Best of 2011: Albums
The best albums of 2011, including Josh T Pearson, Com Truise and Metronomy
Josh T Pearson – Last of the Country Gentleman
A phenomenally stark and moving record from the enigmatic, deeply talented Texan with a foot-long beard. The fact that some tracks come in at almost 12 minutes long may have been off-putting to some, but the rewards are huge to those who persevere with its unrelenting melancholy, open-wound candour and ink-black humour.
Gil Scott-Heron and Jamie xx – We’re New Here
The xx’s producer took the first album that Gil Scott-Heron had released in well over a decade, I’m Here, and added a massively enjoyable dubby bounce to this remix of all 13 tracks. Piano house and minimal bleepery complement Scott-Heron’s raspy vocal to stunning and striking effect. The fact that it turned out to be a career-restarter in the year the ‘godfather of rap’ died, aged 62, made it especially bittersweet. Read our original review.
Com Truise – Galactic Melt
Summing up this year’s trend for retro-futurism, and a tendency to galaxy cruise, while trawling the 80s and 90s for inspiration, Seth Haley’s slow-mo dancefloor beats got massive love this year from The List. (special mention also goes to HTRK’s debut Work (work, work), who like it slow and sleazy, and Washed Out’s Within and Without, making it blurry and beautiful.)
Profile: Com Truise
Remember Remember – The Quickening
Mojo called it ‘eight delightful lattices of wordless, pan-global mood music’, and when we reviewed this album from the Glasgow prog-rock orchestra back in September, we called it ‘a shimmering and optimistic tour de force’. Fronted by sonic experimenter turned melody maker, Graeme Ronald, and featuring guest guitarist RM Hubbert, we liked it from the first listen. The anti-grower?
Read our original review.
Metronomy – The English Riviera
There was a heavy coastal theme to 2011’s soundtrack, no? Everywhere from the surf-pop of The Drums, Best Coast, Beach Fossils to Summer Camp, Wavves and the Japanese War Effort, the Speedos were on and there was sand in our sandwiches. Our favourite though, was the Made in Torbay pop of Metronomy, solidifying their sound on their most upbeat, and commercially popular record to date.
Joe Mount interview