More than photos, diary entries or spoken anecdotes, music is the most dependable keeper of memories; a song has the power to conjure a lost moment from the dusty archives of the heart and brain, bringing it into vivid life once more. For the last few years I have made an annual compilation of the music that has punctuated the year, to share with friends and for my own posterity. Looking back at each mix, I can tell a lot about the happenings of any particular year and the sort of mood I was in.
On the first day of 2011, here are my favourite and most poignant songs from last year - each holds a memory or moment and all were released in 2010. There seems to be a prevalence of ethereal female artists, muddled with a generous helping of proggy post-rock and the occasional splash of cheesy electro. I don't know what this says about my mood, but it was certainly a year of ups and downs. As I sit here in my new house (house!) suffering the after effects of too many prosecco and mead cocktails last night, it feels like a fitting soundtrack.
I hope you'll enjoy my playlist and perhaps treat yourself to one or two of the most excellent albums from which these songs come. I heartily welcome your own recommendations of 2010 musical discoveries and favourites, too.
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