No. 1: Röyksopp - Happy Up Here.
So this was the only song released this year that was better than Dizzee Rascal - Bonkers? Quite a bold statement, if you think about it.
It's a simple song. In discovering the nicest four second little hook buried away at the start of a song by Pavement called Do That Stuff, you imagine they then spent a weekend building it up so it lasted three minutes, adding increasing waves of pleasure until no more can possibly be crammed in.
The result is indeed maybe the happiest song ever created. Go listen to it and try to disagree with me. Quite simply remarkable.
No. 1: The Decemberists - The Hazards of Love
A prog-rock opera album, anyone?
Don't all jump at once now, but after one listen you'll be converted. This is a very immediate album. The structure. The exquisite sense of escalation. The odd reprise or five. And just how damn fine these songs are. Subsequent listens and you'll notice the whole thing is one big story of forest-dweller love.
It's awe-inspiring stuff, an epic hour long journey. You couldn't possibly regret purchasing it.