- 6Bit Collective :.: Generataion Y Not compilation
- Best Coast :.: The Only Place
- Cat Power :.: Sun
- Chromatics :.: Kill for Love
- Clams Casino :.: Instrumental Mixtape 2
- Dirty Projectors :.: Swing Lo Magellan
- Divine Fits :.: A Thing Called Divine Fits
- Frank Ocean :.: channel ORANGE
- Grizzly Bear :.: Shields
- Japandroids :.: Celebration Rock
- Melody’s Echo Chamber :.: s/t
- Passion Pit :.: Gossamer
- Purity Ring :.: Shrines
- Sleigh Bells :.: Reign of Terror
- Solangé :.: T R U E
- Sufjan Stevens :.: Silver & Gold
- Swearin’ :.: s/t
- Waxahatchee :.: American Weekend
- Wild Nothing :.: Nocturne
- The xx :.: Coexist
And a top ten, chosen from the above, of course:
I tried to arrange these in some semblance of flow; they’re not in descending order of favoritism.
By my count, nine of these songs aren’t on Spotify; you can listen to them here:
Eight songs that were on my 2011 list were technically released or re-released this year, but I’ve left them off since I loved them last year:
- Frank Ocean .:. Thinking About You
- Best Coast.:. Up All Night
- Purity Ring .:. Ungirthed
- Purity Ring .:. Lofticries
- Purity Ring .:. Belispeak
- Abadabad .:. Park Slope (I’m Sorry)
- Abadabad .:. Indiana
- Santigold .:. GO (feat. Karen O)
If I did have to pick a Pazz & Jop-style top ten, the rough order would look like this:
- Usher .:. Climax
- The xx .:. Angels
- Chromatics .:. Kill For Love
- Jai Paul .:. jasmine (demo)
- Future .:. Turn On the Lights
- Frank Ocean .:. Pyramids
- Solange .:. Losing You
- Miguel .:. Adorn
- King Tuff .:. Bad Thing
- Tanlines .:. All of Me
I’ll post my favorite records of the year some day soon.
Title: Aching Eyes
Artist: Ghost Hands
Ghost Hands :: Aching Eyes
An unexpected, Alaskan gem.
I just stumbled across this gorgeous demo of Teen Daze’s “The Harvest”, which was one of my favorite songs of 2011. It’s been hiding on the bandcamp of Two Bicycles, a Teen Daze side project of sorts.
Title: Hey Cool Kid
Artist: Cloud Nothings
Judging by the twitter and tumblr and music blog reaction to the new Cloud Nothings record, Attack on Memory, this is a minority opinion, but I still think the best Cloud Nothings song is the first one I heard.
mp3 - Cloud Nothings :: Hey Cool Kid
Maybe I’m too young (although I’m a year or two older than primary CN guy Dylan Baldi), or too poorly versed in the touch-points on the new record, but I think I really just prefer a song with a catchy pop-punk hook to the direction the band has gone in since. I didn’t care for the first widely available Cloud Nothings full-length much, either.
I should probably add that, somewhat unsurprisingly, the one song I do like quite a bit on the new record is “Stay Useless”, what with its Strokes-y riffs and snide verses.
“Comeback Kid” is the latest riff-hungry track from Sleigh Bells’ forthcoming album Reign of Terror.