Outside the Dial

2011 First Half Review

Hirsch here.

OK.. We are just over half way through the year. I wanted to cover the top 10 albums so far released in 2011. So without further delay and in no particular order…

The Kills – Blood Pressures
Without a doubt the best bang and smash album out this year. But the songs have beauty, just listen to Pots and Pans acoustic.

Handsome Furs – Sound Kapital
Fresh off the success of Wolf Parade’s Expo 86, Dan Boeckner gets back in the studio with his honey to make Sound Kapital. This is easily their best effort. Much more focused than previous. Makes you want to thrash around and dance.

Danger Mouse and Danielle Luppi – Rome
Now we come to an album that is intricate and beautiful. Obviously anything Danger Mouse touches turns to audio gold in my opinion. Rome is no exception. Mix in some collaboration with Jack White and you’ve got an album of the year contender at Outside the Dial.

Cut Copy – Zonoscope
This one got a lot of coverage here at OTD. Another dancy/80s sounding album for 2011. This time Cut Copy takes the stage. Seeing them for the first time recently, I cannot believe how great they sound (no this is not Gerk hijacking the post). I did a review already of this album here

Adele – 21
OK, I admit. I was late to the party here. What a fantastic voice and song writer. This album just flows so well, easy on the ears also. Although it is so good it is no longer OTD material, but we like that when we notice something early on so do others. It’s what it is all about, get music to people.

The Pains of Being Pure At Heart – Belong
These guys took me by surprise. The is like the The Cure on acid and steroids and happy pills. It will be hard for me to not have this album as #1 in January. We’ll see. Until then go get it if you haven’t already.

The Shoes – Crack My Bones
An avid listener (Kenwood Cougar) dropped this one on me. And it was love at first listen. Makes you want to move and be happy for Pete’s sake. Much like the LCD Soundsystem formula, just get up and boogie!

Those Darlins – Screws Get Loose
Here is one that has to be the surprise of the year maybe? Those Darlins have always had a special place in OTD’s heart. But this album was far and away above any expectation we had. It’s a slight change from their country alternative sound. This is going to be a contender (note TPoBPaH reference) come January.

The Obits – Moody, Standard and Poor
Wolfarelli brought this about if I remember right. I believe they contacted us through the website. Heck I don’t really care where this one came from. I just know I love it.

The Decemberists – The King Is Dead
Not very OTD, I know but I really don’t care. They’ve been under the radar for a long time and always put out solid albums. The King is Dead is one of those that is kind of like addition by subtraction. It’s much simpler than their last few albums and it has an odd R.E.M sound, that could be because Buck actually plays on this album. Here’s a beautiful song with a country touch to it.

What did I miss? (I know the Ringo Deathstarr record is fantastic but I haven’t digested it all yet)

Hit me up on the email… info@outsidethedial.com

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  1. Wolfarelli July 23, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    OBITS!!! Yes….No Yuck or Radiohead….I know you’re not a fan of the album, but The Dirtbombs’ Party Store has grown on me! Overall good list.

  2. hirsch July 23, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    I almost put Yuck on there, I hmmed and hawed for about a minute on that one but Adele took their spot. Go ahead, berate me for that one! And the King of Limbs doesn’t really grab me. Yeah, Party Store is a stretch…

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