I know the usual bit is to rank the 2011 albums, from best to worst, because everyone likes a list. The fact that no one can really dissect why #9 is better than #10, (number of songs in b minor? cameos by rappers? vocoders and accordians?) is besides the point. If, in five years, someone wants to stock up on their 2011 albums that they missed then the list is the preferred reference point. So here’s my list. I didn’t rank a thing … but I couldn’t resist alphabetizing them.
The Blue Van “Love Shot”: Originally released in 2010 but imported in 2011, these Danes have come a long way. How this record hasn’t been included in some sort of top 100 list is beyond me. It’s an excellent bluesy garage rock record that Black Keys fans could appreciate.
Dum Dum Girls “Only In Dreams”: These ladies still showcase their excellent garage rock ability with summer tinges. I am still getting used to the lead singer’s latest penchant for sounding like Chrissie Hynde, but it’s a fun record overall.
M83 “Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming”: A double dose from M83 was wonderful to hear, especially given that I can’t seem to get enough of the chill out and adrenaline burst music that Gonzalez lays forth every time. It may not be the group’s best, but the record certainly has earned multiple listens from me.
Mastodon “The Hunter”: I like my metal once in awhile, but I like it especially if the band tries to hide it with creativity. The diversity of sound and approach on this record made it a really interesting listen throughout.
Stephen Merritt “Obscurities”: I wrote about it here. Not for everyone, but for Magnetic Fields fanatics, it could be the release they have been waiting for!
There’s a list for you 2011 list lovers! Have a nice New Year…