Albums of 2011 (260 - 251)


5 déc. 2011, 3h59m

Albums of 2011

260 – 251

Elephant Gun - Kid Scissors

Okay, fair enough. I can dig it. Yeah, it gets a little repetitive and, no, it doesn't do anything particularly new but it is rather fast and concise. It's just pretty nice, that's all. Not anything to write home about, whether that letter is written out of spite or praise. You can just settle down for a second and listen to it. Or don't, I really don't care on this one.

John Maus - We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves

Eh, it's alright. Yes, I just started a five page review with the word 'eh.' I do so to piss off all the Pitchfork readers by using their own pseudo-indifference against them on an album that I bet they love. Most people would just say 'meh' but I shorten it to 'eh' because 'm' stands for 'mainstream.'

Look, I get it, Maus is a modern philosopher in training and all that jazz, but this just isn't good. It's repetitive but it doesn't even bother repeating the decent aspects. Imagine a John Hughes movie soundtrack that sucks. Find me a lighthouse, so I can escape this sea of suckiness.

Balam Acab - Wander / Wonder

It's interesting at best. The man's only twenty years old, so we'll see where he goes for his sophomore effort, because this just isn't going to cut it.

Lady Gaga - Born This Way

Before we start, just look at this album cover. I'm serious. Look at it. It's not a parody. It's not from the year 1987. It's an actual album cover from a contemporary artist. I have no idea what is going on any more. I mean, seriously, I cannot imagine the corporate meeting the record company had when they received the artwork.

"Ha ha ha, that's funny! Can you imagine if we actually sent it out with that on the cover!?! Oh wow, thank you guys, I needed that. Things have been rough at home and my mother just passed away, I really needed a laugh. Phew boy. Okay, back to business, where's the cover she sent in?


But...I don' doesn't...

...whatever, they'll buy it anyway."

Okay, now for the actual review as well. I'm not going to lie, I absolutely was not looking forward to this album at all. This is a prime example of an album I would not have listened to if I wasn't sent an advance copy. Don't get me wrong, I am ALL for people listening to ANY kind of music that they love. And again, don't get me wrong, I am ALL for people calling Lady Gaga talented, because she is. Question is, just because she's talented, can she utilize her skills into something of artistic merit? In this case, the answer is no. Absolutely not.

I get the most intense feeling of déjà vu I've ever had in my life listening to this. It's like listening to a combination of every terrible song I've ever heard from the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s in a incredibly overproduced studio session in...uh...let's go with Berlin. I mean, I feel like I'm listening to a parody that predicts the next decade of pop music.

The Christian overtones in this album are so extreme that they put South Park's hyperbole to shame. Listen to Bloody Mary once and tell me I'm wrong. There's a song called Electric Chapel, and it's not even a 1980s hair band cover. You And I is just...I mean, I don't listen to country music because I find the lyrics to be way too on-the-nose, but holy crap this song is bad.

I will continue to stand by and defend people that love The Fame and The Fame Monster, but I will not hesitate to ostracize any human being that honestly prefers Born This Way to pretty much everything else released this year. While the songs carry stronger continuing themes than a large amount of albums on this list, the simple fact that they are all overdone, obvious, and redundant justifies this album's low ranking.

Noah and the Whale - Last Night On Earth

I like this band, but I just can't stand the album. That's all. No, really, that's it. Noah and the Whale? Great band, no problems there. Last Night on Earth? If I was forced to listen to nothing but this album it would prove the title accurate. Again, I'll admit it: if I wasn't sent the advance I probably wouldn't have listened to it on my own.

Dave Alvin - Eleven Eleven

It's funny because his birthday is November 11th (Eleven Eleven) and my birthday is November 11th (Eleven Eleven) as well. So we're like birthday buddies, along with Benjamin Button and George Patton. So, this album has that going for it...and that's about it.

Most of these "We have to preserve the roots of rock and roll" artists really can't ever break away and do their own thing. You see, that's probably because the roots of rock and roll, as vital and fantastic as there were, are really simple. Really simple. You've heard a million albums just like this one and while I may be exaggerating, I'm not over-exaggerating.

T. Mills - Leaving Home

Okay, okay, let's turn to the same page. I think that T. Mills could be a good lyricist one day, but that certainly isn't today. He has potential but he squanders it on incredibly petty subject matter. Oh yeah, sex and partying, you're truly breaking new ground here. I think that if his popularity skyrockets, then people write him off as 'not even a one hit wonder' and his career hits rock bottom, then we'll be in good shape here. Then he'll have something to rap about. He has no reason to rap, and that is painfully obvious. Once he earns some actual life experience, he won't have a problem ranking higher.

Sandro Perri - Impossible Spaces

So I think this is pretty good. Not great, but not terrible either. It's really sincere, but it doesn't sound unlike anything you've ever heard before. This review is kind of hard now that I think about it, the album is definitely above average when it comes to the musicianship but it could be called dull as well. It is lean though, I'll give it that. It definitely doesn't intrude or overstay its welcome. And the ten-minute Wolfman is absolutely a worthy epic, it more than maintains a constant interest.

Panic! at the Disco - Vices & Virtues

...I miss Ryan Ross. That's what was fun about this band: the tight as a drum lyrics with a pop execution. But now it's quite literally pop execution. That's all I really need to say. People never listened to Panic! At The Disco albums for their musicianship, it was always the lyrics. So we lost the lyrics and I wouldn't doubt the band will soon follow.

Friendly Fires - Pala

I've always enjoyed the Friendly Fires sound and, while I wasn't ecstatic to hear another release from them, it also wasn't something I was dreading. As it turns out, maybe I should have. It's not really a rock album like their debut, but kinda pop...ish? It's all begins to sound very bland and very flat, very quickly. I don't really know what it's getting at and while that sometimes is a good thing, it most certainly isn't in this scenario. I was glad each and every time I finished listening to it. What a waste of time. I'm not talking about the album, just this paragraph. I could have summed up this entire album and every aspect of it in one word: generic. There, I just saved you two pages, you don't even have to read the rest. Don't worry, I ain't even mad.

You say that you haven't heard any of these albums? No excuses, click on the picture below to listen to a track from each release.

Playlist length = 38:51


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