This was a tough call to make because a lot of great albums were released this year. I would like to acknowledge a few notable albums before my top 10 list begins:
- Wanda Jackson, The Party Ain’t Over
- Vivian Girls, Share the Joy
- Florence + The Machine, Ceremonials
- Björk, Biophilia
- Lykke Li, Wounded Rhymes
10. Cat’s Eyes, Cat’s Eyes (Polydor)- A collaboration of Faris Badwan of The Horrors and Rachel Zeffira, an Italian-Canadian soprano and composer, Cat’s Eyes creates an eerie but nostalgic sound. Inspired by the Ronettes and other 60’s girl groups this duo puts a new spin on the classic sound with their Goth infused tones.
9. Cults, Cults (Columbia)- This debut album has songs as catchy as anything you’d find on pop radio, except you won’t want to rip out your hair every time you hear them. Instead their music gets better with each listen. With a childlike voice this band draws in a sexier edge that will leave you swooning for days.
8. Dum Dum Girls, Only in Dreams (Sub Pop)- It’s a retro beach sound that stands out from all of those before them. Dum Dum Girls are dead on every time and Only in Dreams shows a growth in their songwriting that proves their strength as musicians.
7. PJ Harvey, Let England Shake (Vagrant) – The ever changing woman, Harvey continues to recreate herself after years in the spotlight of alternative femme fatale. Let England Shake paints a picture of World War I in a dream pop way that almost reflects the sounds of Björk and Kate Bush.
6. The Raveonettes, Raven in the Grave (Vice)- The Raveonettes have an amazingly consistent sound that doesn’t get boring. In fact, it’s calming but refreshing. Raven in the Grave brings forth a darker tone that hasn’t been seen before in their music but it suits them well.
5. Those Darlins, Screws Get Loose (Oh Wow Dang)- There may be no better combination of rock and country twang than Those Darlins. Singing about things ranging from being your bro to eating fried foods, these girls (and guy) are absolutely irresistible.
4. St. Vincent, Strange Mercy (4AD)- St. Vincent’s magic continues with the release of her third album, Strange Mercy. All whirling guitars and a consistently dreamy voice, St. Vincent makes another hit album that cannot be overlooked.
3. Wild Flag, Wild Flag (Merge) – The first female supergroup… say no more. These ladies have paved the way for female rock musicians with their past musical acts and have made history by reviving the legacy of the supergroup.
2. The Kills, Blood Pressures (Domino)- Jamie and Alison don’t like to disappoint and this is clear in their fourth release Blood Pressures. Every single song starting from “Future Starts Slow” to “Pots and Pans” is a piece of art that shows off the talent of this iconic duo.
1. Shilpa Ray & Her Happy Hookers, Teenage and Torture (Knitting Factory) –The sophomore album of Shilpa Ray’s was well worth its wait. It seems as if it’s the album the world has been waiting for… well at least those of us who know of this best kept secret Brooklyn act. Shilpa Ray’s voice and enthusiastic rock band of Happy Hookers is the most thrilling rock act since the Dead Weather.