first & foremost: top singles of 2011

December 26, 2011

It’s been a particularly unique year for me as this hobby rose out of my geeked love of music and a desire to spread the sounds of the DIY underworld. I first & foremost want to thank you for all the support and feedback given throughout the last seven months. John Cusack’s lucid dream of a world might come to an end within a year, so for the past and to the future, let’s wave goodbye and look back at a few tunes that left their mark.

ABADABAD – Park Slope (I’m Sorry) (Yalls Remix)

  • With only a handful of singles and a heart of gold, ABADABAD managed to create a sound simply described as care free and complexly explained as awesome. The chopped Yalls remix added a spice of danceability and is the only song I’ve heard of being premiered on

Acid Glasses – My Pale Garden + Jpeg Hoarder

  • As I first heard ‘My Pale Garden’ through a mid-day iPod shuffle, I wasn’t sure what had overcome my senses. The overly soft voice, blunt and to the point, whisked together with ‘Jpeg Hoarder’ and you have enough of a neo-psychedelic head high to call Acid Glasses one of my favorite odd act of 2011.

Braids – Plath Heart

  • A common sight on a whole lot of lists and for good reason. Braids‘ ‘Plath Heart’ radiates power like it’s been bottled up and shaken over decades of emotional turbulence. With that said, I leave you with quite possibly my favorite ‘quick chuckle’ quote of the year:

BRAIDS is a band that lost to a Red Hot Chili’s cover band in high school” – An Interview with Hear Hums

Co La – Wanna Say Faux

  • Back in May, I was walking down to the mail box and contemplating starting up the site presented in front of you. What came that day was Co La‘s Dial Tone Earth; call it adrenaline, but the rest is a blur. ‘Wanna Say Faux’ perfectly expresses the Baltimore trance pop dream in a fresh, familiar way.

Coma Cinema – Her Sinking Sun

  • Completely genuine and ultimately self-recognizing, everything this man has released to date seems to have you rediscovering yourself all over again.

Fruit Flesh – Viral Infection

  • Truth be told, I’m a sucker for saxophone. But even if you’re strictly a brass man, you have to recognize the whirlwind of experimentation this worldly Tallahassee soul has going on. Honestly pick anything off of Guilt Exchange, it’s a killer EP.

Grimes – Vanessa

  • Mesmerized by the energy this songstress beams out into innocent onlookers, Grimes is an act I can’t seem to go a day without listening to.

Gross Magic – Yesterdays

  • While I did enjoy Teen Jamz EP, the raw power generated by ‘Yesterdays’ is a year-ending force to recon with. The sound of slow moving, high voltage rock and roll leaves any speaker it’s introduced to like a grunge bullet train; I assume headed northwest.

High Highs – Open Season

  • I’ve never been able to put my finger on it, but ‘Open Season’ ends up somewhere between an overwhelming feeling of being completely content exactly where you are in life and that gaping hole you’re given the day after perfection.

Moss of Aura – Jaminal

  • Straying back and forth from his work in the also brilliant Future Islands, Gerrit Welmers was able to top the trop-pop charts. Whether you’re in a warm, breezy climate or not, ‘Jaminal’ gets the blood flowing like a mid-morning bike ride.

Purity Ring – Belispeak

  • A made-for-beauty offshoot of Canada’s power-pop lords Gobble Gobble (now Born Gold) that makes you question your sexuality while explaining all the benefits of personal poetry.

Ricky Eat Acid x arrange – P.S.L.W

  • As you listen to this collaboration, the world around lays still. In the most literal sense, we’re brought an onslaught of calming winds as the melody raises your spirit and slows the mind.

Sacred Animal vs Owensie – Cat and Mouse

  • The slow, distant beat and eerily ambient vocals trace a childhood daydream of searching through a dark, desolated forest, sending chills down your spine and sending you to a place far too known.

ScHoolboy Q – Birds & The Beez (feat. Kendrick Lamar)

Telethon – Ow Nix Golly

  • The mash of pysch-pop and weird waves, a freak of a bassline only Black Moth would call it’s child, and a few good-lord-that’s-catchy breakdown.

Tree Hopping – Brian Sequence

  • From the remnants of Totally Nebular arose an equally danceable project built up on samples and guitar hooks, ‘Brain Sequence’ is the natural essence of this worldly act.

TV Girl – Benny and the Jets

  • Even with obvious Rocket Man 70s nostalgia, ‘Benny and the Jets’ is sweet as sugar and captures that quintessential easy-going bounce sound that TV Girl exemplifies.

Yung life – I Am You

  • With a backing from the glories of New Wave and aired out vocals to occupancy it, the lightheartedness of ‘I Am You’ never fades out, sticking with you throughout the day.

[Next Up: Top Releases of 2011]

PS You can stream all of these sounds after the jump!

PPS They’re in order of the list you see above.


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