Ryan Fitz

Reviews 33
Approval 86%

Soundoffs 20
News Articles 5
Band Edits + Tags 3
Album Edits 10

Album Ratings 443
Objectivity 76%

Last Active 01-23-12 9:59 pm
Joined 05-04-09

Forum Posts 1
Review Comments 911

12.07.11 Top 20 Of 201109.23.11 Radiohead Remix Album Streaming
08.28.11 Trophy Scars And Shit08.09.11 Best Albums This Summer?
04.10.11 Rec me some movies03.29.11 Tv On The Radio-Nine Types Of Light
03.28.11 The Hold Steady03.22.11 Top Albums Of 2011 (8 Months Early)
03.16.11 The Antlers Playing New Album Live Tomm

Top 20 Of 2011

I am bravery in a bottle, I am courage in a glass. I've got the government's approval, prohibition couldn't last."
19Wu Lyf
Go Tell Fire To The Mountain

"We are so happy, so happy to say/ Awh lawh tha keeshaw la woo laak thisay"
18Laura Stevenson and the Cans
Sit Resist

I've developed a crush on Laura Stevenson...have yet to see what she looks like.
17Manchester Orchestra
Simple Math

"Simple Math- This song is really philosophical-Simple Math- What if everything I thought was wrong, but right, but wrong..."
16The Weeknd
House Of Balloons

"You don't know what's in store, but you know what you're here for."
15TV On The Radio
Nine Types Of Light

"My Repetition, My Repetition is this, My Repetition, My Repetition is this, My Repetition, My Repetition is this, My Repetition, My Repetition is this, My Repetition, My Repetition is this, My Repetition, My Repetition is this, My Repetition, My Repetition is this, My Repetition, My Repetition is this..."

4 words: Meatman, Piano Tuner, Prostitute.
13The Antlers
Burst Apart

"Rolled together with a burning paper heart, ooooooooyyyyyyeeeeeaaaaaaaahhhhh" -Climax of Rolled Together
12Kashiwa Daisuke

I like piano.
11 M83
Hurry Up, We're Dreaming

"We would be hundreds, thousands, millions, the biggest group of friends the world has ever seen!"
The King Of Limbs

For a band with the burden of changing the musical landscape every time they release an album, The King Of Limbs serves less as an album, and more as the statement "Screw you, we do what we want". There is everything here you would expect from a Radiohead album, gloomy guitars, narcotic soundscapes, shifting rhythms, quivering falsettos, and daring experimentation. But it doesn't feature any climaxes, blooms no catharsis, and for once, it isn't even an attempt at a masterpiece, it's just Radiohead casually being Radiohead. And while that approach might not get them any awards, it presents a bold new direction for the band, and an album that, oddly enough, is just as tantalizing Best Tracks: "Bloom, Lotus Flower, Separator"
9Frank Turner
England Keep My Bones

Frank Turner, folk musician, and punk enthusiast, releases a tribute to England that is just as inspired as it is stunningly mature. Sure he's still singing about Rock and Roll saving lives, and the tragedy of growing up, but the stale punk sound has finally given way to a much more diverse and confident affair. "One Foot Before The Other" stands as one the greatest songs of the year, and Frank Turner has never been as emotionally poignant or as memorable than he is in " I Am Disappeared" and "Redemption." Perhaps the most memorable song of the album though is the closing atheist hymn/sing-a-long, "Glory Hallelujah" which is just as contagious as it is bold and controversial. It serves as a perfect portrait of the new Frank Turner, fearless in his craft, daring in its execution. Best Tracks: "I am Disappeared, One Foot Before The Other, Redemption"
8Colin Stetson
New History Warfare, Vol 2: Judges

Armed with only a saxophone and a handful of guest stars Colin Stetson creates a jazz album that, well, sounds absolutely nothing like a jazz album...or anything else for that matter. Recorded almost in one take, New History Warfare Vol.2 is an astoundingly technical display that is just as chaotic and discordant, as it is melodic. Disturbing at times, mournful in others, and in the end emotionally triumphant, Colin Stetson creates a powerful unique work that isn?t meant to be listened to as much as it is to be observed. Best Tracks "All the Colors Bleached to White (ILAIJ II), Red Horse (Judges 2)"
7 O'Brother
Garden Window

There's something incredibly beautiful about an album that comes a long and kicks you in the teeth. Garden Window carries itself with an intensity that most albums in its genre yearn for, but few ever achieve. Varying from the alternative rock cuts such as "Easy Talk (Open Your Mouth)" to adventurism into post-metal sludge with the 13 minute "Cleanse Me", few albums hold as much ambition or even half the balls as this album. The bands ability to experiment with its genre is to be admired, but it's not nearly as impressive as the fervor in which they accomplish that task. Best Tracks: "Poison, Easy Talk (Open Your Mouth)"
6James Blake
James Blake

Pitchfork poster boy James Blake releases an album that surprisingly lived up to all the hype. Abandoning traditional dubstep for experiments in minimalism, James Blake's self titled is stunningly bold in its experimentation, taking his craft to a space where few dare to go. Expertly produced and insanely memorable, James Blakes self titled may not only be one of the years best, but also it's most influential Best Tracks: "I Never Learnt To Share, Lindesfarne 1 &2, Limit To Your Love"
5Bon Iver
Bon Iver, Bon Iver

Bon Iver's second album escapes the sorrow and the minimalistic limitations his first release held, and transforms into an album entirely different, and still entirely majestic. Bon Iver still holds the infectious sense of melody he held in his debut, but he escapes the structure of the traditional folk song, and transforms his craft into twisting, wrangled, layered, unpredictable affairs, that disintegrate and transform with almost every chord. Immediately accessible while daringly experimental, Bon Iver's self-titled not only equals his legendary debut, it surpasses it. Best Tracks: "Perth, Holocene"

Dan Brejar (The frontman, and often the only member of Destroyer) has released more records than most artists would ever dream about, or even want to attempt. Kaputt stands as the 9th album of his current project, Destroyer. It?s also arguably the best he's ever made. Destroyer sees Dan Brejar drop his trademark indie-rock sound for something entirely unexpected. 80's soft rock, And while 80's soft rock is undeniably one of the worst inventions in human history, (only slight behind the snuggie.) Brejar somehow makes it work beautifully. It carries all of the trademark of 80's soft rock, sensual female backup vocals, airy saxophone vocals, and a painfully obvious emphasis of cheesy synthesizers. Yet Dan Brejar transforms this dark period of our history into something incredibly listenable and even brilliant. The record gains its surprising strength behind a display of the most inspired songwriting of Brejars career, and its witty observations of American life. In the end, the record stands for all the genre could have been, and unfortunately never was. Best Tracks: "Blue Eyes, Kaputt, Bay Of Pigs"
3The Roots

The Roots have long been one of the most talented groups in the hip hop world, but Undun might be the best album to come out of the bands illustrious career. A concept album about the semi-fictional character of Redford Stephens, who eventually loses himself in the vicious life of the streets, the album proves to be perhaps the roots darkest. Yet it's also the bands most melodic, it's instrumentals a direct offshoot of indie-soul, undun's songs are colorfully fleshed out and instrumentally inspired. It's brightest moment comes in its closing, where it covers Sufjan Stevens piano based instrumental "Redford (For Yia-Yia & Pappou)" and transforms it into a multi-movement classical number. An inspired ending for a hip-hop album that ends up being so much more than a traditional hip-hop album. It's an experience, tragic yet rapturously beautiful. Best Tracks: "One Time, Tip The Scale, Redford (For Yia & Pappou) Movements 1-4"
2Nicolas Jaar
Space Is Only Noise

Nicolas Jaars meditation of space, not only in theory but also in sound, is the most complete collection of music released this year. Ranging from everything from freaked out dance music to Latin violins to hazed jazz to Ray Charles; Nicolas Jaars has created a Tour De Force with few modern equals. The album often acts, as a frustrating exercise in tease and denial, but it's also masterful, combining traditional and modern instrumentation at will, transforming an electronic album into something strangely organic. One of the years most underrated and overlooked, Nicolas Jaars debut ranks among the best electronic albums ever produced, and comes from a producer whose bound to be one of the most influential musicians in the genre. Best Tracks: "Keep Me There, Space Is Only Noise That You Can See"
1Trophy Scars
Never Born, Never Dead

Trophy Scars is the latest in the long line of hardcore band who have abandoned their entire fan base and decided to start singing the blues. Just kidding, Trophy Scars is the only hardcore band I know who abandoned hardcore and decided to start writing blues songs. And holy shit, are they better for it. Never Born Never Dead only runs for a little fewer than 30 minutes but within it you will find some of the most inventive music released this year. Trophy Scars new sound, a scrungy "bastard child" of the blues, takes as much influence from Blues artists such as B.B King, as it does from modern rock pioneers such as Jack White, and downright nasty musicians such as the enigmatic Alice Cooper. But what makes Never Born Never Dead the best album of the year isn't just the album?s unique sound, but the emotional density of the album. There are no two love songs released this year as stunning as "Angels" and "Never Dead" and the closing rumination on death "Never Born" will have listeners breaking inside. If that wasn't enough, the perfectly placed sample from the show Lost, is guaranteed to have Lost fans everywhere tearing up. Simply put, Never Born Never Dead is not the most technically impressive album of the year, nor is it the most influential. In the large scale of things, in 3 years time, the release will probably be completely forgotten. But what makes it the best this year has to offer is simple, wholly brilliant in its concept, and wholly brilliant in its execution, once you listen to it, it'll never leave. Ever. Best Tracks: "Snake Oil, Angels, Never Dead"
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