The Alex Chilton Top 10 2010

Alex Chilton died this year, aged 59. This years list is compiled in his honour. Listen to Big Star - "Jesus Christ was born today"

Favourite album of the year

  1. The National - High Violet
  2. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
  3. Owen Pallett - Heartland
  4. Villagers � Becoming A Jackal
  5. The Drums � The Drums
  6. Broken Social Scene - Forgiveness Rock Record
  7. Four Tet - There is love in you
  8. Vampire weekend - Contra
  9. LCD Soundsystem - This is Happening
  10. Caribou � Swim


Scott Balikian  Enda Bates  Garbhán Blake  Mark Butcher  Gerard Cagney  Tom Corcoran  Tony Corrigan  Richie Evans  Ronan Hickey Lucas Hilbert  Brendan Jennings  Chris Louca  Niall Lynch  Dave McGuinness  Nathan Morehouse  Derek Murphy  Martin O'Gorman  Caroline O'Reilly  Enda Ruddy  Anthony Scarfo  Peter Ward  Colin Waugh 

All time Contributors

Scott Balikian

In no particular order really:

Pretty Lights
- Making Up a Changing Mind, Spilling over Every Side, Glowing in the Darkest Night (All EPs)
Been listening to this Boulder, CO producer quite a bit. All very heavy, blippy bass. Free downloads from his site, too!
Megasoid - Tank Thong Mix Tape & Remix Runners Mix Tape
Turbo Crunk! Maybe my favorite new find this year. These 2 mixtapes will slay you - and again free. Megasoid is from Montreal.
Justin Townes Earle - Harlem River Blues
The first time you hear the title track it won't leave your head for days. And that's a good thing. A very good thing.
Black Keys - Brothers
an early favorite of the year. I had to start my list early to make sure I didn't forget it at the end of the year.
Hold Steady - Heaven is Whenever
I was lucky enough to pick up the early release of this on clear vinyl (600 copies pressed) on Record Store Day. I really got into this one and it's stayed on my deck all year.
Preservation Hall Jazz Band - Preservation
This is certainly a gotta-like-NOLA-jazz kind of thing. With Tom Waits, Yim Yames, Jason Isbell, Richie Havens, Merle Haggard, Steve Earle and many others. My wife groans each time I put it on, but a great release. Tom recorded a second track on the deluxe version "Corinne Died on the Battlefield" which ain't on the vinyl version I got. *sniff*, though he did release his 2 tracks on limited edition 78rpm vinyl for $50 which I did not pick up.
Tom Waits - Glitter and Doom
One of those that came out last year, but I really started listening to it this year. I brought one of my turntables up to work and a selection of music my wife generally doesn't like, so I listen to a lot of that. Really like Fannin Street of of this as I grew up in Houston and know the street well. Also really like "Falling Down" off of here.
Tricky - Half Breed
Grabbed this one for my wife as she's a fan. I surprised myself by really, really liking it. For some reason never got into his earlier stuff or Massive Attack, but this one got me.
Fitz & the Tantrums - Pickin' Up the Pieces
Was lucky to catch them play a free in-store at Sonic Boom not too long ago. I grabbed the record then. What a great, great band.

Fitz and the Tantrums - Seattle, WA Sonic Boom Records
Not quite a full set, but a solid 40-45 minutes. The stage was about chest-high and I realized that the record store just built these rickity particle board stage pieces and places them on top of their vinyl racks. The entire 5 piece band was up there jumping and going nuts. I so thought they were going down.
They Might Be Giants - Seattle, WA - Showbox SoDo
Went to this one alone and I'm so glad I did. They played Flood in its entirety, but as opposed to the Pixies Doolittle show, it was not a yawning start to finish affair. The Johns really know how to work a crowd. They did play the album in order, but mixed in a few other new and old tracks along with them. Made me realize it was the first time I'd seen them play an entire show. My previous 2 TMBG shows were an in-store at a record store and once when they came and played the offices - I know, sick.
Guided By Voices - Seattle, WA - Showbox SoDo
Another show I went to alone. I tend to not like to go to shows alone, but I was a late comer to GBV and had never seen them live. Since I was alone, I just camped near the front of the stage. Killer, killer show. In Seattle, bands aren't allowed to drink on stage anymore and no one is allowed to smoke. GBV came out drinking tequila and cases of beer and immediately lit up. I was surprised how many songs I recognized since they have zillions of them.
Justin Townes Earle - Seattle, WA - Tractor Tavern
Always had thought Justin refrained from the booze, but he was kind of lit this night. The music didn't show it. He's one of my favorite new artists. He's back on tour (after a recent rehab stint).

Honorable mention for a show I did not attend - Fitz and the Tantrums, Live at Daryl's House. This is a great series hosted by Daryl Hall:

and I'm sure there were other great shows that escape me at the moment.

Enda Bates

Enda's Top Ten

1. Broken Social Scene - Forgiveness Rock Record
2. The National - High Violet
3. Jim O'Rourke - the visitor
4. Strands - Strands
5. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
6. Legion of Two - Riffs
7. the Redneck Manifesto - Friendship
8. Four Tet - There is love in you
9. Adebisi Shank - This Is The Second Album Of A Band Called Adebisi Shank
10. Somadrone - Depth of Field

Great sets by LCD Soundsystem and the National at Electric Picnic,
Godspeed You Black Emporer live finally and worth the wait, multiple,
mind -blowing gigs by Legion of Two (the best band in the country for
me right now).

Missing LCD Soundsystem, Broken Social Scene, Arcade Fire and the National concerts in Dublin, Road Records closing, Daniel Linkous, Vic Chestnut, Henrik Gorecki and Leslie Nielson RIP, everything to do with politics and economics.

Garbhán Blake

2010 - Was at 5 gigs in 3 weeks for the first time in years. Signed up for Road Records 'Album of the Month' and enjoyed the new aspects of my listening, unfortunately stopped with the closure of the shop in the Summer... Missed Roxy (again) at Electric Picnic....... Destined never to see them. Really the only act that are still on the go that I really, really want to see. Oh.... shouldn't admit to this but.... real sign of age when you start using ear plugs at gigs..... and try to convince everybody else that they're mad not to do the same

Have a great Christmas and all the best in 2011......
Blocker's Top 10 Albums 2010
  1. Phosphorescent - Here's to taking it easy
  2. Field Music - Field Music
  3. Four Tet - There is Love in You
  4. Drive By Truckers - The Big To-Do
  5. The Besnard Lakes - The Besnard Lakes Are The Roaring Night
  6. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
  7. The Black Keys - Brothers
  8. Gil Scott Heron - I'm New Here
  9. Vampire Weekend - Contra
  10. LCD SoundSystem - This is Happening
Honourable Mentions
Gigs and live events

  1. All Ireland hurling final, Croke Park
  2. Not one for hyperbole but possibly the greatest sporting event in the world this year.
  3. Meath vs Dublin, Croke Park
  4. First win over the old enemy since 2001..... worth waiting for!
  5. Gorillaz - O2
  6. Arcade Fire - O2
  7. LCD Soundsystem - Tripod
  8. Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - Whelans
  9. Pavement - Tripod
  10. Icebreaker perform Brian Eno's Apollo accompanied by NASA footage - NCH
  11. Paul Weller - Olympia
  12. Air - Olympia

  13. Mark Butcher



    1. The Black Keys � Brothers
      Loved their earlier albums but a more soulful & rounded sound makes for their best album yet.
    2. Broken Bells - Broken Bells
      Is there anything Danger Mouse can�t do? Collaborating with The Shins� James Mercer he's produced a spaced-out pop gem.
    3. Gorillaz - Plastic Beach
      Been lucky enough to see them twice this year and the stage filled with rappers, brass bands, strings & endless guest stars effortlessly switching genres, all coupled with Jamie Hewlett�s exceptional animations makes for quite an experience.
    4. Beach House - Teen Dream
      Zebra is a strong tune of the year contender, and the rest of the album maintains the shimmering, hazy style to great effect. Lovely.
    5. Quantic Presenta Flowering Inferno - Dog On A Rope
      Saw Will Holland and his Combo Bárbaro at this year�s Moseley Jazz Festival who were exceptional, but it�s this Jamaican, Columbian, Cuban crossover album I�ve listened to the most. Who knew Latin Reggae worked so well.
    6. Caribou � Swim
      Been following Dan Snaith since his Manitoba days, but this is the album where he�ll finally get some recognition and deservedly so. Sun, Sun, Sun, Sun�
    7. Sufjan Stevens - Age of Adz
      Much more electronic that Illinoise, he seems to have the ability to throw anything into the mix and it still comes out sounding right. An album filled with more ideas that most artist�s careers.
    8. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
      For me all of their albums have been growers and this is no exception, and it ends up being more consistent than its predecessors without perhaps quite hitting the heights.
    9. Sleigh Bells � Treats
      An aural noise assault from the off, particularly opener �Tell �Em� as well as the bit in �Infinity Guitars� where despite everything seemingly belting along at maximum all the elements suddenly get one louder. All contrasted with the biggest surprise on the album the superb �Rill Rill�.
    10. Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings - I Learned The Hard Way
      Their most accomplished album to date, producing funk & soul of the calibre of their influences.


    Aloe Blacc - Good Things
    I Need A Dollar is probably my tune of the year, rest of the album is a great listen too.
    Naomi Shelton & The Gospel Queens - What Is This?
    The Budos Band - III
    Four Tet - There Is Love In You
    !!! - Strange Weather Isn't It


    Keb Darge & Little Edith's Legendary Rockin' R & B
    Daptone Gold
    Tru Thoughts Funk


    1. Inception
      Chris Nolan has to be the greatest Hollywood director working today.
    2. The Social Network
      Biggest surprise of the year, great direction, snappy dialogue and accomplished performances.
    3. Mesrine: L'instinct de mort & Mesrine: L'ennemi public No 1
      Vincent Cassel is just superb in this epic biopic of French gangster Jacques Mesrine.
    4. Un Prophète
      Two French criminal dramas in the top ten, this is just as good.
    5. Up In The Air
      Jason Reitman follows up Juno with a masterclass in how to make a comedy-drama.
    6. UP
      Pixar do it again, from laughter to tears and back again.
    7. Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
      Be interested to see how the Hollywood remake can live up to this.
    8. Kick Ass
      A film actually better than it�s comic book source material is a rarity these days & one featuring a great Nic Cage performance is even rarer.
    9. Scott Pilgrim vs The World
      Not as good as it�s source material, but Edgar Wright�s version is about as good a film as you could wish for. Great fun from the 8-bit Universal theme onwards.
    10. The Mist (the black and white version)
      Frank Darabont is currently wowing the small screen with The Walking Dead, but here he takes a deft hand to 50�s scifi B movies. Best seen in his preferred black and white version.


    1. Toots & The Maytals - Glastonbury, West Holts Stage
      Live highlight of the year by a mile, surrounded by beaming smiles and feverish dancing by all ages. A lesson to many younger bands on how to put on a performance.
    2. Quantic & His Combo Barbaro - Moseley Jazz Festival
      Will Holland has put together one hell of a line-up from his worldwide travels. To see such consummate musicianship up close was amazing.
    3. Fantasy Funk Band - Glastonbury, WOW Tent
      Created for Craig Charles' funk & soul show featuring James Taylor on Hammond Organ, John Turrell & Dionne Charles on vocals, The Haggis Horns and members of best funk bands in the country. My legs ached for days from dancing so much!
    4. Gorillaz - Birmingham NIA
      Glastonbury was good if a little underappreciated by the Pyramid crowd, but 5 months later they'd refined it and perfected an audio-visual treat. With support from De La Soul!
    5. Breakestra feat. Chali 2Na - Glastonbury, West Holts Stage
      Breakestra were great but it was Jurassic 5's Chali 2Na that had the whole crowd in the palm of his hand.
    6. Flight of the Conchords - Birmingham NIA
      Despite a the huge venue did not disappoint.
    7. Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - Glastonbury, The Park
      9 piece brass ensemble (8 of them brothers) performing hip-hop influenced pieces. Incredible.
    8. Madness - Camp Bestival, Main Stage
      After a slow start, a final run of one massive single after another proved why they're still so loved.

    Gerard Cagney

    i thought these were all pretty good....not sure my pop music listening would be so comphrensive these days.....happy 2011 to everyone...

    janelle monae - the archandroid

    richard thompson - dream attic

    the xx

    spoon - transferance

    deerhunter - halcyon digest

    the national - high violet

    sun kil moon - admiral fell promises

    the roots - how i got over

    laura marling - i speak beacuse i can

    canibus - c of tranquility

    also, kevin coyne marjory razorblade (a reissue)

    these are all great if you like jazz...

    tom harrell roman nights

    rudresh mahanthappa kinsmen

    jon hassell last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street

    enrico rava, stefano bollani the third man

    Tom Corcoran

    Music  Gigs  Streams  Moving Pictures Book  Live Events  Sport  Mountain bike trail  Recipe  You Tube  App 

    Reviewing my google calendar compiling this list I saw no gig, film, dvd entries for 4 months from April on. Why? New baby, new town, new house, new job! Saved again by the Electric picnic - I just wish they would bring it back a week so it would not clash with the all-ireland hurling and the first week of school. I thought it was a phemomenal year for Irish music, we have a brillaint diverse array of talent at the moment, the Villagers, Two Door Cinema Club and And So I watch you from Afar are all in my top 10. The real sickner for Irish music was the close of Road Records. Though I bought no CDs this year and downloads did make the majority of my purchases, I did buy Vinyl and will continue to, it'a an unmatched medium. I'd rather buy my vinyl in a shop rather than via Discogs.

    1. The Drums - The Drums
      • Have a listen if you want to put a smile on your face, seruiously infectious pop songs.
    2. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
      • Vinyl of the year. The album was mastered in vinyl so buying it in another form was not an option for me.
    3. Vampire weekend - Contra
    4. Villagers - Becoming a Jackal
    5. Two Door Cinema Club - Tourist hotel
      • There was a Gray Numan which I thought for years went "Hairy Molka", it was "Here in my car". Well similarly, thjis exciting Northern Irish band mistook the name "Tudor Cinema club".
    6. Broken Social Scene - Forgiveness Rock Record
      • This one is a grower. Try and get Texico Bitches out of your head.
    7. Redneck Manifesto - Friendship
    8. Eminem - Recovery
      • I have a soft spot for Em. "Go find a white crayon and colour a fucking zebra".
    9. Flying Lotus - Cosmogramma
      • This came with a unique code for a mp3 download copy of the album. This is surely the way forward. A serious piece of work that keeps opening up.
    10. And So I watch you from Afar - And So I watch you from Afar

    Honourable mentions

    1. Martin Hayes, Body & Soul, Electic Picnic, 3 September
      • Wow. Mind blowing. Thinking the energy might be fading at 3am, we got a shot of ripping fiddle that you just were compulsed to move to. Electrifying and spine chilling as I write. First trad ever for me in 6 picnics and very possibly the highlight of the festival. I guess I have just given it that honour.
    2. Villagers, Electric Arena, Electic Picnic, 3 September
      • Never heard their music before the gig - the hype and friends' advice not to miss proved spot on. Sensational. The song Pieces was electric! Best blind gig ever surely.
    3. Villagers, Daghdha Space, St Johns's church, Limerick, 17 December
      • Completely different show to the picnic, but no less brilliant. You never knew what was coming next with Conor O'Brien reinterpresting the songs. Madly talented lad.
    4. Arcade Fire, Point, Dublin, 6 December
    5. Pavement, Tripod, 4 May
      • When their reunion was announced I got all excited and bought tickets for the then first gig in Central Park, New Work in September! I realised too late that these tickets had to be collected so it was too late to pass them on! It was special to see them play again, here's a review I found.
    6. Jonsi, Electric Arena, Electic Picnic, 3 September
    7. Leftfield, Main Stage, Electic Picnic, 3 September
      • It was a prefect outdoor late night vibe. It caught me by surprise as I had not been keeping up with Leftfield, they finished up with some fantastic dubstep, a festival highlight for me.
    8. National, Main Stage, Electic Picnic, 5 September
      • Saw them 2 years ago in the Olympia when they were still playing songs of Aligator. Have not listened to their last 2 albums, but damn, the crowd had and you got the feeling loved these songs even better. They played a totally different version of the Mr November I knew too. There was some drizzle falling now. Very Good.
    9. The Frames, Main Stage, Electic Picnic, 4 September
    10. And So I watch you from Afar, Electric Avenue, Waterford, 13 January
      • There I was sitting on the couch ready for bed at 12.15am and I get a text from John saying they were on in 15 minutes. The benedits of living right in town! What energy from the first chord, the 4 lads going nuts, completely vibing. Picked up their CD afterwards, the only one I got all year I think.

    Honourable mentions
    Live song of the year
    1. Pieces, Villagers

    Moving Pictures
    Big screen films
    1. Avatar
    2. The Hurt Locker
    3. Inception
    4. The Social Network
    5. Creation
    6. The Cove
    7. Goodbye Solo
    8. Kick Ass

    Small screen films
    1. Shutter Island
    2. Adventureland
    3. Two Lovers
    4. Burn after reading
    5. A serious man
    6. Leaf of Grass
      • My first home cinema experience with this projected on the wall. A memorable film with Edward Nortan.
    7. Up in the air
    8. Inglorious Basterds
    9. Greenberg
    10. The Town
    11. An education
    12. Room for rent
    13. Sunshine Cleaning
    14. Scott Pilgrim vs The World
      • Wish I had seen this one on the big screen. The computer screen did not do it justice.

    TV series

    Last year was box sets, but they take up too much room and are you really going to watch them again - this year downloads or streaming.

    1. Mad men
    2. Walking Dead
    3. The Good Wife
    4. Dexter

    Turkey of the year
    1. The bounty hunter
    2. Love Happens
    Live events
    Live Sport
    Armchair Sport
    Mountain bike trail
    You Tube clip

    Tony Corrigan


    1. Gorillaz, O2
    2. Electric Picnic - Imelda May, Villagers, The Frames, Jonsi.
    3. Ray Davies, Grand Canal Theatre
    4. Joanna Newsom, Grand Canal Theatre
    5. Sting, O2
    6. Paul Weller, Olympia


    1. Death of a Salesman, Gate
    2. Time Stands Still, Alicia Silverstone, Laura Linney
    3. The Gods Weep, Jeremy Irons, Swiss Cottage
    4. John Gabriel Borkman, Ibsen, Alan Rickman, Abbey Theatre
    5. The World Cup � Germany v England!


    Top 10 Albums

    1. Jonsi - Go
    2. Villagers - Becoming a Jackal
    3. Scott Walker - The Drift
    4. Ray Davies - The Storyteller
    5. Eels - End Times
    6. Kinks - Everybodys in Showbiz
    7. Paul Weller - Wake up the Nation
    8. The National - High Violet
    9. Sting - Symphonicity
    10. Joanna Newsom - Have one on me

    Richie Evans

    Top 10 Albums 2010.

    1. The Unthanks - Here's The Tender Coming (2009 release)

    2. The National - High Violet

    3. Surfer Blood - Astrocoast

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

    5. Teenage Fanclub - Shadows

    6. Phosphorescent - Here's To Taking It Easy

    7. Perfume Genius - Learning

    8. Four Tet - There Is Love In You

    9. Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest

    10. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs

    Top 10 Gigs 2010

    1. The Unthanks @ GreenMan

    2. Belle & Sebastian @ Grand Canal Theatre

    3. Band Of Horses @ Tripod

    4. The National @ Olympia

    5. Janelle Monae @ Tripod

    6. Teenage Fanclub @ Academy

    7. Pavement @ Tripod

    8. Tallest Man On Earth @ Whelans

    9. Midlake @ Vicar St.

    10. Greg Dulli @ Whelans

    Ronan Hickey

    Back after a hiatus of (quick check) 7 years. No music festival this year for the first time in a long time but managed to get in a fair few gigs. Thanks to Lisa Hannigan's review in Road Records (a moment's silence please) for putting me on to Dan Auerbach's solo album. Actually just generally thanks to Lisa Hannigan :-) *sigh*


    Some old...some new. Keep it Hid is the album of the year for me. Never been a Final Fantasy fan but gotta say I love Heartlands and keep coming back to it. I put the second-last Eels album on rather than this year's "End Times" but there are great tracks on both. The Decemberists and Iron & Wine tracks are tips to the fact that they both visit our shores in 2011. Loving the Silent Shout album. Picked up the Chequerboard album at a gig in The Sugar Club and it's really strong.


    Amazing Tori gig (could it be anything else?) and Greg Dulli made me a believer again with a brilliant night in Whelan's after his car-crash gig with Mark Lanegan in The Academy. I don't really rate the Scroobius Pip album but for pure noisy, sweat-soaked, energy gigs like we USED to go to years ago it couldn't be beaten. Savage curfew-breaking set by Godspeed and as always Henry Rollins is the man. And what about The Workman's Club? Venue of choice! Crawdaddy intimacy with the bar in a separate room and another room for sitting and chatting.

    Lucas Hilbert

    Since I shuffled my way out of a music job and started something new, most of my picks are from earlier in the year when I was still on the promo feed. Since then I've gone back to listen to stuff I missed in the promo piles from previous years, so there are a couple catchy ones on repeat shuffle from 2009 in here as well:
    1. The National, High Violet
    2. Yeasayer, Odd Blood
    3. Eminem, Recovery
    4. The Temper Trap, Conditions
    5. Mumford & Sons, Sigh No More
    6. Arctic Fire, Neon Bible
    7. Kings of Leon, Come Around Sundown
    8. Broken Bells, Broken Bells
    9. David Gray, Draw the Line
    10. Thirty Seconds to Mars, This is War
    As far as movies and shows, this will be a year sans either on my list. Anyone with a baby knows what I mean. Happy new year, and rawk on.

    Brendan Jennings

    Top 10 Albums 2010

    I had a pretty unadventurous year, so my list is full of my usual suspects:
    1. The National - High Violet
    3. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
    5. The Antlers - Hospice
    7. Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
    9. Sufjan Stevens - Age of Adz
    11. Julie Feeney - Pages
    13. Vampire Weekend - Contra
    15. Broken Social Scene - Forgiveness Rock Record
    17. Konono No. 1 - Assume Crash Position
    19. Wolf Parade - Expo 86

    HMs 2010

    Chris Louca

    Here's my top 10 albums of 2010 (in no particular order!!!)

    1) Grasscut - 1 inch / 1/2 mile
    2) Mitchell Museum - The Peters Port Memorial Service
    3) The Soundcarriers - Celeste
    4) Ratatat - LP4
    5) RJD2 - The Collossus
    6) Bill Callahan - Sometimes I Wish I Were An Eagle
    7) Grinderman - Grinderman 2
    8) Junip - Fields
    9) Jim Jones Revue - Burning Your House Down
    10) Ariya Astrobeat Arkestra - Ariya Astrobeat Arkestra

    My top ten rated movies I've watched in 2010 (again in no particular order and not necessarily from this year!!!!)

    1) Bunny & The Bull
    2) Inception
    3) Scott Pilgrim vs The World
    4) Toy Story 3 (Hugo's first trip to the cinema!)
    5) Talk To Me
    6) Moon
    7) The Fantastic Mr Fox
    8) Mesrine
    9) District 9
    10) Whip It!

    Niall Lynch

    Nialls Top 10

    This year seemed to spin around particularly fast, it must be one of the symptoms of getting older. Lots of great music this year and I still didn't get around to listening to all I wanted to. Here's the top ten and a few more that I enjoyed this year.
    Pos Artist Album Ramblings
    1. Owen Pallet Heartland The lawyers finally caught up with Final Fantasy, their loss, they could have done with some superb music for their soundtrack. This album is just as good as anything he has done before, Owen's talent knows no bounds. Some epic tunes such as The Great Elsewhere and Tryst with Mephistofpheles. Even the tracks I disliked originally I like now, it's a true laster.
    2. The Drums The Drums Very catchy tunes which I was humming from the moment I heard them. Lots of obvious influences from the eighties, the good eighties, The Smiths, Jesus and Mary Chain, Joy Division. Great live show, lots of superb moves you'll be trying to copy.
    3. The Villagers Becoming a Jackal It has all been said about the very talented Mr O'Brien, the mercury nomination was no accident. Still listening to this now and it still sounds great.
    4. Beach House Teen Dream Dreamy melancholic sounds from this American outfit, Norway was one of my favourite tunes of the year. This is their third album but they only came to my attention because this year because the album was on the Les Inrockuptibles albums of the year last year.
    5. Tindersticks Falling Down a Mountain The reformed Tindersticks are getting better with the help of a few additions to the lineup including David Kitt. This is an excellent album, with only one disappointment, the painful duet with Mary Margaret O'Hara, I had such high hopes for that song, pity. Factory Girls stands up there with some of the great Tindersticks songs, the sadness in Stuarts voice is heartbreaking.
    6. Foals Total Life Forever These guys have filled the gap left by The Rapture, bodypopping math rock, lots of layered tunes with catchy melodies, robert smithesque vocals, even some Talking Heads hidden in there. Spanish Sahara is one of the top tunes of the year.
    7. Sufjan Stevens All Delighted People EP This EP was released just before the Age of Adz, which meant I never got around to giving Age of Adz a proper listen as this is so good. Two great versions of the title track and then the most amazing heart wrenching song The Owl and the Tananger
    8. Broken Social Scene Forgiveness Rock Record Although it doesn't reach the heights of some of their previous albums (including Kevin Drews album) I did find lots to like about this. The usual cachophony of sounds they appear to be able to conjure up into a melody. A couple of stand out tunes in Forced to Love and All to All.
    9. Belle and Sebastian Write About Love There are 3 exceptional songs on this album, 3 good songs and the rest is a bit disappointing considering it is over 4 years since their last release. However, some people will never write as good a song as those 3 exceptional songs.
    10. Janelle Monae The ArchAndroid This is a value for money album and we like that in these recessionary times, moving from soul to funk to hip hop it's all covered. At times like prince when he was at his brassiest funkiest best and other times like Lauren Hill back in the day.
    Top 10 2010 by lynchna

    Just edged out:

    Jogging Minutes Loud antics from this Irish outfit vocals not the best but certainly made up for by the great driven tunes.
    Cast of Cheers Chariot The cheapest album of the year, free, and it still is available to download for free. I am Lion was performed live on Under Ether, lots of angular guitar rhythy like the Foals
    The Thermals Personal Life More high energy youthful guitar driven pop tunes from this Portland outfit, very enjoyable.
    The National High Violet I'm a latecomer to this band, I liked this album but I'm still amazed at their popularity, it's a good thing, but how come it never happened in the same way for the Tindersticks?
    Cocorosie Grey Oceans A return to form for these crazy ladies, Lemonade is a top tune
    Giant Sand Blurry Blue Mountain More of the same from the God Father of alt country, it's 25 years since Giant Sand formed, a few line up changes along the way but Howe still controls all the buttons. Monk's Mountain is an epic tune.
    Crystal Castles Crystal Castles II Not as good as I but still some great beats, screaches and noises to help with the tinnitis.
    Morrissey Swords Not an album dedicated to the north dublin town, but one of b-sides over the last few years, includes the great Ganglord and Don't Make Fun of Daddy's Voice
    Jennifer Evans Sure Fire EP This lady is going to be huge, she has the most amazing soulful voice and backs it up with Jeff Buckley esque tunes. Once she appears on Later with Jools it will be a done deal.
    Bonus tracks 2010 by lynchna


    A very fruitful year gig wise:

    Tindersticks @ St. Canice's Church Kilkenny Gig of the year for me, band were in great form, we think that stuart may have even smiled. Great mix of old, stuart solo and new stuff. Check this site for the setlist just to prove: setList kilkenny What an incredible venue, perfect for these guys and they knew it.
    Owen Pallet @Whelans Accompanied by a guitarist this time and there was some great back and forth between them. I also picked up his first album at the gig which is incredible, contains some live favourites such as The CN Tower Belongs to the Dead and That's when the Audience Died.
    DM Stith @Torture Garden Living Room and Whelans Great seeing this guy close up on consequtive nights, hard to believe he was a supporting act, astonishingly talented, cut from the same stone as Owen Pallett
    Cocorosie @Button Factory All the fisher price toys were there plus the two mad sisters, great seeing them live, they put in a really great show.
    Dan le Sac vs Scourbious Pip @Workmans club Best venue in the city now and what a great place to see these guys, they were up for it and so were the crowd lots of laughs and singalongs
    Belle and Sebastian @Grand Canal Theatre A brilliant selection of tunes, 5 from if your feeling sinister, Stuart was in great form, plenty of dancing, they enjoyed the gig a lot too.
    The Drums @Academy & Le Cigalle Fresh and full of energy, some cool moves and both crowds really lapped it up.
    Jennifer Evans @ Workmans Club Awesome talent, amazing voice and great guitar playing, even better live than on recordings, she is going to be big.
    Foals @ Academy Brilliant performance included crowd surfing and audience participation with the guitar solos, old and new stuff sounded great.
    Midlake @ Vicar Street Great to see these guys belt out their guitar laden 70s tribute show, only downside having to sit through the painful John Grant, bemused at what people see in this guy.
    Bell X 1 @ Vicar Street The lads went all acoustic on us with great results. The night also included some ramblings on one of my favourite sbjects, biscuits.

    Fab Fifty
    1. Handsome Devil The Smiths
    2. In The Mouth a Desert Pavement
    3. My Oblivion Tindersticks

    Dave McGuinness

    2010: I just can't believe it's top ten time again. What a year - banking collapse, recession, bailouts, IMF, snow, more snow. But it wasn't all bad - another memorable Electric Picnic, with old friends. Milo arrived in June. More snowboarding in the Dublin Mountains - twice, and that mightn't be the last of it. Wicklow Adventure Race - Glendalough and Glenmalure, two fantastic days out. Right, here're my faves of the year.

    Albums of the Year

    1. Gil Scott-Heron - I'm New Here. Simply brilliant
    2. Mew - No More Stories. The best band you've never heard of, all of this Danish collective's albums are worth checking out
    3. Arcade Fire - The Suburbs. Loved this from almost first listen, and even better live
    4. LCD Soundsystem - This is Happening. No problem with the third album here, another classic
    5. Massive Attack - Heligoland. Fantastic album, seven years after the disappointing 100th Window - worth the wait
    6. Katell Keineg - At the Mermaid Parade. What's the opposite of prolific? Her 3rd album in 16 years. This one got lots of plays
    7. The National - High Violet. They just keep chugging them out
    8. Avi Buffalo - Avi Buffalo. Debut from this Californian band, really enjoyed it - reminded me of Wilco
    9. Janelle Monae - The Archandroid. Where the hell did this lady come from? A sprawling album - a bit long, but loads of great tracks
    10. Yann Tiersen - Dust Lane. The Am�lie guy, but this is very different. Fantastic album

    Albums: Honourable Mentions

    Didn't quite make the cut, and some older releases...


    1. Electric Picnic. Brilliant & memorable weekend, my faves were: Janelle Monae, Marc Almond, Jonsi, Roxy Music, Redneck Manifesto, Villagers (highlight), Ardal O'Hanlon, Paul Brady (amazing), The Frames (finally saw them), LCD Soundsystem, Gil-Scott Heron. Other highlights: the company, our campsite setup, Tom's pancakes, and the hot tubs!
    2. Pavement - Tripod. What a night, and the red carpet treatment for a pregnant Richenda and I
    3. Arcade Fire - O2. Awful venue, but a flawless performance, if not quite attaining EP 2005 level
    4. LCD Soundsystem - Tripod. Needed the earplugs for this one - a great Saturday night performance, worth waiting for after April postponement
    5. Leonard Cohen - Lissadell House, Sligo. A magic evening
    6. Belle & Sebastian - Grand Canal Theatre. Fourth time I've seen them, and they did not disappoint - fantastic venue too
    7. Paul Weller - Olympia. Brilliant energy
    8. Hypnotic Brass Ensemble - Whelans. The most fun you'll ever have at a gig
    9. Willard Grant Conspiracy - Whelans. No band unfortunately, but still a nice show
    10. Joanna Newsom - Grand Canal Theatre. Not exactly rock n roll, but enjoyed it


    Got to see Les Liaisons Dangereuses, and Death of a Salesman at The Gate. Two classic plays, and they were both excellent

    Events, Activities, Sports...

    My first live snooker, an exhibition with Jimmy White, Ken Doherty and John Virgo just down the road. Great fun.


    Another year of the boxset.


    Less time for reading than before, but still chugging away This concludes the votes of the McG jury. Over and out.

    Nathan Morehouse

    Nate's Top 10 Albums of 2010 (in no particular order):

    Pantha du Prince - Black Noise - Transcendent electronic soundscapes from critically-acclaimed German beatmaker. Flying Lotus meets Slowdive.

    Jamie Lidell - Compass - After a disappointing followup to Multiply (Jim), Jamie nails it with this Beck-produced jam. Grunge-funk and off-kilter Prince-inspired ballads.

    Deepchord presents Echospace - Liumin - Second brilliant release under this moniker, Rod Modell captures the beauty and loneliness of life in a foreign land. Composed of field recordings from travels in Japan. If you can, pick up the bonus disc available only with the first pressing. It may be better than the main disc.

    CocoRosie - Grey Oceans - One word: "unbelievable". This album has been on constant play since I got a pre-release copy in late 2009.

    Balam Acab - See Birds EP - This is hip-hop dialed down to half-pace, then spangled with conversational fragments, gurgling waterfalls and birds. The backstory (debut release of 19-year-old from Ithaca, New York) and innovative poise of this EP remind me of when Khonnor first blew me away in 2004.

    James Blake - Klavierwerke EP + Limit to Your Love Single - One of the freshest new producers on the scene at the moment and third man in Mount Kimbie's live setup, Blake brings a soulfulness and precision often missing in the post-dubstep genre. This EP and the just released cover of Feist's Limit to Your Love (the video is a must see) feature Blake's piano and vocal chops more prominently.

    Beach House - Teen Dream - I realize this album may have been overplayed in the US and UK, but it was a revelation for me when I first heard a leaked copy in December, 2009. I was embarrassed I'd never heard of them after their previous two critically-lauded albums. Sweet and jangled sentimental pop for those moments when bliss is on order.

    Mountain Man - Made the Harbor - With everyone clambering to add an electronic glitch or warble to every song, or attempting grandiosity suitable for the label "stadium rock", the beguiling harmonies of these three ladies were a breath of fresh air.

    S. Carey - All We Grow - A sleeper of an album from Bon Iver's capable drummer that somehow hit the sweet spot for kick-back weekend afternoons.

    The Tallest Man on Earth - The Wild Hunt - Swedish musician Kristian Matsson does something magical with his take on folk. I still haven't pinned it down yet, but this album and its predecessors have continued to impress me many listens later. Check out his live DC gig free to stream through NPR's All Songs Considered.

    Honorable mentions:

    Ali Farka Touré & Toumani Diabaté - Ali & Toumani - Equally mesmerizing followup to their Grammy award-winning collaboration In the Heart of the Moon, and now we know Ali's last album. This album was one of Coral's favorites for afternoon playtime.

    LCD Soundsystem - This Is Happening - "Drunk Girls" and "You Wanted a Hit" are everything we could ask from James Murphy in what's rumoured to be his last album as LCD Soundsystem.

    Sharon Van Etten - Epic - Authentic folk that just slays you at times. Check out the tune "Don't Do It"

    The Soft Pack - s/t - Confident up-beat California indie rock for sunny afternoon drives.

    Giant Drag - Swan Song EP - Paid for by fan donations through Paypal (including yours truly), a solid offering by one of the strangest duos in garage rock.

    Various Artists - Palenque Palenque - Champeta Criolla & Afro Roots in Colombia 1975-1991 - 2010 saw a resurgence of interest in afro-beat. This is one of the best curated collections of how afro roots influenced backyard soundsystems in South America.

    Sonny and the Sunsets - Tomorrow Is Alright - Bubbly throw-back and ultimately very strange garage pop.

    Caribou - Swim - Caribou's danciest yet, with a couple of veritable bangers. He almost nabbed a second Polaris prize on this one. Iconic cover art as well.

    Artists to watch in 2011:

    WU LYF - Saw them live at Les Transmusicales in Rennes. Nothing released but a few leaked mp3 demos.

    How To Dress Well - Brooklyn project that falls between shoegaze and hip-hop.

    Banjo or Freakout - One half of Walls (with Allez Allez), this guy made his name decomposing and reconstituting pop songs into wash-out glimmering covers. He's making his own tunes and has several EPs on vend.

    Nicolas Jaar - Freshest player in the house scene. Seriously. And don't let this "house" label throw you. This isn't anything like the house music you listened to in the late 90s. Resident Advisor listed him as their number two live act, above Booka Shade (#5), Moderat (#7), and Shackleton (#9). Not bad for a 20-year-old who's just finishing an undergraduate degree at Brown University. He's released a heap of mixes and a few EPs. Expect a full-length sometime in early 2011.

    Albums I missed in 2009 that received HEAVY airplay in 2010:

    Matias Aguayo - Ay Ay Ay - A banger composed almost entirely of vocal clips from this Argentinean king of dirty hedonistic techno.

    Moderat - Moderat - Never cared much for Modeselektor, but this collab with Apparat is the stuff of legend. "Rusty Nails" and "Out of Sight" take me to another level. Recommended to raving runners and running ravers.

    Various Artists - Snuggle & Slap - A typically eclectic and rewarding compilation from Circus Company, one of the most interesting record labels of the moment.

    Benoit & Sergio - What I've Lost EP - Music that'll make your ears happy and your mind squirm a little.

    Cecilia Bartoli - Sacrificium - The incomparable Bartoli tackles a collection of baroque music rarely sung because it was written for castrati (an uncomfortable subject and vocal range).

    Jónsi & Alex - Riceboy Sleeps - Naptime music for Coral. Music of Sigur Ros' lead singer and his boyfriend.

    Overhyped offal:

    Mumford & Sons - Sigh No More - I was constantly surprised by the amount of airplay this stuff got. This may have been the first mp3 album I deleted from my external harddrive even though I have plenty of space. Sorry to all of those who liked this, I just found it to be shallow, unauthentic and entirely devoid of innovation.

    Magnetic Man - s/t - You would think that a collab betwen superstars Benga, Skream and Artwork would be at least as good as their individual musical ventures. Sadly not so. Don't waste your time. "Perfect Stranger" is somewhat redeeming.

    Derek Murphy


    - Karen O & the Kids - Where The Wild Things Are
    - The Dead Weather - Sea Horses
    - Grinderman 2
    - Fantastic Mr Fox Soundtrack
    - Weezer - Raditude
    - Massive Attack - Heliocentric
    - Fort Knox Five - Radio Free DC
    - Devil's Brigade - Devil's Brigade
    - Them Crooked Vultures - Them Crooked Vultures
    - Soundgarden - Telephantasm

    - Kick Ass
    - Where The Wild Things Are
    - Fantastic Mr Fox
    - Doctor Paranassus Imaginarium
    - Zak & Meri Make A Porno (again!)

    - Shantaram - Gregory David Roberts
    - Her Fearful Symmetry - Thingy Niffenegger
    - Last Train To Memphis - Peter Guralnick
    - Porno - Irvine Welch
    - Stonedogs - Craig Marriner
    - Shadowmarch / Shadowplay / Shadowrise / Shadowheart - Tad Williams
    - The Witches Of Eastwick - John Updike
    - Catch-22 - Joseph Heller

    - Random Acts Of Heroic Love - Danny Scheinmann

    Martin O'Gorman

    Martino's Top Ten

    Thanks again Tom for giving us the chance to record our memories of the year. I am sitting in an apartment in Buenos Aires, 13000 kilometers and 11 months into a bike ride along with Nessa from Mexico, a trip I had dreamed about for years. We are blogged in at CaminoLatino, check it out. We hope to finish by the end of February in Tierra Del Fuego after riding down though Patagonia in the new year.

    I don't have a music contribution this year because to be honest, I haven't listened to much during the year, so am way out of the loop. So, some of the books that kept me in a chilled out space during all that time

    My Name is Red by Ohran Pamuk
    Travels with Herodetus by Ryszard Kapuscinski
    Resurrection by Tolstoy
    Seabiscuit by Laura Hillenbrand
    The Betrothed by Alessandro Manzoni
    The Birth of Venus by Sarah Dunant
    Open Veins of Latin America : Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent by Eduardo Galeano
    2666 by Roberto Bola�o

    I can highly recommend the last 2, each a masterpiece iin its own way.

    Caroline O'Reilly


    1. DM Stith in a sitting room in Monkstown
    2. Tindersticks @ St. Canice�s in Kilkenny
    3. Owen Pallett @ Whelans
    4. The Drums @ La Cigale, Paris
    5. Foals @ The Academy
    6. Jennifer Evans @ The Workman�s Club
    7. The Drums @ The Academy
    8. Belle & Sebastian @ The Grand Canal Theatre
    9. Yann Tiersen @ The Village
    10. Halves @ The Workman�s Club

    1. Owen Pallett - Heartland
    2. The Drums � The Drums
    3. Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles II
    4. Perfume Genius - Learning
    5. Janelle Monae � The ArchAndroid
    6. Tindersticks - Falling Down a Mountain
    7. Sufjan Stevens � All Delighted People EP
    8. Foals � Total Life Forever
    9. Villagers � Becoming A Jackal
    10. Remember Remember - Remember Remember
    11. The Soft Pack - The Soft Pack
    12. Halves � It Goes, It Goes (Forever & Ever)
    13. Joanne Newsom � Have One On Me
    14. Legion of Two � Riffs

    Top 10 2010 by portixol

    Enda Ruddy

    The XX, Paradiso
    Lightspeed Champion, Paradiso
    MIA, Paradiso
    Health, Paradiso
    Paul Kalkbrenner, A Day at the Park
    Babylon Circus, Robodock
    The Thermals, Melkweg
    Kelis - Paradiso

    Jannel Monae The archandroid
    LCD Soundsystem This is happening
    Bill Callahan - Rough Travel for a Rare Thing
    Foals - Total Life Forever
    Broken Social Scene - Forgiveness Rock Record
    Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles

    LCD Soundsystem - Dance Yrself Clean
    Foals - Spanish Sahara
    Tindersticks - Piano Music
    Tinie Tempah - Pass Out
    Broken Social Scene - Anthems for a 17-Year-Old Girl
    Tightrope - Janelle Monae
    Two door cinema club - Something good can work
    4th of July - Kelis
    I didn't see it coming - Belle and Sebastian
    Crystal Castles - Celestica

    Mike Leigh - Another Year
    Richard Linklater - Me and Orson Welles
    Juan Jose Companella - The Secret in Their Eyes
    Noah Baumbach - Greenberg
    Adam McKay - the Other Guys
    Marc Forster - Stranger than fiction

    Anthony Scarfo

    Sophie Hunger - 1983
    Carolina Chocolate Drops - Genuine Negro Jig
    Kings of Convenience - Declaration of Independance
    Gil-Scott Heron - I'm new here
    Neu! - Allogallo - Seminal 1972 release, which I discovered following an excellent Krautrock documentary on the BBC. Now I see the lineage to Radiohead
    The XX - the XX
    Seasick Steve - Man from another time
    LCD Soundsystem - this is happening
    Doveman - the Confirmist
    Little Richard - Here's Little Richard

    Peter Ward

    2010 for me on an 80min cd below:

    1. I Don't Care If There's Cursing - Phosphorescent
    2. Used To Be - Beachouse
    3. Compliments - Band Of Horses
    4. Bloodbuzz Ohio - The National
    5. Written In Reverse - Spoon
    6. Month Of May - Arcade Fire
    7. Twenty Miles - Deertick
    8. The Only One - The Black Keys
    9. What's In It For - AVI Buffalo
    10. Desire Lines - Deerhunter
    11. Tunnel Vision - Here We Go Magic
    12. Round And Round - Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti
    13. Secret Handshake - Chappelier Fou
    14. Dust Lane - Yann Tierson
    15. Plastic People - Fourtet
    16. Sun - Caribou
    17. Running - Gil Scott Heron

    Colin Waugh

    Best Albums: top 5
    1 John Grant- Queen of Denmark
    2 Fantastic Mr Fox Soundtrack
    3 Caribou- Swim
    4 Vampire Weekend- Contra
    5 Heligoland- Massive Attack
    sadly, a poor year for interesting New Zealand music

    Best Film
    Toy Story 3 - perfection. sawit with the 2 boys. cried like a baby.

    Best Live Performance
    Leonard Cohen Chrictchurch Oct

    Best Event
    Not the best but the the biggest- 7.1 Earthquake .... nearly shat myself!

    Christchurch over and out