Wednesday 4 January 2006

In case you're interested, which I am sure you're not, here are my top albums from 2005, in more or less descending order.

1. The Campfire Headphase by Boards of Canada – the beautiful latest album from this Scottish electronic duo is both livelier and softer than their last album and includes gentle beats, soft guitars and simply sublime melodies. A couple of songs, Peacock Tail and Dayvan Cowboy, I have barely stopped listening to lately.

2. Takk… by Sigur Ros – Takk… is beautiful, energetic, and much what you'd expect from the Icelandic band. The usual mix of crashing guitars, thumping drums and orchestral strings.

3. The Understanding by Royksopp – this album took me ages to get into, perhaps because it is so different from their last one. This one is mellower, deeper and slightly less poppy, and has a couple of wonderful songs in, such as Alpha Male.

4. Du & Jag Doden by Kent – continuing the Nordic theme, Kent are a funny band. Their soothing rock ballads aren't what I normally listen to, and many of their heavier songs are just a gear short of what the Smashing Pumpkins used to come up with, but something makes me really, really like this Swedish band. Maybe it's the gorgeous lyrics, the catchy riffs or just the kudos I feel I deserve for being into a band rarely heard outside Scandinavia!

5. Everything Ecstatic by Four Tet – this one got a bit of a slagging in reviews, but I really like it, and think it is the best since the earlier album Rounds, and perhaps even as good. It's lively, quirky, catchy, and very beautiful electronic music from an Irishman who has worked with Badly Drawn Boy in the past. Smile Around The Face is an infectiously happy song without being irritating.

In my next blog, my five favourite London gallery exhibitions.

Not really.

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