100 Songs That Generated Buzz in 2010

To fully honor all the music review and news following we did during 2010, it seemed appropriate to provide a list of “top” songs to accompany our top 10 albums list. It would be far too subjective to offer an ordered list of the year’s best songs, so I decided to shift the mood to exposure. In that mindset, I’ve embedded players so you can sample each song on the fly. I skimmed over most pop music (not all!) – you don’t need me to tell you that Katy Perry sold 50 billion albums this year.

In short, my goal is to be informative; to essentially report to you the songs that generated buzz within various subcultures. To do add some objectivity I researched the background of candidate tracks and let play counts and view totals influence final decisions (Last.fm, YouTube, MySpace, etc).

Thank you to all the Brasky scouts for originally discovering and sharing many of these songs. In no particular order:

Girls
Heartbreaker
This list is slightly biased toward electronic music (as is Brasky.org), but we couldn’t overlook a great album from San Fra…
Best Coast
When I’m With You
“When I’m With You” is a worthy representative from an album loaded with winsome, beachy songs about romance and teenage…
Jónsi
Go Do
As Brasky contributor Christine Browne notes, Jónsi’s “Go Do” is a worthy candidate for “Most Uplifting Song of the Year…
Atlas Sound
Wild Love
Between Deerhunter and Atlas Sound, Bradford Cox released about 5 thousand songs this year. Here’s a highlight from the…
Active Child
When Your Love is Safe
If you can handle Active Child’s–a.k.a Pat Grossi’s–womanly tenor, you won’t have hard time enjoying this bright, synt…
Pictureplane
Transparent Now (Thin Veil)
Keep an eye on Pictureplane. It seems everything this Denver producer touches turns to gold lately. His style is diffi…
DOM
Burn Bridges
“Burn Bridges” might be the most sugary song here, but such is the essence of DOM. Their blissful M83 synth pop has bee…
Cults
Oh My God
Most every Cults song sounds something like this, and that’s a good thing. This song is an especially energetic, drummy…
Dirty Projectors + Björk
On and Ever Onward
Dirty Projectors collaboration with Björk not enough for you? What if I told you that they made an entire LP based on t…
ceo
Illuminata
Luminous pop takes a ride on dark bassline. Very much in the introspective Scandinavian spirit.…
Baths
?
Just one of several standout tracks from Bath’s meticulously produced debut with Anticon, Cerulean. The song gal…
Salem
King Night
Salem is awful, but they are also great; this is the public consensus. Routinely credited as the originators of the eme…
jj
Let Them
No one is making music quite like Sweden’s jj. “Let Them” perfectly demonstrates jj’s style of reimagined, ambient hip …
Avi Buffalo
Truth Sets In
This, the opening track from Long Beach newcomers Avi Buffalo, sets the stage for what was a tremendously successful deb…
Miniature Tigers
Gold Skull
Are these guys popular yet? They’ve been rolling out effortless, adventurous indie pop tunes in secret for the past 5 y…
Owen Pallett
Lewis Takes Action
The bad news: You have to change your performing name for copyright reasons. The good news: This means you’re semi-famo…
Emika
Drop The Other
The UK’s Emika debuts with a stunningly stylish and brooding downtempo piece. Synths, stuttering, rise and fall as a sn…
Jamie Lidell
Completely Exposed
Coming off a successful year in 2009, Jamie Lidell’s “Completely Exposed” is a highlight from his follow-up album in 201…
In-u
The Bailing
On “The Bailing”, self-published In-u discovers a simple verse, garnishes it, mixes in a few variations, and rides it wi…
Blood Diamonds
Heart
Vancouver producer Blood Diamonds delivers with “Heart” a track that seems to perfectly blend the still-emerging chillwa…
Beach House
Walk In The Park
One of the more upbeat songs from Beach House’s acclaimed Teen Dream, “Walk in the Park” finds the right words to…
Auto-Tune the News
Bedroom Intruder Song
Auto-Tune the News (the side project of actual band The Gregory Brothers) hit a new echelon with the July’s installment …
Blue Daisy & TOKiMONSTA
USD
LA beatmaker TOKiMONSTA (she’s female!) teamed up with UK’s Blue Daisy to manufacture one of the year’s most intriguing …
Liars
The Overachievers
“The Overachievers” is a punky tune from Liars’ most successful album yet. Usually these rock veterans (9 years – vets …
Deerhunter
Helicopter
Bradford leaks some more self-loathing on what has become one of the more iconic songs of the year (and a personal favor…
Casiokids
Grønt lys i alle ledd
You should listen to the Casiokids. Their sound is essentially Scandinavian–a good thing. “Grønt lys i alle ledd” cap…
Balam Acab
Big Boy
In “Big Boy”, echoing haunting vocal melodies slide through lush soundscapes architected by 18-yr old Alec Koone. The s…
Mt Eden Dubstep
Sierra Leone
This track has been floating around the web since last year, but due to the relative obscurity of New Zealand’s Mt Eden …
Metric
Black Sheep
Metric earned a spot on the Scott Pilgrim soundtrack (which was good, we’re told), and delivered with an unmistakably Me…
LCD Soundsystem
Dance Yrself Clean
“Dance Yrself Clean” is really just one of a handful of crucial singles from LCD Soundsystems successful 2010 album,

Mount Kimbie
Before I Move Off
It’s hard to mention the genre “post-dubstep” without cringing for a kick in the nuts, but if such a genre exists, Mount…
Four Tet
Love Cry (Joy Orbison remix)
Love Cry was a great song on a good album before Joy Orbison gave it the remix treatment. Whether the remix is a superi…
Cee Lo Green
Fuck You
If the vocal track were muted, you would never guess that the catchy groove you were hearing had become an instant class…
Eux Autres
Wind Me Up
After laying low for a few years Eux Autres is back with more franco-pop. With characteristic light moods and downplaye…
Deerhunter
Helicopter (Star Slinger Remix)
This is probably one of the best remixes I have ever heard. Call it dream crunk – an aggressive beat composed of soft e…
Arcade Fire
Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)
Régine stars on vocal duty in Sprawl II, vibrantly proclaiming her sense of urgency to escape the vast metropolitan spra…
Kanye West (ft. Pusha T)
Runaway
Love him or hate him, Kanye can put together hits. On perhaps his biggest hit from an album full of them, Kanye finds a…
Crystal Castles
Celestica
Celestica, sitting in the 2 spot on Crystal Castle II, marks the arrival of a mature, club-friendly Crystal Castl…
Big Boi
You Ain’t No DJ (Feat. Yelawolf)
It wasn’t easy choosing a favorite from Big Boi’s stacked 2010 album, but great rapping is what sets this track apart. …
Noisia
Machine Gun
Drum & bass trio Noisia made it clear this year that they can produce a wide range of dancefloor crushing tunes. On an …
Gold Panda
You
This track is called “You”, which is true of two songs on the album (dude.). We are referring to track #1. Trancy, ori…
Fol Chen
In Ruins (Baths Remix)
Baths positively transforms “In Ruins” into a soaring, sultry ballad. The song moves slowly, leaving ample negative spa…
Frankie Rose And The Outs
Girlfriend Island
Listening to Frankie Rose and the Outs makes me wish the Cranberries were still making music. Frankie Rose (unclear if …
Gayngs
Faded High
Gayngs is a super group of 23 members including, most notably, Justin Vernon of Bon Iver. Critics were mixed on the deb…
Harlem
Gay Human Bones
I’m a big fan of this album because there are no gimmicks; it’s just rock and roll music. While Harlem has been accused…
Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti
Round and Round
Round and Round’ got ’round the web as a preview for what would become one of the year’s most talked-about albums (among…
Hecq Vs Exillion
Spheres Of Fury
[Technically late 2009] You can sample the track here, but we strongly advise checking out the video from Christopher He…
Phantogram
Mouthful Of Diamonds
We’ve been praising Phantogram’s debut album all year, enough that you might be tired of hearing about it. “Mouthful of…
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.
Nothing But Our Love
“Nothing But Our Love” is the kind of song that stops you, reels in your attention, and insists: “stop worrying and rela…
Wild Nothing
Gemini
One-man band Wild Nothing – Blacksburg’s Jack Tatum – is one of 2010′s noteworthy success stories. The project is barel…
Two Door Cinema Club
Something Good Can Work
Hailing from Ireland, youngsters Two Door Cinema Club have quickly gotten a taste of being rock stars after their very s…
Sufjan Stevens
I Walked
Listening to “I Walked” is a reminder of the songwriting brilliance of Sufjan, who seems far from hitting his peak. Thi…
Candy Claws
Sun Arrow
Candy Claws songs all bear a distinct sound, but what’s amazing is that it’s truly unique. “Sun Arrow”, like the other …
The Black Keys
Everlasting Light
The Black Keys are in a league of their own in the world of blues rock. I still have to remind myself that I’m listenin…
Crystal Stilts
Shake The Shackles
Coming off a well-receive album, Alight of Night in 2009, this noise pop group from NY drummed up some more criti…
Toro Y Moi
Talamak
Toro y Moi is a real-life friend of Washed Out’s Ernest Greene, who has been often been credited as one of the originato…
Tame Impala
I Don’t Really Mind
Tame Impala has quickly become one of the most recognizable names on this list. Their debut album Innerspeaker w…
The Morning Benders
Excuses
We have attributed many songs on this list as sounding “retro” or “nostalgic”, but no song seems more deserving of that …
Caribou
Odessa
I feel overwhelmed with the responsibility of properly reviewing this track. Simply be aware that this was the most wid…
Vampire Weekend
Giving Up the Gun
Vampire Weekend had raised their own bar almost too high for their sophomore album, Contra, but songs like “Givin…
Laurel Halo
Supersymmetry
Laurel Halo became somewhat of an “it-girl” in the Brooklyn club scene, helped by the success of “Supersymmetry”, a song…
Grasscut
Muppets (Nathan Fake remix)
Nathan Fake layers his signature knob-twisting brushstrokes onto Grasscut’s “Muppets”, Nathan’s only release from this y…
School of Seven Bells
Half Asleep
If you’re a guy in a band in New York, leave that band and find yourself a chick or two to collaborate with. This has b…
Wavves
Post Acid
Wavves certainly deserves a few on this list, and choosing just one was a bit challenging. “Post Acid” seems to capture …
Twin Sister
Phenomenons
“Phenomenons” is an especially vibrant single from Long Islanders Twin Sister. Guitars and keyboards measure out a slow…
Crocodiles
Hearts of Love
Be sure to hang on till around 2:30 when the song blooms with a bittersweet Weezer anthem. Very much in the spirit of S…
Tanlines
Real Life (Memory Tapes remix)
Apparently the members of Tanlines have backgrounds in completely different, heavier styles of music. You’d never guess…
Sleigh Bells
Infinity Guitars
We’ve been a little biased in reporting Sleigh Bells because they are sorta tied to FL. Derek Miller, one half o…
Yeasayer
Ambling Alp
If you’ve heard Yeasayer, you know it’s tough to pin them to one genre; the band once described their music as “Middle E…
Domo Genesis
Super Market [Ft. Ace Creator)
Domo Genesis, part of the under-20 rap crew “Odd Future”, teams up with the now-infamous Tyler the Creator for a rap bat…
Tobacco
Motorlicker
Tom Fec, a.k.a., Tobacco, is a man to watch. He is most famous for being the frontman of Black Moth Super Rainbow
Marnie Stern
Transparency Is The New Mystery
Marnie Stern teamed up with drummer/producer Zach Hill (Hella) this year to produce a frenetic, progressive album filled…
Lemonade
Lifted
Warning: The following description reads like a parody of other reviews here: “Lemonade is a Brooklyn-via-San Francisco…
The Gaslamp Killer
Carpool Dummy
LA’s Gaslamp Killer has been gaslamp killing it the last couple years, but hit a new tier in 2010, thanks in part to the…
Washed Out (ft. Caroline Polacheck)
You and I
For everyone who fell in love with Washed Out’s archetypal chillwave music in 2009, here’s a 2010 single that you may’ve…
Broken Social Scene
World Sick
While it’s unclear from the lyrics, it’s tempting to believe “World Sick” relates to exhaustion of a band known for its …
Frank (Just Frank)
Die in Bed
Frank (Just Frank) are French (Actually French), which helps further authenticate their adept revival of the post-punk m…
Tennis
Marathon
Tennis, a husband-wife duo, formed after the two spent nearly a year sailing the Eastern seaboard. As the story goes, i…
The Love Language
Heart To Tell
With “Heart To Tell”, The Love Language has found the sweet spot between pop folk and indie pop, creating their own bran…
Woodsman
Insects
Woodsman came on strong toward the end of 2010 with the release of a handful of excellent singles from their upcoming al…
Teengirl Fantasy
Floor To Floor
Teengirl Fantasy has not even released a full length LP yet, but has generated a lot of buzz with the EPs and demos they…
Radiohead
Reckoner (Nosaj Thing Remix)
Remixes are often a cheap strategy for piggybacking off of the success of someone else’s song, but occasionally someone …
Air
Sing Sang Sung (Black Moth Super Rainbow Remix)
Air’s 2009 song-to-hanglide-to, “”Sing Sang Sung””, was the lucky recipient of Black Moth Super Rainbow’s remix treatment …
The Drums
Let’s Go Surfing
In a year full of surfy music, this takes the trophy for “Surf Song of the Year”. It even has whistling in it.…
TV Girl
If You Want It
Jingling bells gently gallop along to funk-sampled drums as San Diego duo TV Girl sings a familiar story about that one …
The Radio Dept.
Heaven’s On Fire
Secretly rock veterans, The Radio Dept. dropped what may be their most acclaimed album yet in 2010. “Heaven’s On Fire” …
Joanna Newsom
Good Intentions Paving Company
Joanna released yet another monumental album in 2010, 2 discs’ worth of Newsom’s intricate songwriting and storytelling.…
Letherette
In July Focus
In 2009, Letherette nabbed some attention for his impressive
Bonobo
Black Sands
The title track from Bonobo’s breakout album in early 2010, “Black Sands” oozes somber moods and themes of transition to…
The Babies
Run Me Over
When asked “Where can I find more music like Wavves?” (people really ask this), I point them toward this band. It’s a s…
Girl Unit
Wut
Girl Unit’s “Wut” seemed to penetrate several electronic subcultures in 2010, a rogue hit that would eventually get rele…
Seapony
Dreaming
As its title support, “Dreaming” is an ethereal song that showcases the nostalgic girl pop that drew listeners to Seapon…
Flying Lotus
Zodiac Shit
One of many standout tracks from psych-IDM wizard Flying Lotus (Warp). Cool mini-video here.
Gumar and His Magical Midi Band
Sliding Down Rainbows (The Great Mundane remix)
Portland’s self-deprecating beatmaker, The Great Mundane, dolls up a playful song from…
Chloé Lacasse
Les yeux d’un fou
Attn francophiles: Listening to Chloé Lacasse in “Les yeux d’un fou” is like listening to a songbird effortlessly…
Shigeto
Sky of the Revolution
In 2010, Michigan’s Shigeto, a.k.a. Zach Saginaw, released a standout album with Ghostly International, Full Circle
The Bank Holidays
Tripping Up To Fall In Love
If the Bank Holidays weren’t on the other side of the earth–Perth, Australia–we’d probably all know who they are by no…
Weekends
Poor Piscies
Poor Piscies [sic…] is an anthemic single from SF-based garage rockers Weekends. Somewhere under wild guitars there are…
Zola Jesus
Sea Talk
Soulful words and soaring synths make for a pleasing ballad from this American youngster who attracted attention after t…
HEALTH
We Are Water
“We Are Water” starts with a furious pace and pulls you along on a splashy noise jam that provokes a variety of moods wi…
Delorean
Real Love
Delorean is back in 2010 with a full length album released at the beginning of the year. In “Real Love”, dreamy dance m…
Surfer Blood
Swim
Being a Florida blog, we beam with pride whenever it’s time to talk about Surfer Blood. The South Florida youngsters ha…
Siriusmo
Einmal In Der Woche Schreien
Siriusmo has been flying somewhat under the radar, but those in-the-know in the electro-house scene have kept their eyes…
Tyler, The Creator
Seven
How the hell is this dude 18? Tyler (one of the rapper’s in the Domo Genesis song also on this list) sounds like a gnar…
James Blake
The Bells Sketch
“The Bells Sketch” is a fine example of buzz-producer (and proper Englishman) James Blake. The 21-year-old demonstrates…

derek

I am the creator of Brasky.org. Tampa is my hometown, where I attended USF and met most of the current collaborators on the site. Brasky is a project with friends - my day job is working professionally as a digital marketing consultant. Not as cool.

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  1. Pingback: Songs That Generated Buzz in 2010 (Part 1) - BRASKY

    [...] Update: Our full list of 100 songs is here. [...]