NPR's top 100 songs from 2011via All Songs Considered
Listener's top 25 albums of 2011 via NPR's All Songs Considered
Staff picks: Top 50 albums of 2011 via Pitchfork
Staff picks: Top 100 songs of 2011 via Pitchfork
I don't necessarily agree with all of these, but they're good starting points for a little pondering. The thing that irked me most this year was the super-mellow tone of many albums. Maybe because I am at a point in my life where things are constantly in a state of frantic catching-up, or maybe because I get the chance to sit down and listen mainly when I'm working at the computer, and I need tracts that pair well with a jittering third cup of coffee. I'm not sure, but I had a hard time relating to many of the top-picks on these lists; they seem to pair well with contemplative, cup-of-tea, winter weather. Now that we're back to snow and cold I'll give them another try and maybe I'll absolutely love them, who knows!
I think the best music is the music that speaks to you in the moment that you're experiencing, or the music that can make you feel the way that the artist wants you to feel even if you're not really there... There are a few albums that I can recall easily. The ones that grabbed my attention, spoke to me, and played on repeat in my truck for a month at a time. When I hear them, I'm immediately transported...
a la twenty eleven, a Spotify list of my favorites.
My top album picks??
Tune-yards. Yellow Ostrich. The Joy Formidable. Radiohead. The Head and The Heart. Florence + The Machine.