MarvellousG
Tom Gellatly
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Last Active 01-10-14 11:22 am
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Top 9 Albums Of 2011 So Far

So we're already in May, and I figured it'd be nice for me to be able rto look back at the end of rthe year and see how many of these stay rhigh up on my list after we've got another 7 months rof great music rto try and beat them.
9Ulver
Wars of the Roses


Whilst this is still a very enjoyable album, it was a bit of a letdown compared to the band's previous three releases. It's still the same Ulver, though, and features some wonderfully unnerving moments of dark ambiance coupled with Garm's ever- improving vocals.
8The Weeknd
House of Balloons


The sound of the early hours following a party, this is a gritty, almost jazzy album that is one of the most perfect 'late night' albums of recent times. Its only problem is a slight tendency to blur into one continuous track, but that might well be what you want if you listen at the appropriate time; 5 A.M.
7Swarms
Old Raves End


The gorgeous production on offer here betrays the low budget of the project, and that illusion of Swarms being amongst the top tier of their genre is more than maintained throughout the album, evident in the immense quality of the songs on offer. And by the end of their first album, the illusion becomes reality; Swarms really do cement themselves as being leaders in their field, filling every second of this forty minute debut with, pretty much, perfection.
6Radiohead
The King Of Limbs


It seems ridiculous for me to be saying that an album released in February hasn't aged well, so early on after its release, but that's the sad fact about Radiohead's latest. It's still an incredibly solid release in every way, but after the first few weeks of listening it loses the 'I constantly want to listen to this' vibe of In Rainbows, Kid A and OK Computer. So whilst I can't really fault it on a technical level, this is an album that started off as my number 1 and has moved down to, well, number 6 as time went on.
5James Blake
James Blake


Sure, it's actually not quite as good as last year's Klavierwerke EP, but the young dup step pioneer's first full album still stands head and shoulders above most of the competition. It's more accessible than any of his EPs, but still retains that exploratory songwriting style that has won Blake so many fans up to this point. I eagerly await more.
4tUnE-yArDs
w h o k i l l


After the incomprehensibility of the first few spins, w h o k i l l begins to reveal itself as one of the most ambitious albums ever released by a solo artist. From the wonderfully layered single Bizness, to the the joyously sensual You Yes You, w h o k i l l just keeps on giving. A densely produced and carefully considered album, it appeals precisely for the reason that it sounds the complete opposite; improvised, and completely mad.
3Laura Stevenson and the Cans
Sit Resist


This is one of the most immensely pleasing first-listens I've ever had of an album. Whilst that in itself wouldn't be quite enough to recommend it as much as I do, the marvellous thing about the album is how it manages to keep on giving every time you listen again. Laura's voice is the main attraction here, and it's suitably brilliant, but basically everything on this album is like a massive, life-affirming hug.
2Cunninlynguists
Oneirology


Other than boasting the most gorgeous cover art of the year so far, Oneirology can also lay claim to being one of the most fully realised triumphs of style that the genre has ever seen, with every inclusion of a guest star or a 70s prog rock sample judged perfectly.
1Fleet Foxes
Helplessness Blues


Expanding on their unique, inviting sound even further than I thought possible, with Helplessness Blues the Fleet Foxes have crafted one of the earthiest albums I've ever heard, steeped entirely in the natural world and all of its beauty, both musically and lyrically.
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