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Albums Of The Decade

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Another year is drawing to a close, and I had every intention of mirroring the last discussion about significant albums that have been released in the last 12 months. However, it dawned on me that we're approaching a new decade altogether and I thought it might be more interesting to discuss landmark albums that span the last ten years, as opposed to just the one. Obviously this is a broader undertaking regardless of your preferred genre because a lot has happened since 2010. We've seen breakout artists come and go and what feels like an entire generational sphere of influence compressed into such a short amount of time. Things move quicker in the music world quicker than they ever have before. 

I'll have to sit on this and think before I contribute my own thoughts, and I might throw together a little year end list anyway, but I thought I'd open the floodgates for discussion in the meantime. What do you feel have been the best and/or most important albums of the decade? What have been the worst? Why? 

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Arrows to Athens

For me, the best albums of the decade have been (in no particular order):


Incomparable (2011) by Dead by April Genre: Melodic metalcore/electronicore/post-hardcore/pop metal - I'm a huge fan of metalcore; it's the genre that first got me into metal. Dead by April was the band that made that happen. I especially love melodic metalcore, melodic, poppy, and catchy, whilst still maintaining the intensity of metalcore i.e. screams, breakdowns, downtuned guitars, etc. Dead by April are a very underrated band. They're originally from Sweden and made a name for themselves with their self-titled debut album. They're known for their unusual amalgamation of pop, electronic and metal, and it works. In that case, they're very unique. In fact, they're almost like boyband metal, but they can go heavy, and they have on some occasions. Now, Incomparable is their second album, released two years after their first. The production sounds a bit better, the tracks are more energetic, and it still retains the sound of the first album but slightly up a notch, though you could argue that it's a bit more poppy than their previous album. Some people may not like mixture of heaviness and poppiness. For instance, pop fans will be turned away by the screams, while the metal fans will be turned away by the heavy use of synth samples and poppy singing. But then you have people like me that love the combination. However, their lyrics need work, as they're mostly about love and relationship issues. I have a lot of nostalgia with this album, so along with the first album, it has a special place in my heart. 




Kings & Thieves (2011) by Arrows to Athens (hence my username) Genre: Alternative rock - I'm a huge fan of modern melodic alternative rock. I was listening to some Falling Up (another great rock band) when the song finished, and it skipped to a random song. The song was called Dust & Gold. After I hearing it, I was hooked. The band's sound is simple but effective modern rock, but here's the catch: It's catchy as hell, especially for a rock band, but "pop" catchy. They are so incredibly underrated, it's almost criminal. Arrows to Athens is one of several project bands by David Hodges, the band's frontman, songwriter, and vocalist. He was actually once part of Evanescence, the band that released the worldwide hit (and now meme) "Bring Me to Life", also co-written by Hodges. He's also worked with the likes of Kelly Clarkson, Christina Perri, Demi Lovato, Avril Lavigne, etc. Now, apart from the David Hodges connection, there is not a lot of information available online about the band, which is a bummer, but I bet you that a lot of the people who like the artists that David Hodges worked with have no idea that the songs they like were co-written or written by David Hodges, because that is the world today. The kids don’t care about the back story of the song. All they care about is the end product. Hodges has also released solo albums of his own, one of them being The December Sessions, which is a series of concept albums. Check out his most recent one: The December Sessions Vol. 5, as well as another solo album titled Discrepancies in the Recollection of Various Principles / Side A. The songs on those two albums are quite radio-friendly and infectiously catchy, but because they were released by David Hodges, practically nobody's ever heard of them. Had they been released by a bigger artist, like Imagine Dragons or Twenty One Pilots, they would easily be in the Top 40 receiving extensive radio airplay. But of course, it's not just Arrows to Athens/David Hodges. There are plenty of other underrated artists out there that don't get the recognition they deserve. If any of his albums had Maroon 5 or Coldplay as the artist, I guarantee you that all or most of the songs would be smash hits and rocking the top charts. 




What I've Become (2011) by Ashes Remain Genre: Christian rock/alternative rock/post-grunge - Ah, what can I say? Melodic modern rock with crisp raw and catchy vocals which pack a good punch and evoke a sense of emotion that can then transition to groovy, hard-hitting, thick-sounding grunge-style rock. It's simple, yet effective. A must listen for any rock listener. The band is also known for its incorporation of energetic yet infectiously catchy guitar solos that change the pace of their songs. The vocals are raspy but infectious catchy, which contain so much emotion. The album has one piano-based ballad song which then transitions to a alternative rock sound in the second half of the song for that change of pace. An effective and well-made tracks that has a softer sound compared to all the other tracks on the record. I'm a bit late, though. I first heard these guys in 2017 and have been a huge fan ever since. The band is Christian, thus the members incorporate Christian themes in their songs. Now, even though I'm not Christian myself, or even religious at all for that matter, I still love and appreciate the music. Another thing I love about the album and the band itself is that the lyrics can be easily interpreted your own way, therefore it doesn't have to be religious and about God. The band is extremely underrated, especially when compared to other Christian/Alt rock bands such as Skillet, Thousand Foot Krutch, Kutless, etc. 




Until We Have Faces (2011) by Red Genre: Christian rock/alternative rock/alternative metal/hard rock - This band is something else, I tell ya. I love this band album for all the same reasons as the band and album mentioned above except these guys have a unique sound. They take it one step further and add orchestral elements to their song as well occasional electronic synth elements, giving their music an almost epic, dramatic, and cinematic feel to it, which I love, considering I'm a huge fan of movie soundtracks. The vocals are quite similar to the above band's, but more cleaner, though it can get raspy and powerful at times. The album blends the plaintive, often reflective sound of post-grunge and melodic and clean sound alternative rock with a slight metal edge that leaps out of the speakers with a ferocity and complexity reflecting the band's growth and intensity. Again, despite being a Christian band, the lyrics can easily be interpreted in your own way, which I like. The album finishes off with a beautiful and other-worldly piano ballad that features the angelic hums of a female.




What Separates Me From You (2010) by A Day to Remember Genre: Pop punk/metalcore/post-hardcore - Gotta love some pop punk. A Day to Remember is the band that first got me into pop punk, so there's quite a bit of nostalgia associated with this album for me. But they're not just pop punk; they're also metalcore and post-hardcore, and that's something the band is known for: their unusual amalgamation of pop punk and metalcore. I love it when bands fuse different genres together, especially two different genres that you like. It's different and it's refreshing. One of the key players in the burgeoning popcore scene, the band push their love of extremes to new heights on the album, getting full-on medieval for the heavy parts, contrasted with the most melodic work they've done. Everything is bigger, whether it's the hooks or the breakdowns, and instead of clouding the band's appeal, it's only intensified it. Both pit fiends and pop-punks can find something on the album to get their hearts racing, if not everything. The vocals are hard-hitting, energetic, and powerful, but also catchy, melodic, and infectious at the same time, certainly unique and stands out in the pop punk scene. Whether it's crafting a pop-punk anthem or delivering an aggressive sonic beatdown, ADTR do it better than most everyone, and for the rest of us, that's where the separation lies.



Edited by Arrows to Athens

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It turns out this was a bigger task than I thought, and part of me wishes I'd have just stuck to the top ten albums of the year. As I sat and thought, I realised there's almost too many albums of personal significance. One of my first picks was Aphex Twin's Syro, which marks his return to the music world after over a decade off, at least as far as his primary moniker goes. Despite this, Syro was the first full length LP we'd seen from the man since 2001 and it seemed to jump start his career all over again. Renewed interest from this combined with a Kickstarter campaign to release otherwise unreleased music made him realise just how invested people were in his music, and this blew the cobwebs away so to speak. From here he released a handful of singles and EPs to varying degrees of reception. Aphex Twin has seen fresh exposure, with nearly a dozen live shows delivered to a thirsty crowd that either missed the first wave or were mere children during the first leg of his career. It may not be his best work, but it's accessible, fun and exciting.


On the other side of the coin, we have the stylish ★, the last LP from David Bowie. It could be argued that his death added incredible weight to already humble and prophetic release. Bowie died three days following, and immediately fans took to listening again. Cynics could argue that Bowie struggled to find relevance after a rocky decade where he seemed to struggle to find his place again. He was a poster boy for art rock and pop with a penchant for experimentation, but years had passed since a landmark album and the music industry moves at a blinding pace. Regardless of Bowie's death, this is the most experimental and raw project we'd heard for a long time. The closing track on this album weighs heavy with self-reflection, as if he knew his days were numbered. It likely took all of his effort, and something tells me he wouldn't have it any other way.


I debated writing about Death Grips in some capacity too, but truth be told I could have picked any of their albums because their career so far neatly spanned the decade. From humble beginnings, the group made waves but things really picked up steam with the release of The Money Store. This was my first real exposure to the group and I was immediately hooked. I followed every release eagerly and despite the memes, to me it was some of the most original and experimental music released in quite a while, at least as far as mainstream acceptability was concerned. Sure, it's not so abrasive that it's antagonistic, but it was enough to set them apart from their contemporaries. People weren't quite sure what to make of it, and were quick to dismiss it. As the decade drew to a close, the group released Year Of The Snitch which I consider their best work yet, a snapshot of what the group represented. It was as if everything up to this moment led towards this album.


I could go on, but I didn't want to just parrot paragraphs because as it turns out writing about music is like dancing about architecture. Some groups/artists I'd be remiss to mention include Swans (post-rock titans who are continuing to evolve), Guided By Voices (still churning out albums with incredible hooks and at an admirable rate), The Residents (avant-garde musicians who have career spanning 50 years and changed with the landscape), JPEGMAFIA (a true hip hop pioneer in my opinion), Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds... honestly, I'm just rattling them off.

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No order.




Satan - Life Sentence (2013)

Satan - Atom By Atom (2015)

Watchtower - Concepts of Math: Book One (2016)

Sanctuary - The Year The Sun Died (2014)

Arch/Matheos - Sympathetic Resonance (2011)

Gojira - Magma (2016)

Kenn Nardi - Dancing With the Past (2014)

Voivod - The Wake (2018)

Drab Majesty - Modern Mirror (2019)

Drab Majesty - The Demonstration (2017)

Edited by spectre07

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I was going to try and work this out from my most played albums.


Unfortunately Kroh- Altars (occult stoner/doom) completely smashes everything out of the park in numbers of plays. 


Don't get me wrong, it's a great album, but the reason it's got so much play time is that one of my cats is absolutely obsessed with it.

I've never seen an animal react to music in the way he does to this album. He'll literally come and sit as close as he can to whatever's playing is and basically melt into a warm puddle of happiness.


So yeah, without a shadow or question of doubt, AOTD for Vlad, my 10-year-old black domestic shorthair, is Kroh- Altars.




I'll try a different approach for my own top ones when I've consumed slightly less wine.

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Okay, nuts to this. You're having my albums of the year because I'm a maniac for thinking albums of the decade was even remotely a good idea. These are in no order because things are hard enough.



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Edited by spectre07

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That Mgła album is absolutely incredible. Easily up there with the best black metal releases of the year, alongside Schammasch, Batushka and Rimfrost.

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Cameron Star

I'm not good at reviewing things so I'll just list them.


As You Were by Liam Gallagher

The Pale Emperor by Marilyn Manson

Visions by Grimes

Art Angels by Grimes

Voices by Phantogram

A Thousand Suns by Linkin Park

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no words needed

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Vega LVI

In no particular order:


Blue & Lonesome (2016), The Rolling Stones

We Are Not Your Kind (2019), Slipknot

Hydrograd (2017), Stone Sour

House of Gold and Bones, Pts. 1 & 2 (2012, 2013), Stone Sour

The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here (2013), Alice in Chains

Like Clockwork, Queens of the Stone Age (2013)

The Satanist (2014), Behemoth

Forever (2017), Code Orange

Only Ghosts (2016), Red Fang

Thread (2018), Red Sun Rising

Edited by Vega LVI

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Vallenfyre - Fear Those Who Fear Him (2017)

Tony MacAlpine - Death of Roses (2017)

Triptykon - Eparistera Daimones (2010)

Dead Cross - Dead Cross (2017)

Satan - Cruel Magic (2018)

Memoriam - Requiem for Mankind (2019)

Angel Witch - As Above, So Below (2012)

Cattle Decapitation - Death Atlas (2019)

Mithras - On Strange Loops (2016)

Megadeth - Dystopia (2016)



Edited by spectre07

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wow for me Albums of the Decade would be the following 



Image result for beyonce self titled album cover


- This is an ALBUM song to song its amazing. For the most part, each track doesn't sound the same. She gave us upbeat "get up and dance" songs such as Flawless***, Blow, Haunted, Mine,and Superpower. We even had sensual songs and slow paced ballads like No Angel, Partition, Rocket, Heaven, and Blue. She even did a music video for each and every song too!


-This album was literally a GAME CHANGER for the music industry. Beyoncé as nervous as she was, dropped this album on December 13th, 2013 with no promotion, no warning, no nothing. It was a surprise album and it did NUMBERS, selling over 300,000 copies in a week with pure sales and digital sales! She was now the only female artist in 2013 to have sold that many copies within 1 week. In years to come, she goes on to sell 5 million copies of the album worldwide. The album went platinum in many countries and the U.S.'s RIAA certifying the album 2x platinum by the end of it all.


-This album is the album that truly propelled Bey into a legend with universal acclaim this album quickly went #1 on the US Billboard 200 and US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. This album even earned her the famed "Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award" at the 2014 VMAs 


To not say that this album was one of the best albums released in the past decade would be refusing to accept its undeniable impact on the music industry. 




Image result for lemonade album cover


-Another surprise album with almost no warning outside of ominous advertisement clips of it being showcased on HBO


-The big thing for me with this album was that no song was the same, all while maintaining the theme of the album. Each song was from a different genre of music, There was Rock, Reggae, Electro-R&B, Trap-Bounce (a genre from her hometown, Texas), and Alternative.


-Again, this only furthered Bey's acclaim 



(will come and add other albums later on this is what I could do for now)


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Awful Waffle


Beyonce? get a load of this normie over here...



album of the decade should probably go to Exmilitary by Death Grips. memes aside; it was easily the most transgressive and progressive musical endeavor to gain widespread popularity in the last 10 years. absolutely pushing (and confusing) the boundaries of traditional genres, squeezing them into places where they normally wouldn't even have an audience and making it work. discovering an immense feedback from musical communities that don't normally cross paths. death, grind, math, EDM, hip hop, house, trance, psychedelic, rock. go to a Death Grips show and you'll see rag heads sparking up joints just inches away from a sea of angsty white dudes violently moshing. such an extreme crossover that somehow blends perfectly. they also happen to be true artists who are more concerned with their work than their image. they shun the spotlight. they hate giving interviews. they're not big on merchandise. they enjoy a low profile.





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Kids See Ghosts means a lot to me as I'm a huge Cudi fan, it was Man On The Moon that helped me transition from All American Rejects tier Pop Punk to MGMT and beyond. Plus the hype for it was funny to watch, someone shouting the working title (Everybody Wins) and Cudi smirking.


James Blake and his self titled album blend a sort of Burial-esque sound with 808s & Heartbreaks, and it's such an emotional album. The Wilheim Scream man.


Never Hungover Again is the second album by Joyce Manor, a band that arrived on the pop punk scene at an awkward time, and since then have been grouped into the emo revival of the 2010s. These guys got me back into my pop punk scene kid days and introduced me to indie emo/punk music. 


Pinata is just a smooth ass gangster rap album. Bread stuck to the bottom type beats. Madlib is still his eccentric self with the beats, but pulls himself back a little to set up a great atmosphere. 


I could list way more, and tbh maybe some others I liked a little more, but these albums meant a lot to me. I especially wanted to include a vaporwave album, but couldn't settle on one.

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Mister Pink

One album I got great value from was Django Django's eponymous debut album.



Django Django 2012.


I'm not really good at describing music or albums as much as I would like. All I can say is that it's really nicely polished. As a band, they have various influences that come out. I love electronic music and they don't shy away from using synths, sequencing etc but they also have these 60's-style Beach Boys-esque vocals and vocal harmonies. It makes for something really rich and new. It's not just some band doing their new version of psychedelia, in my opinion. it's about being inspired by it and more 90's and 00's electronic music and taking it somewhere new. 


To me the vocals are mesmerizing. They're just recorded, layered and processed so well. I love the little arpeggiator synths dotted throughout. 

The album is just song after song, short, poppy, catchy, full of beautiful melodies and very uplifting and in great spirit. 


Below are two of the big tracks of that album. One appeared in FIFA 13 and the other in GTA 5, if I'm not mistaken. 




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