Mark Reaffirms and Rearranges Your 2010 (Part 2)

39. V/A Stardumb 50 : At the risk of missing out on earlier releases (particularly from the Zatopeks and Kepi Ghoulie) I’ll say this double-LP is the Stardumb release to get. The best of the best of new school European pop punk and some other wonderful rock nuggets as well. A bunch of new tracks and a bunch of covers of the old tracks. All fun and a whole bunch of exclusive tracks, like a good, celebratory compilation should be. (Stardumb)

38. Allo’ Darlin – S/T: English twee with girl vox and the audacity to be fun and cute without pushing the regular twee agenda of fragility and cavities. (Fortuna Pop)

37. Brian Wilson – Re-imagines Gershwin :
My only caveat was the album title, as “re-imagines” has me thinking of Brian doing something…creative. It’s basically a typical cover album. That being said, it’s Brian Wilson doing Gershwin tunes! Pretty much the best of both worlds. (Disney Pearl)

36. Vampire Weekend – Contra :
Not as captivating as their debut, but still really solid. Maybe it’s ranked high just based on the fact that it doesn’t stink. But if this is their plateau, the law of diminishing returns will have me jumping off the VW bandwagon. (XL)

35. The Books – This Way Out:
Finding something NEW in today’s music world is literally like finding gold. The Books just laugh in the face of that truth. Every track is an experience, a mystery, and an adventure in sound. I rarely describe music as “interesting art” but again, the Books make my standards crumble. (Temporary Residence)

34. Sun Kil Moon – Admiral Fell Promises : I love Mark Kozelek’s voice. He could sing AC/DC, Modest Mouse, or a recipe book and I’ll listen. I typically grow into each album of his, but this one had an immediate appeal. To be safe, I’ll rank modestly and let it climb over time. (Caldo Verde)

33. J Roddy Walston & The Business – S/T Good ol’ rock’n’roll. What I love about this album is the attitude that just oozes from these super tuff songs. It’s nasty and rollicking, without becoming a desperate caricature of new-school rockabilly. They don’t have to shout “Hey, look how wild I am!” You just hear it and know it. (Vagrant)

32. The Sword – Warp Riders :
If there’s only one metal album to get this year, and only one stoner rock album to get this year, why not kill two headbangin’ birds with one stone. Fun for the whole stereo. (Kemado)

31. Morning Benders – Big Echo : “Excuses” is such a high point (one of the best songs of the year), that the slow decline from it for the rest of the disc still makes for a wonderful album. Well crafted songs that nod to Phil Spector/Brian Wilson (as a producer) while firmly standing within their own sound – which fortunately happens to be indie pop/rock, which I love. (Rough Trade)

30. Electronic Anthology Project – S/T : I’m so happy about this album. Doug Martsch re-imagines (no, truly this time) his Built To Spill catalog as 80’s synth-wave songs. I love Doug but sometimes I worry that he doesn’t have fun making music. Now, I am relieved. (Self-Released)

Take a sampling of 39-30: http://www.sendspace.com/file/gsmv1m

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