Thursday, 21 January 2010

1. CALVIN HARRIS: Ready For The Weekend




Because it was the record we played most; because he is Scottish; because when you've travelled from death to life "I'm Not Alone" says all.


(Lena's 2009 list-as-story to follow very shortly indeed!)

2. THE BLACK EYED PEAS: The E.N.D.


The moral of 2009 was: count NOBODY out. Especially not the Black Eyed Peas - of all groups - who best redefined what pop music could mean.

3. THE HORRORS: Primary Colours


You thought they were a joke; well, the joke's on you. Helped by Geoff Barrow, they took British rock to places it hadn't foraged since JD.

4. JAY-Z: The Blueprint 3


He changed the air of 2009; too many impatient babies bawling for instant Christmases but Hova's wisdom wins through; bifocally mindblowing.

5. BAT FOR LASHES: Two Suns


Flo got the machines but Natasha has the truth; whisperingly tragic and unutterably groundbreaking. Flo loses Sydney; Lashes gets the Bush.

6. THE-DREAM: Love Vs Money


The greatest turnaround, perhaps of the decade, occurs midway between parts 1 and 2 of the title track; the man who held this year together.

7. STAFF BENDA BILILI: Tres Tres Fort


Musician of 2009: Roger Lumba, for doing things on the guitar no one had heard before. Breezy yet profound - new horizons for group musics.

8. ELECTRIK RED: How To Be A Lady: Volume One


Saturdays Aloud behelled; THIS is the future of girl group pop - DREAM-ily dynamic, fisting tomorrow like a tank full of chancellors. NOW!

9. DIRTY PROJECTORS: Bitte Orca


The Black Flag exorcism done, they (he?) were (was?) free to reinvent a true, animated collective with enough invention to get us to Uranus.

10. NEKO CASE: Middle Cyclone


She dashes off but she'll wait to hear you before responding with a laugh and a sighing kiss. A wise and worldly pop record, her sun arose.

11. ANNIE: Don't Stop


The most important and influential female pop artist of her decade? How many followed in her footsteps last year; she was still ahead, too.

13. MAXWELL: BLACKsummersnight


Speaking of which, catch the ghost of "Ghosts" in "Pretty Wings," the year's finest and sultriest ballad? Two more sisters to come as well!

14. MARIAH CAREY: Memoirs Of An Imperfect Angel


Pinter told Antonia he was loopy about her. Mariah's rejoicing album loops the loopy - wow; it's so surreally happy you'd kiss the booklet!

15. DAVID SYLVIAN: Manafon


About the last survivor of New Pop Mk I still interested in the adjective "New"; the dots are serenely joined to reveal pulmonary violences.

16=. LINDSTROM & PRINS THOMAS: Lindstrom & Prins Thomas II/LINDSTROM & CHRISTABELLE: Real Life Is No Cool




Best use of the Picardy third in noughties pop in the first; coolest (as in iciest) pop since Grace Jones in the second. Let there be drum.

17. THE SLEW: 100 Percent


Kid Koala and his bi-turntable machine guns, the first and better Wolfmother rhythm section, the year's best "rock" album. 1987 - remember?

18. RIHANNA: Rated R


Recombinant, rage, red, righteous, rock, rationale, rabid, ravens, ruination, rebirth, resurrection, raving, ridicule, roulette, reasons, R.

19. ART BRUT: Art Brut Vs Satan

One of the greatest groups of the decade; three classic albums and the first to appear on any of our lists. Better Argos than "Argos," hmm?

20. YEAH YEAH YEAHS: It's Blitz!


One of the greatest groups of the decade; three classic albums and the first one to appear on any of our lists. Better late than "late" eh?