McLemon’s Best Songs of 2010

So it went like this via twitter DM…

Lemon: Hey – you have time and inclination to do a best of 2010 list for Copia blog?
Lemon: With me, I mean.
Lemon: And you can have “Fuck You” because for me that song was ruined when I saw Gwyneth Paltrow sing the radio edit on Glee.

McLovin: don’t want “Fuck You”. The radio edit alone ruined it for me. And yes – I’d love to! *off to choose songs!*

And with that we present: our best of 2010 collection… or something close since neither of us wanted to overthink this thing, which explains why it’s so long. Enjoy!



McLemon Best of 2010


1. Casiokids, Min Siste Dag
From the album “Topp stemning på lokal bar”

Of what do these bearded Norsemen sing? Who cares? Not knowing won’t stop you from singing along with them. See for yourself. Go ahead — I’ll wait.

2. Fanfarlo, Harold T. Wilkins, Or How To Wait For a Very Long Time
From the album “Reservoir”

I’ll try to sing along wit ur Nörse söng. And you do the same with mine! I still don’t have the first clue what this song is about. Harold somebody… who apparently had to wait for a very long time, but I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that Amos Memon had recently had his wisdom teeth out, was suffering from the effects of novocaine and also had cotton in his mouth when he recorded this. I can only make out every 10th word… This has never been a problem for me.

***UPDATE: It turns out Harold was waiting for a very long time for me to buy this song. Thanks mystery reader for pointing out that this one was actually released in 2009. So instead or in addition, enjoy this song by Fanfarlo that DID come out this year. Also? Just as awesome:

Are you singing along?

3. Stornaway, Zorbing
From the album “Beachcomber’s Windowsill”

You know I am. That’s some Excellence in Slurring right there. Did he just say “left behind by the radishes”? The radishes, hey! The radishes! Hey!

I don’t know what I like most about this song: the abundantly enunciated barbershop quartet harmonies, the way the instruments each jump in to take the lead at different points in the song and then pile on top of each other at the end, or the simple devotion of a man on his way to work who can think of nothing but returning to the arms of the woman he’s leaving at home.

4. The Secret Sisters, The One I Love Is Gone
From the album “The Secret Sisters”

That sounds like a song I would have picked. If I had heard it before you picked it that is. I’m a sucker for those harmonies, McLovin.

Speaking of which… I have to confess that I’m as surprised as anyone that this pair of twangy sisters with their throw-backy country sound made this list instead of some of my more obvious choices. But this song has haunted me since I’ve heard it. Like I said, I’m a sucker for lush harmonies and also the appropriate use of non-emo minor keys. And hey, I’m a little bit country…

5. LCD Soundsystem, Dance Yrself Clean
From the album “This is Happening”

That’s a torch song, Lemon. You’re a little bit sultry. Speaking of, I know exactly what I like most about this song: it reminds me of sex.

6. Brandon Flowers, Magdalena
From the album “Flamingo”

You remind me of sex, McLovin.

This album is nothing like a Killers album, but this little side project while the Killers are on hiatus was a nice release this year.

Someone on YouTube said it better and more articulately than I ever could:

OMFG!!!!!! Can someone please explain to me why he is SOOOOOOOO fricken PERFECT?!!??!?! The more you look at him, the hotter he gets! He is absoloutley the hottest person ever! and on top of that, he is an AMAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZING songwriter with an absoloutley perfect beautiful voice!!! ahhhh its so not fair that i cant be married to him!!! hahah

Here, this is even better with gorgeous visual.

7. The Dead Weather, Die By the Drop
From the album “Sea of Cowards”

Following your lovely solo project pick — it’s the Supergroup to beat all Supergroups Past, Present and Future. Why?

Lemon: Because … 3/4 of the artists are each in TWO other well known bands?

HELL-o. . . and the other 1/4 is Dean Fertita of Queens of the Motherfucking Stone Age. It is he + Alison Mosshart + the Jacks, White & Lawrence, that I have gone to for all my 2010 face-melting needs.

8. Beach House, Zebra
From the album “Teen Dream”

On the supergroup spectrum, Beach House is not. They aren’t new to me this year, but they are one of those bands whose music has normally just sort of passed through my ears unnoticed. It has been labeled “dream pop” which I love, but it’s hard for atmospheric melodies to find a way to stick on anything in my mush of a brain. And then this song entered my left ear, bounced off my right eardrum and rattled around in my head, ping-ping-ping.

9. Sean Hayes – Gunnin’
From the album “Run, Wolf, Run”

I don’t know how to describe the music of Sean Hayes. Folk with a kick? Blues Wrapped in a Dream? I just know I like it. A lot. FYI to all you Will & Grace fans out there — it’s not this Sean Hayes; it’s this one.

10. The Morning Benders, Excuses
From the album “Big Echo”

Speaking of genre-resistant bands,the Morning Benders might fall into Modern Classic Indie Oldie? I love the fact that this waltzy song sounds *almost* like it’s an Etta James song complete with the anachronistic sound of the static as the needle hits the album. Maybe if Etta James married James Mercer and had a baby named Etta James Mercer… McLovin – would you dance with me?

McLovin:Yes, love. Let’s us dance closely and whisper sweet, sweet words in and around each others ears.

11. Janelle Monáe – Tightrope [ft. Big Boi]
From the album “The ArchAndroid (Suites II and III)”

I’d like to refer all the stupid, naked pop tarts who blip across my radar screen like sucky, auto-tuned predator drones to Miss Janelle Monáe for a lesson in how to make an impression while remaining fully clothed. Every time one of you cross into my perimeter, I don’t even have to look at you to know that you’ve got both a belly ring and the ass of a 12-year old boy, neither of which gives you a moment’s pause before you shove them into the camera at your video shoot. Now go put your boobs away and learn how to sing. Merry Christmas.

12 Villagers, Becoming a Jackal
From the album “Becoming a Jackal”

I confess. This is a song I heard for the first time like 3 weeks ago. But the moment I heard it, I declared it my favorite song. EVER. For now. I don’t know that I could explain why I love it so much, but I want to marry it and have its jackal babies.

13. Anais Mitchell – Way Down Hadestown [feat Justin Vernon, Ani DiFranco, and Ben Knox Miller]
From the album “Hadestown”

I’d never heard of Anais Mitchell before this year, but I admire anyone who could step back and say “Hey. You know what would rule? A concept album based on the tragedy of Orpheus and Eurydice.” Most of us have to stumble through life without even coming close to having that kind of vision. Plus, her name is “Anais.” Could she be any more cool? Only if she went around using phrases like “appropriate use of non-emo minor keys.”

14. Mumford and Sons, White Blank Page
From the album “Sigh No More”

Or went around introducing me to awesome songs from concept albums based on the tragedy of Orpheus and Eurydice. That’s a hell of a cool song. And it’s been said before, but isn’t it illegal for you to live in Utah, McLovin?

Back to awesome songs, Mumford and Sons came on my radar just this year. And I would have loved them regardless, but I have to add: A band that sounds like Matt Hires with banjos? Are you kidding me? Sign me up!

(Sorry Matt – I figure you like them so it’s allowed… You need more banjos though, buddy. Juuuuust kidding. Kind of.)

15. The Black Keys – Tighten Up
From the album “Brothers”

Future Grammy winners Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney had my full attention this Summer with this whiskey-soaked, 2-songs-in-1 petition for Requited Luv. Humina, baby child.

16. Band of Horses, Factory
From the album “Infinite Arms”

Like Beach House, I’ve had Band of Horses hanging around my IPod for a while, but there’s always too much music, never enough time. This year, upon their release of Infinite Arms, I declared this my favorite band of the year. I may have changed my mind a few times since. But this album is definitely one of my favorites. This song wins over all the others for the reference to Now and Laters, as in the candy. Honestly, stop and listen to the lyrics to this song. They kick the ass of any other lyrics produced.

17. Joanna Newsom – Good Intentions Paving Company
From the album “Have One on Me”

Joanna’s the Sorting Hat of musical tastes. She points us all towards houses of Gets Her or Doesn’t, where she leaves us to our own devices to determine whether we got where we are because that’s what we really feel or because we’re pretentious douchebags. The search continues for evidence that I’m Possibly Non-Douchy As applies to just this, I mean.

18. Black Keys, Howlin For You
From the album “Brothers”

Save me room at whichever house you get sorted to, because I loved that.

Speaking of totally non-douchey, how killer is a bass-heavy “rock & roll band with a brutal, primal force” (tm Stephen Thomas Erlewine)…. It’s not for nothing we both picked a Black Keys song. This album is strictly incredible, especially with headphones. I don’t even have the words to describe the things they do with rhythm and stuff… It’s neat.

19. Ra Ra Riot – You and I Know
From the album “The Orchard”

There is SO much going on in this song. Who knew you could build this many layers of sound on top of a waltz? This almost reminds me of this one Rilo Kiley song that reminds me of a Fleetwood Mac song, except the Rilo Kiley had Christine and Lindsey pulling vocal duties and the Ra Ra Riot has Stevie. Re-reading that last sentence reminds me that I shouldn’t blog after coming home from Holiday parties.

20. Matt Hires, Rock n Roll Heart
From the EP “A to B EP”

So yeah, I was going to try to skip the obvious, but then I suddenly realized that prior to 2010, I hadn’t seriously, or at least intentionally, listened to Matt’s music. And honestly, I’ve worn down my recording of this song, without even counting my sad attempts to play it on my guitar. And although 90% of you would have probably gone with A to B (Matt included), I decided it would have been disingenuous to leave this song off my best of 2010 list. I lurve it. Oh and hey check out Matt’s Best of 2010 Songs List. We overlap on a few artists… but different songs.

I think for both of us limiting this to just 10 songs was nearly impossible. There was a lot of great music this year. Do yourself a favor and google up as many Best Of lists as you can find and seek out those bands you haven’t listened to. That’s the best part of end of year lists. Oh yeah, and if you like anything you hear on our list that you don’t own, do the artists a favor and pay for their music on any reputable music site.

McLemon out.