Quick Before it Melts

Quick Before It Melts presents...


by  |  July 21, 2016


Lists are cool. Lists are fun. In the last 10 years, we’ve made a lot of lists, but never a ranked one. Until now.

With sincere thanks to Quick Before It Melts’ good friends Ryan Bresee, Jonathan Briggins, Louis Calabro, Mac Cameron, Tiana Feng, and Alex Hudson, we’ve endeavoured to compile a (totally subjective and up-for-debate) definitive list of the 100 albums that made the decade and have defined Quick Before It Melts. I think we did a pretty good job.

We’ve been counting down the QBIM ONE HUNDRED in a series of posts over the past weeks, and finally have arrived at today’s post, our top 20 albums of the last 10 years.


Bruce Peninsula are one of the most original sounding bands I’ve had the pleasure of hearing in my lifetime. There is something so stunning about the interweaving of Misha Bower, Neil Hagerty and their supporting chorus’s vocals on top of such dense and rhythmic instrumentals. Bruce Peninsula sound and feel like they are connected to the earth and specifically Canada. I’m unsure a band from anywhere else could sound like them, which makes it that much easier to feel their songs in my bones. – Mac Cameron

19 ATTACK IN BLACK Marriage1258103-gf

Marriage was (and is) the perfect blend of punk and roots music for me. While most of my friends were getting into Alexisonfire and the like, I was finding solace in mellower fare. We all met in the middle with Attack in Black, a group who had much folkier intentions than any of us would have guessed. Despite the band ceasing to play any of the songs on Marriage in their later period, it’s a perfect rock record and a glorious tip of the hat to youth and all its frustration. It’s also the jumping off point for three of the country’s best and most prolific songwriters. While every song on the album is great, “If All I Thought Were True” will never cease to tug at my heart strings in the best way. – Mac Cameron

18 THE WEATHER STATION LoyaltyThe_Weather_Station_Loyalty

Loyalty is a refreshing breeze and it’s the calm rustle of the leaves it runs though. Tamara Lindeman’s voice is meditative, Zen-like; her finger picking is mesmerizing and masterful. No album calms me down and puts me at ease like this one. The subtle production makes Loyalty more than a simple singer-songwriter record – it’s mellow gold. “The way it is and the way it could be both are”, there is no phrase more comforting than that. – Mac Cameron

17 KWARKA Les chemins de verrea0343852502_10

Les chemins de verre‘s last song is titled “Le vrai bonheur”, “true happiness” according to my trusted translator, and I couldn’t think of a better title or way to describe the pleasure of listening to this record. – Quick Before It Melts, August 2, 2010.

16 TOPS Picture You StaringABT040 TOPS LP-Jacket 11183 v2

TOPS’ wickedly addictive pop charms have kept me coming back to them time and again. – Quick Before It Melts, July 10, 2014

15 YOUNG GALAXY ShapeshiftingYoung-Galaxy-Shapeshifting

In my opinion, this is still the best Young Galaxy album. Shapeshifting has a certain type of romanticism and atmosphere about it that engulfs the soul. The listener travels through the 80s, tropics and dreams with song structures that are more impressionistic than pop but still maintaining an attractive flow. Despite not always having a verse-chorus structure it is still anthemic. – Tiana Feng

14 HEY ROSETTA! SeedsHey_Rosetta-SEEDS-cover

Hey Rosetta! have thrown themselves a coming out party on their third album, Seeds.  It betters their previous Polaris short listed LP Into Your Lungs (and around in your heart and on through your blood) by reigning in their anthemic sound and focusing the power into compact, explosive songs like “Welcome”. – Quick Before It Melts, August 15, 2011

13 ARCADE FIRE The Suburbsthe-suburbs

What quickly becomes apparent as you listen to The Suburbs is that, if Neon Bible was the aural equivalent of The Ten Commandments, then The Suburbs is The Ice Storm.  The former, a Cecil B. DeMille cinematic epic; the latter, a grainy art house film by Ang Lee.  Each unique in it’s own right, but masterpieces, both. – Quick Before It Melts, August 3, 2010.

12 THE ACORN Vieux LoupThe Acron - Vieux Loup

Vieux Loup is the story of one man’s journey back to the self, rediscovering his muse after wandering into forests of uncertainty. It is a deeply personal, autobiographic record, bordering on spiritual reawakening, and the best thing The Acorn has ever produced. – Quick Before It Melts, May 19, 2015

11 DRAKE Take Care6a010536846743970c015391d7ea3f970b

10 FUCKED UP The Chemistry of Common Life4c360ea1

Fucked Up’s best album starts unlike any other hardcore album ever made – with a flute solo. Once the solo ends and all three guitars roar into your speakers it is very clear this band is something special. Damian Abraham’s vocals are guttural and gnarly and having them a part of such epic, uplifting and fun songs, that often seem to have little to do with hardcore history makes for an incredible and unique listen. – Mac Cameron

09 WINTERSLEEP Welcome to the Night Sky796c2dd7

I was bullied for singing “Weighty Ghost” one to many times at summer camp the year this album came out. I listened to the album almost everyday walking to school that year. I have a deep-seated love for this album and in my opinion it is certainly the band’s best work. It’s expansive and accessible at the same time. It’s angsty, honest, triumphant and beautiful – pretty much my criteria for all music I have come to love since then. Every song on the album has it’s own sound and feel and Paul Murphy’s exceptional lyrics are a journey through the confusion of adolescence into the strange acceptance of adulthood. Thanks for getting me through high school Wintersleep! – Mac Cameron

08 DANIEL ROMANO Sleep Beneath the Willow and Mosey (tied)

sleep-beneath-the-willow Daniel Romano - Mosey

Sleep Beneath the Willow catapults Daniel Romano into the circle of great Canadian songwriters.  He handles delicate stories of love and loss with beauty and ease. – Quick Before It Melts, April 4, 2011

Mosey is not a country album, a folk album, or a rock album, but a eulogy to those genres that have become gross silhouettes of their former selves. Fortunately for us, as long as Romano has a melody and few things to say about you and me, these traditions will not die. – Mac Cameron, Quick Before It Melts, May 23, 2016

07 GRIMES Visionshomepage_large.42bf6de8

Grimes challenges the boundaries of pop and electronic music with Visions, breaking sexual stereotypes about females in the studio (which opened her up to more future collaborations, including the ones on Art Angels). This album was impressively recorded on GarageBand. The attention from Visions transformed Grimes into more than a musician: a producer, a pop/fashion icon and a feminist role model. – Tiana Feng

06 THE WEEKND House of Balloonsweeknd-house-of-balloons_hisi6d

House of Balloons is a sombre, sobering record that immerses itself into the depths of the disco, only to exit out the back door, disorientated and alone, standing in the dark without a ride home. – Quick Before It Melts, September 12, 2011

05 KATHLEEN EDWARDS Voyageurkathleen-edwards-voyageur1

Voyageur has been an unexpected pleasure from an artist whose new material I wasn’t anticipating.  This is the kind of record I love discovering, and the kind that ends up on my year-end lists in December.  We’ve a long way to go until then, but I’m certain that Kathleen Edwards will be on that journey with me for 2012.Quick Before It Melts, January 17, 2012

04 EVENING HYMNS Spectral DuskEvening Hymns - Spectral Dusk

 Spectral Dusk is Evening Hymns’ Jonas Bonnetta reaching out to me, to anyone else who’s listening, wrapping a comforting arm around my shoulder and saying words that aren’t always easy to hear, even though they’re true: “It never gets better; it just gets easier in time.” – Quick Before It Melts, August 14, 2012

03 CARIBOU Swimmrg348

It’s a whirlpool that will suck you into its centre and drown you in sound.  The most arresting moment on Swim has to be “Bowls” but be forewarned:  listening to it on headphones for the first time may induce throbbing deep inside your skull. – Quick Before It Melts, April 20, 201

02 HANDSOME FURS Sound KapitalSound_Kapital-The_Handsome_Furs_480

All of the albums to come out of the Wolf Parade camp, Sound Kapital is my favourite. I have very found memories of walking around Strathcona and listening to this one. – Alex Hudson

Sound Kapital may have NSFW cover art, but the music inside could easily be classified as NSFS (Not Safe For Sitting).  The beats are viral (see “Repatriated”, the best dance-pop-punk hybrid tune of 2011) and the synths seductive (“What About Us”).  It’s sleek, modern, and designed to connect physically, intellectually, and emotionally. – Quick Before It Melts, June 29, 2011

01 DESTROYER KaputtDestroyer - Kaputt

Dan Bejar is the coolest cat around. Sexy soft-rock saxes were all the rage for a while, and Kaputt is the album that really defined that sound. – Alex Hudson

…I always feel the need to have a cigarette after listening to Kaputt. – Quick Before It Melts, January 25, 2011

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  • KAYTRANADA >> 99.9% KAYTRANADA >> 99.9%
  • THE BURNING HELL >> Public Library THE BURNING HELL >> Public Library
  • PUP >> The Dream Is Over PUP >> The Dream Is Over
  • BY DIVINE RIGHT >> Speak & Spell U.S. BY DIVINE RIGHT >> Speak & Spell U.S.
  • FREDERICK SQUIRE >> Spooky Action at a Distance FREDERICK SQUIRE >> Spooky Action at a Distance
  • KATE MAKI >> Head In The Sand KATE MAKI >> Head In The Sand
  • HOODED FANG >> Venus On Edge HOODED FANG >> Venus On Edge


  • NICK FERRIO >> "Palace of Gold" (Video) NICK FERRIO >> "Palace of Gold" (Video)
  • RENDERS >> "Running Through the Night" RENDERS >> "Running Through the Night"
  • TUNS >> "Mind Over Matter" TUNS >> "Mind Over Matter"
  • BADBADNOTGOOD >> "Time Moves Slow" (feat. Sam Herring) BADBADNOTGOOD >> "Time Moves Slow" (feat. Sam Herring)
  • TWIST >> "Soaked" TWIST >> "Soaked"


  • WHOOP-SZO >> "Bmaadiziwin" WHOOP-SZO >> "Bmaadiziwin"
  • THE BURNING HELL >> "Pop Goes the World" THE BURNING HELL >> "Pop Goes the World"
  • FEIST >> "Flamenco for Gord" FEIST >> "Flamenco for Gord"
  • PARTNER >> "Personal Weekend" PARTNER >> "Personal Weekend"
  • ISLANDS >> "No Milk, No Sugar" ISLANDS >> "No Milk, No Sugar" "No Milk, No Sugar" is Nick Thorburn's pop nonpareil, heavy with hook and melody, and so effortlessly cool that every other songwriter aspiring to pop music perfection best pack up their gear and take up traffic cone collecting.
  • IVY MAIRI >> "All Around Me" IVY MAIRI >> "All Around Me" "All Around Me" by Toronto based singer/songwriter Ivy Mairi is our #NewFavouriteSong. Click the link to listen to it yourself.
  • LUKA >> "Why Don't You Go To Her" LUKA >> "Why Don't You Go To Her"
  • SHIRLEY & THE PYRAMIDS >> "All The Time" SHIRLEY & THE PYRAMIDS >> "All The Time" Saskatoon's Shirley & The Pyramids wear their musical influences on the arm of their long-sleeved tee-shirts, but before you're quick to group them in with other neo-shoegazers, give a good listen to "All The Time", one of two advance singles from their recently released self-titled record. In it, you'll hear a the broad strokes of someone who's explored a range of sonic influencers--from 13th Floor Elevators to Ride, The Velvet Underground to Atlas Sound--and is now drilling down through the gauzy haze of guitar drone to find their essence, their truth.
  • EXPWY >> "Love in Idelness" EXPWY >> "Love in Idelness"

  • 10/10 >> YOUNG GALAXY 10/10 >> YOUNG GALAXY


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