10

Dec

The best albums of 2010


Which method should you use to determine what makes an album the best in any given year? Artistic merit? Originality? Or perhaps you can just divide the number of songs you love on an album by the total amount of tracks it has and see which one comes out with the highest rating?

When it came to choosing Admiral Fallow’s debut album Boots Met My Face as the best of 2010, I just went with my heart. I first got my hands on a copy of the record in March and have revisited it again and again throughout the year.

However, I was oblivious to just how attached I had become to these 10 eloquently crafted songs until I was abroad on holiday during the summer, far away from my record collection. It was only then that I realised it was actually possible to miss an album.

It therefore makes me incredibly proud to announce Admiral Fallow as winners of The Pop Cop’s award for the best album of 2010, following in the footsteps of previous recipients The National, Sigur Rós and The Sounds.

Louis Abbott, Sarah Hayes, Kevin Brolly, Joe Rattray and outgoing member Tom Stearn were on hand to pick up their prize.

Louis: “Holy shit! Framed and everything. Beautiful, thank you very much.”
Sarah: “Aw, cool.”
Louis: “I don’t think we’ve ever won anything before. Cheers! We were very lucky getting the Arts Council money to make this record. It wouldn’t have been half as good if we’d had to scrimp on it. So many people to thank.”

Has 2010 exceeded your expectations?
Kevin:
“It’s been a standout year.”
Louis: “Every year has always been a nice progression from the get-go but this year has been quite a step forward as opposed to just little baby steps. Right now we’re like a blossoming toddler. The cuteness has gone, the football skills are getting better. Then it’s…”
Sarah: “…off to school.”
Louis: “Yeah, we’ll be getting started on the second record and see where we go from there.”

So here are The Pop Cop’s top 10 albums of 2010, each described in Twitter-friendly 140 characters:

1. ADMIRAL FALLOW – BOOTS MET MY FACE
Immaculately paced folk-tinged guitar-pop of the highest order. This album revels in its heartbreak and its warmth. Above all it feels real.
Subbuteo

2. ENDOR – ENDOR
An incredibly close contender for top spot. Endor’s debut is a triumph of beautifully written indie-rock. A gorgeous album, lush and varied.
Chapel Doors

3. THE NATIONAL – HIGH VIOLET
It took me the best part of six months to finally fall under this album’s spell. A grower, yes, but the wait made it all the more rewarding.
Afraid Of Everyone

4. FRIGHTENED RABBIT - THE WINTER OF MIXED DRINKS
It’s been the year of the Rabbit as they took major strides towards indie-rock stardom with an album of singalong choruses. And sing we did.
Skip The Youth

5. FREELANCE WHALES – WEATHERVANES
Since there’s no sign of a second Postal Service album, this is the next best thing – lo-fi indie with an electro edge and dreamy harmonies.
Generator ^ First Floor

6. ROBYN – BODY TALK
Body Talk collected the best of Robyn’s fantastic 2010 EPs to make the most credible, cliché-free mix of pop/dance/electro you’ll ever hear.
Dancing On My Own

7. TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB – TOURIST HISTORY
Everybody needs a modern party album. Silent Alarm was once the favoured option, now it’s Tourist History. It’s fresh, urgent and addictive.
Something Good Can Work

8. JONSI – GO
It doesn’t sound that much different from a Sigur Rós album (always a good thing). Jonsi’s solo effort is more playful but no less powerful.
Go Do

9. DAN MANGAN – NICE, NICE, VERY NICE
The Canadian’s second album is a work of rare quality in a packed genre. His sincere, hearty voice will get you willingly lost in his world.
The Indie Queens Are Waiting

10. KID CANAVERAL – SHOUTING AT WILDLIFE
Kid Canaveral make writing killer pop choruses look easy, which it clearly isn’t given the amount of bands who try. A total joy of a record.
Good Morning

5 Responses to “The best albums of 2010”

  1. Greg Says:

    December 11th, 2010 at 06:59

    Awesome list. Thanks again for a fantastic year of great new tunes. Have put in my order on Amazon for the Admiral Fallow album, but can’t find the Endor album for sale anywhere. Any ideas where I can buy it? Of course it’s not on the shelves here in Johannesburg, South Africa.


  2. Brian Says:

    December 11th, 2010 at 08:20

    Really excellent list. Admiral Fallow definitely deserve that top spot. And great to see Dan Mangan getting some notice – that’s a real gem of a record.
    Greg, I think you can purchase downloads of both Admiral Fallow and Endor from their Bandcamp pages.


  3. thepopcop Says:

    December 11th, 2010 at 11:01

    Get Admiral Fallow’s album here: http://admiralfallow.bandcamp.com/album/boots-met-my-face
    Get Endor’s album here: http://endor.bandcamp.com/album/endor
    Get Kid Canaveral’s album here: http://kidcanaveral.bandcamp.com/album/shouting-at-wildlife


  4. thepopcop Says:

    December 12th, 2010 at 18:05

    You can also read an interview I did earlier this year with Admiral Fallow’s frontman here: http://thepopcop.co.uk/2010/08/i-was-battered-unconscious-and-they-only-stopped-because-a-woman-came-round-the-corner-and-saw-it-happening/


  5. Andrew Says:

    December 13th, 2010 at 07:31

    Great list. Thanks for this. I listened to half of the Admiral Fallows song you posted and immediately fell in love. Great to see you included some of my favourites from 2010 as well as Dan Mangan. As a local guy, I’ve had the privilege of enjoying his album since 2009.

    Cheers.


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