This is a list of my favorite albums that came out in the 10 years. I'm not a good critic. It is based on what I listened to the most and what influenced me the most. I can remember where I was and how I felt when I first heard all of these albums.
10. Is This It - The Strokes
Back in my Napster days I downloaded Hard To Explain and for the first like 15 times I heard it, during the break in the song, I thought it hadn't downloaded fully. I wised up eventually.
Favorite Tracks: Is This It, Someday, Trying My Luck
9. Give Up - The Postal Service
How can I not love a band featuring two of my faaaavorite musicians? I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of this album so by the time I saw them play at a sold out show at the Abbey Pub in Chicago, I knew all the words. Everyone loves this album.
Favorite Tracks: Recycled Air, Nothing Better, Such Great Heights
8. Oh, Inverted World - The Shins
One of my favorite musicians recommended this album when I asked her what she was listening to. I picked it up the next day. I always get such a warm feeling when listening to it.
Favorite Tracks: The Celibate Life, Know Your Onion!, New Slang
7. Kid A - Radiohead
I bought this from Rhino Records in Claremont the day it came out and listened to it no less than 10 times in a row. I got to see them on two dates of the Kid A tour in Santa Barbara and even snuck into the afterparty and met Thom Yorke. . . story for another day.
Favorite Tracks: Idioteque, How to Disappear Completely, Motion Picture Soundtrack
6. Old World Underground, Where Are You Now? - Metric
A friend introduced me to Metric and I was immediately taken by Emily Haines' combination of sweet and sass. The songwriting on this album is impeccable and Haines' lyrics are entirely unique.
Favorite Tracks: Hustle Rose, Combat Baby, The List
5. Funeral - The Arcade Fire
I had heard about this album a lot before I was convinced by my brother to give them a chance. We were in the car with my cousins, one of whom remarked that Win Butler's voice sounded like Brak from Space Ghost. It took me a while to get over this comparison, but once I did I was able to really appreciate the album. They also put on one of my favorite shows ever at the Vic in Chicago.
Favorite Tracks: Neighborhood #1, Neighborhood #3, In The Backseat
4. The Milk-Eyed Mender - Joanna Newsom
I heard Joanna Newsom a number of times before her genius hit me like a harp to the head. I don't even know what to say about her besides that I can get completely lost in this album and want to listen to the whole thing over again immediately.
Favorite Tracks: Peach Plum Pear, Sadie, Clam Crab Cockle Cowrie
3. Let Go - Nada Surf
I first saw Nada Surf open for Death Cab For Cutie at the Glasshouse in Pomona and was blown away by the songs on this album. I drove to San Francisco the next day and didn't listen to anything else the entire way.
Favorite Tracks: Fruit Fly, Blonde on Blonde, Paper Boats
2. We Have The Facts and We're Voting Yes- Death Cab For Cutie
There's something about Ben Gibbard's songwriting and vocal delivery on Death Cab's early albums that I immediately connected with. Simple yet totally interesting. I became obsessed with learning how to play every song on guitar.
Favorite Tracks: Company Calls Epilogue, 405, No Joy in Mudville
1. The Execution of All Things - Rilo Kiley
This album is my heart. Jenny Lewis is my hero for singing about the messed up, the beautiful and the contradictory. This is probably my favorite album ever to sing along to, and these were the first songs I ever learned to play on guitar.
Favorite Tracks: My Slumbering Heart, Capturing Moods, A Better Son/Daughter, So Long
Honorable Mention, in no particular order:
Takk - Sigur Ros
Yankee Hotel Foxtrot - Wilco
The Sunlandic Twins - Of Montreal
The Moon and Antarctica - Modest Mouse
The Rising Tide - Sunny Day Real Estate
The Autumns - Fake Noise From A Box Of Toys
Logic Will Break Your Heart - The Stills
You Forgot It In People - Broken Social Scene
The Last Broadcast - Doves
Set Yourself on Fire - Stars
Asleep in the Back - Elbow