As we career towards the end of the year the usual “best of” lists are popping up all over the place. The Guardian has it’s Top 10 Albums of the year series, The Ticket reviewers have listed their top 10 albums and Nialler9’s annual Poll has had over 200 votes for top 10 irish albums and irish songs (He’s revealed his readers top 30 irish songs of 2010 with the top albums no doubt about to follow soon), and Nay over on Harmless Noise has declared her top 40 songs and top 10 albums, so naturally I’m getting in on the act.

I usually do end of year top 5’s (see 2009) of songs, albums, gigs and cultural events, but in recognition of the explosion of irish talent that there seems to have been in 2010 (I blogged about it for OTR during the summer as a Golden Age), and the fact that I was too late to add my vote to Nialler9’s poll, I’m doing a top 10 of Irish Albums and Irish songs….with the more general top 10’s for all albums/gigs etc to follow.

What’s most interesting to me is the diversity of sound that can be found in irish music – the tracks and albums below bring in rock, pop, indie, folk, dubstep, electronica and more. Long may it last.

Top 10 Irish Albums 2010

(artist name links to artist website, album links to sample tracks for listening)

1. Thread PullsNew Thoughts

2. VillagersBecoming a Jackal

3. James Vincent McMorrowEarly in the Morning

4. Redneck ManifestoFriendship

5. MeljoannSquick

6. Somadrone Depth of Field

7. NeosupervitalBattery Power

8. StrandsStrands

9. Paul Brady Hooba Dooba

10. Halves It Goes, It Goes (Forever and Ever)

With honourable mentions for excellent EP releases from VisionAir and Deaf Joe

Top 12* Irish Songs 2010

1. JoannaDeaf Joe

(now…this is a bit of a cheat as it hasn’t actually been released yet (I don’t think) but it is hands-down my most favourite and most listened to track this year so I’m leaving it in. Plus it’s just the most perfect song ever)


2. Do What You Feel – Neosupervital

3. Villagers– Becoming a Jackal

4. If I Had a BoatJames Vincent McMorrow

5. How to Talk – Thread Pulls

6. Hex – Redneck Manifesto

7. Triple TroubleB-Movie Lightning

8. Little RedCathy Davey

9. NatureswayOur Little Secrets

10. Cold Without YouBingo

11.I Can TalkTwo Door Cinema Club

12. (-_-)Adebisi Shank

*Ok- so it’s not a neat 10, but I couldn’t reduce it any more! I started with a long list of 20 and it’s just too hard. I’m loving Swear I’m not Paul’s Top 100 irish songs list, proof if any was needed that there are a whole host of other contenders. He’s also created a post where you can hear samples of ALL of the 200+ irish albums released in 2010 (as per the Choice Music Prize List) but be warned – it is pretty massive to load.