Tag Archives: 2010

Haruomi Hosono – Close To You (2010)

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Like Ryuichi Sakamoto, Haruomi (Harry) Hosono first gained global recognition as one third of the electronic music group Yellow Magic Orchestra. In 2010, postrock maverick Jim O’Rourke had the genius idea of producing All Kinds of People: Love Burt Bacharach, a tribute album to 60s lounge don Burt Bacharach. Yes, I kid you not. The LP features guest vocalists Kahimi Karie, Yoshimi, and several other venerable Japanese artists, including Hosono, who gets a helping drum hand from Wilco’s Glenn Kotche on the classic ‘Close To You’.

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Gorillaz – On Melancholy Hill (2010)

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Last month, “Gorillaz” announced that their new album will be entitled Humanz and is due out on 28 April. Looking back at their discography, I’ve plucked out Plastic Beach. It may not have beaten ‘Stylo’ and ‘Superfast Jellyfish’ to early release as a single, but ‘Melancholy Hill’ is its standout track. All wistful, pizzicato strings, jaunty keyboards and Damon’s whispers: “Up on melancholy hill/There’s a plastic tree/Are you here with me/Just looking out on the day/Of another dream”. Like an uplifting sequel to 2005’s ‘Hong Kong’.

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Wu-Tang vs The Beatles – Got The Money (2010)

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wu-tang-vs-the-beatles

Some sampling is less subtle. Wu-Tang vs The Beatles was created by Tom Caruana and released at the start of 2010. The album features Beatles songs and cover versions mixed with much Wu-Tang. This hip hop venture was not original. Danger Mouse had ploughed this furrow with Jay-Z in 2004. However, the results were equally as pleasing. ‘Got The Money’ features the most overt use of source material – in this case, Abbey Road‘s ‘You Never Give Me Your Money’.

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Angus and Julia Stone – Big Jet Plane (2010)

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angus-and-julia-stone

Three years after releasing their debut, A Book Like This, the Australian brother and sister Stones created something gift-wrapped for the American market. “She smelled of daisies, she smelled of daisies/She drive me crazy, she drive me crazy.” ‘Big Jet Plane’ features on their 2010 album Down The Way.

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The Besnard Lakes – Chicago Train (2010)

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the-besnard-lakes

Someone once said that listening to The Besnard Lakes is like listening to Supertramp singing Sigur Rós numbers. ‘Chicago Train’ is the third track off their 2010 album The Besnard Lakes Are the Roaring Night. You make your mind up. Have a great week.

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Benjamin Francis Leftwich – Atlas Hands (2010)

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Benjamin Francis Leftwich

A singer-songwriter with a preference for the acoustic, Benjamin Francis Leftwich chose a tough gig in a crowded space. And if you can’t beat ’em, why not join them. And so it isn’t surprising that there’s something familiar about the resigned sound of ‘Atlas Hands’. This was 2010 and the influence of Bon Iver could be heard from London to York.

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Kavinsky feat. Lovefoxxx – Nightcall (2010)

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Vincent Pierre Claude Belorgey

Also known by the slightly cooler stage name Kavinsky, Vincent Belorgey knows a thing or two about projecting an image. His track ‘Nightcall’ is so perfectly pitched as electroclash-indie synthwave pop (or whatever they are calling the modern take on 1980s electronica) that is was selected as the signature track for Nicolas Winding Refn’s nostalgic movie Drive in all its 1980s neon. The enrolment of CSS’s Lovefoxxx was a nice touch too. Have a great week.

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Caribou – Sun (2010)

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Daniel Victor %22Dan%22 Snaith

My goodness, what has happened to the weather FFS? “Sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, sun, …”

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9 of the best – sounds of 2010

I am holiday proper for the next few days. So, please enjoy some reblogging of the best tracks of the last 5 or so years. Neatly following on from the last couple of posts, I start with 2010 …

Samuelsounds

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Beach House – Walk In The Park (2010)

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Beach House 2010

I think I was still buying CDs in 2010. My sepia-toned memories of opening the understated and zebra-covered disc Teen Dream are all magical. I think it’s the third time that one of its tracks has featured on this blog and I save the best for last. Seek out the crescendos at the end of ‘Walk In The Park’, with their soft cymbals, Alex Scally’s treated guitar and Victoria Legrand dreamy vocals. The album contains their best work and, if it weren’t for a certain Kanye West release, would have been vying with Arcade Fire for the best release of 2010.

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Salem – King Night (2010)

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Salem

A big electronic embrace to dust off the weekend’s cobwebs. ‘King Night’ is the opening, title track off Salem’s 2010 debut album. Produced with a the help of some mix desk wizardry from Dave Sardy, the sound is large, dark and a little scary. Have a great week.

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Broken Bells – The High Road (2010)

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Broken Bells

In the same year as MGMT’s continued experiments, the Shins’ James Mercer had teamed up with the producer of the moment Danger Mouse. Their Broken Bells venture managed to combine the strengths of their previous work without usurping each other. Danger Mouse’s funky percussion and Mercer’s melodies flourish on ‘The High Road’, the opener for their eponymous debut album.

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MGMT – Flash Delirium (2010)

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MGMT 2010

It’s a bank holiday in Blighty – cause for celebration! In the exhilarating ‘Flash Delirium’, MGMT featured flutes, horns and a bonafide wall of sound. Andrew VanWyngarden and Ben Goldwasser had cemented their reputation for wacky pysch rock. Have a great week.

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Villagers – Becoming A Jackal (2010)

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Villagers

This is not the first track I’ve featured off Villagers’ debut long player Becoming a Jackal. The Villagers are Conor O’Brien and, I have read, he plays almost every instrument on the album. The Dubliner’s love of Neil Young and Paul Simon is plain to hear. But on the title track, the result is part Elliot Smith, part Prefab Sprout. Very good indeed.

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