Mark Reaffirms and Rearranges Your 2010 – Pt. 1

The end of the year is near! The conveyor belt of time keeps moving, while you and Ethel try to stuff, snatch, save, and salvage all the albums that are on the endless supply of “Best of 2010” lists. If you’ve been dutiful all year I won’t be telling you anything you don’t already know. If you’ve been sleeping on the radar, here’s some suggestions for you to keep in mind when you’ve got Grandma’s X-mas cash or your boy/girlfriend’s iTunes gift card in hand. And yes, this is a top 49, no sense going overboard.

49. NevereverAngelic Swells : One of those aptly named bands with an even more apt album title. 60’s girl group sound with an indie pop lean. Not quite Phil Spector-level authenticity but definitely poppier and less calculated than the Pippettes. (Slumberland)

48. BeckOar : Recommended if you like…Beck. And Skip Spence. (Self Released)

47. First BaseShe’s Boy Crazy 7″ :
Lo-fi without sounding like shit, uber-catchy and poppy synth action. Need I say more? (Play Pinball)

46. Nana GrizolRuth : Indie pop in an Elephant 6 vein (and rightfully so, with E6 alumni aplenty and Orange Twin backing the whole outfit). Traditional elements of horns and handclaps and harmonies are there, but there’s certainly a new/modern angle as well. (Orange Twin)

45. Joey CapeDoesn’t Play Well With Others : A collection of his “single a month” project for 2010. I loved the original “Lagwagon guy goes acoustic” album, and since then his output has been hills and valleys; luckily this time around he’s back on top. (Self Released)

44. Tattle TalesMoon Glasses EP : Remember when they carbon copied Billy Joel’s “My Life” for the theme song to Bosom Buddies and it was absolutely perfect? Well imagine a new show called Power Pop Pals. These guys have already written 4 or 5 tunes for the opening credits. (Killer)

43. A/V ClubNot Your Heart EP :
A teaser for the upcoming full-length, and a great one at that. High quality pop/rock that’s recommended if you want to live in a “these songs should be all over the radio” kind of fantasy world. (Self Released)

42. NocandoJimmy The Lock : Pretty much the only rap album I’ve liked this year. Erratic and engaging. Skirts at the edges hip-pop while packing backpacker flows. Verbs and Busdriver guest, and easily the best beats’n’hooks I’ve heard in the past 24 months. (Alpha Pup)

41. The CrookesDreams Of Another Day :
Jangle pop from Sheffield. C-86 meets the Smiths? I’ll take it. (Fierce Panda)

40. Night BirdsMidnight Movies EP : 80s hardcore, surf punk, and horror come together for a scream/sing-along session on one slab of wax. So good it’s scary. (No Way Out)

Take a sampling of 49-40:

49-40  39-30 29-21 20-1

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