My picks for the ten best tunes of the year past, done countdown-style, from #10 to #1. Enjoy...
10. Heavy Cross - The Gossip
Hardcore pop with a heavy hitting lead vocal.
9. Two Weeks - Grizzly Bear
Complex arrangements and tight production, along with some superb vocal work, highlight this track from the Brooklyn-based band.
8. Mrs. Cold - Kings of Convenience
Jack Johnson meets Simon & Garfunkel on this wonderful track.
7. Maybe So, Maybe No - Mayer Hawthorne
This was a super year for new old-school-style R&B, and this geeky white boy from Ann Arbor, Michigan stepped up to the plate with a stellar album.
6. I'll Go Crazy Tonight If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight - U2
From the best album of the year ("No Line On the Horizon"), U2 were definitely in top form in 2009.
5. Dusk 'till Dawn - Ladyhawke
Ladyhawke is Lady Gaga, Brittany Spears, and Gwen Stefani, all rolled into one, only better.
4. Happy Up Here - Röyksopp
Best dance/bubblegum diddy of the year.
3. The Breach - Bob Mould
From another of the year's best albums, Mould showcases his chops on this track. Excellent guitar riffs, superb production, great vocal.
2. Candy - Paolo Nutini
One of the most beautiful tracks of the entire year. Period.
1. L.I.E. - N'dambi
"Pink Elephant" is one of the best R&B albums to come down the pike in a decade. No electronic slides of the voice, and none of the annoying vocal olympics that are so prominent in today's pop music. This is just straight ahead, soulful R&B, updated for the 21st century. N'Dambi ingeniously combines soul-deep inspiration and a sensual style of elegance and power. Produced by the legendary Leon Sylvers for the venerable Stax label, "L.I.E." is the best track on an album filled with excellent material.