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Over the last few weeks of 05 we will be posting our writers' picks for the best of 2005.

Each day we posted a new Top 5 list from one of our writers. Now at the conclusion we are please to present the master list comprised of the top picks from all of our writer submissions.

Gary Schwind's Top 5 (err Top 10 +) of 05.

10. Little Barrie - We Are Little Barrie: Soulful, funky retro rock in the tradition of bands like Flamin' Groovies.
(samples / buy cd | review)

9. A Band of Bees - Free the Bees: This CD sounds like it's right from the 60s and features my favorite song of the year, "Chicken Payback."
(samples / buy cd | review)

8. Oliver Mtukudzi - Nhava: I don't understand any lyrics of this group from Zimbabwe, but I dare you to feel down when you listen to this.
(samples / buy cd)

7. Nashville Pussy - Get Some: In the tradition of Let Them Eat Pussy but perhaps a little more polished.
(samples / buy cd | review)

6. Graceland Mafia - Family Business: I like this CD so much, I bought copies of it for five of my friends.
(samples / buy cd | review)

5. Mike Doughty - Haughty Melodic: Quirky goodness (featuring Dave Matthews on "Tremendous Brunettes") from the former Soul Coughing frontman.
(samples / buy cd | review)

4. The Blue Van - The Art of Rolling: Big, wide-open retro sounds make this an album you want to blast on your car stereo with all the windows open.
(samples / buy cd | review)

3. Athlete - Tourist: A beautiful English pop CD featuring one of my favorite songs of the year "Half Light."
(samples / buy cd | review)

2. Clutch - Robot Hive/Exodus: Another outstanding effort from the kings of intellectual hard rock. Clutch continues to grow as a band and develop a unique sound.
(samples / buy cd | review)

1. Lucero - Nobody's Darlings: Excellent roots rock from this Memphis band.
(samples / buy cd)

Honorable mention
Note: my honorable mention could easily have been my top 5. However, the artists in my honorable mention have received a lot of recognition already, so I wanted to recognize bands or artists that fly a little more under the radar. In any case, my honorable mention, in no particular order.

Dwight Yoakam—Blame the Vain
Bruce Springsteen—Devils and Dust
Chicago Blues Reunion—Buried Alive in the Blues
Mad Dogs & Okies
Buddy Guy—Bring ‘em In

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