wowz. This has been so amazingly difficult. It’s been a year of evolution in regards to my music taste – a year when maamf featured perhaps more local stuff than ever before, and a year when the local scene in general was pretty freaking strong. It’s also been a year where my taste has gotten even broader…I don’t know how, but it has.
Attempting to dwindle this down to 10 was so hard. Others aren’t doing a top 10, but are instead doing a top 50. That be cray cray is you ask me.
I’m also too lazy.
So, like other years, a bit of an honourable mention section. The peeps that so nearly made the top 10 were:
Big Scary – Vacation, Feist – Metals, M83 – Hurry Up We’re Dreaming, Seekae +DOME, Toro Y Moi – Underneath The Pine, Total Control – Henge Beat.
There were also a whole heap of albums that made a super long list of about 48 albums or so – you can check out those on our facebook.
Anyway, from 1-10, these are my fave albums of 2011. Complete with a stream of a track from each. If you dig, you should get them out again. If you don’t have ’em, grab ’em!
1. Twerps – Twerps
From that opening riff, you know that this is going to be an amazing album. I guess time will tell, but to me, this album is already an Australian classic. Sounds super wanky, but it sounds Australian – I think it’s those big sweeping guitars and the strong bass lines. And it’s the fact that it straddles that line between sounding big and grand but still sounds like it’s just a few mates messing around.
Twerps – Who Are You
2. Adalita – Adalita
An album pretty heavy with emotion is Adalita’s debut. Dean Turner, bass player with Adalita’s old band Magic Dirt helped in the production of some of this album before he passed away two years ago. The album itself sounds quite restrained and considered – Adalita super strong vocals doubled up with a solo guitar full of distortion is almost haunting.
Adalita – The Repairer
3. Oscar + Martin – For You
This was so close for my album of the year. The thing I love the most about this disc is the beats. And the vocals. And that pretty Melbourne sounding floor tom. And the 90’s r’nb influence. But nah, yeah, it really is the grooves that get me on this.
Oscar + Martin – Do The Right Thing
4. Gotye – Making Mirrors
It would be stupid of me if I didn’t include this on the list. People are calling this album of the year, and you can see why. The amazing production on this album will ensure it has it’s place as a bit of an Aussie classic. Wally is an incredible musician and such an amazingly great songwriter. There isn’t a bad song on this disc.
Gotye – State of the Art
5. The Middle East – I Want That You Are Always Happy
Perhaps one of the most anticipated local releases of the year, this, as an album, is a bit of a work of art. The shear emotion that builds right across the disc is moving. Sure there are the sometimes out there lyrics (jesus you’re a fire in my foreskin everyday – Merry Christmas everyone!), but yeah, all together, it’s an album that evokes such clear imagery – and I don’t necessarily mean the lyrics. These guys definitely went out on a high note.
The Middle East – Ninth Avenue Reverie
6. Cut Copy – Zonoscope
When this album finally dropped I was initially a bit disappointed. It’s definitely no In Ghost Colours, but after a few more listens, it’s actually a pretty solid release. There are definitely some great tracks on here and I really like the way it all somehow melds together. It’s no secret that I absolutely love these gents!
Cut Copy – Pharaohs & Pyramids
7. Oh Mercy – Great Barrier Grief
Yeah, so bad puns aside, I really like the work of Alexander Gow. I think their first album was a bit of a sleeper hit – flew under the radar a bit. This disc definitely has had a lot more promo, but i think there’s a real sound that comes through on this record. hearing interviews with Gow, he’s quite romantic about the idea of Australia and the shear vastness of land in this country. I think the record has captured that pretty nicely.
Oh Mercy – Doldrums
8. Single Twin – Marcus Teague
To me, this was an album that I gave one listen and then it gathered dust, well, it gathered digital dust. There were one or two tracks on there that I knew were great, well crafted pop songs, but man, I’m so glad I went back. All the tracks on this album are so well crafted. But easily, I think the thing that makes this go from a good album to a great album is the bed of noise that sits beneath each track – the samples, the slight distortion. They sound quite separate, but they seem to compliment each other really well.
Single Twin – The Blow (Fell Out The Window)
9. Step-Panther – Step-Panther
This is a disc that holds one of my fave tracks of the year. My Neck is such a killer, sweet, smack in your face packet of slacker-kid goodness. But then, so is the album. I never really expected this disc to be near the top for me, but after giving it a few listens, man, it’s just a heap of fun.
Step-Panther – Rock And Roll Alien
This is seriously one of the albums that gives me tingles. Warm lovely nostalgic tingles. English peeps Yuck, do fuzzed out indie pop goodness – sure, some of the stuff sounds the same, and it is massively tinged with 90’s fuzz stuff like Dinosaur Jnr, but the sounds that they do produce, to me, are some of the best.
Yuck – Georgia
A bit over a week ago, Triple J announced the Unearthed winners playing at Laneway Festival. I could have blogged about this then, but I kinda forgot. It works out well though, because the dudes at Laneway released playing times etc today too, so why not one big post for it all??!!
First up, the Melbourne winners for Unearthed were Buchanan. The track they won with is Teachers (down below), but I’ve been following these dudes for a while now. They’re a three piece doing some pretty tight indie pop. Their earlier tracks sound way beyond a few dudes who are unsigned. And Teachers ain’t no exception. Super looking forward to seeing these guys open up laneway. Check out more of their tracks on their Unearthed profile.
For a list of the other bands that took out the right to open up Laneway in their home cities, head here.
Also today, Laneway finally released the playing times. Coz i’m going to the Melbourne leg, we’re only sorta worried/excited about the playing times for that specific show. If you’re from another city, you can grab the playing times via the Laneway website.
But Melbourne. Man. Luckily, I seem to have found a non clash pathway from gates open to close. Except for all the opening bands i wanna catch. And then theirs my mate. Ha! I think he wants to see Ariel Pink…ok, so there might be a few clashes. But yes, below are my pics for the day.
ok. So, for the second time in as many years, a new Avalanches album has made the Home & Hosed‘s Album’s of the new year list.
And here’s hoping that they actually do put out a new album this year, some 11 or so years after their debut.
Anyway, enough of the Avalanches anxiety. There are some pretty exciting albums on this list.
The ones I’m looking most forward to are:
FEB – Cut Copy – Zonoscope (Modular/Universal)
MAR – Collarbones – Iconography (Two Bright Lakes/Remote Control), The Little Stevies – Attention Shoppers (Independent), Oh Mercy – Great Barrier Grief (Capitol/EMI)
APR – Mike Noga – The Balladeer Hunter (TBC)
JUNE – Nick Huggins – TBA (Two Bright Lakes/Remote Control)
AUG – Big Scary – TBA (Independent)
NO MONTH YET – Alpine – TBA (Ivy League), The Avalanches – TBA (Modular/Universal), Jonathan Boulet – TBA (Modular/Universal), Geoffrey O’Connor – TBA (Chapter Music), The Grates – TBA (Dew Process/Universal), Gotye – TBA (Independent/Eleven), Jack Ladder – TBA (Spunk/EMI), The Middle East – TBA (Spunk/EMI), No Device – The Devil Makes Work For Idle Hands (Independent), Pnau – Soft Universe (Warner Music), Rat Vs Possum – TBA (Sensory Projects), Seekae – TBA (Rice Is Nice), The Twerps – TBA (Chapter Music), World’s End Press – TBA (Love & Mercy)
You can access the full list here.
And of course, some music, to get you in the mood.
The Little Stevies – Feel It
Seekae – Blood Bank
Oh Mercy – Keith St.
World’s End Press – Faithful
ok. So for anyone who lives down in Melbourne, you’ll know that the St Kilda Festival is always a bit of fun. Good food, some pretty awesome live music, and best of all, the whole thing is free.
The festival runs between Feb 5 and Feb 13 and is held right throughout St Kilda and Festival Sunday is on Sunday the 13th Feb. Festival Sunday sees about 60 bands playing across a few different stages with the main stage on the beach. Last year I saw Jonathan Boulet play this small little stage, and the year before I witnessed Cut Copy doing a pretty awesome DJ set and Aussie rock legends The Angels doing a set. So yeah, they always manage to attract some fairly decent acts. They also announce the shortlist for the Australian Music Prize – you can check out all of the entrants for that here.
Anyway, so on Friday they announced four of the acts playing on Festival Sunday. They always have some pretty great local acts. So anyway, without further ado, the first four acts announced are:
Hungry Kids of Hungary
I’m especially looking forward to Kimbra and Hungry Kids of Hungary (and we got two of their tracks below). They’re going to announce the rest of the lineup in January, so stay tuned.
The full lineup has been announced, and we’ve got it on maamf. You can see it all, including playing times right here.
ok. so Golden Plains festival down here in Victoria will be in it’s fifth year next year. It always manages to draw an interesting and diverse lineup and next years ain’t no exception.
Something Golden Plains do manage to do is to rake in a few old bands who haven’t played in a while. Last year they got Pavement and Dinosaur Jnr. This year they got NZ band The Clean, who were a killer punk shoegaze kinda band from the late 70s. (To be honest, I actually didn’t know of them before this morning…but listening to their MySpace, i’m rather impressed.)
But yes, the full lineup! I think I might try and get along to this fest. Although there are a few bands I don’t know, there’s enough there that I do know! Totes lookin forward to Best Coast, Architecture In Helsinki, Wavves, The Clean, Mount Kimbie, Jamie Lidell, The Middle East, and World’s End Press.
Wanna go? It’s at the Meredith Supernatural Amphitheatre, Meredith, Victoria, Australia, March 12 – 14, 2011
2011 Golden Plains Lineup.
THE HOLD STEADY
ARCHITECTURE IN HELSINKI
PULLED APART BY HORSES
THE MIDDLE EAST
BOY & BEAR
THE BESNARD LAKES
JUSTIN TOWNES EARLE
J-WOW FEAT. MC KALAF
WILDBIRDS & PEACEDRUMS
BAMBOO MUSIK DJS
WORLD’S END PRESS
To finish off with, a few tracks from some of the killer bands on the lineup!
ok, so the title of this post is a bit of a long shot, but if you ever heard an old radio show called Get This (was on *whispers* triple m), then you might get this reference. Brian Nankervis from Rockwiz was in and they were having a comp where people called up and had to answer questions. It was a bit after the dude meant to be featured in this post, Gotye won an ARIA award for best male.
Brian asked a caller (an inebriated fellow called Phillip) the question: “What is the ARIA award winning Gotye’s real name?”
Phillip: “What is the ARIA good year?”
Brian: “No, No. The guy who won an ARIA the other night, Gotye, what is his real name?”
Phillip: “The guy that won an ARIA the other night was his real name?”
Tony (host of Get This): “Yes”.
Phillip: “Was it silverchair?”
Ed (other host): “I’m going to accept that, I’m going to accept that. That’s fair enough”
For those who remember Get This, you can still get all the podcasts of the show on iTunes. Grab them here.
Anyway, whenever I think of Gotye, I always think of that skit. You probably have to listen to it for it to be funny.
Anywho…now that that’s out of the way, let’s get onto Gotye.
So, as Phillip couldn’t answer, Gotye’s real name is Wally de Backer. He’s been around for a while and had an absolutely massive album a few years back called Like Drawing Blood. He’s back…finally! His new single is called Eyes Wide Open and it’s kicking. Rollicks along like no tomorrow. Interesting to see how he goes live actually – from what I’ve read he sometimes does a one man show, behind a drum kit with samples etc galore. Will be able to check it out at Laneway next year…he’s on the bill!
Anyway, enough of what is probably the longest post in a while. Here’s the track!
Gotye – Eyes Wide Open (Free download via bandcamp)
ok. So this morning, Triple J slowly let out the lineup for the St Jeromes Laneway Festival for next year…
I think that’s all I can say! Most of the bands I’ve been hanging out to see but haven’t been able to coz of the year that is Honours Thesis are on this list.
Cutters (AM SO FREAKING PUMPED TO SEE THESE BOYS LIVE AGAIN!) played at Parklife which would’ve been awesome.
Yeasayer and Beach House played at Splendour.
And then there’s PVT, Rat Vs Possum, The Holidays, Bear In Heaven, Deerhunter, Holy Fuck, Gotye…man, the list just goes on and on. It’s like a bloggers wet dream…or nightmare (Too many great bands in only one day!)
Anyway, you can check out the lineup just below. You can check out my mini review of last years here. Also make sure you check out a few tracks from the bands playin.
I am freaking excited!
Bear in Heaven
Jenny and Johnny
Les Savy Fav
PVT (PVT – Window)
Rat vs Possum (Rat Vs Possum – Binti Jua)
Two Door Cinema Club
World’s End Press (World’s End Press – Golden Child)
Yeasayer (Yeasayer – O.N.E)