Cast your mind back to 2007, the end of Landfill Indie was in sight. Everything, musically, was hitting a new path. Things were less stripy, hair less greasy, and most importantly, shoes less pointy. People started to find delay pedals, and realise that not everything has to be about finding a girl on a night out, and getting into her knickers.

It was all still a boys club, but what can you do, eh? Things started to change shortly after. And whilst we’re still trying to fill the void, or at least get rid of the hangover, there is no harm in looking back at that year in music. You will simply be surprised by some of the iconic albums that were knocking around back then.

Klaxons – Myths of the Near Future

Not the last band on this list to no longer exist, but arguably the most important- the reason why no bands today sound like Klaxons, is that it would be physically impossible. The only album on this list that is so perfectly of its time, nobody of this day and age could even try and replicate it. It starts with a drum beat so hypnotic you have to turn the volume up high enough to be worried about decibel boundaries. It contains at least two genuine 100% indie dancefloor belters in Golden Skans and the genre defining Atlantis to Interzone. It won the Mercury Prize in its year of conception and perhaps most importantly, it single-handedly (probably) ignited James Reighton’s relationship and marriage to mega babe Keira Knightly. If that doesn’t inspire spotty, druggy indie kids everywhere, I don’t know what will.

Kings of Leon – Because of the Times

It doesn’t have the (s)hits on it, it’s inspired by U2 and they’ve managed to learn their instruments by this stage, but Because of the Times remains KOL’s finest album. They bottled up their angst into the lyrics rather than the music and made an expansive, genre crossing, stadium sized classic. Their first number one album hinted at how massive they would come but retained the fantastic tunes: Charmer is the only track on the album (maybe in their career) that linked their spotty, garage rock beginnings to their stadium-sized singalongs perfectly, Fans is a beautiful love song to us- the country that took them in and if you look further than the singles; McFearless, Black Thumbnail, My Party and the albums magnificent centrepiece True Love Way demands far more recognition than the average fuckwit belting out Use Somebody on X Factor will ever give them.

Arctic Monkeys – Favourite Worst Nightmare

Who’d have thought that after all this time, the Arctic Monkeys second album would become the least relevant of their fantastic catalogue? There’s the Era Defining Debut, the One Where They’ve Matured, the One With Good Lyrics On It and then the other one- but that leaves Favourite Worst Nightmare as an anomaly. Luckily for us, that means there’s just one thing to focus on- the tunes. And by fuck, are there tunes on this album?! For one it kicks off with Brianstorm, easily the most exciting opening track on an album this millennium. It goes darker with the This House is a Circus/If You Were There, Beware saga and it plucks beautifully on the heartstrings with the Monkeys only real ballad to date, Only Ones Who Know. The fact that their AM tour setlists still draw heavily from this album more than the other first four, is a testament to just how good these songs are. Shame about Alex now though.

Radiohead – In Rainbows

When the premise of an album release is something as boundary pushing as getting fans to pay what they like for it, it’s usually the most forward thinking part of the whole record. But this is Radiohead we’re talking about. Having an uncanny knack of fusing sounds you’ve never heard before to the constructs of just a damn good rock album, here you have Radioheads last (latest) classic- it’s not ridiculous to mention this in the same sentence as The Bends, OK Computer and Kid A. It almost mixes those three albums together perfectly and it gave fans hope that they weren’t just becoming boring and experimental, that in fact their experiments had heart and soul and beauty. Not bad for a band who were just “having a break”.

Biffy Clyro – Puzzle

Is 2007 the transitional year where all semi-successful cult/critically acclaimed bands are about to go mega massive? KoL’s next album was the massive Only by the Night and Biffy’s next was Only Revolutions, officially the album containing the most hits EVER. And despite that album being great, it’s still only mentioned second to Puzzle. Opening with the ludicrously overblown Living is a Problem, it only got more ridiculous. Semi conceptual, with 2/15ths, 4/15ths and 9/15ths dotting around, it featured daring pop moments, beautiful ballads and even including a better Queens of the Stone Age song than anything on Era Vulgaris (an album from 2007 that doesn’t deserve to be mentioned, sorry boys) in Semi Mental, this was the sound of a band who were just discovering what they could be and what they could mean.

The Cribs – Men’s Needs, Women’s Needs, Whatever

The moment when they came of age. The Cribs always had promise for massive tunes (Another Number, Hey Scenesters and Martell are cases in point) but a whole album of them? From a band whose entire premise were Pavement meets The Shirelles lo-fi punk? Bash. Straight from the off, Our Bovine Public remains as vital today as it did ten years ago, Men’s Needs fills any indie disco it comes on at and I’m a Realist, along with it’s heartbreaking video, is a must have for any indie rock fan anywhere. But it’s Be Safe that bucks the trend by being anything but. A spoken word lyric by Sonic Youth’s Lee Ranaldo over guitar feedback and drums hardly being held together by any tempo, everything comes together in the most heartfelt and emotional indie chorus in modern memory. They’ve never come close to topping this but when they do, it will go down in history.

Frank Turner – Sleep is for the Week

Ten years to the day on day of writing (17/1), this album is but a snapshot of what our Francis was to achieve. A very raw mostly acoustic offering, that didn’t diminish the frankly (aha) stellar songwriting. Arguably the best song about a ketamine comedown, The Real Damage opens the album with a ferocious punk spirit that could barely be contained by its folk and country musical wrappings, Back in the Day could have been a hardcore song if there was more money involved and I dare you to listen to Fathers Day without physically breaking down in the depression of the distant memories of your own daddy problems. The album closes with a live recording of The Ballad of Me and My Friends, an apt reminder that live is really where Frank shines. But for his first solo album, this isn’t half a bad start.

Arcade Fire – Neon Bible

How do you follow an album as life affirming and celebratory as Funeral was? Easy. You plunge to the depths of hell through an Ocean of Noise, challenge global terrorist attacks, economic failure and country destroying tsunamis before being flung back to earth in a big Black Wave to tell your sorry tale. Arcade Fire come back more overblown, more overwrought and more over the top than they have ever been (or will be) to tackle The Big Issues. Does it affect the tunes? Of course it fucking doesn’t. Black Mirror stomps into view like Bruce Springsteen if he took the drugs he sings about on Spirit in the Night. Mandolin and pipe organ are added into the plethora of instruments already in the band, thus making Keep the Car Running and Intervention two of their most accessible pop songs in this difficult second album. They got more inventive with their next two albums, but on Neon Bible, Arcade Fire were truly real.

LCD Soundsystem – Sound of Silver

Dance Punk is a misleading genre. It can make you think of 80’s Clash or the Rapture but really it means LCD Soundsystem, who on face value is hardly punk at all. Sound of Silver however combats that hard with nine genre leaping jams each burrowing deep into the fibres of your very being. The 7 minute opening track (but not the longest) Get Innocuous! is a Bowie-referencing post-krautrock jam which would soundtrack every dancefloor if weed was your club drug of choice. Time to Get Away is Prince for those short of attention. All My Friends is an indie disco phenomena, so 70’s yet so now. The choruses aren’t choruses, more mantras drilled into your brain. Finally, the album ends with the jazz influenced slow jam power ballad New York, I Love You but You’re Bringing Me Down- James Murphy’s crowning moment, climaxing with crushing guitars before swirling out in a daze with twinkling pianos. Punk as fuck.

Words: James Kitchen