This is in all likelihood the last of the best of 2011 lists to be coming out, and it is in fact my second. As it turns out, I had overlooked some great releases in my original list, and the new additions are in bold.
The Honorable Mentions (80-51)
These are the albums of 2011 that you don’t regret listening to but might hesitate before buying.
80. In Love with Oblivion – Crystal Stilts
79. What a Pleasure – Beach Fossils
78. Metals – Feist
77. On the Water – Future Islands
Steep drop for this Baltimore group from their marvelous 2010 release In Evening Air. This album garnered more press attention, but it ultimately lacked the passion and energy of previous Future Islands work.
76. Goblin – Tyler, the Creator
75. Hello Sadness – Los Campesinos!
This album contained much sadness for Campesinos! fans in its aspirations toward former glory that fell short.
74. Weekend at Burnies – Curren$y
73. Lenses Alien – Cymbals Eat Guitars
72. Quilt – Quilt
71. Lost in Translation – Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire
70. Bad Penny – The Spectrals
69. Zonoscope – Cut Copy
68. Wild Flag- Wild Flag
67. Skying – The Horrors
66. Live Music – The Strange Boys
65. III: Arcade Dynamic – Ducktails
64. Kiss Each Other Clean – Iron & Wine
63. True Loves – Hooray for Earth
62. Tha Carter IV – Lil Wayne
61. Go Tell Fire to the Mountain – WU LYF
60. Ravedeath, 1972 – Tim Hecker
59. Career Culture – Icarus Himself
58. The King of Limbs – Radiohead
57. I’m Gay (I’m Happy) – Lil B
56. Holy Ghost! – Holy Ghost!
An excellent debut by this DFA troupe. They’re going take up the handle of the next great DFA group as YACHT, LCD Soundsystem, The Rapture, Hot Chip, and the Juan Maclean fade.
55. Belong – The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
54. The Rip Tide – Beirut
53. Mirror Traffic – Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks
52. Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming – m83
51. We’re New Here – Gil Scott-Heron & Jamie XX
Coming Soon: 50-25 with more commentary & better albums.