If it wasn't already obvious to you from the fact that I beat you over the head with it every time you visit this little corner of the internet, I'll spell it out for you: I spent almost all of 2010 listening entirely to Todd Rundgren and Rundgren-related acts. As so much of my 2010 record allowance was spent rescuing old 1970s LPs from dusty shops, I'm still just starting to discover most of the music that was released this year, making my way through Matthew Perpetua's 2010 Survey Mix and the well-appreciated opinions of the All Songs Considered pundits. So I'm sure by the end of 2011 I'll be able to actually tell you about all the great music there was in 2010.
There were some gems that managed to shine through the cracks and catch my eye down in my little 1970s mine, down where the glam shines bright and the Moog synthesizers echo the drip of water off stalactites, and so I've gathered them for you here. (Those of you reading this in an RSS aggregator will need to click through to the entry to see the player.)
End Love - OK Go / Solitude Is Bliss - Tame Impala / Bloodbuzz Ohio - The National / Lost In The World - Kanye West & Bon Iver / Swim Until You Can't See Land - Frightened Rabbit / This Time Around - The Radio Dept. / Myography - Apollo Run / Marz - John Grant / Sigh No More - Mumford and Sons / In The Mirror - Field Music / Tighten Up - The Black Keys / Fool's Day - Blur / Trešā elpa - Gustavo & Čiziks / New York Is Killing Me - Gil Scott-Heron / Stylo (featuring Mos Def and Bobby Womack) - Gorillaz
A note on the format: I grew up on radio. I interned for our local alternative station all through high school and college, and had my own radio show through most of college. (I once got chewed out for playing an Elastica b-side, which was considered "too mainstream," and my most loyal listeners were several gentlemen interned in the prison up the road.) I love that now you can play separate songs, a musical pick-n-mix. I do it a lot myself, skimming through someone else's musical tastes, jumping from song to song until I find something I like.
But there was radio. And there's something about finding a gem in the rough, hearing a song that you love among songs you're not too keen on. This is a very personal mix. The type of stuff I probably would have played on my own radio show, with some Patti Smith, Einstürzende Neubauten, or Jandek thrown in to keep the programmer happy. Turn down the ones you don't like, and wait for the gems. I promise you: we'll bump into each other somewhere down in these dark mines.
© Zan McQuade. All rights reserved.