It´s a dirty job, but somebody´s gotta do it... So without further ado, here´s the one and only For The Sake Of The Song end of year list. Accept no substitutes, baby. Ten albums that were in heavy rotation during 2010, and that´s what counts in the end. Check! Buy the whole wonder show why don´t you.
1. Gil Scott-Heron - I´m New Here
Unexpected comeback of the year, by one of HipHop´s true forefathers.
Gil Scott-Heron - I´ll Take Care Of You MP3
2. Bonnie Prince Billy & The Cairo Gang - The Wonder Show Of The World
Will Oldham met guitarist Emmett Kelly, which lifted the fog on many a dreary day.
3. Charlie Parr - When The Devil Goes Blind
Intense and authentic pre-war blues, anno 2010. No, I´m not kidding.
Charlie Parr- 1890 MP3
4. Neil Young - Le Noise
Teaming up with producer Daniel Lanois was an excellent idea, sonically speaking.
5. First Aid Kit - The Big Black And The Blue
A lovely Swedish girl duo provided no-frills acoustic bliss. Jag älskar dig.
First Aid Kit - Sailor Song MP3
6. Phosphorescent - Here´s To Taking It Easy
Matthew Houck´s take on Americana compared to slipping into a warm bath.
7. Wounded Lion - Wounded Lion
Growling barb wire pop from smoggy LA. Debut of the year I´m sure.
Wounded Lion - Pony People MP3
8. Tunng - ...And Then We Saw Land
Not as adventurous as previous outings, but still the finest freakfolkers around.
9. Isobell Campbell & Mark Lanegan - Hawk
That marriage between a Belle and a Screaming Tree surely was made in heaven.
Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan - You Won´t Let Me Down Again MP3
10. Bill Callahan - Rough Travel For A Rare Thing
The former Smog foreman impressed once more, this time in an intimate live setting.
Bubbling under: Sun Kil Moon, Grinderman, Joanna Newsom, Drive-By Truckers, Pearly Gate Music, Off!, the Black Keys, Alasdair Roberts, Roky Erickson with Okkervil River, and the Graham Nash tribute Be Yourself.
Some old stuff released this year that I really enjoyed: Johnny Cash´s epitaph American VI: Ain´t No Grave, Dylan´s Witmark Demos and Live At Brandeis University, Complete Mythology by Syl Johnson, Satan´s A Waitin´ by Sonny Burns, and the Legacy Edition of Raw Power by Iggy & the Stooges. Music books of the year: Bob Dylan In America by Sean Wilentz, and We Never Learn - The Gunk Punk Undergut 1988-2001 by Eric Davidson.
Wishing you a bopping new year, dear readers. I´m off on a short break, see ya sometime early 2011.