Monday, December 27, 2010

Top 10 of 2010

10. TOKiMONSTA - Midnight Menu

Brainfeeder's pocket sized beat melter has crafted a delightful debut album, fusing hip hop hooks, flowing instrumentals, a nice side of glitch and crunching them with a sledgehammer.

Recommended listening: Cruising into the big smoke on a hot Friday night to visit your favourite uncle.

9. Mount Kimbie - Crooks & Lovers

Emerging out of the deep ocean of British electronic music, Mount Kimbie arrived on Scuba's Hotflush label debuting with their lush and instantly loveable Crooks & Lovers.  The combination of warm tones, muted drums which skip and pop, and a voice which blurts out jigsaw melodies makes this album a wash of joy and a love at first listen for so many this year.

Recommended listening: Fishing on the Nile

8. Take - Only Mountain

Borrowing sounds from the past 30 years Take has adopted a magnificent blended style which is showcased superbly with his 2010 release 'Only Mountain'.  The tracks span familiar electronic territory with a fresh new lens.  The bass on this album is outstanding and lay way for the rhythms and melodies to continue to unfold into new territory within each song.

Recommended listening - Caving with a bag full of fireworks

7. Actress - Splazsh


Splazsh is an album that requires deep exploration, with it's unusual frequencies and offset tone there is much to be discovered after each and every listen.
Recommended listening - Base jumping off the moon

6. James Blake - 2010 Ep's

James Blake will be arriving in 2011 with his incredible self titled debut album. 2010 saw him develop his compelling sound showing seemingly impossible depth with few sounds. An electronic story teller who encourages a close ear but can all to easily make your head bounce with his incredible control over a tight bass line and vocal hooks.

Recommended listening: Fixing the Hubble telescope

5. Shigeto - Full Circle

Full Circle is a beautiful mix of hip hop scenery with IDM additions and a slight jazz undertone.  The tracks are all self reflecting and self perpetuating which adds up to very seamless sound that doesn't push or drag but somehow pulls itself through.

Recommended listening - On a skidoo to the north pole

4. Baths - Cerulean

Will Wiesenfield has grown from Post-Foetus to discover his art through Baths.  Cerulean, Wiesenfield's debut album has risen above the renaissance nest of chillwave beat-making in L.A by crafting a piece of work which is heavy in feeling yet calming in immersion.

Recommended listening - Floating in a bath around the Galapagos Islands

3. Four Tet - There Is Love In You

The artwork on Four Tet's latest album summarises Hebdens ability with music.  He is a musical gardener, there is beauty in what he creates and this beauty can be noticed at a single glance like a garden however he also manages to go astonishingly deep, fostering the natural beauty of sound, giving it a frame, not spoiling how simply lovely a song or an album can be.

Recommended listening - Walking through a nice big garden

2. Scuba - Triangulation

Regardless what you think of dubstep this album must be listened to.  It is a a truly inspiring piece by the man who brought to light Mount Kimbie and Joy Orbison this year through his outstanding Hotflush label.  Gorgeous at times at times, almost uncomfortable at others, this album goes beyond a dance record and realises soundscapes which resonate an array of deep feeling, through high energy sounds which are closely related through the space which they are separated by. 

Recommended listening - Watching synchronised helicopters

1. Flying Lotus - Cosmogramma 

2010 saw the word 'genre' become more confusing than ever before.  Discussions about what people are hearing in a song is really quite a remarkable thing.  Cosmogramma simply put, is a landmark in recording history.  In an age where musical limits are melting Cosmogramma stands as a very strong flame. Ellison has captured the presence of imagination on record, it's confusing, it's exciting, it's unexpected and it's brilliant.

Recommended listening - Driving a motorbike through a Desert 

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