Starting next week, Kind of Bleu will be counting down our top 20 albums of the year. Before we do that, though, there are some albums that didn’t make the list that deserve some recognition:
Surfer Blood – Astro Coast
This group from West Palm Beach, Fla. put out one of the most impressive debuts of 2010. Songs like “Floating Vibes” and “Swim” will get stuck in your head for days. They couldn’t have picked a better name either – their surf guitars bite harder than any others.
Of Montreal – False Priest
Of Montreal is the only band I’ve seen that can keep up with the Flaming Lips’ live show. It’s a confetti-soaked dance party, and their albums are no different. False Priest‘s energy, funk and sexuality is the closet thing any band can get to Prince without plagiarizing.
The Black Keys – Brothers
The blues-rock duo’s sixth album, their second produced by Danger Mouse, continued to push the band beyond their standard drum-and-guitar sound. The blues are still just as deep, though. Brothers is also the album that really brought the Black Keys to some well deserved mainstream attention.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. – Horse Power EP
If this EP had been longer than 13 minutes, it probably would have made the top 20 list. Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. – who probably win the distinction of best name of 2010 – compiled four perfect songs for their debut EP. Their effortless harmonies float over the mellow electronics and guitars in songs like “Vocal Chords” and “Simple Girl.” There’s also a beautiful cover of the Beach Boys’ “God Only Knows.”
Tokyo Police Club – Champ
Ontario-based Tokyo Police Club’s sophomore effort is every bit as catchy as their debut, Elephant Shell. This album is a slighty slower and more mature offering, but longtime fans won’t be disappointed by songs like “Wake Up.” Champ is also the perfect introduction for newcomers.
Kind of Bleu’s top 20 countdown starts Monday!