Not the pastoral beauty of it's predecessor but this was a really solid album full of great songs. Yes, it's a bit predictable that it's my No 1 (me being a big fan) but according to my last.fm stats it's the album I listened to the most so there. Favourite track was Still
2. Chuck Prophet- Let Freedom Ring!
Rock record of the year and Chuck's best album, raw rock 'n' roll recorded in Mexico City during the Swine Flu epidemic. There's some absolute corkers on this disc,"Where the Hell is Henry?", "You and Me Baby (Holding On)" "American Man" and the closing track "Leave the Window Open" the best track written about living for the moment and "living this life before it's gone". Love Chuck, love this, brilliant album.
3. Slaid Cleaves - Everything You Love Will Be Taken Away
What a great songwriter! This contains tunes of such poignancy it almost brings a tear to the eye. It's a stunning effort, a real joy to listen to. Utterly gorgeous songs such as "Dreams", "Beyond Love" "Cry" all interwoven with some wonderful melodies. I liked every track on what must be Slaid's best album?
4. The Decemberists - The Hazards of Love
An absolutely superb sonic experience from start to finish. It's a concept album based around a twisted fairy tale and an album that rocked but also soothed with a couple of excellent acoustic tracks. Has to be listened to in it's entirety, just superb.
5. Sam Baker - cotton Last in the trilogy and three albums to treasure. Some of the most touching songs I've heard, so deep and meaningful. What a great artist. Provider of track of the year with the closing track Snow.
6. The Low Anthem - Oh My God Charlie Darwin
Possibly the breakthrough act of 2009, they were certainly wonderful live. This contains some wonderful songs with a wonderful sound. It will live long and be played for years to come. A gem of an album.
7. Levon Helm - Electric Dirt
A cracking country stew of an album, heart-warming, thigh-slapping and uplifting....loved it too bits.
8. Malcolm Holcombe - For The Mission Baby
AS with Levon Helm another superb, real country album with plenty of meat on the bones. Another superb release from Mr Consistency who's consistently superb, loved it!
9. Tinariwen - Imidiwan: Companions
The soundtrack of this past summer, I remember sitting outside leaving the back door open and letting this album drift outside. Hypnotic and beautiful.
10. Israel Nash Gripka - New York Town
Great début album that surly promises more to come. Very Impressed and at the top of my 'must see live' list.
They Also Served:
11. Vanessa Peters & Ice Cream on Mondays -Sweetheart, Keep Your Chin Up
So underated, such a good folk-pop album.
12. Son Volt - American Central Dust
Their best album this decade, great Americana.
13. BettySoo - Heat Sin Water Skin
Nice album, great discovery.