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|Top 11 Songs For '11|
A year to remember for sure. These are 11 of my rrfavorites in no rparticular order.
|1||TV On The Radio|
One of the best genre and stereotype smashing popular acts around, TV On The
are most known for their quirky up-tempo songs and downright strange videos.
song's bedroom beat,noteworthy lyrics are rivaled only by the song's
good official music video.
Already a masterpiece in its own right, Alcest trumped themselves when
they re-recorded Le Secret. Originally, Neige was upset to hear reviews
call the EP "dark." Despite the black metal styled vocals and comparably
raw recording, he had intended it to be a cheerful album. The new take
injects enough uplifting atmosphere into the song while preserving the
creative integrity of the original. The lyrics, a beautiful poem by Charles
Baudelaire by the same name, reveal the soul of the song. "Beyond the
vast sorrows and all the vexations/that weigh upon our lives and obscure
our vision/Happy is he who can with his vigorous wing/Soar up towards
those fields luminous and serene..."
Sunset Of Age
Unfortunately, Anathema's reworking of their early songs in Falling Deeper
didn't fare as well as Hindsight. In fact, I'd call the album flat out boring at
times. But the finale, if you made it that far, is truly blissful and leaves me
bewildered at why the same level of attention did not seem to be given to
all of the songs. Sunset Of Age is transformed into a swirling, beautiful work
with excellent strings, synth, piano, guitar and drums. The vocals are as
dark and foreboding as the atmosphere. This is the best piece of music
Anathema has produced in many years, and trumps everything on
I could have chosen any song on this album. It's like digging through a bag
of flawless diamonds and being asked which one is most beautiful. I don't
know, and I don't care. Bon Iver's self titled album is a spine-tingling
masterpiece. I took it along with me through a 4 and a half month road trip
across the US, and it spent more time in the CD player than anything else.
When it spun I was left staring vacantly into in the road in front of me, lost
in a dozen or so emotions. Its magic has still not worn off.
Mice On Venus
Not since Kow Otani's phenomenal soundtrack to Shadow Of The Collosus
has a video game soundtrack captured my imagination like C418's Minecraft
- Volume Alpha. The game, a riot success which needs no introduction, is
famously minimalist. Blocks. Really, that's all. Yet somehow, depth. I am
sure I am not alone in saying however that when one of C418's tracks
kicked in (a fairly rare occurence) it added so much more to the game.
Nostalgia. Longing. Sadness. Hope. I bought the soundtrack to see if it
would have the same effect outside of Minecraft, and it does. Every track
has its own unique character. I chose "Mice On Venus" as I feel it is one of
the most noteworthy (and the longest.)
If you recognize their name, it's either because you know Hebrew or have
read Frank Herbert's Dune, or both. Either way, they are an extreme metal
outfit from Israel, whose metal community seems to be growing at a
healthy rate. Last year another Israeli metal album stole the hearts of
metalheads around the world, Winterhorde's Underwatermoon. Arafel
seemed to fly mostly under the radar of the west, but regardless, songs
like "The Siege" continue to put Israel on the metal map. Features a lovely
violin performance by the very lovely Nasha Nokturna.
|7||:Of the Wand and the Moon:|
A Pyre Of Black Sunflowers
This album took me by surprise. I wasn't look for it. It found me through a
friend, who shared my belief as summed up by my response to hearing the
first few tracks: "This is the ideal music for wearing all black walking down a
path covered with autumn leaves. It's a soundtrack for the transition into
winter." Can you tell I was a teenage goth? I'd almost forgotten about that
period of my life until this album so firmly struck that chord.
An unashamedly giddy song glorifying the familiar, the mundane, heralding
a return home with such infectious adoration and joy. Moreso than all of
that, a love song all fans of Patrick Wolf have been dying to hear. Patrick
has seen his share of disappointment in love, and this song came on the
heels of his announced engagement to his boyfriend of 2 and a half years.
Patrick Wolf's sexuality is seemingly an unavoidable topic despites its
insignificance as he so eloquently and positively reminds us in "Bermondsey
Street": "Love knows no boundaries, sees beyond sexuality, and holds the
sun in the palm of its hand, laughs down on the cynical man."
I love music of which it can be stated "the whole is much greater than the
sum of its parts." In this case, the spartan duo Talkdemonic (viola and
drums respectively, with a layer of synth) creates a healthy variety of sound
elements ranging post-rock to stoner rock to psychadelic to, well,
Talkdemonic. If you like instrumental music on the experimental side, such
as A Cosmic Trail, you'll enjoy this.
|10||The Twilight Singers|
Blackbird And The Fox
Dynamite Steps is the first album I've heard from this band, though that will
change as soon as I have the necessary funds to purchase their back
catalog. I am particularly enamored with this track which features guest
vocals from Ani DiFranco.
"Seasons" sums up Yanni's approach to music. Playful, hopeful, global,
sentimental, and unapologetically positive. I first heard Yanni in the form of
Live At The Acropolis. That was nearly 15 years ago when I was pre-teen.
Back then, classical music was pretty much all I cared to listen to,
particularly Debussy. Yanni was something fresh and interesting to me.
Neo-classical music with an emotional, personal touch. Nothing in his career
trumps that performance. If you've never heard it, listen to "One Man's
Dream" from that concert. Astounding. However, Yanni's studio work is
more commonly electronic, more Tangerine Dream, less symphonic. This is a
return to that style,d for the 21st century with a select few vocalists
and a crispd sound. It's not perfect, but it's the Yanni I know and
|This took FOREVER to write and I listened to every song while writing about them (hence hyperbole.) |
I'm taking a break from music for a couple days after this. I'm late, I know. I don't rush things.
|WTF GUYS I WORKED HARD :'(|
|Glad to see Of The Wand and The Moon on here. That new album is excellent.|
Good call on Bon Iver too.