4 January 2012

So, I think we can all agree that 2011 was quite the year, right?

A lot, err, happened.

From a personal perspective it was pretty good. Being part of the whole Adele thing was undeniably fun (if not a little bit surreal at several points), as was working another Radiohead record (although the record itself was really only a component in a larger whole). It’s fair to say work dominated 2011 for me, which is both good and bad. More non-work things in 2012 would be sensible, although I think I think that every year.

It seemed as though 2011 in general was less good for albums, and much better for single tracks. There was no great album of 2012, in my opinion. A good year for music, then, but not a great year for the long player format. I don’t think that’s any result of a grand “the world is changing” shift away from albums, more just that by pure coincidence and bad luck no one happened to make a collection of tracks that was “right” this year.

So, to that end rather then do a best albums of 2011 list that probably shouldn’t have a #1, I’ve compiled a list of my favourite 40 tracks of the year. 40, because it turned out that’s about how many I liked. It ranges about a bit genre-wise, which I think illustrates potentially illustrates a wider trend of the Internet enabling people to easily try stuff out that’s not traditionally in their comfort zone.

Spotify is the reason Rihanna is on this list, basically.

Best tracks of 2011

  • 40. Baby Missiles – The War On Drugs
  • 39. Georgie Ray – British Sea Power
  • 38. 212 – Azealia Banks
  • 37. A Chore – Tom Vek
  • 36. Terra Incognita – Atlas Sound
  • 35. Surgeon – St. Vincent
  • 34. Countdown – Beyonce
  • 33. The Words That Maketh Murder – PJ Harvey
  • 32. Calgary – Bon Iver
  • 31. Under Cover of Darkness – The Strokes
  • 30. New Brigade – Iceage
  • 29. Villains of the Moon – Cold Cave
  • 28. Otis – Watch The Throne
  • 27. Queen of Hearts – Fucked Up
  • 26. Jesus Fever – Kurt Vile
  • 25. Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I’ve Moved Your Chair – Arctic Monkeys
  • 24. California – EMA
  • 23. Beat of My Drum – Nicola Roberts
  • 22. Hold On – SBTRKT
  • 21. Someone Like You – Adele
  • 20. Everything Goes My Way – Metronomy
  • 19. White Limo – Foo Fighters
  • 18. Headlines – Drake
  • 17. Scarlet – 2:54
  • 16. Endless Blue – The Horrors
  • 15. She – Tyler, The Creator
  • 14. Diamond Way – Jeff The Brotherhood
  • 13. Codex – Radiohead
  • 12. NY is Killing Me – Gil Scott-Heron and Jamie xx
  • 11. Dirt – WU LYF
  • 10. We Found Love – Rihanna
  • 9. The Wilhelm Scream – James Blake
  • 8. Rolling In The Deep (Jamie xx shuffle) – Adele
  • 7. Goshen – Beirut
  • 6. The Look – Metronomy
  • 5. Powa – Tune-Yards
  • 4. Video Games – Lana Del Ray
  • 3. BTSTU – Jai Paul
  • 2. Mozaik – Zomby
  • 1. The Daily Mail – Radiohead

You can listen to these tracks as a playlist on Spotify (if they’re on there).

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