What have been my favorite albums of 2010 thus far? When I started this note I assumed I'd come up with five or so but in looking back it has been an excellent year in music already. Here's my ranking of albums released in the first half of the year. Please post rebuttals and "you idiot" remarks in the comment section, and remember I can't listen to them all.
- The National: High Violet. The best without question. I mean no question for me because O'Barr will put Heligoland, Plastic Beach, This is Happening, and maybe a dozen more ahead of it. So it has irritating O'Barr going for it as well as being the best so far this year. If this doesn't get a Grammy nomination for Album of the Year then I'm giving up completely on the Recording Academy. (BTW, today they announced rules changes in the awards -- more on that later if it interests me).
- The Nels Cline Singers: Initiate. I don't expect a lot of support on this one but I absolutely love it.
- Four Tet: There Is Love in You. Ditto. I may have a recently-discovered bias for it.
- Massive Attack: Heligoland
- Broken Bells: Broken Bells. I said Grammy nomination, and I'm sticking with it even though I'll be wrong.
- LCD Soundsystem: This Is Happening
- Crystal Castles: Crystal Castles (II)
- Christian Scott: Yesterday You Said Tomorrow
- Laura Veirs: July Flame. I started back blogging after this had been out for a while so the link is to the Pitchfork review.
- These New Puritans: Hidden
- Gorillaz: Plastic Beach
A top 11? Well, at first I accidentally left off my #3, so when I put it in, the Gorillaz album dropped into the "tied for" category. I'm already going to have to put up with O'Barr's snub for scoring the MA and LCDSS albums so low, so it's a concession of sorts to put the Gorillaz in the top tier. That way at least I have something to yell back when my wits get to their end (that's a straight line, O'Barr, so go ahead). It probably should be ahead of the These New Puritans album, but I like the way I've drifted on this.
Tied for 12th in no particular order:
Honorable mention, no order: