2011 had a lot of ups and downs. I think the choices I have in my top ten list are reflective of that. Many of these albums can be downloaded for free from ifyoumakeit.com.
Thursday – No Devolution – Thursday hasn’t made the album everyone wanted to make since Full Collapse. The naysayers have always said that nothing they have done has been as good as that record. They’re wrong, and you can see my full opinion of that on this blog. This record is the icing on the cake of what I regard as one of the most important musical groups to me personally. RIP Thursday. Thanks for everything.
Spraynard – Funtitled – I’ve seen a lot of people say that these guys are the heirs to latterman, and while I don’t agree, they’ve made huge strides in their songwriting and released what is easily the most fun record of the year.
Bon Iver- Bon Iver – Justin Vernon had a lot to live up to with his sophomore release. He’s quieted the critics and has crafted an album that is full of lush instrumentation and beauty.
Touche Amore – Parting the Sea Between Brightness and Me – Jeremy Bolm said in an interview that this album was about not being able to do anything right. With 13 songs in 20 minutes they pull no punches, and there is little room for filler. Bolm is one of the more genuine lyricists in hardcore today, and this record is brilliantly put together for a sophomore release.
Chuck Ragan – Covering Ground – Chuck Ragan, as stated by the title of the first song on this record, has nothing left to prove. He’s a very gifted songwriter, and a great storyteller.
Capital – Givers/Takers – With members of Silent Majority, these guys do LI hardcore right. One of my favorite live acts, and a more mature take on what is often a youth-centered subculture.
Timeshares – Bearable – See: Spraynard
Fucked Up – David Comes To Life – It’s Fucked Up. If I had more time to listen to it, it’d probably be number 1.
The Horrible Crowes – Elsie – While I can say this is probably my least favorite Brian Fallon related project, the songs that stick out on this are among my top Brian Fallon songs. Black Betty and the Moon is beautiful; Blood Loss is awe-inspiringly intense.
Owen – Ghost Town – It’s Owen. I love it. Deal with it. This album makes this list solely for the song “Evelyn”.
After the Fall
Laura Stevenson and the Cans
Polar Bear Club
Bomb the Music Industry
Iron Chic – Split and Shit
Self Defense Family – I’m Going Through Some Shit
Jonesin’ – Jonesin’
Crow Bait – Three Tickle Guys
Favorite Live Show:
Iron Chic (It’s like a fucking therapy session. GO SEE THIS BAND!!!)
Albums I wish I had time to listen to that I know are awesome:
Barons in the Attic’s new record!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!