My top 10 albums: 2021

My top 10 albums from 2021

Well 2021 was at least a bit better than 2020 overall, wasn’t it?  After my marathon blogging efforts in 2020 I was much quieter over the last 12 months, but here are my top 10 albums of 2021 with accompanying Spotify playlist too (and you can see my corresponding list for 2020 here).

There’s definitely a bias towards old favourite artists of mine this year – but also some fresh selections including my number 1 pick, 36 minutes of jangly pop perfection that deserved much more attention than it received.   So, let’s count down from 10 to 1…

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Tape It Up: 26@17.06.95

Here’s the second of my recently rediscovered compilation tapes, the rather prosaically named 26@17.06.95 which does at least date it to being basically 26 years ago.  And there are some suitably breezy summer tunes included from favourites such as Teenage Fanclub, Mercury Rev, Stereolab and the Beach Boys. 

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Tape It Up: Smiley Smile Tunes

Having recently come across a stash of old compilation tapes, mainly from the 90s, I thought I’d start posting details about them here on my blog from time to time along with an accompanying Spotify playlist.  It’s fun to look back on these mini time capsules and see personal favourites to this day mixed together with other tunes that I may listen to more infrequently but are old friends nonetheless.

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Jumping Fences to Wichita: my 100 favourite songs

“It started with a playlist…I never thought it would come to this…” (with apologies to Hot Chocolate).

Well yes, I went quite a bit further with an early lockdown challenge amongst some friends to each compile a Spotify playlist of our 50 favourite songs (with only one selection by any single artist).  From an initial longlist of 379 such tunes – leading to various accompanying playlists in addition to my standard top 50 – I then started blogging about each choice.  Initially this involved pretty much one post every day throughout April and May for my favourite 50, before broadening this out to cover my top 100 songs and then blogging roughly twice a week from June to November.  And so a project that began near the start of the first lockdown comes to a conclusion towards the end of the second lockdown…

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B100: Favourite songs 51-100

Bee Hundred

B100: with apologies to Guided By Voices

Having recently completed the “379 to 50” rundown of my top 50 songs, I’m now going to share my next 50 favourite records that didn’t quite make the cut.  When initially whittling down my longlist of 379 tunes, there were actually just over 100 that I thought would be in the top 50, so these are all still very beloved songs.  I’m not going to be counting down day by day as before but do plan to write blogs about each record every now and then, and will be travelling up this time around from 51 onwards…

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379 to 50: The Final Countdown (from numbers 50 to 1)…

Top 10 montage

I’ve now finished my lockdown inspired favourite 50 songs countdown, which started in early April.  All 50 tracks are listed below, with links to each accompanying blog.  There’s also a Spotify playlist with the songs in ranked order, plus 4 bonus tunes (my numbers 51-54) as my top 50 choices from My Bloody Valentine, Whiteout, Plush and The KLF are not available on Spotify.

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