Best of 2011

It's still a bit early to list the 10 best albums of 2011 as there's still a chance to release something brilliant, but I reserve the right to  shuffle things around before the year is over. In general, this year was a better year than most recent, and I made a few discoveries, as can be concluded from the list. There are quite a few newcomers, which pushed new releases by some of (previous?) favourites off the chart. Björk, Junior Boys and Jay-Jay Johanson all released new stuff this year, but their efforts never really took off and left me quite a bit disappointed. My all-time most frequently played artists list will be hard to budge though, since I tend to get tired of an album after just 10-15 plays, thus not allowing new artists to rise very high. I often find myself looking for the next big thing 3-4 plays down the line of an album I really like. Maybe also because I don't want to get tired of it so soon, and need to balance with something more difficult. Another sad thing is that I didn't go to ANY live show this year. Visits by big (and medium and small) artists remain scarce and the last show I saw was The Whitest Boy Alive in late 2011. There are a few venues for electronic music though, and occasionally some interesting names fly by for gigs. Come to think of it, didn't I see The Field in Dos Colegas? Nope, that was also last year...

Anyway, here's the list:

1. Planningtorock - W (DFA) This is definitely this year's biggest and most overwhelming musical experience. As a big fan of The Knife I was already sort of adapted to the dark twisted world of pseudo-gamelords and masked kidnappers with crow-bar nose jobs, but this shemale opened the door to a parallel universe, seemingly governed by a strange ageless dictator whose androgynous tunes stroked me just the right way. The songs just seem to come from a place I'm carrying around inside myself, but never been confronted with before. Extremely well composed and endlessly beautiful. Most raved-to song: Manifesto

Since I cannot make up the ranking order of my other most listened-to albums this year, I'll just list them and you can imagine which ones I like better. As if it mattered. But they're all not as excellent as Planningtorock.

Jay-Z + Kanye West - Watch The Throne

Nicolas Jaar - Space Is Only Noise

Lykke Li - Wounded Rhymes

Radiohead - The King Of Limbs

James Blake - James Blake

M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming

Kate Bush - Director's Cut

SBTRKT - SBTRKT

Crystal Fighters - Star Of Love

 

π (pi)

This morning I got the urge to listen to some Kate Bush, more specifically her latest album, Aerial, from 2005. It's an enchanting album, very dreamy and pleasant. One of the most delightful songs is called Pi; after a typically Bush-esque introduction of a sensitive man that lifts her spirit by being very dedicated to his work, mathematics. she starts singing out the endless sequence of decimals of π in a long wonderful chorus. 3,141592653589793.......mmmmm

Kate Bush - Pi