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2010 | The Year in CDs

LET'S HEAR IT: The Globe's music critics pick their favorite 10 albums of the year and from each writer — a noteworthy surprise.
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Globe critics' top picks
Kanye West

James Reed

Kanye West rebounded from a year of personal strife to make an album so unflinching, it utterly rewrote the rules for modern hip-hop records. It also landed him on this critic's top 10 list.
Alejandro Escovedo

Sarah Rodman

If the Austin rocker Alejandro Escovedo has made a bad record, this critic hasn’t heard it. His latest release falls right in line on her year's best list.
Beach House

Michael Brodeur

On Beach House's "Teen Dream," it’s as though the sun finally poured into the dark chambers of their sound, writes our critic. See who else won him over.
Big Boi

Julian Benbow

Always the half of OutKast more rooted in rap, Big Boi stepped out on his own and onto this critics top 10 list. See what other hip-hop records made the grade.
Khaira Arby

Siddhartha Mitter

By rights the charismatic queen singer of Timbuktu Khaira Arby should have had an album in international release many years ago. This one was worth the wait, and heads this list of world music releases.
Erik Telford

Steve Greenlee

Erik Telford, a young trumpeter, issued a stunning debut that represents everything that is right with contemporary jazz. See what other jazz records were among the year's best.
Nikolaj Znaider

Jeremy Eichler

Nikolaj Znaider and Sir Colin Davis enjoy a rare chemistry on "Edgar: Violin Concerto," writes our critic. See the other classical albums that made his list.