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The Best Music of 2011

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After reading a few of my favorite music bloggers Top 10 of the year, I realized I couldn’t let 2011 go by without compiling my very own list. This was an AMAZING year for music, no doubt- so many artists released new records… I’m actually pretty disappointed at the sheer number of records I FORGOT to listen to, there were just so many! I’m really not sure how I’ll be able to narrow it down to ten favorites. But I will definitely try.

    

    

#10 Death Cab For Cutie- Codes & Keys
Released: May 2011

Why: I got this one pretty late (as in a few weeks ago) but it’s an awesome album. I had a lot of trouble picking a 10th album to be honest, but I really liked this one best out of all the potential candidates.

#9 Adele- 21
Released:  February 2011

Why: Because who doesn’t love Adele? I could listen to ‘Someone Like You’ and ‘Set Fire to the Rain’ on repeat all day.

#8 Feist- Metals
Released: October 2011

Why: I wasn’t ever a huge Feist fan, but this album changed me. I loved listening to it when it was still warm outside in October. It was the perfect mix of cute, relaxing, indie, and sing-songy.

#7 Automatic Loveletter- The Kids Will Take Their Monsters On
Released: June 2011

Why: It’s no secret that I love Juliet Simms’ unique voice, and I love how it’s highlighted on this acoustic EP.

#6 The Decemberists- The King is Dead
Released: January 2011

Why: I got this album after interviewing one of the band members this year and I’ve been completely smitten about them since! They are so cute and fun live, and I just love the sound of this record.

#5  Foster the People- Torches
Released: May 2011

Why: The entire album is just as catchy as their single Pumped up Kicks

#4 Hedley- Storms
Released: November 2011

Why: Probably the best Hedley album so far, it has a depth to the songs and lyrics that I’ve never seen before from this band. I listen to this record over and over again. And over.

#3 Marianas Trench- Ever After
Released: November 2011

Why: If you haven’t heard Marianas Trench, they might be one of the easiest bands to love. Their newest record is no different; it’s everything I’ve always loved about them, and then some.

#2 Augustana- Augustana
Released: April 2011

Why: After the scare this band gave me RIGHT after releasing the best album of their career- you know, the whole “we broke up for a few months thing”- it definitely deserves to be in my very favorites. Glad they’re back together, and I am still totally in love with everything about this CD.

#1 Jack’s Mannequin- People and Things
Released: October 2011

Why: Well, besides the fact that they’re my favorite band and it was my most anticipated CD of the year, it’s awesome. Definitely not my favorite by them, but I still had it on repeat for a really long time. I love Andrew McMahon’s voice and everything he creates is amazing.

Notable: All Things Bright and Beautiful- Owl City (THIS SHOULD HAVE BEEN in my Top 10, but I remembered it after this post was all done! Sad face.) Bon Iver- Self Titled, Blink-182- Neighborhoods, Foo Fighters- Wasting Light, The Arkells- Michigan Left, The New Cities- Kill the Lights, New Found Glory- Radiosurgery, Britney Spears – Femme Fatale (by far one of the best of her career!)

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I’m sure I missed about a dozen albums that I LOVED but I just couldn’t remember everything that came out this year! I still have a few that I just didn’t listen to enough, but overall these are the records from 2011 that really made an impact on me.

I have SUCH a varied taste in music, sometimes I feel like I don’t do all of it justice and that I don’t listen to enough new stuff. In 2012 I’m going to make a conscious effort to keep track of upcoming albums and really giving them a good listen, instead of just throwing them into the vast world of my iTunes.

What were your favorite albums of the year?

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Muuuusic Time!

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I thought I’d take the weekend to catch up on some good stuff worth sharing, and after writing the post about books yesterday I thought it would be only fair to give new music it’s own day too! Here are a few albums I’ve been listening to that came out recently, all worth checking out, I think!

1) People and Things- Jack’s Mannequin 

It’s no secret that this is my favorite band and that I’d been anxiously waiting for this record to come out ever since it was first announced, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s quite amazing. I’ll admit it might be my least favorite of the Jack’s records, but it tells it’s very own story like the other two. I’m pretty sure almost no album beats their last one, ‘Glass Passenger’, but what I love about this one is how upbeat it is. It makes me think of lovely summer days spent reading by the beach.

Genre: piano pop/alternative/rock
Rating: 4 stars

2) Neighborhoods- Blink 182

This album, even though it’s brand new, makes me think of high school and growing up, and basically all those things that Blink-182 make most of us think about. It’s pretty classic Blink music. I mean, if you like their old stuff you’ll love this. The first song on the CD ‘Ghost on the Dance Floor’ is so far my favorite. It sets the tone for the whole record and makes the entire thing an easy listen.

Genre: Rock/Pop
Rating: 3.5 stars

3) Siberia- Lights

I’m a bit torn about this album. I’ve listened to it a few times now, and I have to admit it’s growing on me. The first time I heard it I didn’t feel like very much stood out about it. I figured I needed to give it a good chance, so I sat myself down and really paid attention to the songs and now I’m a much bigger fan of it. It’s not anything SPECIAL, and Lights isn’t exactly breaking out of her usual stuff to show fans anything new, but maybe that’s a good thing for now.

Genre: Synth pop 
Rating: 3 stars [but a solid 3, definitely worth checking out]

4) Metals- Feist

It’s basically impossible to dislike Feist. I mean, her music is so calming, soothing, relaxing. You name it. I’m not usually a huge fan of music like this, but I make an exception for artists like Feist. This album got me in a good study groove this week and I listened to it several times without getting remotely tired of it. Easily something I could put on after a stressful day to just decompose.

Genre: Folk/Indie
Rating: 3.5 stars

5) Radiosurgery- New Found Glory

Such a catchy album! It kind of had me thinking of Good Charlotte mixed with a little bit more heavy punk, and maybe a touch of pop. I’m in love with the opening track, ‘Radiosurgery’, which similarly to Blink-182 sets the vibe for the rest of the record which has the same feeling to it. The great about this CD? I didn’t feel like I was listening to the same song for 45 minutes.

Genre: Punk/Rock [and in my opinion a LITTLE BIT of pop]
Rating: 4 stars

Honorable mention:

-Cartel’s new EP ‘In Stereo’, love that band, love the EP!  Good alternative/pop music. I’ve loved this band ever since late high school, they’re just constantly awesome. Check them out!

 What are you listening to these days?