'All Songs' Listeners Pick The Best Albums Of 2010

Listen To The Countdown

2 hr 13 min 55 sec
 
a collage of artists featured on the show i i
a collage of artists featured on the show

Back in June, when we asked All Songs Considered listeners to pick the year's best music (so far), the Gorillaz album Plastic Beach was the overwhelming favorite. But that was still a couple of months before Arcade Fire released its third full-length, The Suburbs. With it in the year-end mix, no other album or artist could compete. All Songs Considered listeners cast tens of thousands of votes, and The Suburbs was light years ahead of everything else to become the year's top vote-getter.

This is our favorite time of year at NPR Music. We love to look back at all the great music that came out and debate which albums and songs are better than others.  But more than the debate, all of this year-end coverage gives us a chance to rediscover albums we'd forgotten about, or find new songs and artists we may have missed altogether.

On this edition of the program, host Bob Boilen and producer Robin Hilton count down the Top 25 listener picks for 2010 and share some thoughts on the year in music. You can find a downloadable list of the Top 100 listener picks on the All Songs Considered blog.

As always, let us know what you think in the comments section below.  And be sure to check out all the other extensive coverage of the best albums, songs and artists of 2010 on NPR Music.

Download A PDF Of The Top 100 Listener Picks

Explore NPR Music's Extended Coverage Of The Year In Music

Listener Picks For Best Music Of 2010

Cover for The Suburbs

1. The Suburbs

  • Artist: Arcade Fire
  • Song: Ready To Start
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Ready To Start"
  • Album: The Suburbs
  • Artist: Arcade Fire
  • Label: Merge
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Brothers

2. Brothers

  • Artist: Black Keys
  • Song: Everlasting Light
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Everlasting Light"
  • Album: Brothers
  • Artist: Black Keys
  • Label: Nonesuch
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for High Violet

3. High Violet

  • Artist: National
  • Song: Bloodbuzz Ohio
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Bloodbuzz Ohio"
  • Album: High Violet
  • Artist: National
  • Label: 4AD
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Sigh No More

4. Sigh No More

  • Artist: Mumford & Sons
  • Song: The Cave
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "The Cave"
  • Album: Sigh No More
  • Artist: Mumford & Sons
  • Label: Cooperative
  • Released: 2009
 
Cover for Broken Bells

5. Broken Bells

  • Artist: Broken Bells
  • Song: The High Road
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "The High Road"
  • Album: Broken Bells
  • Artist: Broken Bells
  • Label: Sony
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for This Is Happening

6. This Is Happening

  • Artist: LCD Soundsystem
  • Song: All I Want
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "All I Want"
  • Album: This Is Happening
  • Artist: LCD Soundsystem
  • Label: Virgin
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Contra

7. Contra

  • Artist: Vampire Weekend
  • Song: Taxi Cab
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Taxi Cab"
  • Album: Contra
  • Artist: Vampire Weekend
  • Label: XL Recordings
  • Released: 2009
 
Cover for The Age of Adz

8. The Age of Adz

  • Artist: Sufjan Stevens
  • Song: Vesuvius
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Vesuvius"
  • Album: The Age of Adz
  • Artist: Sufjan Stevens
  • Label: Asthmatic Kitty
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Teen Dream

9. Teen Dream

  • Artist: Beach House
  • Song: Zebra
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Zebra"
  • Album: Teen Dream
  • Artist: Beach House
  • Label: Sub Pop Records
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

10. My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

  • Artist: Kanye West
  • Song: Monster [Explicit]
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Monster [Explicit]"
  • Album: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
  • Artist: Kanye West
  • Label: Def Jam
  • Released: 2010
YouTube
 
Cover for Plastic Beach

11. Plastic Beach

  • Artist: Gorillaz
  • Song: On Melancholy Hill
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "On Melancholy Hill"
  • Album: Plastic Beach
  • Artist: Gorillaz
  • Label: Virgin
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Treats

12. Treats

  • Artist: Sleigh Bells
  • Song: Rill Rill
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Rill Rill"
  • Album: Treats
  • Artist: Sleigh Bells
  • Label: Mom & Pop Music
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Go

13. Go

  • Artist: Jónsi
  • Song: Go Do
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Go Do"
  • Album: Go
  • Artist: Jónsi
  • Label: XL
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Gorilla Manor

14. Gorilla Manor

  • Artist: Local Natives
  • Song: World News
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "World News"
  • Album: Gorilla Manor
  • Artist: Local Natives
  • Label: Frenchkiss Records
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Infinite Arms

15. Infinite Arms

  • Artist: Band of Horses
  • Song: Laredo
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Laredo"
  • Album: Infinite Arms
  • Artist: Band of Horses
  • Label: Sony Music
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Wild Hunt

16. Wild Hunt

  • Artist: The Tallest Man on Earth
  • Song: The Wild Hunt
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "The Wild Hunt"
  • Album: Wild Hunt
  • Artist: The Tallest Man on Earth
  • Label: Dead Oceans Records
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Halcyon Digest

17. Halcyon Digest

  • Artist: Deerhunter
  • Song: Memory Boy
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Memory Boy"
  • Album: Halcyon Digest
  • Artist: Deerhunter
  • Label: 4AD
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Transference

18. Transference

  • Artist: Spoon
  • Song: Written In Reverse
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Written In Reverse"
  • Album: Transference
  • Artist: Spoon
  • Label: Merge Records
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for The ArchAndroid

19. The ArchAndroid

  • Artist: Janelle Monáe
  • Song: Tightrope
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Tightrope"
  • Album: The ArchAndroid
  • Artist: Janelle Monáe
  • Label: Bad Boy
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Odd Blood

20. Odd Blood

  • Artist: Yeasayer
  • Song: Ambling Alp
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Ambling Alp"
  • Album: Odd Blood
  • Artist: Yeasayer
  • Label: Secretly Canadian
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for God Willin' & The Creek Don't Rise

21. God Willin' & The Creek Don't Rise

  • Artist: Ray Lamontagne & The Pariah Dogs
  • Song: Beg Steal Or Borrow
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Beg Steal Or Borrow"
  • Album: God Willin' & The Creek Don't Rise
  • Artist: Ray Lamontagne & The Pariah Dogs
  • Label: Red Ink
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Together

22. Together

  • Artist: The New Pornographers
  • Song: Crash Years
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Crash Years"
  • Album: Together
  • Artist: The New Pornographers
  • Label: Matador
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Forgiveness Rock Record

23. Forgiveness Rock Record

  • Artist: Broken Social Scene
  • Song: World Sick
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "World Sick"
  • Album: Forgiveness Rock Record
  • Artist: Broken Social Scene
  • Label: Arts & Crafts
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for Have One on Me

24. Have One on Me

  • Artist: Joanna Newsom
  • Song: Does Not Suffice
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "Does Not Suffice"
  • Album: Have One on Me
  • Artist: Joanna Newsom
  • Label: Drag City
  • Released: 2010
 
Cover for The Lady Killer

25. The Lady Killer

  • Artist: Cee Lo Green
  • Song: F--- You [Explicit]
close

Purchase Featured Music

  • "F--- You [Explicit]"
  • Album: The Lady Killer
  • Artist: Cee Lo Green
  • Label: Elektra/Asylum
  • Released: 2010
 

Featured Artist

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.