My Favorite Albums of 2011

It’s January, holiday break is winding to a close, the holidays are over, time to write my “best of” list. These lists are probably 90% for my benefit, I just like coming to a conclusion after a year of music searching of 10 diamonds in the rough, it feels so finished and satisfying. So here we go.

Albums that came out in 2010 but I didn’t get to hear until 2011 that probably would’ve made my 2010 list include

Johnny Flynn’s album Been Listening

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Marina & The Diamonds’ album The Family Jewels

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Geographer’s album Animal Shapes

Guster’s album Easy Wonderful


2011 Honarable Mentions go to

The Antlers “Burst Apart” With best songs: I Don’t Want Love & Corsicana,

ADELE “21” With best songs: Rolling in the Deep & Rumour

Death Cab for Cutie “Codes and Keys” with best songs: Stay Young, Go Dancing & Underneath the Sycamore,

Fleet Foxes “Helplessness Blues” with best songs: Lorelai & Helplessness Blues,

Blitzen Trapper “American Goldwing” with best songs: Taking it Easy too Long, Love the Way you Walk Away & Fletcher,

10. Iron & Wine  “Kiss Each Other Clean” with best songs: Walking Far from Home & Your Fake Name is Good Enough for Me
9. The Decemberists “The King is Dead” with best songs: Calamity Song, Rox in the Box, Down by the Water & This is Why We Fight
8. Foster the People “Torches” Saw these guys live, great work-out music, kind of silly pop, but it got fairly good rotation on my player this year with best songs Don’t Stop (Color on the Walls), Broken Jaw, Pumped up Kicks (sigh . . . yes, I liked a song about a kid shooting kids for their shoes . . . I hate myself for it really).
7. The Womats “The Wombats Proudly Present . . . This Modern Glitch” best songs include Tokyo (Vampires & Wolves), 1996 & Our Perfect Disease
6. Cold War Kids “Mine is Yours” Their EP made it on my list last year, I LOVE CWK! So pretty much whatever they make I kind of love, best songs Mine is Yours, Royal Blue, Finally Begin, Sensitive Kid and actually the whole album is terrific, I highly recommend.
5. Beirut “The Rip Tide” This was a surprise album for me, I really enjoyed it, I tend to like bands with a ton of instruments (Mumford and Sons, The Decemberists) and Beirut fits the bill best songs A Candle’s Fire, Santa Fe & The Rip Tide
4. Mason Jennings “Minnesota” LOVE LOVE LOVE Mason Jennings, the whole album is worth it but my favorite song is Clutch
3. Bon Iver ‘Self Titled’ Awesome album, this is an album that you must listen to from track 1 – track 10 for the most enjoyable experience. The whole album is terrific, but my favorite song is Michicant

2. The Black Keys “El Camino” This is one of the Few albums that make me want to stand up and scream/dance and quite honestly learn the guitar so I can jam out to the great beats, I love The Black Keys, favorite songs are Lonely Boy, Gold on the Ceiling, Stop Stop & Sister but really the WHOLE album is terrific, another great work out album
1. Florence + The Machine “Ceremonials” I really didn’t like her first album, but last summer her single What the Water Gave Me turned my head, then Ceremonials was released end of October and totally took over the Slotemaker Zune players, our neighbors are probably sick of it, our biggest dissapointment was not seeing her perform in Seattle in December at the Paramount . . . next time maybe. Anyway, the whole album is terrific, every song I love.

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