4 - Fleet Foxes – Fleet Foxes

Seattle's Fleet Foxes released their eponymous record to critical acclaim back in June, and have seen it consistently lauded as one of the defining albums of the year in the six months since. That it also met with commercial success must have stunned the young band, whose beards and flannel shirts are a far cry from the skinny jeans and angular haircuts gracing many of 2007's heavy hitters.

Comparisons to Crosby, Stills & Nash and Animal Collective aren't far wrong, though there is a tenderness and sincerity that makes the band a far more comfortable listen than many of their new-folk brethren. With just a couple of EPs to their name, such a confident and assured sound surprised listeners, and they have inspired a vocal and devoted following that encompasses soft-rock Starbucks drinkers and chin stroking bloggers with not so much as a blink.

Just as the claymation video “White Winter Hymnal” rolled through the seasons, Fleet Foxes managed to do the same, creating a bed of calming summer sounds that stayed with listeners as the leaves turned brown.

Play Fleet Foxes Next on Last.fm Best Of 2008 She might have a little voice, but who was a big hit at number 3?