the Music, I found so many great albums! This is another one I came across in my short-lived travels on that site. Grunge? Not really. I don’t really have a category for them.
Structures — All the Above
Still have a hard time trying to figure out some of the drum patterns. I gave up trying to learn it a while ago, but it would bring me much closure if I could AT LEAST FIGURE OUT WHAT HE IS DOING!
Song: Still Waters
Sufjan Stevens — Age of ADZ
Neat. Just, neat.
Song: I Want to be Well (personal anthem)
Title Fight — Shed
One of my favourite punk albums of all time.
Tokyo Police Club — Champ
I do not have an excuse why I love this band so much.
Tom Vek — Leisure Seizure
This guy cannot sing, but his attempts are what make this album so amazing.
Song: Aroused (WARNING: If you smoke or DID smoke, this video will drive you nuts)
Touchè Amourè — Parting the Sea Between Brightness and Me
Some of the best lyrics that you will find ever. It really didn’t help that they are really nice guys who just love music.
Song: Home Away From Here
Vampire Weekend — Contra
Do you have an album that you love and you don’t know why and when people ask why you have so many plays on it, you hesitate to tell them it’s because you love the album dearly? Yeah, that’s my relationship with this album/Vampire Weekend in general.
Song: Giving Up the Gun
xx — Coexist
Minimalist, haunting, beautiful. There permeates a feeling that something is something horribly wrong, and it makes the album feel like a movie*.
*might be why the songs are featured in a few films and TV shows from that year
65DAYSOFSTATIC — We Were Exploding Anyway
This is the band that I wish I created when I was in high school. Stupid talented and imaginative. I love this band.
Song: Dance Dance Dance
Again; sorry for any ads that may have bombarded you. I tried to pick my favourite songs, the Melody’s Echo Chamber probably being my favourite of the last decade. Though I do recommend listening to all of these, I understand that it is a lot. There is enough for one a week, though!