Monday, December 26, 2011

Doug D's Top 10

Long time reader/first time poster...Here goes.

10. The Naked and Famous - Passive Me, Aggressive You

What I learned about myself from this album is that I still really enjoy somewhat anthemic pop songs.  This albums has it's share.  "Punching in a Dream" and "Young Blood" especially.  While nothing off the walls groundbreaking, this is a good album.  Starting and ending strong with "All of This" and "Girls Like You" respectively.

9. The Joy Formidable - The Big Roar

It seems ballsy to start an album with a 7 minute song, but "The Everchanging Spectrum of a Lie" holds your attention and offers a peak into where the next 11 tracks will take you.  This album also offers a good finish from "Craddle" to the end.

8. Arctic Monkeys - Suck it and See

Enjoyable album from start to finish.  Interesting to see them playing large arenas now as the secondary draw to The Black Keys.  I wonder if thats an overestimation of the Black Key's popularity or Arctic Monkey's stateside popularity.  I'm digressing. 

7. My Morning Jacket - Circuital

My reaction and subsequent feelings of this album seem to be in line with others who have this on their list.  It took more than 3 listens to really get the hang of this album.  Once it grows on you though, you can really appreciate what Jim James and co. are doing.  "Holding on to Black Metal" is probably my favorite track.  MMJ has earned the multiple listens from its past work, and I'm glad I stuck with this one.

6. Skrillex - Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites

I might have needed to get clarification on its eligibility, but it looks like its e-commerce debut was within the rules dictated for 2011.  As the large part of my music listening is during the morning and evening commutes, this album has been a steady part of the rotation to get past the lull of driving home.  Starting off with "Rock n' Roll (Will Take You to the Mountain)" this EP takes you on a nice uptempo and interesting journey.  Sure, he overuses some drops "like oh my god", but throughout he keeps it moving continuously forward and ends on a nice note with "With Your Friends (Long Drive)".   Apparently this has gone gold in Canada and is nominated for a Grammy...

5. tUnE-yArDs - w h o k i l l

I stumbled onto this album in late August when I was perusing "top 10 so far" lists.  It was pretty amazing for me to find out this is essentially all done by one person, Merrill Garbus.  "Gangsta" is my favorite track.

4. TV on the Radio - Nine Types of Light

"Second Song", "No Future Shock" and "Killer Crane" are all standouts on a very strong album.  If you have a chance, check out the companion program on Palladia which gives videos to a few of these songs.  It definitely enhances the appreciation of Nine Types of Light.

3. M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming

I dont really have anything unique to add to what has already been said about this album in previous posts.  It's phenomenal.  I will add that my favorite track is "Claudia Lewis". 

2. The Head and the Heart - The Head and the Heart

This album really grabbed me, and I think it's because it brings me back to early David Gray, which I really love.  It is probably the only non-skip album I've found in 2011.  "Coeur D'Alene", "Down in the Valley", "Lost in My Mind" and "Honey Come Home" are all standouts. 

1. Cut Copy - Zonoscope

This album was the first exposure I've had to this band.  I remain the only person I've found who prefers it to "In Ghost Colours".  It likely has more to do with the chronology in how I heard them.  "Need You Now" is my favorite song in 2011.  From the slow build up to the drum fill "1 e + 2 e a 3 e a 4 e + a" leading into the vocals.  The song carries with it a comforting familiarity, as if you can picture yourself at a high school dance or watching a Molly Ringwald movie and this song is part of that memory.  "Where I'm Going", "Pharaohs & Pyramids" and "Blink and You'll Miss a Revolution" make up my favorite three songs in a row on any album this year.  The album finishes strong on "Sun God" which allows you to slowly ease out of the album. 

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