10. Black Dice - Beaches & Canyons (Fat Cat)
While divergent reviews will always exist about Black Dice, Beaches & Canyons
is one of those albums so layered in different sounds and ideas, it feels like it could hold a clue as to what was happening in New York in the early '00s more than other records of the same era. It's also a great background to put on when you just want to zone out and stare at a spinning platter.
9. Boris with Michio Kurihara - Rainbow (Drag City)
While a lot of people would probably argue that a crazy experimental drone album featuring a psychedelic guitarist isn't as important as, say, everything else in the world, this record is one of the finest in the genre. It also represents a lot of what Drag City as a label stands for, outward reaching music that occasionally bothers to have a hook, but is more interested in creating a idea.
8. Deerhoof - Deerhoof vs. Evil (PolyVinyl)
We'd be willing to venture into a fire for most of Deerhoof's output, but since this is the most recent release, we'd guess it'd be the closest to the top of the pile. Plus, we're super into "The Merry Barracks" in a slightly unhealthy way.
7. Amon Tobin - ISAM (Ninja Tune)
Picking one album from Ninja Tune was almost impossible, as the labels output is so consistently remarkable. That said, few releases define the idea of the Ninja Tune sound better than Amon Tobin, and ISAM
is one of his finest records to date. It does that thing that most Ninja Tune albums do, which is be engaging and smart, but also relaxing.
6. King Geedorah - Take Me To Your Leader (Big Dada)
Daniel Dumile (aka King Geedorah, aka MF Doom, aka Viktor Vaughn, aka Madvillian) is one of our favorite rappers because the dude knows when to have a little fun and when to be serious. He's also so prolific in so many different projects it's really hard not to love the guy. One of our favorite hip-hop records lost in the fire, easily.