Day 131: I listen to music every day. Whether it’s the radio in the car, Apple Music on my phone or using a collection of musical pieces to help me relax via the Calm App.
It made me wonder what my Top 10 albums are. I don’t want to overanalyse it and try to put too much significant attachment to the list but try to pick my Top 10 based on the enjoyment I get from listening to the albums again and again. I’m only 34 so it’ll be interesting to revisit this in 5, 10 and 25 years and see how much the list may have changed!
It’s so bloody hard to whittle your favourite albums down to 10. A few that just missed out…
Dr Dre – 2001, Blink 182 – Enema of the State, Fleetwood Mac – Rumours & Bryan Adams – The Best of Me and Taylor Swift – Folklore. I could name more!
10. Twinnie – Hollywood Gypsy (2020)
This album will forever remind me of the COVID pandemic but in a good way. I listened to this album on repeat in the house, in the car and on my daily walks. I love every song on the album and ‘Superhero’ is one of my favourite songs ever. It has a British-Country Pop feel to it. For those of you who aren’t familiar with ‘Twinnie’ – She is an English Actress turned Singer / Songwriter from York and has previously appeared in the TV Soap Hollyoaks.
9. Carly Pearce – Every Little Thing (2017)
I fell in love with Country Music around 2015 when I started listening to a new British Country duo called ‘The Shires’ – Their debut album ‘Brave’ spawned a journey into Nashville and Americana which has continued ever since. Me and my wife attend the SummerTyne Americana Festival in Gateshead every year where free music is performed but more established acts also attend in the concert hall of The Sage music venue. I nearly put The Shires’ debut album in this Top 10 as a nod for their influence in sending me into an obsession with Nashville but this list is based on albums I love listening to so I had to include Carly Pearce. I’m a big fan of her voice and storytelling. Her second album (self titled) was released last year and includes one of my favourite Country songs “I hope you’re happy now” feat. Lee Brice. I nearly added that album but her debut effort was song by song a wonderful piece of work and the songs are relatable in a sense that she talks about the past, a partner who drank a lot and being unhappy. Something I inflicted on my own partner in my drinking days.
8. Hard Fi – Stars of CCTV (2005)
This album reminds me of Beer Gardens, Clubbing and generally getting up to no good as a young lad. It was released when I was 19 and coincided with a period of my life where I was ‘living for the weekend’ which was also the name of one of the hit tracks from Hard-Fi. This ‘indie’ British Band seemed to disappear into obscurity as far as I was aware but that could have more to do with that fact I lost interest in the Indie scene. Wikipedia has them down as releasing three albums in total, their last in 2011 – and a greatest hits compilation in 2014 with the group now on ‘hiatus’. Great album to listen to in the garden on a sunny afternoon!
7. Embrace – This New Day (2006)
I love this British Band. I love Danny, the lead. I can relate to his struggles with mental health. I’ve followed them since I was a teenager. This was the band’s fifth studio album, released in March 2006, with the single “Nature’s Law” being released the week before. Embrace were chosen to record England’s official football World Cup 2006 song, “World at Your Feet,” so this will have made them more noticeable in the mainstream. ‘This New Day’ went straight into the charts at number one and became their third chart topping album in the UK. “I can’t come down” remains my favourite Embrace song. The song ‘Gravity’ written by Coldplay’s Chris Martin isn’t on the album but I’d recommend anyone to listen to it too – Fans of the British sitcom ‘Gavin & Stacey’ will know it!
6. Feeder – The Singles (2006)
Another album that was prominent in my younger days and remains a go to for reminiscing and chilling to. Feeder, the Welsh rockers are one of those bands where you might not instantly be able to list their hit songs but you will have heard of their music be it on films, radio, etc. This album was a compilation of their music from 1997-2006 and arguably some of their best songs such “Come Back Around”, “Lost and Found”, “Buck Rogers”, “Just the way I’m Feeling” and “Feeling a Moment”. I finally saw them live in Newcastle in 2018.
5. Linkin Park – Hybrid Theory (2000)
Heavier than what I’d normally listen to but emphasises the fact I love so many genres. This album (arguably the best by Linkin Park) is aggressive, loud and in your face but I love running and working out to it. It also helps me get irritation and frustration out of my system. It was such sad news when it was announced lead singer Chester Bennington had ended his life in 2017. ‘In the End’ remains a favourite song of mine.
4. The Wandering Hearts – Wild Silence (2018)
I came across this band on one of the free stages at the SummerTyne Americana Festival in 2017 I think it was. I loved their look and feel as I’ve always appreciated harmony groups especially with a Folky edge (see Mumford & Sons). I’ve since seen them live numerous times and their album ‘Wild Silence’ is one of those ones I really couldn’t find a bad track on. Their voices intertwined so beautifully. A great live band and I look forward to their second album this year. They do some great covers too by Elvis, Dolly and Johnny Cash.
3. Mumford and Sons – Sigh No More (2009)
My love for Folk, Country, Americana and British Rock / Indie over the years is combined with Mumford & Sons. I’ve loved all of their albums but their debut album ‘Sigh no more’ is what got me hooked on them. I finally saw them live in 2018 and it is by far my favourite gig to date. ‘Little Lion Man’ remains one of my go to songs. It’s just a wonderful collection of music that I’ll never tire of listening to (and tapping my foot to). Marcus Mumford is an amazing performer and lead.
2. Embrace – Love is a Basic Need (2018)
A second entry from my favourite band. A band that I’ve still never seen live but will change that once the World returns to normal. This album, (their seventh) shows the maturity and journey of the band and in particular focuses on the importance of love. “Most people remember to eat, breathe and drink, but too many of us forget about love until it’s too late. The album is about the realisation that without food or water or shelter you die, but the same is also true of love. We set out to make an album where every song on it would stand up against the best songs we’ve ever written, and I’m pretty confident we’ve done just that,” said the band’s lead Danny McManara.
1. Savage Garden – Savage Garden (1997)
So my favourite album is one of the first I owned as a kid. Eleven songs and 45 mins of great pop music delivered by the amazing voice of Darren Hayes. Whilst ‘To the Moon and Back’ and ‘Truly, Madly, Deeply’ will always be remembered as the stand out singles (both charted in the Top 4 of the UK chart) I can’t find a song I dislike in this collection. Savage Garden were the first musicians I went to watch live in 2000 and despite only releasing two albums (they followed this album up with Affirmation in 1999 they remain one of my most listened to artists. So easy to listen to and the music is suited to so many of my different moods.
Let me know your favourite albums or if you like any of mine!