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Saturday, December 10, 2011

Lou's Top 20 of 2011, Part 1

Here's the first in a four-part series revealing my choices for the Top 20 records of 2011. Feel free to submit your own list to purgegeeks@gmail.com and I'll strongly consider posting it.

16.) Witches - Forever  (Bakery Outlet)

The primal indie-rock three-piece at its finest and most pure, Athens, Ga.'s Witches--led by Cara Beth Satalino--conjures other rough-edged yet highly melodic female-fronted outfits like Scrawl. Glorious in its simplicity.

17.) The Rural Alberta Advantage - Departing (Saddle Creek)

The second outing by singer-songwriter Paul Banwatt and mates brings the same brand of intense, hooky confessionals as their excellent 2009 debut, perhaps sharpening the focus on songcraft over raw emotion just a bit, but to the detriment of neither. Springsteen, Death Cab for Cutie, and Husker Du are all touchstones without a bit of incongruity.

18.) Bodies of Water - Twist Again (Thousand Tongues)

A more subdued but no less adventurous outing from this L.A. collective which throws in everything including the kitchen sink to create a constantly fascinating melange of moods and sounds which meld easily into a unique and wholly satisfying experience.

19.) Mount Moriah (Holidays for Quince)

The full-length debut from this North Carolina band delivers crushing hooks on both roots-inflected and more straight ahead indie tunes.

20.) D. Charles Speer & The Helix - Leaving the Commonwealth (Thrill Jockey)

I stumbled upon these guys live earlier this year, which was a pleasure, as is this platter of mostly fairly authentic honky tonk. Granted, there are certainly some psych elements and what I suspect must be unconventional lyrical themes (there may even be a Civil War concept), but you could totally dance to it and not really notice. Anyway, anyone doing country music well nowadays is fine by me, and this band fits the bill.



Blogger Joe Pontillo said...

It's not the end of the year until the new purge list is up. Always enjoy it.

11:02 AM  
Blogger lou said...

Thanks, Joe. Appreciate you reading. Will try to get the rest of it done soon.

12:01 PM  

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