There were two full scoops of albums I thought were interesting or amazing, but not amazing enough to be in my Top 10 for the year. These are albums I encourage you to pick up, explore, fall in love with, put on a mixtape. They are albums that fill in the space of a year that my Top 10 could not.
They are indeed excellent albums
J Cole's Friday Night Lights mixtape - In a year of uninteresting hip hop, here is J Cole making me believe in genre that most years I write off for dead. Aggressive on delivery he owns every minute of this mixtape.
Sky Larkin's Kaleide - Brainy, wordy indie pop rock band from Leeds. Katie Harkin's voice is worth the album alone, but there's so much energy here you'll stick around again and again.
Broken Social Scene's Forgiveness Rock Record - Just a fun dance record. I love Texico Bitches, mostly for the ram ma lam ma ding dong.
Sharon Jones and The Dap Kings' I Learned The Hard Way - Whoa. Don't ever cross Sharon Jones. She will eat your punk ass for dinner, then write an incredible sould song about what a dog you are. And The Dap Kings will be there to back her up.
Shelby Lynne's Tears, Lies and Alibis See above about Sharon Jones. But instead of soul, insert Loretta Lynne country song instead.
Dum Dum Girls' I Will Be - Catchy lo fi fuzzy girl group pop. What's not to like?
Arcade Fire's The Suburbs - Tales of lonely suburban life from that band you used to like until your mom started liking them. Obligatory inclusion? Possibly. But that doesn't not make it a compelling and interesting record.
Best Coast's Crazy For You - Sunny, surfy, lo fi weed rock. You will get a contact buzz reading their twitter. You'll feel euporic just listening to these happy songs.
The Drums' s/t - Surf rock meets the Smiths. That is, dark moody lyrics about love over dreamy surfing guitars.
Superchunk's Majesty Shredding - 10 years since their last album, and Mac and the gang haven't mellowed one bit (insert obligatory slack motherfucker joke here). I think it sounds more like a kicked up Portastatic, since no one can be 19 forever. But damn if this entire album doesn't make you want to pogo around.