Today concludes Ranting About Music’s 2011 year-end coverage. For this entry, I thought I’d hand out a few miscellaneous awards, and put down some of my favorite songs this year. If none of your favorites show up, I’m sorry, but consider this a more editorial entry than the past few days. So let’s start!
Let it Rock: 2010 was a bad year for radio rock, but things turned around somewhat in 2011. Foo Fighters, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Coldplay, The Strokes, and The Black Keys all put out decent to great albums with strong singles. The only downside is that it feels like no one’s really crossing over from alt/indie that much, except maybe The Joy Formidable and Foster the People. Either way, this was a good year for rock.
Albums I Wish I’d Digested More:
1. Thurston Moore – Demolished Thoughts: I lost my copy a few days after getting it in the mail, only to find it the other day.
2. tUnE – yArDs – W H O K I L L: I listened to this one plenty, but never found as much to say about it as everyone else. It was weird, fun, and good, but something about it didn’t click with me, kind of like Dirty Projectors in 2009.
3. Atlas Sound – Parallax: I actually wanted to review this one, but circumstances kept getting in the way of listening to it enough to verbalize a solid opinion on it. Despite that, it’s still a personal favorite. On a related note…
Albums I Didn’t Review, but Really Liked Anyway:
P.S. Eliot – Sadie
The Wonder Years – Suburbia I’ve Given You All and Now I’m Nothing
Flogging Molly – Speed of Darkness
Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
Sonoio – Sonoio (red)
Albums Given the Most Second Chances
Lady Gaga – Born This Way
Radiohead – The King of Limbs
Angels & Airwaves – LOVE pt. 2
Bon Iver – Bon Iver, Bon Iver
Songs That Appeared on the Hot 100 at Some Point That I Wish Made the Year-end Hot 100
Taylor Swift – The Story of Us
Selena Gomez and The Scene – Love You Like a Love Song
Coldplay – Paradise
Foo Fighters – Rope
Florence +the Machine – Shake It Out
Lupe Fiasco feat. Skylar Grey – Words I Never Said
Hit Song I Still Don’t See the Appeal of
Pitbull feat. Ne-Yo, Afrojack, Nayer – Give Me Everything: I guess this was only big because “Party Rock Anthem” hadn’t caught on yet?
Worst #1 of the year: Katy Perry – Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)
Best #1 of the year: Adele – Rolling in the Deep
Most Improved Hit Artist: Ke$ha: She only had two hits this year, neither of which I hated. “We R Who We R” was actually shortlisted for the Best Hits list, and “Blow” was a decent, if not especially memorable, song.
Least Improved Hit Artist: Bruno Mars: I still love “Nothin’ on You”, and the dude helped write “Fuck You”, but hits of his own this year, “The Lazy Song” and “Grenade”, did absolutely nothing for me.
1. Amanda Palmer – Bad Wine and Lemon Cake
2. Adele – Someone Like You
3. The Roots – Sleep
4. The National – Exile Vilify
5. Bon Iver – Holocene
25 Favorite Songs of the Year (in no order)
1. The Mountain Goats – Estate Sale Sign
2. Foo Fighters – Arlandria
3. Arctic Monkeys – Reckless Serenade
4. Flogging Molly – Power’s Out
5. Florence + the Machine – No Light, No Light
6. The Horrors – Endless Blue
7. Candy Hearts – Sleepy Kisses
8. Lady Gaga – Heavy Metal Lover
9. P.S. Eliot – Talk
10. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Everybody’s on the Run
11. Drake – Take Care
12. Radiohead – Separator
13. Atlas Sound – Te Amo
14. blink-182 – MH 4.18.2011
15. M83 – Midnight City
16. Dropkick Murphys -Going Out in Style
17. The Decemberists – Down By the Water
18. Raphael Saadiq – Stone Rollin’
19. The Roots – Make My
20. Sonoio – Enough
21. The Strokes – Under Cover of Darkness
22. Trent Reznor/Karen O – Immigrant Song
23. Wavves feat. Best Coast – Nodding Off
24. tUnE-yArDs – Gangsta
25. St. Vincent – Cruel
And thus concludes List Week! I’m taking the weekend off for Christmas, and regular Ranting About Music activity will resume the week after. Wishing you and yours a happy holidays, and looking forward to more great music to rant about in 2012!