2011 – My Favorite Albums

Posted: December 29, 2011 in Favorites

I didn’t listen to as many new albums as I did last year (I blame all those reunion shows) but 2011 still had some good ones.

My Favorite Albums of 2011 (alphabetical order by band)

The Antlers – Burst Apart

This was the highly anticipated follow up to Hospice (2009). I saw them play this entire album live at the NPR show at SXSW. It’s much less depressing than their previous album, but it’s still good. This time around the Antlers go for a slightly poppier sound. At times this reminds me of Radiohead and also the Notwist. The Antlers manage to keep it interesting mainly because of Pete Silberman’s haunting falsetto vocals.

Deer Tick – Divine Providence

I’ve been a fan of Deer Tick for a few years now. I really loved the alt-country sound of their first two albums, War Elephant (2007) and Born On Flag Day (2009). However, when I saw them in 2010, they were going for a rowdier, faster, rock sound. Apparently, John McCauley put down the Hank Williams and picked up the Replacements. At first, this caught me off guard and I tuned them out for a while. Their latest album Divine Providence does a great job at taking that energy and refining it. I haven’t seen them since this came out, but after this album, Deer Tick is definitely on my radar again.

F*cked Up – David Comes to Life

I kind of missed the boat on this one. I’ve seen F*cked Up live before and they put on an entertaining show. I wasn’t really into their recorded music. I remember hearing about how these guys were putting out a hardcore rock opera and I kind of laughed it off. I finally gave it a listen about two months ago and I was blown away. If you like hardcore, you’ll like this album. Even if you don’t like hardcore you should at least set aside 80 minutes of your day and give it a listen.

The Lonely Forest – Arrows

Arrows is the third album and major label debut of this Anacortes, WA band. It’s no surprise this this it their most polished album to date. The album is also much poppier than their previous releases, most likely due to the production work of Death Cab For Cutie’s Chris Walla. This album came out back in March so I’ve given it many listens. It’s nothing groundbreaking, but it’s good, solid indie pop.

We Were Promised Jetpacks – In The Pit Of The Stomach

This is the second album from these boys from Scotland. It’s a little more aggressive than their first album but it’s not a major departure. It’s another dose of fast-paced, rhythmic post-punk. Basically, if you liked the first album, you are going to like this one.

Wild Flag – S/T

This is the debut album of Carrie Brownstein’s latest band, Wild Flag. Wild Flag are great live and this album does a nice job at conveying that energy. If you were a fan of Sleater-Kinney’s later albums, you are going to like this album. Although, Wild Flag’s sound comes off as much more playful than S-K. My favorite songs on here are “Romance” and “Boom.”

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