Cementing The Seams

The Plot Sickens


Tenement - Napalm Dream

  • 2011 was a pretty excellent year for pop-punk, and Napalm Dream is camped atop a mountain of great music from the genre this year.  I've heard a few people mention not getting what the fuss is all about. I don't get them.
House Boat - The Thorns Of Life
  • Like I said, great year for pop punk.  House Boat is what you get when you put together over-the-top catchy pop-punk acts like The Steinways, The Ergs, and Dear Landlord. Sometimes it's ridiculous, sometimes it's perfect.
Ghoul - Transmission Zero
  • When I was 14 I bought an Exhumed CD because the concept of gore metal seemed hilarious and ironic to me. Ghoul doesn't really sound like what I remember of Exhumed, but 12 years later I had to wonder if maybe that CD might be really good.  Transmission Zero is absolutely one of my favorite records of the year despite the inherent cheesiness (in fact, it works heavily in it's favor).  I don't really know what metal music is supposed to sound like, but if it was all like this, the world would be a perfect place.
Office Of Future Plans - Office Of Future Plans
  • I'm kinda surprised I never got around to posting this to be honest.  It was probably my most anticipated record of the year.  I suppose it was because it would have gone something like this: "If you're like me and basically love everything J Robbins touches, then this record is for you".  I suppose it didn't grab me as much as the Channels full length, but OFP still hits on all cylinders, and sounds like only this group of dudes can. Pretty brilliant.
Bridge & Tunnel - Rebuilding Year
  • When it comes to socially conscious, next-level, reluctant adult punk, pretty much nobody can hold a candle to Bridge & Tunnel.  Rebuilding Year is absolutely their best material and most certainly one of the best punk records of the year.
Beau Navire - Hours
  • I think I made it the whole year without posting a screamo record.  Primarily because it all sucked.  This however, is pretty fucking good. So there you have it.  2011's good screamo record.
Night Birds - The Other Side Of Darkness
  • Pretty much unilaterally considered on of the best punk albums of 2011 and with good reason.  Perfect mix of throwback hardcore, surf punk and the occasional pop-punk; a formula for greatness.

Trainwreck - If There's A Light It Will Find You

  • The always killer Trainwreck madetheir mark on 2011 with this 5 song 12".  The consensus on this record seemed to be "good but doesn't really sound much like earlier material" Is that good? Bad? Depends on who you ask.  Either way, compared to other Trainwreck or any record in this genre, it was one of the biggest successes of the year. Conceptually.
Punch - Nothing Lasts
  • It was a big year for Punch; signing to Deathwish, touring the entire universe, and (if Tumblr is any indication) becoming the most popular band in said universe.  You would think their recorded resume would have been a bit more prolific.  Considering how good Nothing Lasts was though, you'll get it.
Impalers - S/T
  • Members of Mammoth Grinder and Hatred Surge (more on these guys in the near future).  This sounds like what you assume these two bands getting together and writing a punk record would sound like: fucking awesome. 
Damp Hay - Middlewestern
  • This is what my life is missing right now.  Midwestern math-rock, fuzzed out bluesy riffs.  Everything about this is good.  In fact, listening to it now, it's even better than I remember.
Thou - The Archer & The Owle
  • This hit me like a ton of bricks.  I always thought Thou was a little boring, and I mean, I guess they still are, but The Archer & The Owle cannot be ignored.  It was a little difficult to put here because A) It can hardly be called an EP, and B) The best material on it is recylced from 2010's "Summit".  Everything is so well put together, though (the songs, the packaging) that I had to include this.  Had it not already been released, the opening track "Voices In The Wilderness" would have probably been the best song of the year.
Kidcrash - Naps
  • I might be the only person who thinks Snacks is without question Kidcrash's best record. At least it seems that way.  So imagine how pleased I was when these 4 songs sounded like outtakes from one a my favorite records from last year.  I still probably haven't listened to this enough, which is probably because it doesn't quite have the hook of Snacks.  But you know, can't go wrong.
Four Eyes - Towards the End of Cosmic Loneliness
  • This was absolutely the best impulse buy I made all year.  Perfect mix of punk, pop and 90's indie rock.  I dare you not to like this.
Giant Peach - People Don't Believe Me
  • Looking back now, 2011 was a pretty killer year for indie rock.  It just kills me that people are so into Bon Iver and Sufjan Stevens and not Giant Peach. Shit. Top notch driving-into-the-sunset music from these New York dudes/dudettes.  I don't understand the world.

You may be aware that it's been a while since I've made one of those "best records of 20XX" lists.  I usually don't do this for 2 reasons.  1) I've pretty much already posted about the best things I've listened to in a year so rehashing all the same records you've already read about doesn't seem to serve much purpose. 2) I know by June of next year the list will be completely outdated and obsolete.

This year though, I've neglected posting enough that I can probably make a pretty decent list of shit that I didn't post.  Although I may include some shit I did anyway.  I don't know what's gonna happen, but it IS going to happen. So, you know, be prepared to be underwhelmed by everything I listened to too much in 2011.