Best albums of 2011?

Tuesday marks the beginning of the fall schedule for new albums. Indie super group Wild Flag, St. Vincentand Neon Indian are among those releasing tomorrow. In two weeks, Wilco puts out its new album.

But before we get to those, here’s an overdue look at five of the most interesting albums of 2011 (mostly releases from the first half of the year). I’m not sure if they’re the best but they have a good shot at being on my year-end top 10. Don’t read too much into the order.

New BrigadeIceage

They didn’t remake the genre, but these kids from Copenhagen made one of the most compelling punk albums in years.  Clocking in at about 24 minutes, New Brigade proves less is still more.

New Brigade – Iceage

TomboyPanda Bear

Noah Lennox couldn’t simply remake Person Pitch.  He didn’t attempt to with Tomboy, the follow to his remarkable 2007 release.  The album certainly has the signature Lennox/Animal Collective feel yet holds it own as a fresh, original piece of work.

Last Night At The Jetty – Panda Bear

Sun and ShadeWoods

Woods layers one breezy, psychedelic song on top of another. Amid the concise nuggets, Sun and Shade features a couple long players, including the trippy Sol Y Sombra and the Kraut rocker Out of the Eye.

Pushing Onlys – Woods


It’s abrasive and often times uncomfortable but Merrill Garbus makes some interesting music. It’s noisy and hard to categorize and that’s what’s best about it.

Gangsta – Tune-Yards


Derivative of indie bands from the past two decades or so, I think I like these guys because of the nods to Dinosaur Jr. But, overall, it’s just a really enjoyable rock album.

Holing Out – Yuck

Read my next five picks after the jump.

Charlatans at the Garden Gate — Tristen

The best alt-country album I’ve heard all year.

Dye it Blonde — Smith Westerns

If I didn’t love ’70s glam so much — T-Rex, Sweet, etc. — I probably wouldn’t like Smith Westerns. Overproduced? Hell yes.

Smoke Ring for My Halo — Kurt Vile

Kurt Vile just keeps making great music.

Slave Ambient — The War on Drugs

Speaking of Kurt Vile, his ex-band The War on Drugs just made a great album, too.

 Goodbye Bread — Ty Segall

I discovered the heir to Jay Reatard’s throne a little late — missing a chance to include this garage rocker’s Melted on my best of 2010. Goodbye Bread slows down the tempo but is no less compelling.


2 responses

  1. Pingback: Best bet: Tristen at Subterranean Tuesday « All the Young Punks

  2. Pingback: New music: Atlas Sound, Cass McCombs, Kurt Vile « All the Young Punks

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