A collection of musically themed musings by Brendan Bush in Burlington, VT

Mail: PO Box 1556 | Burlington, VT 05402

2010 Albums That Fell Short

Filed Under: Album Reviews, Guest Post

Written by Preeti

Monday January 3, 2011

[ed. note: to help me get through the holiday mayhem, I asked a few friends to write a post. Here's Preeti's contribution.]

I know I’m always asking what music other people recommend — bands you might never have heard of, exciting new albums from old favorites, etc. I mean this blog is a perfect example since it highlights just those artists (if you haven’t checked out Brendan’s 2010 Favorites you should). Here’s the thing, there are also those bands in the last couple years that you loved and then somehow, after waiting at long last for their next album it just didn’t seem to match up OR it was a vicious disappointment. The 10 albums below are just some of those for me this past year.

Maybe I’m whining but imagine it this way, one day you go to Cirque de Soleil and the next you go to a Circus. Mine ears have seen the glory.

I write this not in criticism (though I guess one could take it as such) but really, some of these artists have made amazing near perfect albums in the past, albums I play over and over and over. I write this as a proposition to these artists to reach back into their Mary-Poppins-like bags of talent and dig deep for what again could be musical mastery. In the interest of being concise I will follow the Twitter-inspired 140 character limit for notes below.

P.S. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder — what may be disappointing for me, may be listeners gold for ye.

Band of HorsesInfinite Arms
Love the band but Infinite Arms lacked heart. Similar calm and ease from Cease To Begin but felt too rehearsed.

Belle & SebastianWrite About Love
Love The Boy With The Arab Strap forever. Couldn’t play this album more than twice. Need more instrumental (strings/brass) less synthetic.

Broken BellsBroken Bells
I was all psyched for Mercer + Danger Mouse but this album was less than the sum of its parts. [ed. note - though it didn't quite make my favorites of 2010, I thought this album was fantastic]

Hold SteadyHeaven is Wherever
Hopefully this is a transition album (to something better), until then we still have their other three albums.

M.I.A/ \ / \ / \ Y / \
WTF? Let down + crazy town. “Born Free” video controversy is the only reason this could have been popular. Maybe her wedding distracted her?

The NationalHigh Violet
Is everyone overproducing these days? Boxer, Alligator – great albums. I wanted to like it but just didn’t feel growth here.

Of MontrealFalse Priest
After Skeletal Lamping I wanted to like this but I couldn’t. Nothing stood out. Too much orgy, not enough music. I’m sure this is just temporary.

Rogue WavePermalight
Hard to beat Out of the Shadow & Descended Like Vultures, Permalight didn’t succeed. Reinventing with poppy electronic is a trend this year.

Indie band with a long history of great albums. This was not one of them. Everyone has a bad day.

Sufjan StevensAge of Adz
I just don’t get it. Maybe I’m not supposed to get it. Electronic + Sufjan = disaster.

Note: All photos are copyright © 2010 Brendan Bush unless otherwise noted. You are free to copy, distribute and transmit them as long as proper attribution is given, in accordance with this Creative Commons policy.

2 Responses to “2010 Albums That Fell Short”

  1. Eric says:

    Disagree on Spoon. Definitely liked that one. Most of the others are on point.

  2. Rachel says:

    Great post! I kinda disagree about the National’s new album- while they didn’t seem to grow alot, I really enjoy listening to High Violet as sort of a b-sides to Boxer. More of the same isn’t always bad:)