Hopefully by now you will have read part 1 of this topic in last month’s blog (Jan. 2020). Just in case you haven’t, I will give you a few minutes to go back and catch up on my top movies and songs #26-50 from the decade of the 2010s. …….Okay, now that you’re back, let’s dig into my fave 25 albums and then the rest of my fave songs from 2010-1019. Note the word ‘fave’ as these lists don’t attempt to be profound while pretending that most of these are anything but music that appeals to an aging white dude who grew up on guitar-based pop/rock and roll. If you want to chime in with your faves, I would love to hear your comments!
Doc’s 25 Fave Albums 2010-2019
1.Dave Kerzner – New World-Deluxe Edition (2015) – for those unfamiliar with keyboardist Kerzner, he is the guy with his arm around Steve Hackett in to above picture. Okay, I own up to being a blubbering fool and interrupting his dinner on last year’s On The Blue Cruise to tell him how much I loved this album – sorry Dave. This is a prog masterwork along the lines of classic Pink Floyd.
2.Federale – No Justice (2019) – going back to December you will see this atop the best albums of 2019. Lee Hazelwood meets Ennio Morricone (Clint Eastwood spaghetti western music).
3.ABC – The Lexicon Of Love II (2016) – after an 8 year layoff, Martin Fry and his group released a followup of sorts to their first album from 1982 which was lush synth-pop. It was a #5 in the U.K.
4.Robin Gibb – 50 St. Catherine’s Drive (2014) – a wonderful and emotional posthumous album from the late warbling Bee Gee. The last song he recorded was “Sydney” in 2011.
5.The Pierces – You & I (2012) – 2 beautiful sisters (see the above picture – the females, idiot) who released some excellent music together, but are now pursuing solo careers. While from the U.S., they found success in the U.K. with this album hitting #4.
6.Miles Kane – Don’t Forget Who You Are (2013) – Kane has made some excellent music with his band The Last Shadow Puppets and as a solo act. He is inspired by ’60s mod music. The album charted at #8 in the U.K.
7.Alan Doyle – A Weekend At The Warehouse (2017) – the third solo album by the former member of the Newfoundland folk band Great Big Sea. Riproaring fiddle tunes to sing at your local pub.
8.Stone Temple Pilots – Stone Temple Pilots (2010) – this was their first album since 2001 and the last with the late original singer Scott Weiland who like Jim Morrison of the Doors seemed to always be doomed to an early death. Guitar rock inspired by the ’60s and ’70s.
9.The Black Keys – El Camino (2011) – rockabilly, glam rock, ZZ Top, etc. inspired this record. Co-production was by Danger Mouse.
10.J. D McPherson – Let The Good Times Roll (2015) – while not blessed with a standout track, this was a solid from top to bottom ’50s feeling rock album. The best place to catch McPherson and his crack band is in a small club.
11.Beady Eye – Different Gear, Still Speeding (2011) – Liam Gallagher’s band after Oasis was pretty much Oasis without brother Noel. One of the song titles sums up the influences: “Beatles & Stones”.
12.The Mavericks – In Time (2013) – after a long time away during which Raul Malo pursued a solo career, this was a solid return for the Tex-Mex country rockers. Malo’s Orbison-like vocals belong with this fun band.
13.Steve Hackett – At The Edge Of Light (2019) – great prog guitarist and his 25th studio album is a winner.
14.Robbie Williams – The Heavy Entertainment Show (2016) – U.K. teen idol from the band Take That who has matured into a bombastically entertaining pop artist. This album was a worldwide success everywhere except the U.S.
15.Nick Magnus – n’monix (2014) – great album from prog keyboardist Magnus who has worked with Steve Hackett among others.
16.Paul McCartney – New (2013) – some introspective history plus some excellent Paul pop.
17.Dragonette – Bodyparts (2012) – guilty pleasure Canadian dance pop and nominated for Dance Record Of The Year at the Juno awards.
18.Temples – Sun Structures (2014) – the debut and still best album by the U.K. neo-psych Temples.
19.Cashier No. 9 – To The Death Of Fun (2011) – they were a short-lived band from Belfast with echoey wall-of-sound pop.
20.The Rolling Stones – Blue & Lonesome (2016) – where the Stones got back to the gritty blues that started them 50 plus years ago.
21.Phideaux – Infidel (2018) – this is the best 2 CD indie prog album from an American TV director ever.
22.Bob Seger – Ride Out (2014) – after an 8 year layoff, this was a good rock and roll album including fine material such at Steve Earle’s “The Devil’s Right Hand”.
23.Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown – Wild Child (2013) – classic sounding Texas guitar rock.
24.Down ‘N Outz – This Is How We Roll (2019) – Def Leppard’s Joe Elliott’s side project owing a debt musically to Ian Hunter rock & roll.
25.Neil Diamond – Melody Road (2014) – I was never a fan of his schmaltzy hits after his early Bang Records years, so this came as a huge surprise. Tuneful and well-sung memorable pop songs that would have been hits back in the day.
Doc’s 50 Fave Songs 2010-2019 (#1-25)
1.The Pierces – Glorious (2011) – a great song and an even better performance from the album You & I. This song has rapidly become one of my top 10 songs of all-time. The ethereal choral vocals and swelling instrumentation behind the sisters’ harmonies still gives me chills.
2.The Strawbs – We Have The Power (2017) – 50 years into their career, I would have never expected one of my fave prog bands to come up with a song and performance the equal of any of their early classics. Great mellotron (though keyboardist Dave Bainbridge showed that it is a sample on synth when we saw them on the On The Blue Cruise). From the album The Ferryman’s Curse.
3.Maurice Gibb – The Bridge (2010) – this may be a bit of a cheat calling this a new song since Maurice died in 2003 , but it wasn’t released till the 4 CD anthology set Mythology. This song is by far the best thing ever done by the Bee Gee who was my fave of the trio. It is a song about family relationships and includes his kids Adam and Samantha performing as well. Props for the bagpipes.
4.Adele – Skyfall (2012) – boy did Adele ever knock it out of the park with this theme to the James Bond movie Skyfall. It sounds like a classic early Bond theme instead of the usual contemporary track that doesn’t really feel respectful to the franchise.
5.The Mavericks – Brand New Day (2017) – for a band supposedly Tex-Mex country, this amazing song sounds like nothing they have ever done – sort of a Phil Spector Wall-Of-Sound homage. Some songs demand that you crank up the volume. It can be found on their Brand New Day album.
6.Nick Curran & The Lowlifes – Baby You Crazy (2010) – if you didn’t know it you would think this was 1956 with some wild black shouter. Instead it is 2010 and a sadly now deceased (age 35) skinny white dude. From the album Reform School Girl by the former Fabulous Thunderbird guitarist.
7.Paul McCartney – Hope For The Future (2014) – what a sad waste that one of the best songs Paul has done in many years was thrown away on a videogame soundtrack (Destiny). Paul should have used this as the lead single to a new album of epic music like this. That being said, it is pretty nifty he could come up with something this outstanding after all the other great music he has given us.
8.JD McPherson – Fire Bug (2012) – JD’s best song ever is a nasty ’50s rocker from his debut album Signs & Signifiers. He has put out some good music since, but it would be great if he would cut loose again with a flat out rocker.
9.Steven Wilson – A Door Marked Summer (2017) – this classic prog mellotron song was only available on the expensive boxset version of his CD To The Bone which is too bad. Perhaps some day he will see fit to collect his rarer tracks into a package we can all afford.
10.OneRepublic – Love Runs Out (2014) – this pounding song was added to a deluxe version of the Colorado Springs band’s Native album which came out originally in 2013. It managed to sell over a million copies and charted at #15 in the U.S.
11.Rod Stewart – Blood Red Roses (2018) – Rod managed to come up with a winning title track with driving fiddle work. The late folk singer Ewan MacColl is given a co-writing credit.
12.Travis – The Magnificent Time (2016) – a very poppy song that conjures ’60s feel-good music a la a group like The Cowsills. It can be found on the Everything At Once record. Lead singer Fran Healy of this Scottish band co-wrote the song with the keyboard player from Keane – Tim Rice-Oxley.
13.Ghost – He Is (2015) – Meliora is a fine album from the cartoonish Swedish metal band Ghost that at times gets very prog as on this song.
14.John Ford – Perfect Day (2011) – the former Strawbs bassist has been recording independent music that can be purchased on bandcamp. This progressive feeling version of the old Lou Reed song is on the Resurrected-The Best of And Then Some CD and would have fit perfectly on a Strawbs or Hudson Ford album.
15.Bellowhead – Lillibulero (2012) – Bellowhead was an act somewhat in the tradition of bands like Fairport Convention and Steeleye Span though they had a much larger cast of players on tuba and the like. This song dates to the 1600’s and was a marching jig. The album Broadside managed a U.K. chart placing of #16 which was considered amazing for an independent folk album.
16.The New Pornographers – Brill Bruisers (2014) – even though they have a terrible band name, these Canadian folks consistently release smart pop music. This is the title track to their 6th studio record and has a great wall of vocals and layered instruments.
17.Keane – Silenced By The Night (2012) – Keane is different from many pop bands in that their primary instrumentation is keyboards and not guitars. Their Strangeland album was a U.K. #1 hit.
18.Blondfire – Waves (2014) – the brother and sister team of Bruce and Erica Driscoll were Astaire till Fred’s heirs suggested a name change so Blondfire they became. This track can be found on their 2nd album Young Heart.
19.Lonely Robot – Oubliette (2015) – prog guitarist/singer John Mitchell (Arena/It Bites) has released a trio of albums as Lonely Robot with this ethereal song found on their debut Please Come Home.
20.Dan Baird – Naughty Marie (2017) – since my rock and roll hero Dave Edmunds retired, Baird (Georgia Satellites) has supplied me with the 3 chord stoopid chunka chunka monkey-beat rock and roll that appeals to my lizard brain. Found on his solo album SoLow.
21.Down ‘N Outz – Boys Don’t Cry (2019) – Joe Elliott of Def Leppard with members of The Quireboys making great Ian Hunter-type rock with pounding piano. Grab the This Is How We Roll album when you can.
22.Steven Wilson – How Big The Space (2018) – between Porcupine Tree, Blackfield and his solo albums plus remixing classic prog LPs one wonders when he sleeps. Once again he recorded one of his best songs then perversely only made it available on a limited record store day 12″. Please, Steven, don’t make your music so hard to find when it is this good.
23.Adele – Rumour Has It (2011) – the juggernaut that was Adele 21 grabbed your Dentist’s hard earned cash just like nearly everyone else. Basically the song isn’t much more than a gospel feeling vocal over a drum stomp. It was written by Adele Adkins and OneRepublic leader Ryan Tedder.
24.Goo Goo Dolls – Indestructible (2019) – with the echoed keyboards on the intro this song starts out sounding alot like Keane but then the wall of guitars kick in. Johnny Rzeznik and Robby Takac included this on their recent album Miracle Pill.
25.Cashier No. 9 – To Make You Feel Better (2011) – an easy loping track with a lot of echo. Their import album To The Death Of Fun sort of felt like Phil Spector producing the pastoral side of Pink Floyd. After they broke up, they became Exmagician.