The Best Songs of 2010 | 75 – 51

Artwork credit: Alyssa Shapkoff

Check out songs 100 – 76 here!

75 Arcade Fire – Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)
All of the members of the multi-musicianed Arcade Fire are clearly critical to the band’s immense sound and stunning performances. With “Sprawl II,” however, Regine Chassagne rises above the collective and shines in this astoundingly beautiful critique of a bleak suburban landscape.

[buy the album]

74 Gold Panda – You
“You” is a fully textured, and for lack of a better word, squeaky track that is as mysterious as it is catchy. It’s electronic, but not all that dance-focused, so it’s one of those perfect songs to throw on a playlist for a run through the woods.

[buy the album]

73 Patty Griffin – Coming Home To Me
We knew Griffin could sing; what we didn’t know was that she could write a gospel tune. Damn.

[buy the album] [more from Patty Griffin on Speakers]

72 Mimicking Birds – Burning Stars
With a celestial intro that softly morphs into a mid-tempo indie-folk number (perfect for fans of Bon Iver and Iron & Wine), the song reassures that despite our inescapable mortality, we have to tend to one another now.
[buy the album] [more from Mimicking Birds on Speakers]

71 The Walkmen – Angela Surf City
This rocker ranks right up there with 2004’s “The Rat” in the growing catalog of rollicking tunes from The Walkmen. Racing guitars. Pounding drums. Hamilton Leithauser’s unmistakable voice. A winning Walkmen combo.

[buy the album]

70 MGMT – I Found a Whistle
A bit of a departure for MGMT, “I Found a Whistle” is down-tempo and dirge-ish, mainly featuring a haunting organ sound. It, of course, has lyrics that are almost impossible to figure out, but we get the gist: he found a whistle. It works like a charm.

[buy the album]

69 Sally Seltmann – Harmony To My Heartbeat
We don’t care if you think this one’s a bit too sunny/cheery/cheesy. We dare you not to smile, clap your hands, and sing along.
[buy the album] [more from Sally Seltmann on Speakers]

68 Electric President – Safe and Sound
On “Safe and Sound,” the duo of Ben Cooper and Alex Kane aren’t afraid to mix a little folk-pop with some electronic beats a la early David Gray and William Fitzsimmons. We likey.

[buy the album] [more from Electric President on Speakers]

67 Big Boi feat. Gucci Mane – Shine Blockas
2010 has been a great year for Big Boi, and “Shine Blockas” proves it with a slick beat and the rapper’s southern drawl delivery. You simply can’t block his shine, shawty.

[buy the album] [more from Big Boi on Speakers]

66 Sonny and the Sunsets – Too Young to Burn
Channeling the classic stylings of Wayne Cochran & the C.C. Riders, “Too Young To Burn” is pure vintage-style west coast pop, telling a sordid tale of loss, regret, and otherworldly despair.
[buy the album] [more from Sonny & The Sunsets on Speakers]

65 Sarah Harmer – Captive
Sarah, if you’re out there, we’ll hold you captive anytime.
[buy the album]

64 Admiral Radley – I Heart California
It’s not a total surprise that this Earlimart/Grandaddy side project released an ode to California to kick off its debut album. Citrus, the symphony, fake tits, and drugs in diaper bags abound.
[buy the album] [more from Admiral Radley on Speakers]

63 Wild Nothing – Chinatown
Wild Nothing is Jack Tatum. Jack Tatum is Wild Nothing. “Chinatown” is the standout track from his debut record, Gemini. It is a dynamic lark of a tune.

[buy the album]

62 Small Black – Despicable Dogs
While “Despicable Dogs” is spinning, we can almost pretend winter is not upon us, as if we can hear the soil thawing as the sun decides to stick around a bit longer each day.
[buy the album] [more from Small Black on Speakers]

61 Sam Quinn – Late the Other Night
After the everybodyfields split, Quinn didn’t know if he wanted to continue making music. So, we’re extra thankful to have this in our lives.
[buy the album] [more from Sam Quinn on Speakers]

60 Lissie – Stranger
There’s no way that any listener with a heartbeat won’t instantly fall in love with “Stranger,” a nod to ’60s girl groups like The Dixie Cups and The Shangri-Las, about a girl who’s not going to take any crap from a suspect guy.

[buy the album] [more from Lissie on Speakers]

59 Deerhunter – Revival
“Revival” is one of the shortest tracks on Halcyon Digest and represents a condensed exemplar of Deerhunter’s shift away from the hyper-experimental and toward more structured tunes with pop-oriented sensibilities.

[buy the album]

58 Das Racist – Fashion Party
This is one of those awesome songs to throw on the iPod when we’re getting our workout on. The lyrics are funny, the beat is driving, and when Chairlift comes in at the end, it gives us that pep we need to give that elliptical hell.

[get the free album]

57 David Ford – Nothing At All
“Well, who needs education/ When you’ve got a degree?” We love those lines. And we’re sensing some sarcasm.
[buy the album] [more from David Ford on Speakers]

56 First Aid Kit – Hard Believer
The “love is tough/ time is rough” harmonic chorus of “Hard Believer” sounds simplistic enough (hey, that rhymes), but the combo of both Soderbergs’ robust vocals adds a dimension of complexity that emphasizes that deep well of experience the girls have amassed in fewer than twenty years.
[buy the album] [more from First Aid Kit on Speakers]

55 Best Coast – Boyfriend
“Boyfriend” is the lead track on Best Coast’s Crazy For You, and the tune lays down the blueprint for the amazing record to follow: equal parts of the garage, surf, and ’50s – ’60s girl group genres with lyrics about relationships, loneliness, and longing (the cat and marijuana references start later in the record).

[buy the album] [more from Best Coast on Speakers]

54 Broken Social Scene – Texico Bitches
Even after seeing it performed live, we have no idea how Kevin Drew hits that high falsetto note multiple times without rupturing vocal chords. The song itself is pure indie goodness – with a conscious. But, it should have been “BP Bitches” after the events of the past year.

[buy the album] [more from Broken Social Scene on Speakers]

53 Brooke Fraser w/ Aqualung – Who Are We Fooling
Fraser makes us cry at least once on every album. Just thought we’d warn you.
[buy the album] [more from Brooke Fraser on Speakers]

52 Futurebirds – Yur Not Ded [listen to the demo] Equal parts southern barnburner and shoegaze-on-acid, “Yur Not Ded” stands at the crossroads of genres. And, like the title suggests, its raucous chorus will awaken even the most idle of hands.
[buy the album]

51 Twin Shadow – Slow
This new-wavey jam is a perfect specimen of Twin Shadow’s sound. It is danceable, accentuated by synth notes, but paced and pushed forward by steady drums and a racing guitar. George’s Lewis Jr’s voice channels Morrissey and we’re transported, happily, to the ’80s.

[buy the album]

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