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Gnarls Barkley

Album: Sam Sparro, Sam Sparro (Island)

Sam Sparro, an auteur of DIY electrofunk is, much to everyone's surprise, the man of the moment, with "Black & Gold" – the unexpected hit of 2008 – being held off the No 1 spot by Estelle.

Album: The Black Keys, Attack & Release (V2)

'Attack & Release' was produced by Danger Mouse (of Gnarls Barkley/Gorillaz fame), but give or take a few plasticky background beats, if someone told you it was recorded between 1967 and 1974 by Foghat or Rory Gallagher, you wouldn't blink.

Album: Gnarls Barkley, The Odd Couple (Warner Brothers)

There's a sinister undertow to several tracks on The Odd Couple, which is not surprising for a duo prepared to dress up as gladiators, chefs, nurses and characters from The Wizard of Oz, Star Wars and Austin Powers at their shows.