Top Ten Albums of 2010

We know we are a bit late on doing a Top Ten Records from 2010, but we’ve been crazy busy and Jan 1st seems like a good time to look back. The one thing that seems obvious from looking back at the labels that put out some of the top ten, is that Young Money & Shemspeed have had a seriously dynamic and ridiculously fun year. Check it out and feel free to send us your 2011 record demos! (email:

1. Nicki Minaj, “Pink Friday” (Young Money/Universal):
If hip hop is dead, Nicki has started a new genre, her music is so full of life that in songs like “Monster” she makes her fellow MCs on the track (Kanye, Jay-z) look like they are just starting out. She jokes about how funny it is that someone could call her a rookie. We laugh along as we listen to what sounds like someone in their prime, an artist on top of the world.
Download it.

2. D. Brook & J. Harkman, “Darkcho” (Shemspeed):
Shemspeed has taken on this beautiful record that was almost lost to the world, in order to ensure that it is heard and available around the globe, aged in the barrels of Eastern European folklore and steeped in centuries of Jewish musical tradition. The album plays like a Tarantino soundtrack to the deepest, most spiritual moments of life; full of depth and style, antiquity and freshness. This is a record unlike any other and is a must have for any music enthusiast and/or fan of spiritual moments.
Download it.

3. Kanye West, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” (Roc-a-Fella/Def Jam):
We love pop almost as much as indie and experimental music, so when one of the kings of hip pop releases a record that is both cerebral and thematic, we get really excited. This record is full of light, but feels like it’s being pushed out of a really dark space.
Download the tracks off this album Free.

4. Dillz & Diwon, “Bonna Rhymes” (Shemspeed):
This record was a Free download for everyone who was and was not able to make it to Bonnaroo this past year. Diwon remixed his favorite groups including; The xx, Miike Snow, Neon Indian, Manchester Orchestra, The National, LCD Soundsystem & Gwar. Kosha Dillz took the instrumentals and laced them with his most precious one session rhymes. THe album is a journey and a sountrack for a road trip.
Download it Free.

5. Broken Bells, “Broken Bells” (Columbia):
Danger Mouse and The Shins’ James Mercer try and produce music that doesn;t sound like The Shins and the Gorllaz, sometimes they succeed and at all times, they music is great.
Download it.

6. Aziz Ansari, “Intimate Moments for a Sensual Evening” (Comedy Central):
Aziz is one of our favorite comedians. He is definitely the voice of our generation, that is probably why we love him so much, we feel like all of his jokes are private and only we get them.
Download it.

7. Tes Uno, “A Tribe Called Tes” (Boundless):
The finest tribute mixtape in history.
Download it Free

8. The Roots, “How I Got Over” (Island Def Jam):
This record sounds like The Roots’ Dissertation, by the end you want to at least give them honorary Doctorates. They have matured to the piont that they now make music that both your grandmother and your hipster cousin from Bushwick could enjoy. Joanna Newsome can finally listen to hip hop in a dorky sweater.
Download it.

9. Nas & Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley, “Distant Relatives” (Universal Republic Records):
I never thought Nas and Bob Marley had much in common, but when Bob’s son gets down with Nas on this melodic spiritual journey we eat it up and hope the collaboration is not a one off.
Download it.

10. Sufjan Stevens, “The Age of Adz” (Asthmatic Kitty):
Sufjan has found the sonics of dreams and he keeps recording them so that when we want to tap into that space we have more than just Bjork to help us out.
Download it.

and Yishai Mizrahi-Varon says that Drake, “Thank Me Later” (Young Money/Universal) should DEF be in the top ten. hmmm, we do like Drake…

Happy 2011 from Erez Safar & Team Shemspeed!


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