We could tell early on that 2009 was going to be an outstanding year for music. Bands such as Animal Collective, Andrew Bird, Bon Iver and Antony and the Johnsons all released new music, and that was just in January. By the time we posted our online ballot to vote for the year's best music, we had a dizzying array of albums and artists from which to choose.
Thousands of votes poured in and, just as it is every year, the race was very close. In our mid-year ballot, Animal Collective's Merriweather Post Pavilion was the most popular album. But by the end of this year, Grizzly Bear had edged its way to the top, with Animal Collective, Phoenix, Neko Case and Andrew Bird rounding out the top five.
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