Joe Reilly hosts a show every Monday night from 9 - 11 PM. Here are his favourite albums from 2011.
Broken Records – Let Me Come Home
If you like the Waterboys and/or Arcade Fire then this Scottish outfit’s sophomore album will kindle the passionate fires of your soul. The aching soul at the heart of the song “Home” helps make it the best song of the year.
Sigur Ros – Inni
Who really cares about live albums? You will, when the band in question takes its songs to uncharted celestial heights and captures the whole affair in a beautiful, artsy black and white film. Gorgeous.
Cris Derksen – The Cusp
Released in late 2010, this collection of music by the Vancouver cellist moves from dark, rhythmic pieces to lovely ambient soundscapes and includes aching shoe-gazer pop as well as touches of Canadian aboriginal music. Hypnotizing.
The Apache Relay – American Nomad
A scorching set opening for Mumford and Sons in Montreal brought this foursome to my attention, and this album delivers a solid mix of folk and rock with some orgasmic, pop anthems thrown in for good measure.
Foster the People – Torches
These guys blend the sounds of rock, pop and hip hop to create a bouncy, effervescent soundtrack to summer – although some darkness lurks in the lyrics of tracks like mega-hit “Pumped Up Kicks.” A quirky mix that at times is reminiscent of MGMT at its best – minus all the bloated self-awareness.
The Decemberists – The King Is Dead
The finest REM album since Automatic For the People. Peter Buck guests on here and helps the Demberists create wonderful folk-pop-rock.
Peter Gabriel – New Blood
A flawed album of Gabriel covering his older material with only an orchestra to back him up. In the past he worked with some of the best female vocalists on the planet (Kate Bush, Sinead O’Connor) so sadly the vocal work by his daughter and others don’t stand up. Get the double disc as the orchestral works without voices are powerful.
Bright Eyes – The People’s Key
Awesome show at Folkfest and a beautiful album.
Death Cab For Cutie – Codes and Keys
A fine return to form for Death Cab.
The Orienteers – The Orienteers/Giant Hand – Starting As People
Two excellent local releases to check out. Orienteers, make pacific gorgeous pop and Giant Hand’s edgy haunting songs may remind some of Neil Young.