Sigur Rós – Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust
I adore this album. Its soaring lightness combines with simple earthbound beats, and the result is certainly their happiest and most perfect work yet. Seeing Sigur Rós live for the first time — finally — at Benaroya Hall earlier this year cemented my opinion that they are one of the best bands ever.
• One great track: “Við spilum endalaust”
Kanye West – 808s & Heartbreak
I guess I didn’t realize that the hype swirling around West for a couple of years now was actually deserved. I started listening to Graduation shortly before 808s came out and was hooked immediately. 808s is completely different and completely genius.
• One great track: “RoboCop”
The Knees – Sexual Radio
This is some of the catchiest music I’ve heard in a long time. Imagine Liz Phair fronting Weezer and somehow in the process creating some very, very infectious songs that you’ll be singing in the shower for days.
• One great track: “Sick of Being Stoned “
The Teenagers – Reality Check
A surprisingly good, if sophomoric, pop album. Unfortunately I’m 100% certain that we’ll never hear anything from The Teenagers again (or at least not anything worth listening to).
• One great track: “Love No”
M83 – Saturdays = Youth
Oh, my. It’s so beautiful.
• One great track: “Graveyard Girl”
Girl Talk – Feed the Animals
Where else are you going to hear Kelly Clarkson, Nine Inch Nails, MC Hammer, Elvis Costello, Shawty Lo, Rick Springfield, Chris Brown, and Nelly Furtado — all on the same track? This is a man who can do a proper mash-up.
• One great track: “Here’s the Thing”
The Grand Archives – The Grand Archives
I am just so pleased that Carissa’s Wierd continues in these various new forms (see also: Band of Horses).
• One great track: “Sleepdriving”
The Notwist – The Devil, You + Me
The Notwist have definitely not produced an album to rival or even match 2002’s Neon Golden, but this is still a really strong offering. I’ll take it.
• One great track: “The Devil, You + Me”
Black Kids – Partie Traumatic
Merits? A consistently good album with one obvious standout track, but also, they get props for an sincerely fun a-cappella performance at Easy Street Records.
• One great track: “I’m Not Gonna Teach Your Boyfriend How to Dance with You”
The Cure – 4:13 Dream
Yay! It doesn’t suck!
• One great track: “Underneath the Stars”