The Null Device

Records of 2011

And now, here is my list of notable records of 2011: With honourable mentions going to: Evan Abeele, Lineage EP (an understated instrumental album from one half of Memoryhouse; subtly lovely), Amor De Dias, Street of the Love of Days (Lupe from Pipas and Alasdair from The Clientele's new project; languid bossa-tinged pastoral pop), Apparat Organ Quartet, Pólyfónía (the Icelandic kraut-pop combo's first record in about six years sees them get less heavy and more chiptuneish), Bachelorette, Bachelorette (the New Zealand electronica artist's final album under that name is a more organic affair than the previous ones), Brave Irene, Brave Irene (Rose Melberg (of The Softies/Tiger Trap)'s latest project goes back to an upbeat garage-pop style; should fit well alongside All-Girl Summer Fun Band), Girls' Names, Girls' Names and Minks, Over The Hedge (two bands doing a slightly gothy, in a John Hughes way, 1980s-influenced guitar pop), Greeen Linez, Greeen Linez (a revival of 1980s boogie groove as instrumental electronica; look for it in a mixtape or DJ set near you), Help Stamp Out Loneliness, Help Stamp Out Loneliness (Dee from the Language Of Flowers' new band, in a new-wave-tinged pop direction), Jens Lekman, An Argument With Myself EP (Jens' first recorded work in some years reveals a more Afrobeat direction; the title song also recounts a drunken walk across the north of Melbourne, and the somewhat maudlin reflections on said walk), Loney, Dear, Hall Music (slightly less bleak and more organic than the predecessor; the closing track, What Have I Become? is particularly lovely), M83, Hurry Up We're Dreaming (the latest instalment in their journey sees them put aside the John Hughesisms of their last album and sound more like Toto or The Police, all yelped vocals and gated drums, only with more synths), Memoryhouse, The Years (technically disqualified as it's a rerelease of last year's EP, with a few new tracks, tough it bodes well for their upcoming album), Ringo Deathstarr, Colour Trip and Spotlight Kid, Disaster Tourist (two great contemporary takes on classic shoegaze; the first from Texas, the second from Wales), Xander Harris, Contamination (a Bandcamp-released EP of synthesised instrumentals, which borrows from electro-industrial, ambient and kosmische musik and does so well), Zola Jesus, Conatus (with her pop melodies, electro-industrial synthpop backings and dramatic voice, Zola shows us the middle ground between Lene Lovich and U2).

Were I to anoint one title as my record of the year, the accolade would probably go to My Sad Captains.

There are 4 comments on "Records of 2011":

Posted by: Greg Sat Dec 31 21:27:50 2011

Just from a rough count - 19 out of the 26 acts mentioned are explicitly reworking old genres!

I know I'm revisiting an old topic here, but it's getting hard to think of pop music without thinking of the past.

Another example, from this week's Mess&Noise: http://www.messandnoise.com/releases/2000984

Posted by: Cos Sat Dec 31 23:49:02 2011

oh, I hadn't noticed Constant Light had a whole album out, cheers.

Posted by: Krav Maga Sun Jan 15 01:10:34 2012

Come on, be honest Andrew. How many of these did you make up?

Posted by: Constant Light https://www.facebook.com/pages/Constant-Light/30 Mon Mar 12 12:59:58 2012

Wow, just saw this.

A minor correction, our album 'Mag-Amplitude' is also available as a limited edition digipack CD: http://constantlight.bandcamp.com/album/mag-amplitude

Thanks! Constant Light

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