I'll try and speed this up, I've been so busy lately.
I primarily listen to metal related material, but I do listen to a good amount of music outside the realm of heavy as well. Here are a few I've enjoyed this year.
7. Hugh Laurie - Let Them Talk
I'm not an expert on the blues but as far as I can tell this is a solid representation of the genre. Hugh Laurie, of House fame, is the primary performer and sings in addition to playing piano. Most of the songs are traditional blues and are skillfully and authentically executed. Laurie isn't the strongest singer but he sings from the heart and his genuine love for the blues is quite clear.
6. *shels - Plains of the Purple Buffalo
Uplifting post rock with great vocal melodies. Beautiful record that really takes you to another world. Could have gone with my metal list as well but I decided to leave it here.