Top 5 albums of the year (thus far)

It’s that time of again, kiddies!

Time for all sorts of “best of” lists to start popping up all over the place. You know, the ones that wrap up the year and give you a chance to check out some truly spectacular tunes, films, etc. that you may have missed out on.

With that, I give you the countdown of 2010’s top five albums (thus far).

5. Maroon 5’s “Hands All Over,” released on Sept. 21, 2010

Don’t even try and tell me that Maroon 5 isn’t cool anymore. Have you heard their new album? I can honestly say I was completely sick of Adam Levine and company after hearing “She Will Be Loved” every second of every day of my life for approximately five years, but this album is seriously magic. If you haven’t yet, check out the saucy video for their first single, “Misery.” However, if you’re only going to take the time to listen to three tracks, please let them be “Stutter,” “Never Gonna Leave This Bed” and “Just a Feeling.” This album is so good that after talking about it, I’m going to have to stop writing this list and go listen to this bad boy in its entirety before I continue…

4. Robyn’s “Body Talk, Pt. 2,” released on Sept. 7, 2010

If you’re unfamiliar with Swedish pop singer Robyn, you need to change that. She has released three, count ’em, three, albums in 2010. Her “Body Talk” trilogy is awesome, but part deux is by far the best. Check out my review of “Body Talk Pt. 2” on Spartanedge and if nothing else, be sure to watch the video below. Robyn is like an electro-pop explosion of talent, a.k.a. Sweden’s version of Lady Gaga. Kind of.

3. She & Him’s “Volume Two,” released on March 23, 2010

Zooey Deschanel (she) and M. Ward (him) are easily one of the most talented male-female duos in music today. Put their record on, close your eyes and you could easily find yourself being transported back to the 1960s. Their sound is heavily influenced by an old fashioned, sun-kissed sound, yet this album is a brand of folk unlike anything you’ve ever heard before. Deschanel is able to maintain her sunny disposition even on songs like “I’m Gonna Make It Better” and “Gonna Get Along Without You Now.” The highlight of the album is definitely their cover of NRBQ’s “Ridin’ In My Car.” Don’t even get me started on how good it sounds on vinyl…

2. Wakey!Wakey!’s “Almost Everything I Wish I’d Said The Last Time I Saw You,” released on Feb. 2, 2010

In terms of pure musical ability, Mike Grubbs is one of the best I’ve ever heard. He can play the piano like no other, and on his band’s debut full-length album, he does not disappoint. Each song goes seamlessly from one to the next, and the only problem with this album is that it ends. “Dance So Good” is the album’s best track, and songs like “Light Outside,” “Car Crash” and “Feral Love” all top contenders as well. This Brooklyn band isn’t very well known, so be sure to tell your friends and spread the word. Also, don’t forget to check out my interview with Grubbs via Spartanedge.

1. Mumford & Sons’ “Sigh No More,” released on Feb. 16, 2010

This English folk-rock band has just about the most unique sound I’ve heard in a while. Electric banjo, anyone? Chances are if you’ve heard any of their stuff, you’ve heard “Little Lion Man.” However, if that’s their only song you are familiar with, I pity you. Seriously, stop reading this, go to amazon.com and buy the album. Immediately. Beginning to end, “Sigh No More” is nothing but deliciously heartfelt music backed with actual talent, something that is rare to come by in the “music” industry these days. “The Cave,” “White Blank Page” and “Winter Winds” are the best of the bunch, but this is one of few albums that I can listen to all the way through and not skip a single song.

Honorable mention: Ray LaMontagne & The Pariah Dog’s “God Willin’ & The Creek Don’t Rise,” released on Aug. 17, 2010

There’s no way for me to not mention this album. I may be biased because I can sit and listen to Ray LaMontagne for hours on end, but this album is pure brilliance. Don’t believe me? On Dec. 1, LaMontagne was nominated for three Grammy’s for this album including Song of the Year for “Beg, Steal or Borrow” and Best Contemporary Folk Album.

There you have it. If you’re not satisfied with my picks, let me know what you think I should have chosen instead!

Three new tracks from Robyn

Swedish pop sensation Robyn is easily one of the most underrated musicians of today. I’ve endorsed her many times before, and I’m about to do it again.

Talk about dedication… Robyn is about to release her THIRD album of the year, “Body Talk: Pt. 3” on Nov. 22. Part one was good, part two was better, and from what I’ve heard, part three could be the best of the bunch.

Check out three of the new tracks here before the album drops in a few weeks.

“Call Your Girlfriend”:

“Time Machine”:

“Stars 4-Ever”:

Wanna Hang with Robyn?

Artist: Robyn

Song: Hang With Me

Album: “Body Talk, Pt. 2,” out this September

———————————–

Love this song, this video and Robyn in general.

She’s certainly keeping busy in 2010. Having just recently put out an album in June, she’s already released two videos for her next disc, due Sept. 7.

Ain’t no rest for the wicked… Robyn’s planning on releasing yet a third album before the end of the year, so I don’t know how she has time to hang with anyone.

Take a peek at her hectic life here, in “Hang With Me”:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

2-for-1 Tuesday

I’ve got two new songs to make your day a little brighter.

“For The First Time,” is the first song leaked from The Script’s upcoming sophomore CD, “Science & Faith,” due Sept. 13.

I just heard it for the first time this morning and I’m already OBSESSED.

I plan on listening to it constantly on repeat before it gets popular in a few weeks/months, as it will then get played to death on the radio until the time comes where I cannot stand the mere sound of its opening note, i.e. “Breakeven.”

Next is “Hang With Me” by Robyn. I posted a video of hers a few days ago, and I think I might love this new track even more than “Dancing On My Own.”

An acoustic version of “Hang With Me” was first released on Robyn’s “Body Talk, Pt. 1” earlier this year. However, this version is revamped for her upcoming album, “Body Talk, Pt. 2” and is so much better.

Listen for yourself: