Like every other UK music mag, MOJO published their Top Albums of 2010 list today. Your first reaction to their Album of the Year might be "Who is John Grant?" After hearing him you're likely to say "How have I not heard this before?"

Former frontman of The Czars, John Grant's solo debut, Queen of Denmark, came out back in April and features Midlake as his backing band. No surprise given the musicians involved, Queen of Denmark has a lush '70s sound somewhere between The Carpenters and Harry Nilsson (who he uncannily sounds like at times) with some pretty heavy lyrical themes. A little more info courtesy The Guardian:

Queen of Denmark is all about the 41-year-old Grant finally coming to terms with who he is. It's also the word-of-mouth hit of 2010, the ecstatic reviews that greeted its gentle soft rock melodies and grimly sardonic lyrics followed by a nomination for best breakthrough act at the Mojo awards earlier this month. Made with the assistance of acclaimed Texan folk rockers Midlake, who lent him their studio and nursed him through his emotional wobbles, it's offering Grant a first real chance of success: his previous band, the Czars, split in 2004 after struggling to muster even cult appeal. Text-book catharsis, Queen of Denmark manages to be frank, funny and sweet - much like Grant himself - while considering the origins of its author's crippled self-esteem. Growing up gay in a religious family in the midwest didn't help, nor did alcohol and drug abuse, nor difficulties in maintaining relationships. In fact, it was the demise of his most recent romantic entanglement that nudged him over the edge last autumn.

You can stream the whole of Queen of Denmark at the bottom of this post via a widget and I highly suggest you do. And you can go see him live. Grant (minus Midlake) starts his first headlining tour next week, with two stops in NYC: an early show at Mercury Lounge on December 8 and The Rock Shop on December 11.

All John Grant tour dates, the streaming player and video for "I Wanna Go to Mars," plus MOJO's entire Top 50 Albums of 2010 list are after the jump.


John Grant - I Wanna Go to Marz

John Grant: Portrait of the Artist

John Grant - Queen of Denmark

John Grant - 2010 Tour Dates
12/4 Chicago, IL Schuba's Tavern
12/6 Toronto, ON Music Gallery
12/8 New York, NY Mercury Lounge
12/10 Philadelphia, PA World Café Live Upstairs
12/11 Brooklyn, NY The Rock Shop
12/15 San Francisco, CA Swedish American Hall
12/16 Los Angeles, CA Gene Autry Museum, Heritage Court
12/17 Portland, OR Doug Fir Lounge
12/18 Seattle, WA High Dive
12/19 Vancouver, BC The Media Club

MOJO - Top 50 Albums of 2010
1 John Grant - Queen of Denmark
2 Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
3 MGMT - Congratulations
4 Edwyn Collins - Losing Sleep
5 The Black Keys - Brothers
6 Paul Weller - Wakes Up The Nation
7 Midlake - The Courage of Others
8 Phosphorescent - Here's To Taking It Easy
9 The Coral - Butterfly House
10 Doug Paisley - Constant Companion
11 Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
12 Mavis Staples - You Are Not Alone
13 Joanna Newsom - Have One On Me
14 Manic Street Preachers - Postcards From A Young Man
15 Avi Buffalo - Avi Buffalo
16 Aerial Pink's Haunted Graffiti - Before Today
17 Roots Manuva meets Wrongtom - Duppy Writer
18 Caribou - Swim
19 Rumer - Seasons of My Soul
20 Grinderman - Grinderman 2
21 Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan - Hawk
22 Sam Amidon - I See The Sign
23 Sharon Jones and The Dap Kings - I Learned The Hard Way
24 The Jim Jones Revue - Burning Your House Down
25 Foals - Total Life Forever
26 Gorrilaz - Plastic Beach
27 Field Music - Field Music (Measure)
28 DangerMouse and Sparklehorse - Dark Night of The Soul
29 Gill Scott-Heron - I'm New Here
30 Janelle Monae - The ArchAndroid
31 Neil Young - Le Noise
32 Robert Plant - Band of Joy
33 The Roots - How I Got Over You
34 Villagers - Becoming A Jackal
35 M.I.A. - // / Y /
36 LCD Soundsystem - This Is Happening
37 Teenage Fanclub - Shadows
38 Gonjasufi - A Sufi And A Killer
39 Wyatt, Atzmon, Stephens - For The Ghosts Within
40 Eli Paperboy Reed - Come and Get It
41 Tom Jones - Praise and Blame
42 Kelley Soltz - To Dreamers
43 The Besnard Lakes - Are The Roaring Night
44 Swans - My Father Will Guide Me Up A Rope To The Sky
45 Roky Erickson with Okkervil River - True Love Cast Out All Evil
46 Peter Gabriel - Scratch My Back
47 Jane Weaver & Septieme Souer - The Fallen By Watch Bird
48 John Legend & The Roots- Wake Up!
49 Ali Farka Toure & Toumani Diabate - Ali & Toumani
50 Matthew Dear - Black City

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