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Articles Home » Best Of » Best Of 2010 - 2011 Eric
Best Of 2010 - 2011 Eric

ARTICLE: Best Of 2010 (Eric)
YEAR: 2011


2010 was a tough year for quality releases, especially when it came to AOR and Prog. Fortunately the power pop scene picked up the slack with some truly outstanding discs. The 10 of 10 in no order.

Eric Abrahamsen

In Summary
Popfilter - Pop This!
Comparisons to the late great Sugarbomb? You bet and with production by Bleu (remember L.E.O.?) and the late Will Owsley, not to mention a cover that screams power pop, how can you go wrong?

Seth Swirsky - Watercolour Day
Warm and summery solo disc from one half of The Red Button. I actually like this release better with traces of McCartney, Elton John and Nilsson.

Moon Safari - Lover's End
While the current prog scene seems to be mired in dark tattooed and metallized cynicism, there are rays of hope including Sweden's Moon Safari. This is their third and possibly best album of progressive pop borrowing from The Beatles, Klaatu and Crosby Stills & Nash.

Munchener Freiheit - Ohne Limit
A band that happily shows no sign of going away, this new studio album while not their best, sure beats a lot of what's coming out of the AOR scene these days. My all-time favourite German group? Maybe...

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark - History Of Modern
The biggest surprise of the year, OMD return with a spectacular release worthy of their groundbreaking early 80's albums.

Smash Palace - 7
With a history dating all the back to 1980 when they were signed to CBS as Quincy, power poppers Smash Palace return with their seventh album and the `Revolver' styled cover says it all.

Rumer - Seasons Of My Soul
Soft rock early 70's style with Karen Carpenter influenced vocals. Heavenly.

Taylor Locke & The Roughs - Grain and Grape
I discovered this a little late- just before New Years Eve as a matter of fact and been playing it ever since. A killer record with Big Star, Badfinger and Beatles as major influences. Wow!

Bryan Ferry - Olympia
A Roxy Music album in all but name. Brilliant art rock.

Bleu - Four
Yeah, he's done better but few do power pop better than Bleu.

Reissues/ Archives
Paul McCartney & Wings - Band On The Run (Deluxe Edition)
CD, DVD and bonus tracks and what is one of the greatest pop albums of all time, setting the bar for reissues.

Airbus - Test Flight
Previously unreleased material from the early 70's in the style of Wings and 10cc. Yowzah!

Supertramp - Breakfast In America (Deluxe Edition)
Fitting tribute to this classic/ monster prog/ pop album. Live tracks left off `Paris' and additional material concerts from two other cities. Wish I was there..

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#1 | gdazegod on January 26 2011 02:55:38
Popfilter sounds interesting..
#2 | jefflynnefan on January 27 2011 02:50:56
I didn't know OMD came out with a new album! I'll have to
check out some samples. I saw Supertramp live twice!
#3 | Nick C on February 03 2011 03:55:26
Nice list Eric, didn't realise Moon Safari had a new album out, their 1st 2 releases are ordered this one pretty sharpish after reading about it.
#4 | Eric on February 03 2011 13:35:50
Thanks Nick. Left off a few others like Free Energy 'Stuck On Nothing', although I think I'll give it a review here soon. North Atlantic Oscillation - 'Grappling Hooks' which is superb modern pop/ prog, Duncan Maitland - 'Lullabies For The 21st Century' which is brilliant XTC/ Beatles stuff, The Posies 'Blood/ Candy' as well as albums by The Sails, The New Pornographers, Spygenius and The Jigsaw Seen's 'Bananas Foster' as well as Ratt just name a few. Still, I wish the new melodic stuff (outside of Ratt) moved me with the same energy I'm hearing from the pop/power pop scene...
#5 | swazi on February 03 2011 15:39:18
LOL! I also ordered the Moon Safari straight after reading the review!
#6 | Nick C on February 03 2011 17:06:25
Hey careful now Eric, stop spending my money haha! Bernd, I'm sure you'll like 'em, have you heard the 1st two?
Strangely enough...I've been umming and ahhhing over whether to buy the NAO album since Xmas. I like the couple of tracks I've heard in full...but I'm not sure yet, they sound a bit PTree and Frost* ish ... which is great I love both those bands, but I'm not sure whether I need another version of either yet. Maybe I'll plump for it over the next few weeks....or remain sat on the fence as so often happens.
#7 | Eric on February 03 2011 17:25:09
Lot's of Klaatu comparisons on the first two Moon Safari albums, but the new one goes a bit beyond that...
#8 | englandashes on March 28 2011 21:35:21
Finally brought Moon Safari, after years of thinking about buying Blomljud, which I will get now after hearing Lovers End, better harmony vocals then Venice?, quite possibly!
#9 | swazi on March 28 2011 23:48:03
Moon Safari's Lover's End really is one of the discs that swept me off my feet in 2010. Still today I am having troubles getting it out of my CD player. What a great release! Thanks a million to Eric for giving me (us, incl. Nick) the tip!
#10 | Eric on March 28 2011 23:58:25
You are welcome!
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