Our Critics' Year-End Top Tens: Kelly Dearmore Champions Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy and Its Non-Hip-Hop Ways

In this week's paper, you may notice a piece including some of our DC9 writers' choices for best albums of the year. But, space being limited, we couldn't run all of our writers' lists. So, thanks to the power of the Internet, we're doing just that, right here.

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Mailroom cleanser and resident head-twanger Kelly Dearmore finds faith in a hip-hop album that, he swears, isn't a hip-hop album when you get down to brass tax.

10. The Sword - Warp Riders

9. Local Natives - Gorilla Manor

8. Justin Townes Earle - Harlem River Blues

7. .357 String Band - Lightning From the North
While Mumford & Sons rightly deserve praise for their acoustic-based greatness, Milwaukee's ragged, renegade outfit of lightning-fast pickers made us forget that the Avett Brothers used to actually play banjo.

6. The National - High Violet

5. Joe Pug - Messenger

4. Phosphorescent - Here's to Taking It Easy

3. Jamey Johnson - Guitar Song
No one takes any risks in country music any more, right? Not so if you've heard this disc. By looking for, and finding, truth in his native musical tongue, Johnson's double-album risk is our reward.

2. Mumford & Sons - Sigh No More

1. Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Epic in every sense. This isn't a hip-hop album, it's a transcendent and revolutionary statement of agression and vulnerability that even Taylor Swift probably bounces to when she's not griping about ex-boyfriends.



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