25. Empire Ants – Gorillaz Feat. Little Dragon
Easily the best tracks on the new Gorillaz collaboration album were the two featuring Little Dragon. This one floats in gracefully, before soaring high beyond the clouds on a sonic wave of synths, presumably to the empire of the ants. Or the set of Starship Troopers. One of the two.
24. Butterfly House – The Coral
I’ve gotta be honest, I’d forgotten The Coral existed. However, this song, indeed this entire album, was a real surprise. I love the way it cuts loose in the second half.
23. There is a Burning Ball of Desire in Outer Space – Kids and Explosions
I have no link for this one unfortunately. Suffice to say it’s the most inspired and moving example of cut and paste sampling I’ve heard… ever.
22. Undertow – Warpaint
All female prog-rock with a lulling, gentle beginning that accelerates towards a grandstand finish. A beautifully crafted song.
21. Stilettos – Holy Fuck
Incredible live band. This track (among others) blew me away at Hillside Festival this year.
20. I Didn’t Know That – The Books
Oh my god, this video is so AWESOME! Thankfully the track is fun enough to be in my top 20, so I can parade this video around as if I own the damn thing.
19. Everlasting Light – The Black Keys
I love the direction The Black Keys have been heading with their last 2 albums. This opening track off the brilliant ‘Brothers’ album sets the tone with a stomp and a flourish.
18. This Orient – Foals
I really wasn’t fussed about ‘Total Life Forever’. I thought it was lazy and, for the most part, I thought Foals had shed the edginess that had marked them out as 2008’s hottest prospects. ‘This Orient’, however, is a gem of a track.
17. Can Change – LCD Soundsystem
A glorious song straight from the heart of LCD’s stellar ‘This is Happening’.
16. Supertribe – Errors
The catchiest instrumental track of the year without doubt. It whirls round and round my head for hours on end, resulting in me suddenly chirping it’s blippy refrain while surrounded by wrinkled frowns on the bus.
15. You – Gold Panda
Dub-step tempo beats spliced with skipping whirrs and bleeps, shoved into a rapidly inflating helium balloon that eventually explodes and leaves you writhing in a great, steaming pile of twitchy electronics. Err, yep, that just about sums it up!
14. I Remember – Yeasayer
Probably not the most popular choice off Yeasayer’s Odd Blood album due to its dubious lyrics and heavy doses of sonic power balladry. But shucks, I can’t get enough of it.
13. Roman Candles – Suckers
The best whistle track of the year (yeah, take that The Drums) and features quite possibly my most favouritist line of the year too: “Turn the light on, so you can see what I’ve got on, and see the smile I’ve got for you”
12. Flash Delirium – MGMT
Good luck stomaching the video of this one. In fact, good luck stomaching the song too! I think this whole experience is just fabulous.
11. Heart of a Wrestler – Heart-Ships
An exciting new band from Leeds, this song is a deranged monster that awakens to a soft glockenspiel tinkle before clambering up towards a climax of crashing guitar slashes and quite stunning garbled vocals. No link I’m afraid.
10. Kindergarten – Zeus
The ‘aaaaahs’ may be a bit painful in this live version but this is a great little track from Jason Collett’s back-up band. Recorded in Soundscapes, Little Italy Toronto.
9. You Wanted a Hit – LCD Soundsystem
At over 9 minutes long this could go down as LCD Soundsystem’s most epic track… and that most certainly is saying something. A self-reflexive song, that directly questions the listener’s expectations of the band.
8. Save Your Love For Me – Suckers
A comic masterpiece. I love the way this band seem able to take nothing seriously. It builds… It builds… It builds just a smidgen more… and WALLOP! Crazy wailing all in your face!
7. Sprawl II – Arcade Fire
A welcome release from the four tracks of filler that precede it on the album, its sonic ambition and fucking gorgeous vocals put me in a state of paralysed awe like no other song from the year.
6. Love Cry – Four Tet
What can I say. It’s 9 minutes of pure perfection.
5. Odessa – Caribou
The song that alerted me to Caribou’s existence. I know, I’m a buffoon. How the HELL had I not heard of this guy. I have his whole back catalogue now, and it’s fan-bloody-tastic. I owe it all to this dark, percussive beast.
4. The Suburbs – Arcade Fire
No hook this year has been bopping around my brain more than this one. The verses have a bounce and swing I just can’t let go of. And no-one evokes time and place these days better than Win Butler, even if the bleakness of his lyrics belie the happy jaunt of the melody.
3. Ambling Alp – Yeasayer
The perfect track to gee you up on a miserable morning. “The world can be an unfair place at times. But your lows will have their compliment of highs”. LOVE IT!!
2. Kaili – Caribou
Easily the best live show I’ve been to in 2010. This track of trippy electronics stood out for me in a performance that just seemed like a big fat advert for psychedelic drugs. Unfortunately, I wasn’t on any.
1. Black Sheep – Suckers
A raucous din of nonsense it may be but I can’t help leaping about the place like a pillock on a pogo stick every time I hear it. It’s the abrupt arrival of the bass on 52 seconds that does it. I’m a bit partial to the Pixies-esque wails that follow too. A crime they’re unheard of in Britain.