By Andy Greenwald
Updated January 06, 2011 at 05:00 AM EST

2010 was a year of ?90s overload as indie groups reunited and cashed in on nostalgia for that simpler, grungier time. Young Kentucky band Cage the Elephant offer a contemporary alternative to the Alternative Nation with their sophomore album, Thank You Happy Birthday. Charismatic lead shrieker Matt Shultz wears his slacker influences proudly: On quiet-quiet-LOUD pogofests ”Aberdeen” and ”Shake Me Down,” sounds cribbed from the Pixies and Nirvana seem as fresh as an unworn flannel. B

Download these:
Future ironic moshpit classic Aberdeen

Haunted acoustic strummer Shiver