In my view, it was a pretty good year for new music. Some good albums by bands that I were looking forward to (Arctic Monkeys, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Decemberists); some good work from bands that I had sort of written off (PB&J, CSS, The Strokes) and then a whole bunch of great bands that were new (at least to me).
Overall, I think PB&J’s Gimme Some was my favorite album of 2011, but The Decembrists’ The King Is Dead and Arctic Monkeys’ Suck It And See were pretty close to the top. Special mention to Wild Flag’s eponymous debut both because I get to use the word eponymous and because it’s the kick-ass, hard rock girl group album of the year.
My least favorite album of 2011 (that I purchased) was Beyoncé’s 4. It got good reviews and all, but it was not for me.
Here are my top 26 tracks of 2011 in alphabetical order by artist:
- Black Treacle by Arctic Monkeys from the album Suck It And See
- Suck It And See by Arctic Monkeys from the album Suck It And See
- Lost Weekend by Art Brut from the album Brilliant! Tragic!
- New Direction by Black Lips from the album Arabia Mountain
- Shake Me Down by Cage The Elephant from the album Thank You Happy Birthday
- Long Time by Cake from the album Showroom Of Compassion
- You Could Have It All [Explicit] by CSS from the album La Liberacion [Explicit]
- Go Outside by Cults from the album Cults
- Calamity Song by The Decemberists from the album The King Is Dead
- Don’t Gotta Work It Out by Fitz & The Tantrums from the album Dangerbird Summer Sampler 2011 [Explicit]
- Lorelai by Fleet Foxes from the album Helplessness Blues
- Honey Bunny by Girls from the album Father, Son, Holy Ghost (Amazon MP3 Exclusive)
- Tree By The River by Iron & Wine from the album Kiss Each Other Clean (Deluxe) [Explicit]
- Internet Killed The Video Star [Explicit] by The Limousines from the album Get Sharp [Explicit]
- Damn These Vampires by The Mountain Goats from the album All Eternals Deck
- L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N. by Noah & The Whale from the album Last Night On Earth
- Dig A Little Deeper by Peter Bjorn And John from the album Gimme Some
- Radio by Raphael Saadiq from the album Stone Rollin´
- Easy by Real Estate from the album Days
- The Adventures Of Rain Dance Maggie by Red Hot Chili Peppers from the album I’m With You
- Weekend by Smith Westerns from the album Dye It Blonde (Amazon MP3 Exclusive)
- Taken For A Fool by The Strokes from the album Angles
- Canajoharie by They Might Be Giants from the album Join Us
- Gangsta by Tune-Yards from the album W H O K I L L
- Post Break-Up Sex [Explicit] by The Vaccines from the album The Vaccines – EP [Explicit]
- Endless Talk by Wild Flag from the album Wild Flag
Not all of it is available on 8tracks, but you can listen to 25 of the 26 songs here.