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Every music critic likes to imagine, even if only subconsciously, that their year-end wrap-up will have some neat tale or trend that encapsulates the year in a couple of easy paragraphs. Unfortunately, the nearest one I could find is that two of the year’s best albums both had ‘England’ in the title and wrote about the country from completely differing, yet equally telling angles; and not only is that a drastic over-simplification that ignores 96% of my yearly top 50, but writing about that on an American website is hardly all that user-friendly, is it? (And hell, it’s probably about as relevant as pointing out that another two of the year’s best were also recorded by women with the surname Roberts.) For a while, I though the fact that I couldn’t find an angle might be the angle, that I’d end up writing about how music had splintered so much that it would be impossible for a story-arc like 1967’s psychedelic revolution, 1977’s punk outbreak, 1991’s ‘year of grunge’, or 1995’s Britpop wars to ever happen again.

Then I looked at the music I’d listened to this year, and I suddenly realized what the real story was – this was a fucking great year for music. There was so much good going on this year that I feel like I’ll still be catching up with it in April; there’s at least a dozen acclaimed albums I’m sure I’d like that I simply haven’t got around to yet (hello, Dear Hunter and Nicolas Jaar!), and God knows how many more I don’t even know about yet. And the breadth of it, too, was incredible, from the brilliant all-inclusive pop of Nicola Roberts and Girls’ Generation, to the off-kilter niche interest sounds of Death Grips and Matana Roberts, to the stunning revivalism of Raphael Saadiq and Girls, to the unclassifiable forward-thinking of Colin Steton and The Caretaker. There were great albums that were as good as I expected (Bon Iver, Kate Bush, Andrew Jackson Jihad), great albums by previously brilliant acts I thought would never make one again (Guillemots, DJ Shadow, Bjork), and great albums by previously average bands I never thought would make one at all (Foo Fighters). There were great self-consciously important artistic statements, just as there were great abums filled with dumb, fun club bangers. There were great albums by wizened old heads (Tom Waits) to go alongside great albums by fresh-faced debutants (Little Scream). Incredibly, I can count the real disappointments from the whole year on one hand; Kuedo, Joker, Incubus, Lady Gaga, and most distressingly of all, The Roots were the guilty parties. All of that means that somehow, a top 50 doesn’t feel like enough for 2011 – there are too many records I’d be leaving out that would have sailed into, say, 2007’s top 50 with ease.

So to that end, before we get to the top 25, my full top 75 is here. A few honourable mentions need to go out to some of those artists that missed out on the top 25, though. Firstly, hats off to Eisley’s “Smarter” and Gotye and Kimbra’s “Somebody That I Used To Know” – sorry guys, but I just can’t pick between you two for the song of the year*, and to top it off you both had great videos too. Much credit goes to Boris for having such a prolific, diverse year, and to Scott Matthews, Blue Sky Black Death, and Asian Dub Foundation for bouncing back so well from recent disappointments (in addition to those mentioned above). Also, Lord knows what made June Tabor and Osyterband decide to get back together for another album, but let’s all be glad that they did.

*Since this paragraph was written, Lana Del Ray’s “Born to Die” has appeared on YouTube, and things done changed.

With that said, here’s my top 25 albums of a stunning year.


25. WOODS OF DESOLATION

Torn Beyond Reason
Recommended Track: “November”

Review/YouTube

A masterclass in getting maximum impact from minimum input. Woods of Desolation take elements that every blackgaze band uses, but use them in a way that’s far more effective than usual, with something as simple as the addition of a new guitar line or backing vocals often giving their songs a whole new mood and sense of purpose. Solid, tight, well played, brilliantly produced (which is a huge plus for me in this genre), beautiful in places, capable of incorporating black metal, shoegaze, and post-rock without any of those influences feeling like tokenism, and compact enough to feel a lot shorter than its actual runtime – I just can’t fault this. It slots right in alongside Thy Catafalque and Agalloch, and that’s a real nice place to be.


24. ANDREW JACKSON JIHAD

Knife Man
Recommended Track: “American Tune”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

Weird as it may seem, Andrew Jackson Jihad’s Sean Bonnette feels more like a great British songwriter to me than almost anybody of his age group that actually holds an English passport. His wit, his sense of morbidity, his ability to laugh off tragic events, and the depth of his character sketches put him right alongside the likes of Stuart Murdoch, Shane MacGowan, and Morrissey, much more than any American. That, really, is why I love AJJ so much – they tackle some pretty major emotional subjects, but they do it in a way that’s funny, graceful, intelligent, and thought-provoking. It helps that you can never quite tell when they’re joking and when they’re serious, too; it’s pretty absorbing trying to work out which parts of the album are meant to be funny. I’m not even sure they know, really – these sprawling, messy, hyperactive, brutally honest lyrics are like screamo with punchlines.


23. THE CARETAKER

An Empty Bliss Beyond This World
Recommended Track: “An Empty Bliss Beyond This World”

Review/YouTube

The combinations and contradictions that lie at the heart of An Empty Bliss Beyond This World are well-trodden in popular music; there is plenty of music out there that sounds futuristic and old-fashioned at the same time, just as there is plenty that uses samples of happy music to create depressing patchworks, and so on. Yet it’s hard to think of many people that have employed so many contradictions at once, and smashed them into each other so effectively. The overall effect is dizzying, but it’s also heartbreaking – there’s a relentless sadness and resignation at the heart of this album that has caused a few reviewers, me included, to speculate that suicide might be a theme. Now there’s a contradiction for you.


22. BON IVER

Bon Iver, Bon Iver
Recommended Track: “Perth”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

For Emma, Forever Ago may have felt like an album with no downsides, but there was one – its backstory. When an artist becomes such a phenomenon based on a situation that they can never possibly replicate, how can they move forward with their careers without retreading the same ground with ever diminishing returns, or worse yet, changing completely and alienating everybody? It was a worry, but it needn’t have been – Bon Iver made it look easy. Shifting from a singer/songwriter set-up to a full band, Justin Vernon’s songcraft began to move in several new directions (toward other genres, toward the ’80s, toward the communal rather than the personal, toward happiness) while retaining the melodicism and ability to tug at the heartstrings that drew so many to his first album. Better than his debut and effortlessly so, and I’m happy to admit that I would never have though that possible.


21. TORI AMOS

Night of Hunters
Recommended Track: “Carry”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

Tori’s career since Scarlet’s Walk, arguably even since From the Choirgirl Hotel, seems to have been one long stumble through ideas, looking for one that stuck – the literal dress-up of American Doll Posse was a neat allegory for her approach to inspiration in the latter half of her career. And sure, she still knocked out a couple of classic songs at least on every album, but each full album had enough misses alongside the hits to be ultimately unfulfilling. So when she turned to classical music and signed to Deutsche Grammophon, I wasn’t expecting a lot. And yet, it’s in the adapted compositions of Erik Satie, Felix Mendelssohn, Johann Sebastian Bach et al that she’s found the inspiration she needed to make another brilliant album; delicate, melodic, graceful, and beautifully produced throughout. At a tight 14 tracks, it’s also her most concise work in over a decade; proof, if any were needed, that less is usually more.


20. DEATH GRIPS

Exmiltary
Recommended Track: “Lord of the Game”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

“Lord of the Game” points to a future where hip-hop reaches critical mass, implodes, and is pushed back underground, forcing producers to use the same club-friendly production techniques of today to create something dark, muscular, and inventive to play in abandoned or underground warehouses ripped straight from the Blade movies. It’ll never happen, but it’s nice to know what it would sound like if it did, isn’t it? Exmilitary is manic, oppressive, brutal, and a somehow still a shitload of fun. It’s inarguably hip-hop, but trying to pin this down to a scene is ultimately futile; nothing really sounds like this does. Hopefully by 2016, that won’t be true anymore – we need more records like this.


19. EXPLOSIONS IN THE SKY

Take Care, Take Care, Take Care
Recommended Track: “Human Qualities”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

It’s unfortunate that Explosions in the Sky are a band that an awful lot of people would love to see fail – as poster boys for the pretty, catchy brand of post-rock you’re not supposed to like, their name is constantly thrown around as a pejorative by both people who hate the entire genre, and fans of cooler, older bands like Disco Inferno and Labradford. How unfortunate for them, then, that Explosions have now carved out the album that everybody thought they couldn’t; with Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, they’re pushed their sound forward, found a niche that no other post-rock band quite fills, and still retained enough of the sound of The Earth is Not a Cold Dead Place to keep all the fans they already had on board. It’s enough to make me punch the air in delight for them.


18. BUCK 65

20 Odd Years
Recommended Track: “She Said Yes”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

20 Odd Years returns to the scene of one of Buck’s most confusing, underwhelming albums, 2005’s Secret House Against the World, yet it turns those album’s failures into successes. This time around, the attempts to draw folk influences into hip-hop feel natural rather than clumsy, his stabs at radio-friendly choruses are adapted into their songs with more panache, and crucially, Buck’s own inimitable personality is never compromised, which means that the childish thrills of “Lights Out” and “Zombie Delight” aren’t uncomfortable in the company of ballads like “She Said Yes” or experiments like “Cold Steel Drum”. This stands as one of the highpoints of one of rap’s weirdest, most inexplicably lengthy careers.


17. TUNE-YARDS

w h o k i l l
Recommended Track: “My Country”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

Sounds like Vampire Weekend discovered drugs, discovered dub, and just went balls-out with it, although the end result is so fractured that it sounds more like Dirty Projectors – it’s indie pop, folks, but not as we know it. On first listen I thought “My Country” was a perfectly judged opener because it grabs your interest without telling you anything about what the album sounds like, but really it gives you every clue and you just don’t realize – w h o k i l l falls through the cracks between your own understanding of how genres work, leaving you waiting for it to committ to something, whatever that ’something’ may be; the whole thing becomes woozy, disorientating, slippery, and completely gripping, and it does it while being pretty robust and joyous. It’s like hearing Los Campesinos and being left feeling like you’ve listened to Cocteau Twins. I don’t feel like I have a grip on this yet like I do with the other albums on this list, but that’s because I don’t want to have one; w h o k i l l is better when you embrace the oddness.


16. THE HAXAN CLOAK

The Haxan Cloak
Recommended Track: “Raven’s Lament”

YouTube

A droning chamber string quartet with occasional bursts of noisy electronics and choirs, and one dark as hell industrial/trip-hop track in “The Growing”. Frustratingly, I want to shout this album’s merits from the rooftops but I don’t really know what to say about it. I know I love it, though – it’s as bleak and claustrophobic as anything I’ve heard this year, capturing the vibe of the best horror movie scores without succumbing to any of the cliches or pitfalls. It’s straight up inspiring; as mad and scary as it is on the surface, it just makes me want to hear and create more music like it. Enthralling stuff.


15. NICOLA ROBERTS

Cinderella’s Eyes
Recommended Track: “i”

Review/Spotify/YouTube
                                                                    

The kind of pop album that should be used a textbook for an entire generation of budding pop stars. Cinderella’s Eyes has it all, from the Diplo-fueled dancefloor banger “Beat of My Drum” to the stylish Minougeian “Lucky Day”, through the stark, confessional “i” to the atmospheric ballad “Sticks + Stones”. It’s inventive, diverse, and deeply personal, but it never loses sight of the need for a winning hook. In a year with some stiff competition from the likes of Gotye and Kimbra, Nicola Roberts still won the race for the year’s best pop album at a canter.


14. GILES COREY

Giles Corey
Recommended Track: “The Haunting Presence”

Review/YouTube

It’s exactly what you’d expect from a solo album by a member of Have a Nice Life; it’s a more introspective and downbeat retreading of the ideas that ran through Deathconsciousness. That’s certainly a good thing, though, because Deathconsciousness was one of its decade’s most beguiling albums, and Giles Corey adds focus and a personal touch to the more dreamy, ethereal parts of that album’s template. Like HANL, it’s difficult to place anywhere neatly, with shades of slowcore, shoegaze, and psychedelic folk all working their way into the mix, but it’s certainly not unwieldy or inaccessible with it; it’s hard to see how a fan of a band like Red House Painters wouldn’t be impressed by this. You wonder how long the Enemies List collective can keep up this standard, but let’s not worry about that for now, let’s just enjoy the great music they’re giving us in the here and now.


13. RAPHAEL SAADIQ

Stone Rollin’
Recommended Track: “Heart Attack”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

A throwback par excellence. There isn’t a second of music on Stone Rollin’ that you won’t be able to trace back to something you already know, but Raphael Saadiq – a man now in his 23rd year as a recording artist – puts them together in a way that’s so joyful, playful, imaginative, and energetic that you don’t care. And when the influences are this perfect, why should you? Prince, Funkadelic, The Four Tops, Little Richard, they’re all here; Stone Rollin’ is a record that genuinely rocks, has soul to spare, and is far cooler than any man in his mid-40s should even be attempting, let alone pulling off.


12. BJORK

Biophilia
Recommended Track: “Mutual Core”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

A bolt from the blue. Biophilia marked the first time in my life when I didn’t really care that Bjork was releasing something new, so disappointing were Medulla and Volta to me. My main reason for giving it a listen was ‘may as well, for old time’s sake’ – imagine how delighted I was when I realised that she’d rediscovered her muse in spectacular fashion. This is the album that should have immediately followed Vespertine; a wide-eyed, lush, inventive album that’s not afraid to throw down some breakcore when the song calls for it, but that holds a mood and atmosphere throughout. Classic Bjork, in other words.


11. TOM WAITS

Bad As Me
Recommended Track: “Hell Broke Luce”

Review/YouTube

Writing about Tom Waits these days is a thankless, horrible task; every review simply has to boil down to the sentence ‘it’s great because it’s Tom Waits’. There’s a shift towards prettiness in the ballads that’s more Rain Dogs than Alice, but there’s hopefulness there too, while the rockers are occasionally more traditionally ‘rock’ than you’d expect, but are just as likely to be unhinged barnstormers. Aside from those observations…..well, it’s a Tom Waits album, isn’t it? If you’ve heard him before, you know what you’re getting. You know if you’re going to like it, too; maybe this record’s greatest strength is that any kind of Waits fan will be able to find something here they’ll love.


10. PJ HARVEY

Let England Shake
Recommended Track: “The Words That Maketh Murder”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

This year, PJ Harvey became the first person ever to win the Mercury Music Prize twice. The difference this time is that, unlike the victory for 2001’s over-rated and dull Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea (in an admittedly weak year), this one was completely deserved. Let England Shake isn’t just her most thematically consistent and lyrically impressive album yet, but it’s a record that NEEDED to be made; not necessarily by Harvey, but by anybody who’s observant and English. There are lyrics on this album that are like daggers straight in the heart of modern Britain – when she sings about ‘grey damp filthiness of ages’, ’stinking alleys’, and ‘the music of drunken beatings’ on “The Last Living Rose”, I clench my fists in celebration that somebody is taking this kind of stand. Let England Shake doesn’t wave its finger, doesn’t seek to start a revolution; hell, it doesn’t even angry. It’s just disappointed, astonished at what’s happened and how far we’ve fallen, and resigned to defeat because there are no easy answers, because this is pretty much it for the foreseeable future. Isn’t that how most people on this island feel?


9. KATE BUSH

50 Words for Snow
Recommended Track: “Snowed in at Wheeler Street”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

Unlike any other Kate Bush album, 50 Words for Snow embraces space and ambience in a way that recalls the last few Talk Talk albums. It’s genuinely lovely, in a homely, plain, and unfiltered way. It wouldn’t be a recent Kate Bush album without some unusual guests though, and 50 Words for Snow uses them to better effect than any of her albums yet; Stephen Fry is cute and funny on the title track, while Elton John turns in one of his performances in decades on “Snowed in at Wheeler Street”. The lead single “Wild Man” is a slight disappointment, if only because it breaks the mood, but the rest is some of the best music she’s ever put her name to. It’s as if those 13 years away never happened; with this and Aerial, she’s jumped straight back in at the top of the game.


8. MATANA ROBERTS

Coin Coin Chapter One – Gens de couleur libres
Recommended Track: “Lulla/Bye”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

A klaxon in the face of anybody that dares to think jazz is dead, Coin Coin Chapter One: Gens de couleur libres is a bewitching, moving, avant garde slab of jazz so fine it could pass for marble. The vocals are among the best to ever appear on a jazz record too, both diverse in execution (ranging from mournful chanting to beat poetry to screaming) and forceful in concept (the record as a whole is an examination of racism in American history). Absolutely terrific stuff; this deserves to be part of the jazz canon every bit as much as classics like Out to Lunch! and Karma do.


7. THE TWILIGHT SINGERS

Dynamite Steps
Recommended Track: “Waves”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

The best album Greg Dulli has been involved in since The Afghan Whigs blessed us with Black Love back in 1996, and that accolade alone should be enough to send you scrambling to the nearest place you can get it. Dulli never really lost his touch, but it’s rarely burned as brightly as it does here; it’s a dive straight back towards sex and all its repercussions, after the brighter themes of Powder Burns, and that means a return to his comfort zone. Comfortable isn’t the word though; the way he swaggers through the BDSM-themed “Waves” pegs him as a man with a point to prove, as does the melody on “Get Lucky” (one of the finest he’s even penned). If that point was that he can be as much of a force in 2011 as he was in 1993, then point proven.


6. CUNNINLYNGUISTS

Oneirology
Recommended Track: “Hard As They Come (Act 1)”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

Cunninlynguists have become the world’s most frustrating in the world to write about – you want to scream their brilliance from the rooftops, but how can you when all you have to say about a new album is ‘oh yeah, it’s brilliant, just like the last one’? You can’t, really. So I’ll just say this; Oneirology is probably the album that tips them over from ‘one of the best rap acts in the world today’ to ‘one of the best rap acts in the world ever‘.


5. STATELESS

Matilda
Recommended Track: “Ariel”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

I’ll happily admit to being a little bit worried about this album; their first record was brilliant but saw them pegged as mere copycats by a lot of people, and I had no idea how they’d go about reacting to that criticism. Even hearing “Ariel” in late 2010 didn’t put me completely at ease, despite its fluid Eastern-tinged guitars and shuddering electronic bass sounding like pretty much nothing else. Yet Matilda moves the band’s sound forward so effortlessly it leaves me wondering why I ever had any doubt they’d pull it off. This is a record that’s more mechanized than the debut in its music, but no less human in its somgwriting and singing – “Junior” dips its toes into soul’s waters, and “I’m on Fire” recalls Jeff Buckley at his most soaring. They remain one of Britain’s best and most overlooked bands.


4. THY CATAFALQUE

Rengeteg
Recommended Track: “Az eső, az eső, az eső”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

All I wanted from Thy Catafalque in 2011 was another album that was anywhere near the quality of 2009’s brilliant Roka Hasa Radio, yet they went above and beyond that, giving us an album that matches it blow-for-blow. Rengeteg holds on to all the best bits of the band’s sound – namely their sense of melody and grasp on atmosphere – while ironing out the few remaining flaws they had, with experimental tracks like “Az eső, az eső, az eső” and Holdkomp” being more tasteful than their earlier equivalents. With Opeth using 2011 to release their worst album yet in the shape of Heritage, Thy Catafalque are staking a seriously impressive claim to replace them as my favourite metal band.


3. LITTLE SCREAM

The Golden Record
Recommended Track: “The Lamb”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

One of those thrilling albums where everything goes right, no matter how insane. Lord knows where Little Scream appeared from, but she arrived complete with an almost unrivalled Midas touch; she slips between genres like a cartoon ghost slipping through walls, using all sorts of disparate touchstones – dream pop, post-rock, folk, electronica – to create a sound world that’s both nostalgic and fearful, one that sees her looking at a beautiful past reluctantly, for fear that she might miss the future if she looks back too much. It’s absolutely beautiful and occasionally breathtaking, and wins the award for 2011’s finest debut at a canter.


2. GIRLS

Take Father, Son, Holy Ghost
Recommended Track: “Honey Bunny”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

Girls’ debut album was a pretty good stab at shambolic indie pop that fed the genre’s melodicism through a ’90s throwback slacker aesthetic, yet its qualities were no preparation for this. Chris Owens is NOT fucking around here; Father, Son, Holy Ghost is a delirious grab-bag of influences and ideas that seems to want to beat you about the head with its own brilliance, an album that’s obviously accessible and easy to listen to but near-impossible to take in completely on the first listen because it’s so delirious. It’s showing off without actually showing off, using classic songwriting as a weapon instead of flashy guitar solos or genre-defying quirks – if there’s any album released this year that a time traveller from the early ’70s would recognise as a ‘classic’, it’s this one.


1. FRANK TURNER

England Keep My Bones
Recommended Track: “I Am Disappeared”

Review/Spotify/YouTube

As somebody with good memories of Million Dead being a big deal when I was in college, and seeing them blow every band I ever saw them support off stage, I can scarcely believe where Turner’s ended up in 2011. The band burned brightly and burned out quickly, as it always seemed they would, but who knew their manic frontman, once a Mars Volta-esque whirlwind of lanky limbs and white man afro, had the inclination or the guts to cut his hair, pick up an acoustic guitar, and become one of Britain’s leading singer/songwriters? And how could have predicted that his songwriting would become even more cutting, even more brave, with that shift?

England Keep My Bones ranks as Turner’s greatest album because it’s the one that nails his own particular gift most often – namely, the ability to write a lyric so simple and so devastatingly effective that you have to wonder why nobody’s sang it before. No matter what he sets his sights on (regret-filled break ups, England’s history, existential angst, dreams, death, and religion all get a look-in), he nails his subject so accurately it’s as if his tongue has a telescopic sniper sight on it – “I Am Disappeared” isn’t just one of my favourite tracks of the year, it feels like the soundtrack to my adult life, somehow written by me even though I knew nothing about it. Turner is the kind of writer that can have that effect. It’s a masterclass not just in songwriting, but in honesty, passion, and clarity of expression, and as such it deserves to be remembered as one of the all-time great British albums.





firedemon751
12.20.11
Completely agree about "I Am Disappeared"

Mordecai.
12.20.11
so music

Knott-
12.20.11
Mate I genuinely love this list, not just the albums on it (in fact, not really those) but the angle you approach the write-up from.

taylormemer
12.20.11
The only staff list that I was waiting for. So good

Electric City
12.20.11
youre a cool cat, butler

FromDaHood
12.20.11
Write more often dammit

Crysis
12.20.11
Glad to see Woods of Desolation here

greg84
12.20.11
10 12 13 and 17 are all awesome albums.

taylormemer
12.20.11
I'd argue that Nick is the site's most important reviewer and member. Speaking the truth.

Deviant.
12.20.11
Love this list, even if your thoughts on Kuedo sadden me just a little

Need to check out 16

Knott-
12.20.11
Also the description for 10 is so so spot-on even though I haven't even heard the album.

Electric City
12.20.11
i lol'd at "doesn't even angry" though

Deviant.
12.20.11
She's bold, she's fearless, she don't angry much

Iai
12.20.11
I like that typo so much that it's staying.

taylormemer
12.20.11
I think I saw another one but I can't remember where it was now.

Iai
12.20.11
I think PJ Harvey is a pretty cool guy. Eh makes albums and doesn't angry of anything.

AliW1993
12.20.11
my favourite staff list so far. props for pj harvey and kate bush (and, of course, frank).

FelixCulpa
12.21.11
I am digging The Haxan Cloak. Great list.

AtavanHalen
12.21.11
"over-rated and dull Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea"

THE FUCK BRO

svjchtr
12.21.11
DEATH GRIPS

static2dope
12.21.11
the fact that eits is on this kinda saddens me.

thebhoy
12.21.11
I still don't really get the Frank Turner hype personally, but this list is interesting mostly because I haven't heard a lot of it.

clercqie
12.21.11
Love the write-ups and you have some really great albums on here.
Great to see recognition for Explosions In The Sky

defjaw83
12.21.11
Great list with some albums I really need to check out. Awesome write up man

exredhouseresident
12.21.11
about 50 short of 75, but nice list.

Iai
12.21.11
Read gooder.

Iai
12.21.11
But thanks anyhow (and to everybody else as well).

MysteriousBryan
12.22.11
I cannot figure out why EITS are not as well liked as they should be. I didn't see them on a single year end list I've read and I've read about 30. Well, they're in MY top albums of the year list and it's nice to see they're in yours too!

MisterTornado
12.22.11
Caretaker m/

Wael
12.24.11
Solid list, just you know tone it down next time with your write ups, something like "this deserves to be part of the jazz canon every bit as much as classics like Out to Lunch! and Karma do." is a bit much especially considering that that album was number 8 on your list. That kind of flowery rhetoric should be reserved for the top three at the most.


taylormemer
12.24.11
Stupid thing to say. The way in which Nick rates has everything to do with his opinion and not something goverened by you or anyone else. "reserved for the top 3 at most" my arse. For all its worth he could have put such rhetoric anywhere and your comment still has no meaning.

Wael
12.24.11
That comment seems to imply that Coin Coin is equivalent to Out To Lunch! and Karma, which would mean that there are like 7 albums that have come out this year that are better than those three. I don't think that was his intention and that's why I pointed it out, but it if it was then mea culpa. There's really no need to get upset.

clercqie
12.24.11
Not better, different. He just liked those albums more, but there's no point comparing them, when they are all so different from each other. He can compare that jazz album with other albums in the same category. That comparision is independent of the ranking here;

Tyrael
12.24.11
Ugh 1

Zion
12.26.11
I thought this year sucked. Then I read your list. Wow. Mind blown.

kingsoby1
12.30.11
hi nick nice post

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