90. Kings of Convenience, Quiet Is The New Loud (Astralwerks, 2001)

These Norwegian folksters are not afraid to look like dorks on their album cover, and therein lies much of their charm. Bowing down to the altar of Simon and Garfunkel and Belle and Sebastian doesn’t hurt, either. With a half-mocking title that’s nothing less than a battle cry, this record revels in a rare, understated beauty. As melancholy and spare as Nick Drake (see # 96), only much more innocent and a little more open. Sort of the aural equivalent of comfort food, some might find it boring or even worse, bland. But those tight harmonies and nylon acoustic guitars never fail to nourish me.