Thought this might be quite revealing because amid list fatigue, I'm discovering a heap of records rising to the top of my pile of intrigue. Here are a few I've discovered over the past few days and thrown onto this playlist of things to listen to: http://open.spotify.com/user/seaninsound/playlist/20B8G66E1VlEAdCxFoDDw5
Faunts - Feel.Love.Thinking.Of.
This is the kind of record I've been hoping to find all year. Just the right mixture of hazy, textural, Cut Copy-ish take on New Order's joyous swirling dance-inspired indie-pop mixed with epic beats and widescreen guitars. Not quite got the songs to crossover but loads better than the Delphic album which I thought I was gonna fall in love with and maybe I will by the time it comes out in January. One for fans of Friendly Fires and Colder.
JJ - JJ N° 2
Found this via the Gorilla vs Bear end of year list (thanks Oceanrain for pointing this out - http://gorillavsbear.blogspot.com/2009/12/gorilla-vs-bears-albums-of-2009.html ). It's dreamy scandi-pop that's got a dusting of Lykke Li-like icy-girl tearsomeness but the vocals ride these amazing driving - almost tribal - rhythms.
The Antlers - Hospice
I dunno how I missed the DiS review ( http://drownedinsound.com/releases/14753/reviews/4137741 - maybe I was away at the time?!). Or how I somehow ignored the deafening of hearts throbbing with their love for this record, because as soon as I tweeted about it loadsa people I know told me it's their record of the year. It starts out quite slight, almost Shearwater light, with filmic static floating on Sigur Ros/Explosions in the Sky/Eno-esque soundscapes. The record builds and builds into intense, raging, storm-like moments. His voice might not be to everyone's taste but if you like things a little bit post-rock or Antony, I think you'd like this too. Reminded me a little of Maximillian Hecker in its almost pained hopelessness.
Kurt Vile - Childish Prodigy
All the reviews of this made me think it'd be more nofi nonsense but it's not at all. It's really blissed out and a bit fuzzed up but graceful r'n'r with a touch of Spiritualized, Jonestown, Warlocks, or early Verve.
I'm sure there are a few others I've either finally checked out or clicked with but those are currently the main ones and more suggestions welcomed, I'll get some time over Xmas to investigate and explore music much more than I seem to manage during the year!