Editors - An End Has A Start
Alright, everybody seems to discard Editors as an Interpol rip-off, which is a rip-off of Joy Division. We all know that. . .nothing ground breaking. But this album really surprised me. A definite bigger sound and some optimistic lyrics, something you don't hear much from Interpol.
Zach Condon has to be the smartest 20 year old kid in the world. I'm just amazed at every release. This new one is no exception. . . full of Gypsy/Balkan sounds and great melodies.
Vampire Weekend - Blue
Probably one of my favorite new bands as of late. They don't sound like anything particularly ground breaking (think if Paul Simon were in an indie band right now) Full of 60's sounding organs and guitars. Poppy, bouncy and fun.
Interpol - Our Love To Admire
I know, a lot of people don't think it's cool to like Interpol, but contrary to popular opinion, I love their new album. They really seem to be growing as a band and exploring new territory. Even if the territory isn't too far from where they were a couple years ago, it definitely is different. This album successfully combines the more melodic style from Antics and dark lyricism from Turn On The Bright Lights.
!!! - Myth Takes
!!! never seem to disappoint. Even though they put on. . .in my opinion. . .one of the worst shows that I experienced this year, they still put out one great party album. Definitely sure to put some pep in your step peeps.
Kings Of Leon - Because Of The Times
This album seems to be another one that people love to hate. I'm on the positive side. I've always loved their slowly evolving sound, and this is no exception. They are definitely all about showcasing their breadth of songwriting abilities. The songs range from all-out screaming dirty country rock to some simple ballads. Possibly my favorite album by The Kings.
This album really hasn't gotten much attention this year. I don't know why. . .maybe because it's by one of The Strokes, who maybe aren't cool enough to be cool anymore. If you haven't heard it yet, give it a listen. It definitely doesn't sound too much like The Strokes. It's a much softer sound with Hammond singing, while keeping familiar sounding clean, retro sounds.
Not a giant step from their debut, but definitely more cohesive. They use all the best synths and sound from the 80's and blend them with a great 80's vocal styling. Okay, maybe not too much different stuff blending together. It definitely could have been a great album in 1986. Nothing too new, but done great. My favorite party album of the year. I'm happy to see a band creating their own retro sound without leaning on stolen samples to do the work for them.
The National - Boxer
I was definitely a late-comer to this album. I wasn't on the bandwagon right away. It wasn't until I saw their amazing live show that I really became a fan, especially of their older stuff. Full of deep, introspective lyrics. . .Matt Berninger's monotonous tone really grows on you. Much more accessible than their previous stuff too.
Another album that I didn't hear much about this year. Possibly one of the most underrated musicians of today, Finn Andrews is definitely one of my favorites as of late. This album is a heart-wrenching brit-rock masterpiece. His screaching vocals really send his message home. He has a genuine sound to everything that he says and plays. He also explores a broader, more wide open sound than his previous work, The Runaway Found. If you haven't heard it yet, check it out. . . and if you don't like it. . . I guess you can tell me why you didn't like it?
Alright, there they are. . . and here are some more that I really had a tough time not including in the 10 above. . .
The Raveonettes - Lust Lust Lust
Radiohead - In Rainbows
A Place To Bury Strangers - A Place To Bury Strangers
The Black Lips - Good Bad Not Evil
Bright Eyes - Cassadaga
Andrew Bird - Armchair Apocrypha
Elvis Perkins - Ash Wednesday
Frightened Rabbit - Sing The Greys
Arcade Fire - Neon Bible