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Added by the giraffe

on 16 Dec 2011 10:19

 
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Best albums of 2011

Sort by: Showing 25 items
People who added this item 6  Average listal rating (6 ratings) 7  IMDB Rating
1. Deerhoof Vs. Evil - Deerhoof
Deerhoof Vs. Evil was a surprise from the moment I started listening to it. I've always heard good things about Deerhoof but hadn't got around to checking them out before this one. So when I couldn't stop listening to it for a couple months & then remained in regular rotation through the end of the year it rightly earned its spot atop the years' releases.

Like everything else I heard this year, however, it fell just short of what I'd consider a perfect 10 (regardless of how much I listened to it).

Favorite song: "I Did Crimes for You"


See also: 99% Upset Feeling, Deerhoof's excellent FREE live-album recorded during their tour behind this album
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 20  Average listal rating (17 ratings) 7.5  IMDB Rating
2. The Hunter - Mastodon
Crack the Skye distinguished Mastodon as metal's most important band going forward, and The Hunter is clearly the sound of the band blowing off steam rather than taking themselves too seriously. The album takes a few listens to fully appreciate, but once you've wrapped your head around it it's more rewarding with every listen. In fact, I spent the first weekend that it was on Youtube for early-listening with the enhanced video playing in a loop & must have listened to it over a dozen times in 3 consecutive nights.
Offsite review at theprp.com

Favorite song: "All the Heavy Lifting"
mmmm...drums
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 1  Average listal rating (1 ratings) 9  IMDB Rating
3. We Are the Champions - Jeff the Brotherhood
As I said in my Most anticipated albums of 2011 list: It's everything a sophomore album should be. JTB build off the foundation laid down on their debut, showing progression and improved songwriting skills. Even better, this time around the songs are more easily distinguished from one another. Good stuff.

the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 11  Average listal rating (7 ratings) 7.6  IMDB Rating
4. Wild Flag - Wild Flag
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 9  Average listal rating (6 ratings) 8.3  IMDB Rating
5. Undun - The Roots
Offsite review at The A.V. Club


Favorite song: "Tip the Scale"
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 5  Average listal rating (4 ratings) 5.5  IMDB Rating
6. All At Once - The Airborne Toxic Event
The Airborne Toxic Event's sophomore album is basically more of the same, but that's not at all a bad thing. The sincerity & emotion is every bit as strong as it was on their debut, and this album feels more cohesive than the first. My favorite song on the album isn't the best (that'd be either "Welcome to Your Wedding Day" or "The Graveyard Near the House"), but thanks to a reference to one of my top 10 albums of all time I can't help but love it.

Favorite song: "Strange Girl"
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 1  Average listal rating (1 ratings) 8  IMDB Rating
7. The Apologist - East of the Wall
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 6  Average listal rating (6 ratings) 7.5  IMDB Rating
8. Life Fantastic - Man Man
I spent most of 2010 & the first half of 2011 listening to Man Man's first 3 albums a LOT. So my expectations for this one (their 4th) were higher than they managed to deliver. Rather than push forward with their sound it seems like they simply refined the sound they'd already established, which isn't entirely bad but I can't help but feel the whole thing could be better.

Most often stuck in my head: "Piranhas Club"

(Though I think my favorite on the album is "Steak Knives".)
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 4  Average listal rating (3 ratings) 8.7  IMDB Rating
9. Polymers Are Forever - Future Of The Left
future of the left seemingly released Polymers Are Forever just to prove they really were working on their upcoming 3rd album all year long. It's a mixed bag EP that primarily offers a taste of what to expect from their changed line-up, and hints at great things to come when the new album drops in 2012. The lack of cohesion here keeps it from reaching greatness, but there's a lot interesting going on & they're definitely branching out & moving away from being merely a continuation of Mclusky.

Favorite song: "My Wife Is Unhappy"
*Song now absent from YouTube. Sorry.*
(especially the bit about Joe Pesci near the end)
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 4  Average listal rating (1 ratings) 8  IMDB Rating
10. Live On I-5 - Soundgarden
The setlist/tracklist here is excellent, featuring most of Soundgarden's best songs plus a couple of covers. Cornell's voice isn't always as good as it is on their albums, which makes for an occasionally grating listen. The more I listen to the album I'm minding it less though. The covers ("Helter Skelter" and "Search and Destroy") are solid, and musically the entire band is tight & firing on all cylinders. So my issues with Cornell's vocals plus the fact that I simply prefer the album versions of most of these songs to the incarnations captured here prevent this from being anything more than an 8/10.

Favorite song: "Rusty Cage" (which normally wouldn't be my favorite, but the way they tear through it & the fact it's dedicated to Johnny Cash...WOW)
**Sorry, couldn't find this one**
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 7  Average listal rating (6 ratings) 7.5  IMDB Rating
11. Green Naugahyde - Primus
As a long-time Primus fan I dig it, but the magic that the band has when Tim "Herb" Alexander is on drums is absent. The new guy does a good job, & some new sonic territories are explored, but I simply don't see this one being a new favorite. I may not even listen to it as much as Antipop, but we'll see.

Favorite song: "Jilly's on Smack"
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 5  Average listal rating (4 ratings) 7  IMDB Rating
12. Tao of the Dead - ...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead
As I said in my Most anticipated albums of 2011 list: Tao of the Dead is much better than their previous release Century of Self, and as a whole it's better than the album before that So Divided. I hear traces of their earliest works in places, and the album shows more focus than the last two efforts. The 16-minute-plus finale is especially noteworthy, which is actually 5 songs perfectly merged into one long track.

the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 7  Average listal rating (6 ratings) 8.8  IMDB Rating
13. The Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues - Between the Buried and Me
Related list: 2011 Favorite Albums... So Far! by 4Gypsies

Here's how it starts:
the giraffe's rating:

People who added this item 2  Average listal rating (2 ratings) 8  IMDB Rating
14. No Kings - Doomtree
Hip-hop collective Doomtree turns out a solid record, largely on the strengths of having P.O.S. and Dessa in their ranks.

the giraffe's rating:


Disappointments

These albums were ones I anticipated to be better than they actually were. Most were average; the new Beastie Boys album was utter crap. Thus they're arranged from best to worst.

Still unheard

Half of these I've actually listened to, but I have yet to figure out my opinion of them. The rest I haven't listened to yet. Once I have they'll move out of this section.

Listed alphabetically by title.

 

Added to

9 votes
the giraffe's music lists guide (37 lists)
list by the giraffe
Published 2 years, 1 month ago 2 comments
2 votes
the giraffe's lists for 2011 (10 lists)
list by the giraffe
Published 1 year, 4 months ago



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Comments

Posted: 2 years, 2 months ago at Feb 15 4:14
I was wondering when we'd finally see this list. :) Great choices, man, and thanks for including the clips for the benefit of those of us who aren't familiar with some of the ones you picked.
Posted: 1 year, 5 months ago at Nov 9 1:44
So happy that No Kings made the list! I finally got around to buying a copy and am definitely digging it.

I've also recently discovered that if I wake up in a foul mood, I need only watch the Bangarang video and I quickly understand that everything will be okay :)

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