Albums of 2011
10 - Black Keys - El CaminoFavorite Tracks: "Lonely Boy"
I have no interest in attending stadium tours, so I’ll probably never see them live again, but I still love their pounding grooves and huge bad-ass riffs.
9 - Portugal. The Man - In The Mountain In The CloudFavorite Tracks: "Got It All (This Can’t Be Living Now)"
3rd year in row on my list. Can’t fight it. I love this band and how each album adds a new twist.
8 - Mighty Fine - Get Up To Get DownFavorite Tracks: "Black Train"
A blistering, fuzzed-out, soulful, sonic assault guaranteed to seek and destroy your speakers. Mick Collins approved garage soul at its finest.
7 - AgesandAges - Alright You RestlessFavorite Tracks: "No Nostalgia"
Hide the robes, Kool-Aid, and directions to the commune. AgesandAges’ relentlessly upbeat melodies and gorgeous back porch harmonies got the spirit rising.
6 - Black Lips - Arabia MountainFavorite Tracks: "Modern Art"
Goodtimin’ rock n’ roll. FUCK YEAH! RKNRL! R@CKN!#$%&R@wwwwwllll!!!
5 - Dolorean - UnfazedFavorite Tracks: "Unfazed"
"Unfazed by pain, unfazed by love, unfazed by rain that won’t let up." I wish.
4 - Reigning Sound - Abdication... For Your LoveFavorite Tracks: "Lyin’ Girl"
It’s lazy to simply call this garage rock, when it’s the best hybrid of country, soul, and rock n’ roll I’ve heard this year. A master craftsman at the top of his game.
3 - The Vaccines - What Did You Expect From The Vaccines?Favorite Tracks: "Wetsuit"
Young and fun soundtrack for summer. Fulfilled my lust for Surfer Blood.
2 - Waters - Out In The LightFavorite Tracks: "Take Me Out To The Coast"
So packed with fantastic emotionally raw and exuberant songs, I turn up one jam, only turn up the next even louder.
1 - Light For Fire - Light For FireFavorite Tracks: "NY (By The Hand)"
Romanticizing and ultimately celebrating heartbreak by diving into a whiskey bottle has never sounded so necessary.
Honorable Mentions of 2011
5 - The Decemberists - The King Is Dead
Stripped of pretension, the band seems like it’s having fun.
4 - Black Joe Lewis & Honeybears - Scandalous
Making soul young, wild, and irreverent. The DJA album mixtape is awesome too.
3 - The Features - Wilderness
"You can have everything, except my rock n’ roll, my love / Put down Fats Domino."
2 - Priory - Priory
Damn catchy indie pop. Great live show too.
1 - U.S. Royalty - Mirrors
Although the gorgeous harmonies caught my attention, their live show made me love their heavy rockers.
Singles of 2011
2 - LMFAO - "Champagne Showers"
Miles might even dance wilder to this song.
1 - Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears - "Booty City (DJA Remix Featuring Yelawolf & Bun B)"
The top jam for when Miles and I want to get down and shake it, which is often.
Favorite Non-2011 Albums
4 - Various Artists - Sweet Inspiration: The Songs of Dan Penn & Spooner Oldham
Two of my favorite songwriters and a bunch of classic versions I hadn‘t heard before.
3 - Various Artists - This May Be My Last Time Singing: Raw African-America_n Gospel on 45RPM, 1957-1982
Seriously fantastic and gritty gospel.
2 - Charlie Rich - It Ain‘t Gonna Be That Way - The Complete Smash Sessions
Country soul at its best.
1 - Various Artists - The Fame Studios Story 1961-73
Some of my favorite songs of all time were recorded at Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals.
Best concert of 2011
AgesandAges & Givers
The pinnacle of an epic 4 day MusicFestNW bender. Just when I thought Givers couldn’t possible follow an amazing AgesandAges set, they go out and kill it and then bring out a rapper and kill it all over again.