We Are Scientists
Brain Thrust Mastery

The Californian duo brought their epic dance rock to the main stage with album number four, and we liked it. Combining solid riffs, big electro bleeps and beats with a wry sense of humour should make tracks like After Hours permanent fixtures on your new playlist.
Buy:
To impress the hip young office intern.

 

 

Trivium
Shogun

Combining widdly guitar solos, thundering drumming and an ear for a decent melody, Shogun is a metal album that’s accessible without compromising on brutality. Tracks like Into The Mouth Of Hell We March is metal at its best; loud, fast, fun and chock-full of references to His Infernal Majesty.
Buy:
If you have a tattoo of a skull wearing a top-hat smoking a massive joint on your arse.

 

 

Kings Of Leon
Only By The Night

The fourth album from the Tennessean siblings saw them in a darker mood than usual. The songs still romp along, but they’re more introverted and better for it. Sex On Fire might not make much sense lyrically, but it’s certainly one of the most anthemic songs to be released this year.
Buy:
If you like beards and being all emotional.

 

 

Elbow
The Seldom Seen Kid

This won the Mercury Music Prize this year, a moral victory after the band were nominated but didn’t win in 2001. This album is witty, sad, and soulful in equal amounts. The lyrics are easily as important as the music, see The Loneliness Of A Tower Crane Driver for proof.
Buy:
If you like corduroy trousers.

 

 

Atmosphere
When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That Shit Gold

Slug and Ant, the key players in Atmosphere bought both the best hip hop album and the best title to the table in 2008. Using more live instruments than on previous albums, Lemons is intelligent hip hop with none of the cocksure rubbish you’d expect.
Buy:
If your pants show above your trousers.