No Ripcord's Top 50 Albums of 2011

No Ripcord's Top 50 Albums of 2011

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50. Rustie - Glass Swords

October 11, 2011
Critic Score
83
13 reviews

48. Tyler, the Creator - Goblin

May 10, 2011
Critic Score
72
25 reviews

This is mostly clever, intelligently designed rap, intended to give a greater conceptual sense than mere boasts and anecdotes, which is something too often unseen these days.

46. Zomby - Dedication

July 12, 2011
Critic Score
78
20 reviews

Dedication seems like a bit of a missed opportunity; as collection of ideas it may be incredible, but as an album it's just insubstantial.

45. Foo Fighters - Wasting Light

April 12, 2011
Critic Score
74
26 reviews

Catchy choruses remain, arpeggios hardly make an appearance in favor of volatile hooks, and quiet-loud dynamics are still the norm.

44. Beirut - The Rip Tide

August 30, 2011
Critic Score
77
22 reviews

42. Smith Westerns - Dye It Blonde

January 18, 2011
Critic Score
80
24 reviews

This features Smith Westerns focusing in on the things that really succeeded the first time around, then fixes up that with some more of their songwriting style.

41. Tennis - Cape Dory

January 18, 2011
Critic Score
72
19 reviews

For a brief thirty minutes, Riley and Moore opt to share a reliable set of savory pop nostalgia.

40. Washed Out - Within and Without

July 12, 2011
Critic Score
71
27 reviews

It’s just flat out dull, and sounds worn out in 2011.

38. Death Grips - Exmilitary

April 26, 2011
Critic Score
78
6 reviews

37. Arctic Monkeys - Suck It and See

June 7, 2011
Critic Score
74
26 reviews

The Arctic Monkeys of 2011 have produced, probably by a significant margin, the best British Rock 'n' Roll album you will hear this year.

36. Iron & Wine - Kiss Each Other Clean

January 25, 2011
Critic Score
80
30 reviews

It showcases a more than self-sufficient songwriter who prefers to discover the fruits of collaboration.

35. Cults - Cults

June 7, 2011
Critic Score
75
21 reviews

34. Radiohead - The King of Limbs

February 19, 2011
Critic Score
77
31 reviews

It’s largely cerebral music to appreciate rather than adore; music for the head rather than for the heart or feet. Sadly, The King of Limbs – while a brave side-step – is a case of style over substance.

33. The Mountain Goats - All Eternals Deck

March 29, 2011
Critic Score
79
22 reviews

This album is hard work, but, inch by wretched inch, it becomes worthwhile.

30. The Horrors - Skying

July 26, 2011
Critic Score
81
27 reviews

With Skying, The Horrors continue to explore familiar territory whilst refining their idiosyncratic slant like proficient tastemakers.

29. Lykke Li - Wounded Rhymes

March 1, 2011
Critic Score
79
26 reviews

In moving firmly away from the happier pop tone of her debut Lykke Li has nonetheless made a better record.

28. Bill Wells & Aidan Moffat - Everything's Getting Older

May 23, 2011
Critic Score
74
8 reviews

This is perhaps his most beautiful work to date; its vulgarity is restrained but a sense of humour remains, and Wells and Moffat reach new emotional heights.

27. Elbow - Build a Rocket Boys!

April 12, 2011
Critic Score
80
18 reviews

It is not the finest album that Elbow have made but, I suspect, it is one that ‘everyone and everyone’s mum’ will be glad they did.

26. Wilco - The Whole Love

September 27, 2011
Critic Score
80
28 reviews

The Whole Love is precisely an answer to those who relegate the kind of music Wilco makes as old-timey.

25. Shabazz Palaces - Black Up

June 28, 2011
Critic Score
85
22 reviews

It’s fresh and idiosyncratic, compellingly cryptic, but it’s difficult to pinpoint the effect it has on the listener.

24. The Weeknd - House of Balloons

March 21, 2011
Critic Score
80
15 reviews

He commands the mood better than artists who have been in the game for years and yet this his first release.

23. Tim Hecker - Ravedeath, 1972

February 15, 2011
Critic Score
85
15 reviews

The record is awash with the feeling of isolation and teaming with crushing amplified annihilation.

22. Wild Beasts - Smother

May 10, 2011
Critic Score
81
25 reviews

Smother is an exercise in moderation, trying to find the precise balance between audacious beauty and emotional intelligence.

20. Kate Bush - 50 Words for Snow

November 21, 2011
Critic Score
84
26 reviews

If every song here had been of the same standard as the opening suite of three, and the final two, 50 Words For Snow would have been an all-time classic

18. Feist - Metals

October 4, 2011
Critic Score
77
23 reviews

As much as an album can be, it's pretty damn close to being flawless; not only matching the quality of The Reminder but actually bettering it.

17. Tom Waits - Bad as Me

October 25, 2011
Critic Score
85
28 reviews

Bad As Me is contained and precise with each of its 13 songs hitting its target full on.

16. The Antlers - Burst Apart

May 10, 2011
Critic Score
80
25 reviews

Burst Apart is a passable follow-up to an incredible record, but that’s all it is. Passable.

14. The War on Drugs - Slave Ambient

August 16, 2011
Critic Score
78
24 reviews

Vile may get all the end-of-year glory, but his comrade’s first full-length effort is just as laudable and commendable.

13. Destroyer - Kaputt

January 25, 2011
Critic Score
85
25 reviews

This is a solid album with some great ideas, and when it’s given the attention it really deserves, those qualities come out in droves.

12. M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming

October 18, 2011
Critic Score
77
30 reviews

It’s a sweeping, expansive album, that covers a lot of ground and leaves the listener satisfied.

11. Real Estate - Days

October 18, 2011
Critic Score
75
24 reviews

The air of careful conception surrounding Days is one of its most unmistakable and undeniable characteristics.

9. Gang Gang Dance - Eye Contact

May 10, 2011
Critic Score
82
23 reviews

An album that plays like a voyage or single composition, taking twists and turns within gloriously maze-like arrangements.

8. Katy B - On a Mission

April 5, 2011
Critic Score
79
21 reviews

On A Mission deftly mines non-commercial genres and repackages them for crossover success.

7. Kurt Vile - Smoke Ring for My Halo

March 8, 2011
Critic Score
79
21 reviews

John Agnello has helped Vile to refine his lo-fi aesthetic and at times Smoke Ring For My Halo sounds nothing short of stunning.

6. Bon Iver - Bon Iver, Bon Iver

June 21, 2011
Critic Score
84
30 reviews

Bon Iver embarks on a sustainable new direction for the band and is evidence of a successful transition from one-off wonder to durable outfit.

5. St. Vincent - Strange Mercy

September 13, 2011
Critic Score
88
29 reviews

The role of the music in conveying Annie Clark’s message has been upped, the lyrics are more personal, the production is richer, and Clark’s velvety voice is now threatening as often as it is beautiful; Strange Mercy is a more ambitious record featuring improved songwriting that is littered with Clark’s personal tribulations.

4. Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues

May 3, 2011
Critic Score
84
31 reviews

Helplessness Blues is a cosmic, bombastic record, undaunted and ready to expose itself on every corner with a whole lot of heart.

3. James Blake - James Blake

February 8, 2011
Critic Score
82
28 reviews

James Blake is an astonishing record, an early contender for album of the year and could well change the face of popular music.

2. tUnE-yArDs - w h o k i l l

April 19, 2011
Critic Score
85
26 reviews

It’s a massive improvement from her last album, yet it never sacrifices any of her style.

Original Source: http://www.noripcord.com/features/top-50-albums-2011-part-one
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