Best album of 2012

John Talabot - Last Land from Stroll TV on Vimeo.

 

Runner-up:

Matthew Dear - Beams

Matthew Dear - Her Fantasy from SonoroHelicoidal on Vimeo.

 

And  according last.fm, this is what else I listened to:

Grizzly Bear - Shields

The XX - Coexist

Cat Power - Sun

The 2 Bears - Be Strong

College - Northern Council

Bat For Lashes - The Haunted Man

The Weeknd - Trilogy

King Creosote & Jon Hopkins - Diamond Mine Jubilee Edition

Jens Lekman – I Know What Love Isn't

Rodriguez - Searching For Sugar Man

Frank Ocean - Channel Orange

Drake - Drake

Gotye – Making Mirrors

Incarnations – With All Due Respect

Active Child – You Are All I See

Glasser – Ring

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

 

The Most Predictable Best Albums of 2010

1. Hot Chip – One Life Stand2. Four Tet - There Is Love in You 3. Matthew Dear – Black City 4. Yeasayer – ODD BLOOD 5. Caribou – Swim 6. LCD Soundsystem – This Is Happening 7. The Radio Dept. – Clinging to a Scheme 8. Joanna Newsom - Have One On Me 9. The Knife - Tomorrow, In A Year 10. Florence + the Machine – Lungs