The musical year in review

Another year is over and so comes the end to yet another year of musical awesomeness. We saw a variety of album releases in 2010 and even more hilarious musical moments. From Bieber Fever to Kanye West’s string of bad publicity moves, 2010 was full of surprises.

So what actually happened this year? Let’s look back and remember the past year’s highlights. Early in the year we saw album releases from the likes of Vampire Weekend, Spoon, Beach House, and many others. We saw many artists unite all over the world for the Hope for Haiti telethon in January, in which the live album became one of the highest-selling albums of 2010.

There were long-awaited album releases from Eminem with Recovery, as well as Gorillaz’ Plastic Beach. Bone Thugs-n-Harmony reunited for an album, and both Kid Cudi and Kanye West released albums late in the year. There was the emergence of none other than Ke$ha with her smash hit “Tik Tok”, and in April Justin Bieber topped Billboard’s Top 200 with the release of the second half of his debut album.

Lil Wayne and T.I. went to jail, yet again, and Toronto-born Drake became one of the top artists of 2010, so great that his mere presence induced riots all over the world. Both Lady Gaga and Katy Perry released new albums over the summer months. “We No Speak Americano” by Yolanda Be Cool and “Barbara Streisand” by Duck Sauce become some of the summer’s most notable hits. Lauryn Hill along with Snoop Dogg headlined Rock the Bells, performing “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill” and “Doggy Style” in their entireties.

Red Hot Chilli Peppers reunited to begin work on a 10th studio album, and Daft Punk returned by doing the entire film score for Tron Legacy. Backstreet Boys and New Kids on the Block reunited once again for another tour, and New York’s Voxtrot called it quits. Lauryn Hill announced a world tour, and showed up three hours late for her first show on December 30 in New York.

Miley Cyrus smoked a bong and got in a lot of heat for it, while John Mayer announced that his penis is racist, and Arcade Fire finally released a new album! Wyclef Jean ran for president of Haiti and lost. And the number one highlight of 2010 was … (drumroll please) … Coachella 2010! With an amazing roster of artists, even Danny DeVito was seen enjoying the Deadmau5 set.

Five of the Best Albums of 2010

1. Beach House – Teen Dream

With the release of Teen Dream, their third studio album, Beach House became a household name for millions of hipsters all over the world. One of the best “dream pop” bands out there today, Beach House caught the eye of artists like Jay-Z and Beyoncé, who often frequented their shows. Beach House came to Toronto thrice last year, headlining at the Opera House in March, and twice later in the year opening for Broken Social Scene at Toronto Island, and then for Vampire Weekend at the Molson Amphitheatre.

2. Big Boi – Sir Luscious Left Foot … The Son of Chico Dusty

Sir Luscious Left Foot… The Son of Chico Dusty is the debut album for Outkast’s other half, Big Boi. With tracks like “Ain’t No DJ” and “Shutterbug”, this album is like no other rap album. It’s whimsical, fun, and it feels like you’re tripping all over the room while singing “yo’ DJ ain’t no DJ, he just make them f***ing mixtapes. Where they at?” (repeat seven times).

3. Eminem – Recovery

Recovery is the seventh studio album from Eminem, and is an emotionally driven album that returns him back to form. It is Eminem at the peak of his rap superpowers. With ballsy hip-hop beats and a remarkable eclectic mix of sounds, Recovery is one of the best albums Eminem has ever put out.

4. LCD Soundsystem – This Is Happening

After This Is Happening was released, LCD Soundsystem announced that the latest album would be their last. Whether this is true or not, it has sure caused a lot of controversy. This Is Happening is a compilation of catchy tunes mixed with a self-help guide to broken relationships. With fun vocals and great instrumentation, each track flies by and you’d never believe that more than half of them are longer than six minutes.

5. Mystery Jets – Serotonin

If you don’t know the likes of Mystery Jets you should really get on it this year! With the release of their second studio album, Twenty One, in 2008, fans eagerly waited for the next album, Serotonin. It was released last summer, and the band followed suit with an American and Canadian tour. Mystery Jets played Toronto’s Horseshoe Tavern in which they played an epic seventy-five-minute set. With a unique UK Sound, infectious beats, sing-along choruses, and witty banter, Mystery Jets established 2010 as the year they would take over the world.

Honorable Mentions

1. Arcade Fire – The Suburbs

2. Black Keys – Brothers

3. Broken Bells – Broken Bells

4. Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

5. Vampire Weekend – Contra

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