Best Releases of 2010

Started by drone on, November 02, 2010, 07:59:23 PM

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drone on

I can't wait until the end of December to do this, so why not now?!  I like reading others' best of lists as I invariably discover stuff I missed that I should investigate.  Anyways, here are my ten best of 2010 (subject to editing in the next two months!):

(in no particular order)

1) Concert Silence (Infraction) This is a beautiful and haunting album with great use of sound manipulation.
2) Pjusk-Sval (12k) What's not to love about this awesome Biosphere-like duo?  Ultra ethereal Nordic soundscapes abound.

3) David Sylvian-Sleepwalkers (Samadhi Sound) Even though this is a comp. with some previously unreleased tracks, I found myself thoroughly enchanted, with a new-found appreciation for Sylvian's current phase of experimentalism. 

4) Taylor Deupree-Shoals (12k) I agree with some other reviewers that this disc is his best to date. 

5) Steve Roach/Mark Seelig-Nightbloom (Projekt) Roach makes the list again (surprise!)

6) Steve Tibbetts-Natural Causes (ECM) Aural magic.

7) Arc-Church (DiN) More Berlin School perfection from two masters of EM.

8) James McDougall-Dispossession of Periphery (Mystery Sea) Mysterious and essential drone zones.

9) Ben Fleury-Steiner-Keep a Weather Eye Open (Infraction)  Mesmerizing ghostly infractions.

10) Solo Andata (12k) Did this come out in 2010 or 2009? Who cares, it's awesome!

Joe R

Here's my favorites this year, from what I've heard so far (no particular order)

Taylor Deupree- Shoals. I agree With Drone On, this is Deupree's best yet, although "Transcriptions" with Stephan Mathieu is close.

The Circular Ruins- Invisible Cities; I've raved about this one in other threads, no need to repeat myself.

Hummingbird- Our Fearful Symmetry; No one knows who Hummingbird actually is, but it's a great disc with lots of cello, piano, synth, a few crackles and a few odd murmers. Very solemn, and very good.

Andrew Chalk- The Cable house; extremely minimal and deliberate piano and synth work, every note is perfectly placed.

Cindytalk- Up Here In The Clouds; a bleak and delicate noise/drone album. Lots of crackles and rumbles and scratches, but it's oddly gentle, and beautiful in spots.

Hessien- untitled, and Hessien-Skurjn; I'm counting this as one. They're both E.P.s, and the same kind of music--  airy and floaty guitar, sounding very distant and fragile and beautiful. The untitled one is a free download, so the price is right.

Konntinent- Opal Island; I love it, but it's hard to describe, so the hell with it.

Marcus Fjellstrom- Schattenspieler; hissy and crackly haunted house music, with synth and classical instruments. A very cinematic feel to this, very effective. The world can always use more haunted house music.

Fieldhead- They Shook Hands For Hours

Mains De Givre- Esther Marie

drone on

Thanks for l isting that Joe, I'll have to check some of those out.  PS: Solo Andata came out in 2009, so I'll have to think of a replacement.

Joe R

Yeah, there's nothing like "best of" lists to give you new ideas for music.

You're right about Solo Andata, it's an awesome disc. I recently bought the new one, "Rituals", and was definitely underwhelmed. Maybe it's one that'll grow on me slowly.

Brian Bieniowski

Hey Joe, I didn't care for that latest Solo Andata much either.  I haven't give it enough plays, but it definitely did not impress me immediately.

Have not played Chalk's Cable House much either, but Ghost of Nahodka is def. going to appear on my best of 2010 list.

Joe R

Well thanks for that info, I've never even heard of Ghost of  Nahodka until now, I'll have to check it out.

For me, The Cable House was an awesome disc that resonated with me right away, easily Chalk's best IMO.

I'll have to check out the Concert Silence disc also. I did a little research and found out that the Eluvium guy is a member of this. Matthew something is his name, but it escapes me at the moment.


Favorite music I've *discovered* this year - some are surely older than 2010.   And this is just quick off the top of my head...

Emmalee Crane - Crux  - gorgeous drones carved from woodwinds, piano, guitar, effects, and circuit bent stuff.  Seriously gorgeous.  Her new album Formantine comes out in a couple weeks.  (an interview between Emmalee and me is posted here: )

Stuff on the Feedback Loop Label (a free netlabel - so go download these...) -

   I've Lost - Dissociative Fugue - live guitar through effects - stunning work - so stunning I coaxed him into joining my label.  He lives in Portland.

   adam williams & leonardo rosado - take this longing - Adam's piano and Leonardo's field recs and background - in conversation with each other - each makes way, leaves space.  This is a beautiful album.

Matt Hillier released a couple of fantastic albums this year - Ishq - Sama and Elve - Emerald.  Very different albums - and both deep and enjoyable journeys.

I also discovered adamned.age (Hanne Adam) this year.   She goes across a lot of musical territory - but tends to fall into idm with a lilt of ambient on it at least to my ears.   I interviewed her earlier this year - please check her out:

John Koch-Northrup .: jkn [AT] .: owner / artist .: .: .:

drone on

I realize now that only 8 of my 10 best came out in 2010 (James McDougall and Solo Andata were both 2009). 

So, with two slots open, I can easily put False Mirror's "Derelict World" into the list, which just arrived in the mail.  Fantastic album.  Highly recommended for fans of Robert Rich, Oophoi, and other deep drone artists.   

Dave Michuda

This list is a bit long cuz I'm just too lazy to cut it down to a top ten.

Here are my favorite ambient releases of 2010(in alphabetical order):

36 - Hollow  [3six recordings]
36 - Memories in Widescreen [3six recordings]
alio die - horas tibi serenas [hic sunt leones]
alio die - tripudium naturae  [hic sunt leones]
alio die & parallel worlds - circo divino [hic sunt leones 2010]
Brian Mcbride - the effective disconnect [kranky]
Christopher Hipgrave - Slow With Pages Of Fluttering Interference [low point]
Deepchord presents echospace - liumin/liumin reduced [modern love]
Gareth Hardwick - of the sea and shore [low point]
Herion - Out & About [hypnos]
hummingbird-our fearful symmetry [fluid audio]
Ithaca Trio - Tesla Verses The Night [under the spire]
Jannick Schou - Night [under the spire]
Kyle Bobby Dunn - A Young Person's Guide To [low point]
Maps & Diagrams - cubiculo [fluid audio]
Maps & Diagrams - Tintinnbulate [audio gourmet]
marcus fischer - monocoastal [12k]
Nest - Retold [serein]
pausal - lapses [barge]
Scott Cortez - twin radiant flux [line]
sonmi451 - spectrum [u-cover]
Spheruleus - Frozen Quarters [under the spire]


Two very good quality releases in 2010 (both free)

'Koude Handen' by Matthew Florianz

'Domestic Aerospace' by Ensueno (a very under-rated artist, IMO)



my list this year

igneous flame | ion
seetyca-mari solaris | zeit
phobos | monolith
false mirror | derelict world
zenith | prenatal memories
c. reider-desohll | falling into disrepair
matthew florianz | koude handen and maalbeeck download
frequent sync | coalesce
mark harris | the boy observes the ocean
phelios | astral unity
ships on fire | the sleeper must awake
darren harper | descend
nunc stans | we leave without speaking
svartsinn | elegies for the end
exuviae | amnesiascape
simulacra | there is a fountain of blood
steve roach | live at grace cathedral
fabio orsi | wintereise
darren rogers | the alternate realm
lexithimie | stroll into shadow
disturbed earth | with this night
steve brand | sunprints

thanks to all            h


Thomas Köner - Nunatak / Teimo / Permafrost
Steve Roach and Mark Seelig - Nightbloom
Steve Roach - Sigh Of Ages
Ishq - Sama
DeepChord Presents Echospace - Liumin


Hi friends,

greetings from Slovakia!!! Here is my "Best of 2010" list in alphabetical order, can't make it shorter... :(

Alio Die "Tripudium Naturae" CD
Alio Die & Zeit "Il Giardino Ermeneutico" CD
Alpha Wave Movement "Cosmic Mandala" CDr EP
Andrew Lahiff "Cosmic Archeology" CDr
Brian Parnham "The Broken Silence" CD (remastered)
Bruno Sanfilippo & Mathias Grassow "Cromo" CD
Byron Metcalf, Dashmesh Khalsa & Steve Roach "Dream Tracker" CD
Chad Kettering "Voices Of The Ancients" CD
Cymphonic & Vintage H "Post Mortem Investigations" CD
David Helpling • Jon Jenkins "The Crossing" CD
David Parsons "Akash" CD
Enrico Coniglio "Salicornie: Topofonie Vol. 2" CD
Enrico Coniglio Feat. Manuel P. Cecchinato / Massimo Liverani "Sea Cathedrals" CD
False Mirror "Derelict World" CD
Herion "Out And About" CD
Mathias Grassow & Tomas Weiss "Electric Angels" CD
Mathias Grassow & Tomas Weiss "Farewell - In Hommage To Klaus Wiese" CD + CDr
Robert Rich "Ylang" CD
Rudy Adrian "Distant Stars" CD
Steve Brand "Circular Scriptures" CDr
Steve Roach "Live At Grace Cathedral" 2CD
Steve Roach & Mark Seelig "Nightbloom" CD
The Circular Ruins "Invisible Cities" CDr
The Winterhouse "Sanctuary" CDr

Have a wonderful 2011!!!



Quote from: richardgurtler on January 07, 2011, 09:24:02 AM
Mathias Grassow & Tomas Weiss "Electric Angels" CD
Mathias Grassow & Tomas Weiss "Farewell - In Hommage To Klaus Wiese" CD + CDr

These two I want to hear at some point!


Thanks to the first two posters (drone on and Joe R) for including not only the record's name but also giving some comments. It made me discover a lot of new stuff, especially the 12k label, Home Normal and Mystery Sea *thumbs up*


Alio Die's 'Horas Tibi Serenas' by far... I still listen to this almost daily since the day I got it.


The Sight Below - It All Falls Apart
Steve Roach - Sigh Of Ages
Demdike Stare - Liberation Through Hearing
Steve Brand - Sunprints
Emeralds - Does It Look Like I`m Here
Alio Die & Mathias Grassow - Praha Meditations
Rafael Anton Irisarri - The North Bend
Loscil - Endless Falls
Oneohtrix Point Never - Returnal
David Parsons - Akash
Erstlaud - Sleepwalking Into The Underworld
Steve Roach, Byron Metcalfe, Dashmesh Khalsa - Dream Tracker
Steve Roach, Mark Seelig - Nightbloom
Jonas Reinhardt - Powers Of Audition
Disturbed Earth - With This Night


One more addition to my "Best of 2010" list:

Alison Wait "Dove Esistono Solo I Ricordi" CD

A really beautiful work, both musically and visually, by Italian duo, Filippo Spadoni and Alessandro Tusino, co-released by Radiotarab Records and Eibon Records in June, 2010. Highly recommended for all those who are enjoying the intimacy and warmness of Hypnos latest CD "Out And About" by Herion.



Quote from: headonist on January 06, 2011, 01:39:47 PM
Thomas Köner - Nunatak / Teimo / Permafrost
Steve Roach and Mark Seelig - Nightbloom
Steve Roach - Sigh Of Ages
Ishq - Sama
DeepChord Presents Echospace - Liumin

Some additions to my primary list...

Robert Rich - Ylang
Alio Die - Horas Tibi Serenas