Saturday, December 17, 2011

TdS Year In Review: Plus Our Top Ten Albums of 2011

As the year comes to a close, it's time to reflect on all of the good music that was made in 2011.  We released one (killer) album (in our humble opinion), which spawned successful singles that stretched across the globe, and a buzz-worthy video for the boys in The Susan Constant.  We have big things planned for 2012 -- which includes: expanding our roster, putting forth a compilation of un(der)known independent artists, and organizing as many shows as we can in the Boston area.

Since everybody else is doing it, we thought we'd share some of our favorite records of the year.  These are the albums that we haven't stopped listening to; have worn out the repeat button on our ipods, and have forever burned their melodies and lyrics into our heads. Counting down from 10 to 1, these are our gems of 2011.

 Honorable Mentions
 The Susan Constant: Rayonnement (Tour de Stade) just to show that there's no nepotism here, we didn't add this to our list. Recommended Track: "It Comes Apart"

I Break Horses: Hearts (Cooperative)- Dreamy synth-pop from Sweden.  
Recommended Track: "Winter Beats"

Portugal, The Man: In The Mountain In The Cloud (Atlantic)- Beatles-eque if you ask me. In song composition, not magnitude. Recommended Track: "Sleep Forever"

and onto the list:
10. Ryan Adams: Ashes And Fire (PaxAmericana)
We know everyone's saying this is his best since Heartbreaker. We agree. Recommended Track: "Chains of Love"

9. The Joy Formidable: The Big Roar (Atlantic)
"Whirring" is the track that people flock to. But "I Don't Want To See You Like This" should be. Recommended Track: obviously, "I Don't Want to See You Like This"

8. Louder My Dear: What's The Matter With You, Rock? (Midriff)
Woo! Boston Rock!  So good that they can pull off lyrics like "I shacked up with a dancer from Providence." Seriously catchy stuff. Recommended Track: "With A Dancer"

7. Strand of Oaks: Pope Killdragon (Self-Released)
This technically came out late 2010, but didn't make it into our collection until January, so cut us some slack.  "Last To Swim" and "Bonfire" are hauntingly beautiful. Recommended Track: "Last To Swim"

6. Dawes: Nothing Is Wrong (ATO)
Dawes was everywhere in 2011. Including our list! Solid album top to bottom. Seeing them live will make you love these songs even more. Recommended Track: "Time Spent In Los Angeles"

5. Nerves Junior: As Bright As Your Night Light (sonaBlast!)
A fun, well crafted debut from Louisville. Title track kills it. Recommended Track: "As Bright As Your Night Light"

4. The Middle East: I Want That You Are Always Happy (Missing Piece)
First there was the geographic region, then there was the Central Square rock club, and then there were these guys from Australia. Only one remains in tact.  I'm looking at you Cambridge. A brilliant swan song. Recommended Track: "Jesus Came To My Birthday Party"

 3. Bon Iver: Bon Iver (Jagjaguwar)
Pretty close to flawless.  I envy everything about Justin Vernon, all the way down (or up) to his beard. Recommended Track: "Calgary"

2. Blind Pilot: We Are The Tide (Expunge)
Folk Pop with the catchiest hooks this side of the Mississippi. Recommended Track: "New York"

which brings us to our favorite album of the year...
1. We Are Augustines: Rise Ye Sunken Ships (Oxcart)
Everything we loved about Pela,  we love even more about We Are Augustines.  Billy McCarthy and Eric Sanderson have crafted a masterpiece that drips with raw emotion.  It would be a disservice to yourself if you didn't pick this one up. Recommended Track: "New Drink For The Old Drunk"

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