Albums of 2011 (20 - 11 and Anticipated Releases)

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29 Dic 2011, 3:59

Albums of 2011



















20 – 11











20
Gary Clark Jr. - Bright Lights


Oh sweet Jesus.

Screw all of you and your stupid 27 Club. This man is twenty seven years old and has pretty much resurrected everything you thought died when the weight of the world came crashing down upon your shoulders.

Holy Mother of God, I don't even know what you are doing reading this review and not listening to this EP. Unless you are listening to the EP and reading this and in that case:

"ISN'T THIS JUST THE BEST!?! COME OVER TO MY HOUSE AND WE CAN SHOUT AT EACH OTHER ABOUT HOW MUCH BETTER THIS IS THAN ANYTHING WE'VE EVER HEARD! THIS AIN'T YOUR DADDY'S ROCK AND ROLL, THIS IS THE GOOD STUFF!

WHAT'S THAT? HALF OF THE ALBUM IS LIVE!?! HOLY BALLSACK, WHY HAVE I WASTED MY LIFE LISTENING TO ANYTHING THAT ISN'T FROM THIS MAN!?!"











19
Chad Valley - Equatorial Ultravox

Pretty flippin' good. I honestly can't even imagine how amazing the first album from this man is going to be.

Despite the fact that this is only an EP, I find it to be one of the most memorable releases of the year. This is incredible. You know what, this might as well be an album. How this manages to accomplish what it does in only seven songs, I'll never know. I kind of feel obligated to point this album out to anyone that's strictly anti-electronics in music, because this man accomplishes more with a synth than most fully-equipped bands do.

I normally don't approve of massive waves of similar-sounding artists, but this 'Blessing Force' movement coming out of Oxford is surely going to benefit this planet.










18
Chad VanGaalen - Diaper Island

Look, I know I'm not supposed to judge a book by its cover and all that and blah blah blah blah, but this album cover is flippin' awesome. I love it.

Even taking the art out of the equation, I still love this. It varies quite a bit but really sticks to the whole "we're here to make whatever 'problems' you have completely insignificant" vibe. Which is a hard thing to pull off, which makes it kind of a big deal.

This album took a ton of listens before I ever felt comfortable even putting it on the list. Yeah, it's that good. The diversion that VanGaalen has taken here completely justifies my belief that he is without a doubt one of the best musicians currently making music. Even his whole "all I do is record music, paint, and draw all day in my little shack of a house" persona gets me excited. The first time I listened to this I was so pissed off and frustrated at just how good it is, "This is incredible. No one listens to this man and he just keeps putting out all this perfect crap."

I want to live on Diaper Island. I'm sure the smell is terrible but these sounds must make up for it.

That's it, I'm done. I'm shutting down and turning my prejudice filter off. Anyone who doesn't listen to VanGaalen is a complete waste of organs and should not be allowed to exist. This is a great album to start with and, if you've got the balls, his other work will send you down experimental roads you never knew existed.










17
The Chemical Brothers - Hanna


Absolutely, definitely, and without-a-doubt amazing.

We have truly reached a golden era. An era where incredibly well-respected musicians feel comfortable enough dedicating their time and effort to a score that they take just as seriously as an album.

I'm not going to dress it up or sugarcoat it: I love this.

There's a part in the film where one of the characters whistles the melody to one of the tracks and my brain literally just about exploded out of my ears. Dude, so meta.

I don't care what you think about the film (Personally, I quite like it) because this, as a stand alone body of work, is fantastic. When you read the word 'fantastic,' imagine that I'm placing hard emphasis on the t's and the c. Metaphorical spit should be flying from my ink to your eyes.

I love this.

As a filmmaker (holy cow, that sounds incredibly douchey and pretentious as balls), I would feel so terrible even putting images to these sounds, for fear of ruining them. But then, five minutes later, you better believe I'd be getting way too excited about planning out the shots.

It's just so condescendingly innocent at one moment and then “Fine, let's grow up then” the next. Spectacular work, front to back.

This album renders me a ornery little boy with a stupid smile on his face.










16
Giraffes? Giraffes! - Pink Magick

I will not lie to you. I simply refuse to do it. Since we are all on the same page, the page of truth, I will tell you that my love for Giraffes? Giraffes! exists on an unconditional platform.

This outfit is without a doubt my favorite, and I believe the best, math-rock band of any era. Superbass!!!! (Black Death greatest hits vol.1) and More Skin With Milk Mouth are both incredibly concise and original releases and Pink Magick definitely follows suit. Their amazing trend of amazing song naming ability that no other band can touch also continues with some ridiculous and hilarious sentences used as song titles.

I can't really say that this album represents a growth for them but that's only because they exist in this weird sub-genre of math rock that doesn't require progression just yet. What Giraffes? Giraffes! has right now is like a little vacuum of creativity, inspiration from outside sources may bleed into it but nothing escapes. Nothing.

This album is just incredibly good. Just listen to this and remind yourself that two men wrote, recorded, mixed, mastered, and released this basically on their own. Yeah, I know, we should put their heads on Mount Rushmore.










15
Shabazz Palaces - Black Up


I have no idea what's going on.

It's just absolutely crazy.

It's like The Dark Side Of The Moon of rap.

It's like the Kid A of hip-hop.

I've never heard anything like it.

I am in no way comparing it to Madvillain's Madvillainy, but that's the closest comparison I can draw. It makes a conscious effort to be different from everything else without sacrificing quality for the right to say so.

Albums tend to be like pools of water. It's not fun when you can see the bottom and you always want a good swim. If there are no sharks in the pool, that helps as well. Black Up has no floor, no one will ever reach the bottom. No one will ever discover what lies infinitely beneath the surface.

Check back with me in 2019, this album will still be pretty high on the Best of the Decade list. There's no way it can fall. Every single day of my life I will make it a priority to,

"Clear some space out, so we can space out."



The most original release of the year, by far.










14
The Drums - Portamento

When any high school boy who starts a band, writes a few songs, and plays a few shows is asked by an attractive female in his age group if his music is any good, this is what that boy thinks he sounds like. He doesn't, we know that.

This is very simple and very direct. It doesn't have to pretend to be anything more than what it is and I will always hold it in high regard for that.

The thing is…it's very good. It may act modest, but oh boy, there's a lot of substance here.

It's weird because it uses fairly standard instruments and electronics, but it really doesn't feel confined to any set decade or genre. It's very detached, very secluded. It's a very nice album to leave the world for forty-five minutes for and just kinda…exist. I'm putting this in very pretentious terms, I know, but it's a pretty unique release.

The very first time I listened to it I sat pretty far from the situations and complexity of the world and just listened. Then when it finished, I looked upon the cover art of the feast I just partook in and laughed and laughed and laughed. That album cover is just perfect. There are serious themes and emotions flowing through this that are only evident if you leave any and all preconceived notions of this life at the door.



But seriously guys, what happened to album covers this year? It's like everyone just sat in a drum circle and concluded,

"You know what would be hilarious? If our album cover this year looked NOTHING like the message we are trying to send."

"Dude, that's hilarious. I think."











13
Coldplay - Mylo Xyloto


Alright dickwits, listen up. I have incredibly strict rules regarding the types of people I allow to have credible opinions on this band. To have a respectable and objective opinion on Coldplay you must meet ALL of the following criteria:

1. Must own at least five (5) Brian Eno albums and no fewer than ten (10) albums that he produced.

2. Must have read War and Peace. This point is non-negotiable.

3. Must acknowledge that OK Computer is not the best Radiohead album.

4. Must acknowledge that U2 has not put out anything of even the slightest amount of value since The Joshua Tree.

5. Can not bestow any sort of importance at all on Muse. Non-negotiable.

6. Must be able to recite the fact that 'pop music' refers to a method of distribution and not a specific genre or sound.

7. Must own at least thirty (30) albums older than their year of birth.

8. Must acknowledge that Sophie Scholl was probably the greatest human being that ever walked the Earth.

I have been to more concerts than you will ever go to in your life and I can honestly say that the few Coldplay shows I've attended are some of the only times I've ever feared for my well-being. There is a very deep intellectual schism between fans of this band and I have driven at least twelve people to the emergency room as a result of fights breaking out at shows between the smarter fans and those that like modern U2. There have been about five or six of these cases where the person was admitted to the ER in critical condition. I am not even joking. I have seen a bone sticking out a man's arm after he retreated from one of these. I have never gone to a Coldplay show without knowing fully well that I will have to give my testimony to a police officer in the venue parking lot as a group of people are treated for injuries. I have seen war, and it was all yellow.

I take this Coldplay crap very seriously. The problem with the British quartet is that they appeal to way too many people. They exploded much too quickly but have done an incredible job at maintaining a (somewhat) humble output.

Parachutes (while released under a record company) absolutely set the stone cold standard for what indie albums had to live up to last decade. They could have easily let their instant fame warp their sophomore release, but they didn't.

A Rush of Blood to the Head was an absolute, knock-out home run that not only solidified the band's place in contemporary rock but their place in the decade's history.

Careful to be avoid complacency in their sound, they released X&Y. Though it could have definitely done with some trimming (okay, a lot of trimming), it was still a respectable release.

Then, 2008 rolled around.

Now, I know I have made it abundantly clear since then but I feel as if I should emphasize it a bit more: Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends is kind of a good album. I may have made my feelings on this fact evident when I released my Best of the 00's list and it tied for Best Album of the Decade with Kid A (Radiohead created a world but Coldplay populated it, blah blah blah, you remember).

Viva is a masterpiece and I will not budge on that point. Each and every song from that album is nothing short of brilliant. Then, Coldplay took the unreleased material and jammed it into the Prospekt's March EP, which also ranked incredibly high on my best of the decade list.

What I am trying to make clear is that not only has this band put out consistently good soft-rock with a hidden underbelly of literary genius, but that their last album cycle was by far one of the most productive and rewarding from almost any band I can remember. So, they had big expectations to fill in most camps. Did they meet this expectations? Did they break them? Well, no. To both of those.

I am not the average Coldplay fan. Clocks is a terrible song and Viva la Vida is almost worse (when played outside the context of the album). My favorite Coldplay song of all time is one that 99% of the people on this planet haven't heard and those that have probably don't know the title. The only hint I'll give is that I truly feel that if Coldplay were to continue with the form of self-expression they utilize in that song, one of extreme subtlety, they would pass any and all modern artists and go down in history as one of the greatest bands of all time. But they haven't, and might not do so until they get old and cranky.

I am not some little thirteen year old girl, so I wasn't expecting Mylo Xyloto to even come close to Viva or anything else the band has done. But, I was expecting more than this. Chris Martin has this stupid fixation with the worst kinds of hip-hop and it's starting to break out into the group's music like pimples on a prom princess.

What we have here is a clear and definite expression of the current-Coldplay mindset. They have abandoned the David Bowie concept of making only intellectually strong radio-rock and instead decided to pander to stadium-rock ticket sales. Coldplay has four albums worth of proof that they are Radiohead Jr., but this album provides ammo for the idea that they may be U2 Jr.

And that pisses me off.

But, I will not say that have sold out. No, not just yet. You see, this album has a ridiculously strong story arc that goes through the track list. Without this method of storytelling, this would have been incredibly far down the list. I'm not going to go as far as calling it a concept album, but it is insanely close to that incredibly difficult arena of rock.

To be honest, I want this album to tank. I want it to sell badly and damage the band's reputation. Then they might realize that they've become way too comfortable and need to get back to the mindset where they have the balls to put Chinese Sleep Chant on a Top-40 album.

I want those wankers to get back to that, "Oi, let's throw on a bitta' avant-pop, just to give the wee 'uns nightmares" mentality. Coldplay, this is a change in your style and that's all I ever require out of a band. For that, I won't mark you down, you get a pass on this one. But if you ever pander to this demographic again I will simply stop defending your artistic merit and only inhabit the first four worlds you created.

But seriously, what's the deal with leaving off Moving to Mars? Guys, if you would have put that song at the very end of the track list, I would have given you album of the year. That's right, you guys screwed yourself out of another first place. Moving to Mars would have been the exclamation point to perfectly compliment the themes and concepts you were exploring. I will never forgive you for this, ever. Stop leaving your best material on B-sides. That crap is getting old.

And, if you want a serious criticism of the music itself: I think the notion being passed around that Eno over-produced the balls off of this album is pretty accurate. I don't want a live album but I don't want a synthetic rock release either.

I have no problem defending Coldplay, but I honestly hate how high up this album is. TRUST ME, if it didn't have a perfect story structure, this album would be well down the list.

But seriously, you people piss me off. You can't like Pixar AND hate Coldplay. They're the exact same thing.

Plus, Coldplay forbid this album being available on Spotify and other on-demand music services so that the album's coherence would be preserved. So, I don't want to hear any of this crap about them making terrible albums. No, Coldplay writes terrible songs for amazing albums. That's what's happened here.

In conclusion, this album almost perfectly backs up my theory that the longer a Coldplay album title is, the better it will be. I still prefer X&Y to this though.










12
Yuck - Yuck

Don't even think of being off-put by the album cover, this is just the most raw and visceral shoegazer-pop that you may ever hear. Well, at least from this year.

It is an absolutely spectacular breath of fresh air. This album makes me just so happy it should be a crime against humanity.

The band is named Yuck? With an album called Yuck? How absolutely contradictory to the sheer quantity of quality music this album contains.

I have fallen head over heels in love with this album. These guys should have been around in the 1990s, they could have easily pulled off some brilliant albums that we'd still be marveling over today. Good thing they're starting right here and right now, because this if this album is a preview of their career...it's going to be a long, fast, and jagged road.

It's just so solid and genuine. It feels modest and so eccentric.

If this album was a person, I'd award it TIME Person of the Year knowing that they'd still stay humble and be the best friend I made all year.

Studio Audience: Awwwwwwwwwwww...

I understand the comparisons to Pavement and Dinosaur Jr. and they are completely and utterly true and accurate, but Yuck just doesn't carry any stigma yet, meaning this album stays innocent.

And the length! It's perfect! They literally could have ended it after the eighth song, but oh no, it kicks right back up again for a few more songs and STILL finishes in a place that's more than perfect.

This is the definition of why people consume music, I never wanted it to end and because I own the album it never has to.

This album has some very glaring mistakes, but they are done out of pure innocence. They are minor issues that can be overlooked with the greatest of ease because the band didn't notice them while they were having what feels like the time of their life.










11
Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues


So much for the sophomore slump.

Before we start, you listen here: I am the biggest opponent of this whole 'neo-folk' revolution that seems to be sweeping the globe. Folk is meant to be played by a Canadian man driving between gigs in the northernmost continental United States in a van that he can barely afford to keep running. Folk music is about living both a philosophically and physically worse life than it's country music cousin. The lyrics are supposed to reflect that thesis, with the eclectic instrumentals behind them providing the anti-thesis, combining to create something that can be called nothing less than a creation that this world should be humbled to call its own.

This is not happening with this new generation of folktards.

Buying an absolutely brand new guitar, calling up all of your other upper-middle class friends, and starting a folk band to sing about how hard your life in a first world country has been for the twenty-two years you've been alive makes you such a pretentious embodiment of American ignorance that calling you a hipster would be a compliment. The musicians dub this a 'nu-folk/indie-folk revolution' but 'pseudo-folking fad' is probably a more accurate description of this wave of excrement that's flooding the scene.

[Author's Note:] This video basically depicts what modern folk fans are devolving into: sub-hipsters. Seriously, look at that audience and look at what unfolds here, and the first thought any rational human being should have is, “Yeah, I bet every single one of them owns Sun Giant. On vinyl.” Warning: Pretty graphic.

All that being said, I hereby anoint Robin Pecknold as the Patron Saint of Punk Proprietary. Fleet Foxes has created something just unreasonably memorable here. I can say right here, right now that it is absolutely head and shoulders above and miles ahead of St. Pecknold & Friends' debut effort, Fleet Foxes, which was perfect.

See, all great albums have those songs that become instant favorites or perfect radio singles. This album completely fails in that aspect. It is impossible to listen to just one song and feel content or satisfied with the experience. The only time one can feel right and at ease is after listening to every track in succession. The very moment I heard-

"I was raised up believing I was somehow unique/
Like a snowflake distinct among snowflakes, unique in each way you can see/
And now after some thinking, I'd say I'd rather be/
A functioning cog in some great machinery serving something beyond me"


-I knew that I was now a member of a phonic orgy. And you better believe it was consensual.

None of the songs hold up by themselves, but together they are stronger than any almost other collection of music released this year. And that, by definition, makes it one of the best albums of the year.





Notable 2012 Releases

There aren't a ton of albums that are must-listen-to's coming out next year, here are a few.










The All-American Rejects - Kids In The Street


The All-American Rejects suck. HARD.

These guys shouldn't ever be on anyone's 'Must Watch' list. But, they are responsible for Move Along, so I have to include them.










Animal Collective - LP9

Has anyone else noticed that Animal Collective put out an album every five minutes? And that they're all 'Earth-shattering?'

Take those statements to be as sincere or as sarcastic as you want.










Atoms for Peace - LP1

I have a strong feeling that this one is going to piss me off in the best possible way. Thom will pull some sort of idiotic crap and put something amazing on here that should be on a Radiohead release instead. I'll love it but feel incredibly guilty at the same time.










The Beach Boys - I Honestly Have No Idea What They'll Call This One, Probably Something About Surfing

You have a soul, therefore you will listen. It's as simple as that.

I never said it will be good though.










Black Star - LP2

So, I mean...like...who isn't excited for this?










Bloc Party - LP4

YEAH! This is going to be great. I'm not stupid enough to expect another Silent Alarm but I have never been disappointed with a Bloc Party release.

Wait, forget what I just said, Bloc Party is actually on very thin ice with me. I recently re-discovered Cells Shaped Like Stars (Demo) and I'm not happy with them for not releasing that. I listen to hundreds of albums a year, which include thousands of songs, and THAT song has one of my favorite choruses of all time. Out of everything I've ever heard in my entire life, that chorus is among my favorites. And the wankers never went and released it.

There have been multiple reports that this is going to be a return to a 'rock' album, but I highly doubt that. They said the exact same thing about Intimacy.










Bruce Springsteen - LP19

(Yes, I'm aware that this is an incredibly old picture of him, but it's my favorite. I could post that picture of him humping that camera at the Super Bowl, but no one needs to see that.)

Pretty standard. Bruce Springsteen is releasing an album. You should probably listen to it. You don't have to but you might as well.










The Cranberries - Roses

Yes...oh yes...looking forward to it. Realistically, this will probably just be a mediocre reunion but part of me just hopes for more.










Daft Punk - LP4
My absolute favorite thing in the entire world is someone coming up to me and saying, "You know Jesse, Daft Punk is actually pretty good." Then I thank them for making me feel like it's flippin' 1997 again.

Thanks to the extended music video known as Tron: Legacy, everyone likes them now, but they'd be so much better if they used more bass...

*puts gun in mouth*

I have absolutely no idea if Daft Punk is doing anything next year, but I'm not going to break tradition and leave them off the list. That'd just be irresponsible.










Deerhunter - The Curve of Forgotten Things Score

Film scores will always count and releases from Deerhunter will always count.










Editors - LP4

I think that The Back Room is an extraordinarily overlooked album. Their followup efforts are nothing to brush off either, so I'm looking forward to this.

They're really efficient about changing their style, so I'm not even the least bit worried.










First Aid Kit - The Lion's Roar

So I saw these two perform live and the unreleased material they played was very, very good. Could this be the album that propels them even further, maybe to house-hold name status? I don't know, but I wouldn't be surprised.










Flying Lotus - LP4

Definitely looking forward to it. Honestly, you kind of have to be.










Grizzly Bear - LP4

Hey, all we can hope for is that they stop the decline. Horn Of Plenty was amazing but they've been steadily getting worse. Not that any of them aren't great though.










Jonny Greenwood - The Master Score

Eagerly awaiting both the film and its score. Because it's not like he's good at these things, right?











Jonny Greenwood - We Need To Talk About Kevin Score

Oh, hey look, there's another one. The only thing more traumatic than the film is going to be the score.









Leonard Cohen - Old Ideas

Hey, shut up. It won't be the best thing ever released, but it's worth a spin.










Madvillain - LP2


My inner twelve-year-old is so excited.

Is he going to put money on it even being released in his lifetime? No, obviously not, but let's not crush his spirit.

Theoretically, this could be the year.










MGMT - MGMT

So this one might not come out until 2013 but there's still a good chance we'll hear it next year.

To be honest, I really don't care what it sounds like, these guys understand that each release needs to sound different and necessary. They've done it twice now, there's no good reason not to expect another.










Miike Snow - Happy To You

I really enjoyed their self-titled debut, and they're talented enough to make this record their make-or-break attempt at really getting somewhere different.










Modest Mouse - LP7

Wait, who are these guys again? Oh that's right, it's that band that I absolutely drop everything for a good year or two when they have a new release.

Let's be mature here, this is probably going to be the best album of 2012. If it is actually released.










Morrissey - LP10

This album is already recorded and ready for release. That's a fact. He just needs a label to put it out.

Maybe if he stopped being such a stuck-up wanker, they might do it.

Then again, if he isn't a stuck-up wanker, he ceases to be Morrissey.

And that's just not worth it.










Mumford & Sons - LP2

My favorite part of Mumford & Sons was listening to Sigh No More nearly three years ago, thinking, “Yeah...okay,” and then a few years later everyone decides that this album is just so brand new and so original sounding. Look, if they change their sound, great, they'll get a good review. If they don't, well...no loss really.










Muse - LP6

The rumor is that this one will be about love, space, and rebellion. Oh, I'm sorry, did I say rumor? I meant fact. Come on people, it's the same thing over and over. But it's okay, because Bellamy has a wife and kids now. So there's no way that we're going to get any cheesy love songs on this one. Oh wait, that's all we're going to get.

Don't get me wrong, if Muse pull a 'Kid A' and radically attempt to alienate their fans, then I will be their number one follower. I'm serious, I will start worshiping this band. But the simple fact is that they won't, they don't have the balls to say no to all the cash they can get by writing top 40 rock. And that pisses me off. For a band that named their last album The Resistance, they sure do play by ALL of the rules.

Once again, Christian Finnegan puts it simply:

"Someday I hope to think I'm 1/10th as awesome as Muse thinks Muse is awesome."










of Montreal - Paralytic Stalks

Let's do this. That's all.










Passion Pit - LP2

You could say that I love Passion Pit, but I don't find that to be true. I don't understand the concept of loving a band that has only put out one album.

I love Manners, that is true, but an artist needs to put out at least three albums before I subconsciously decide that I love them. Passion Pit could either fall from grace on this next release (which is entirely possible) or they could somehow top their debut album, which would be near impossible.

I'm telling you right now, if LP2 is remotely close to Manners, you're looking at a Best Album of 2012 contender.

And I swear to God, if I hear one more song from Manners played over a commercial or movie trailer, I'm not going to be responsible for my actions.









Phoenix - LP5

Pro: This is so exciting! I've been telling people to listen to these guys for years and now everyone is!

Con: Oh crap. I've been telling people to listen to these guys for years and now everyone is.

The only reason I bring this incredibly pretentious point up is because the band has said that they are abandoning the sounds of Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix (as they should) and moving somewhere a bit more experimental.

So expect a bunch of seventeen-year-olds hearing their new album and complaining, "B-b-b-but…none of these sound like 1901!"










Pinback - Information Retrieved

The absolute best band that you don't listen to. No one listens to enough Pinback, myself included. And that pisses me off.










Placebo - LP7

I will never be ashamed of Placebo, but Battle for the Sun certainly wasn't something worthwhile. But again, I've been listening for way too long not to get excited for another release.

Yeah, like Jesse of all people was going to forget about a Placebo release.

I know, right?










Queens of the Stone Age - LP6

Looking forward to it.










Radiohead - LP9

They're always recording and they don't have a recording contract, so they can literally release an album without any warning (and often do). They're recording right now and in January, so we're either getting an LP or an EP sometime before/during the tour I would think.










Rush - Clockwork Angels

Yeah, like I'm just not going to point you in the direction of a Rush record release. Because I totally haven't done that ever before.










The Shins - Port of Morrow

Take a good long look, ladies and gentlemen. This will be the one that pisses me off the most next year.

Look, you stupid idiots, I'm just going to get this out of the way right now. The Shins have undergone a complete overhaul of their lineup. The only original member left is James Mercer. That would be a problem...if we weren't talking about James Mercer here. You know, the man responsible for most of the instrumentation anyway. So, it WILL sound different but it WILL sound just as good. There.

Look. Look up there. It's in writing. Next year, when all the Garden Staters are complaining about a completely “unexpected” change in sound, go back to those sentences up there. It's not something that's up for debate: it will sound different. It will probably be good, but we can't say just yet.










Sinéad O'Connor - How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?

My little punk-rock princess. I used to have this poster hanging up and I'd look at it anytime I ever took any girl in my generation even the least bit seriously about how "unique" and "different" they were.

Yeah, this album probably won't be Earth-shattering, but I'm okay with that. She's earned the right to calm down.

[Author's Note:] I find it pretty funny that she got married and divorced between the date this was originally published and now. So much for calming down.










Sigur Rós - LP6

I have never even been the least bit disappointed in anything these men have done, through all of the years and years and years I've been listening to them (since they toured with Radiohead). I love all of their discography equally. Odds are that they continue the trend.










The Stone Roses - LP3


Oh sweet Jesus. This is either going to be the single greatest thing ever recorded or the worst comeback in the history of the world.










The Ting Tings - Sounds From Nowheresville

Hey, shut your ugly little mouth. The Ting Tings are great. I said shut up.

I'm expecting more of the same from them: underrated pop.










U2 - Songs Of Ascent

Rumor has it that this is going to be the final U2 album.

Oh, I get it, 'Songs Of Ascent' as in 'after this album we'll ascend directly to Heaven to side beside the Lord because we're doing Christ's work through exploiting Africa and it's citizens' misfortune to sell iPods.”

Bo(red).










The Wrens - LP4

Guys, this is actually happening. I'm serious this year. There is supposedly enough material to do a double album or two LPs. I'd love the latter but certainly wouldn't be disappointed by the former.

[Author's Note:] Actually, there's a good chance this will be pushed back to 2013.

*throws something valuable at the wall*











The xx - LP2

YEAH! YES! OH I AM SO READY!

Sorry, but I think we're all on the same page with this one. Remember xx!?! Oh man, so excited. Yeah, I know they've undergone a lineup change, but they still got it. Literally can not wait.

[Author's Note:] After releasing a demo on Christmas, the band apparently informed the world that their next album would be 'club-inspired.'

Yeah, that deflated my expectations a bit, but then I listened to the demo track. Obviously they don't know the definition of 'club music' and I hope no one ever tells them.






You say that you haven't heard any of these albums? No excuses, click on the picture below to listen to a track from each release.

Playlist length = 51:14


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