The year 2010 is over and that means it's time for my annual "favorite albums" list. This time around, I found it more difficult to narrow my list down to a workable amount. I liked a lot of music that was released in 2010 and it really became a matter of what albums I returned to the most, what albums made me smile as I listened to them, and what albums had an emotional effect on me.
This year's list has 15 albums on it but before I rattle them off, here is a short list of music I liked that's ineligible: Lungs by Florence and the Machine (released in 2009), `+` by Wise Blood (EP), Kanye West's G.O.O.D. Fridays (various tracks), and the 2010 releases of Pogo (various tracks).
The albums are not ranked and appear in alphabetical order by artist name.
Big Boi – Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty: Big Boi's long-awaited solo disc is an absolute blast from start to finish. While it's a shame that Andre 3000 couldn't appear on the album due to label issues, Big Boi proves himself to be just as funky and inventive as ever. This isn't merely a stopgap until the next OutKast album...it's a great album in its own right.
Aloe Blacc – Good Things: Aloe Blacc's voice is not one made for contemporary R & B. It isn't one that I can imagine ever singing about trendy alcoholic brands. His voice is made to sing soul music and he does it very well on this album. You can hear everything he may have ever been through in every single note he sings. Whether he's begging for help on "I Need A Dollar" or bringing you close to tears on "Mama Hold My Hand," Blacc always lets the emotions shine through.
Tom Caruana – Wu-Tang vs. The Beatles: Enter The Magical Mystery Chambers: Despite its title, this is not a retread of Danger Mouse's Grey Album. It's so much more. Caruana brilliantly mashes up songs from the entire Wu-Tang oeuvre with covers of Beatles songs, archival interview audio, and actual Beatles songs. While this mixtape is no longer available from its original source, it's worth searching out online.