Andrew Stewart Poop ’11

cover of Bon Iver – Bon Iver  Buy New or Used via amazon
1. Bon Iver / Bon Iver
This transcendent, atmospheric folk album defies logic, a shimmering narcotic elegy to loves that never were, and places that don’t exist. High-wire brilliance.

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2. TV on the Radio / Nine Types of Light
TVoTR finally hit their groove, enriching their beats with a warm, soulful sound.

cover of Middle Brother/Middle Brother  Buy New or Used via amazon
3. Middle Brother / Middle Brother
The leads from Dawes, Deer Tick and Delta Spirit team up to bust heads and break hearts.

cover of Nerves Junior/As Bright As Your Night Light  Buy New or Used via amazon
4. Nerves Junior / As Bright As Your Night Light
Louisville unknowns channel Walkmen, Deerhunter and Radiohead. An industrial indie sound.

cover of The Rural Alberta Advantage/Departing  Buy New or Used via amazon
5. The Rural Alberta Advantage / Departing
A neck-breaking back-beat drives this crisp indie-rock band through a laser-focused set.

cover of We Are Augustines/Rise Ye Sunken Ships  Buy New or Used via amazon
6. We Are Augustines / Rise Ye Sunken Ships
Love-hate this brutal, anthemic passion play about the loss of a family to mental illness.

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7. Girls / Father, Son, Holy Ghost
Half Pernice Brothers, half Pink Floyd, this emo-psych hybrid is weirder, and better, than it seems.

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8. Stephen Malkmus / Mirror Traffic
Criminally underrated, his best solo album to date, sardonic and sublime.

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9. Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. / It’s A Corporate World
Impossible to resist, this synth-rock album grabs and shakes you by the baby blue lapels.

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10. Wilco / The Whole Love
Revolutionary rock, changing the world one (more) great song at a time. They’re on a winning streak.

11. Waters / Out In The Light
The end of Port O’Brien gives us this new sound, a Nirvana-esque set of power pop.
12. Kurt Vile / Smoke Ring For My Halo
Fuzzed-out, misty rock anthems from a newer, gentler guitar god. Neil Young + Lou Reed.
13. My Morning Jacket / Circuital
Tightening up their rig, MMJ crank out another solid set of psychedelic country tunes.
14. The Head and the Heart / The Head and the Heart
If Ryan Adams fronted Everybodyfields, you’d have this mellow, rich folk sound.
15. Mountain Goats / All Eternals Deck
Cool as an ice cube, John Darnielle gets back on his punk-folk horse, and rides.
16. David Wax Museum / Everything Is Saved
Whiskeytown-meets-Calexico by way of Massachusetts, earnest and full of joy.
17. Tim Easton/Beat The Band
More epic than on prior efforts, but it’s still gritty country-rock from this veteran. Solid, end-to-end.
18. Mister Heavenly / Out of Love
Obscure “supergroup” mixes indie-rock and 50’s pop, but makes it work.
19. J. Mascis/Several Shades of Why
Super-enjoyable acoustic set feels retro; but here he’s invigorated, and pretty damn lively.
20. Jessica Lea Mayfield / Tell Me
Out-of-nowhere youngster goes huge, with Dan Auerbach producing; Emmylou meets Edie Brickell.
21. Megafaun / Megafaun
Weirdly scattershot song cycle out-Foxes Fleet Foxes, wakes up the Dead, and nods to Eno; awesome.
22. Tune-Yards / W h o k i l l
Another love-or-hate bomb-blast from this propulsive, progressive artist. Here, it’s love, and awe.
23. Unknown Mortal Orchestra / Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Lo-fi rock songs packed with hooks, they’ll get your feet moving despite your hipster self.
24. Say Hi / Um, Uh Oh
Another album of excellent, soulful new-wave love songs from this underrated artist.
25. Beirut / The Rip Tide
A leaner, cleaner, more mature sound, still rich with horns, accordions, and tambourines.


Atlas Sound / Parallax (despair infuses this album full of intense torch-rock songs; fascinating)
A.A. Bondy / Believers (the year’s biggest grower, so sedate it seems boring at first, but lots to admire here)
Boston Spaceships / Let It Beard (way, WAY better than you think; Pollard’s fired up again, and inspired)
Richard Buckner / Our Blood (recorded in Kingston, this goth-folk tale of sorrow and woe is magnificent)
Cave Singers / No Witch (freak-folk fellows see the light and plug in on this Stones-meet-Nick Drake thing)
Country Mice / Twister (Kansas kids are inspired: Paul Westerberg and Crazy Horse, with cheap mikes)
Crooked Fingers / Breaks In The Armor (Eric Bachmann sounds like Neil Diamond covering Alex Chilton)
Cymbals Eat Guitars / Lenses Alien (Staten Island guys echo Modest Mouse and BTS with this alt-rock set)
Dawes / Nothing Is Wrong (less-ragged pop balladry is short of their first, great record, but still beautiful)
Dead Man Winter / Bright Lights (Trampled By Turtles front man jams out: Jayhawks meet Bellwether)
Deer Tick / Divine Providence (can’t help but root for this sloppy, desperate mess of bluesy country rock)
Alela Diane / Alela Diane & Wild Divine (Joni Mitchell meets Neko Case, in all the best ways)
Dodos / No Color (their percussion-rich pop still intact, they’re now taking more chances, and it works)
William Fitzsimmons / Gold In The Shadow(Ben Gibbard + Sam Beam + Damien Rice)
Glossary / Long Live All of Us (70’s-tinged, classic-sounding country-rock with a modern, glossy sound)
Gringo Star / Count Yer Lucky Stars (out-Strokes-ing the Strokes, this gritty, sweaty, groovy rock rocks good)
Icarus Himself / Career Culture (Britt Daniel + Wolf Parade)
Cass McCombs / Humor Risk (Lou Reed covers Paul Westerberg, or maybe the other way around)
Frank Ocean / nostalgia, ULTRA. (incredible R&B-rock hybrid album, equal parts swagger and sorrow)
Old Calf / Borrow A Horse (another Oldham brother’s more accessible folk-pop project, very nice)
Peter Bjorn and John / Gimme Some (Squeeze, Joe Jackson, and Jens Lekman had a baby, and this is it)
Radiohead / The King of Limbs (worth hearing, and great listening, no matter what they say)
The Roots / undun (ambitious concept album, a soulful, angry elegy to the tragedy of Philly’s drug trade)
Ty Segall / Goodbye Bread (grungy punk record with a nod to Jay Reatard and early Bowie)
Seryn / This Is Where We Are (Austin, TX group produces a soaring folk symphony, unexpectedly rich)
Smith Westerns / Dye It Blonde (glammy, fuzzy pop-rock album is like ELO + Destroyer + Strokes)
St. Vincent / Strange Mercy (on every critic’s list, this complex art-psych offering is knotty but sweet)
Surfer Blood / Tarot Classics EP (Smiths + Weezer + The Cure)
Thao & Mirah / Thao & Mirah (these two find a clean, propulsive, upbeat folk-rock middle ground)
Timber Timbre / Creep On Creepin’ On (Roy Orbison + M. Ward + Morphine)
Tinariwen / Tassili (North African bluesmen pull the plugs and go acoustic; otherworldly, literally)
John Vanderslice / White Wilderness (recorded live with an orchestra, this pace-change is warmly organic)
The War On Drugs / Slave Ambient (this time around it’s less VU, more U2 for these trippy Philadelphians)
White Denim / D(a kitchen sink of sound, with Phish, Yes, Steve Miller, ELP and Zappa all in play)


Ryan Adams / Ashes &amp Fire
Arctic Monkeys / Suck It and See
Black Keys / El Camino
Blind Pilot / We Are The Tide
Blitzen Trapper / American Goldwing
Death Cab For Cutie / Codes and Keys
Drive-By Truckers / Go-Go Boots
Fruit Bats / Tripper
Iron & Wine / Kiss Each Other Clean
The Jayhawks / Mockingbird Time
Okkervil River / I Am Very Far
Tapes ‘n Tapes / Outside


The Civil Wars / Barton Hollow
Cults / Cults
The Decemberists / The King is Dead
Destroyer / Kaputt
Fleet Foxes / Helplessness Blues
Fucked Up / David Comes To Life
PJ Harvey / Let England Shake
Real Estate / Days
Tom Waits / Bad As Me
Wye Oak / Civilian
Youth Lagoon / The Year of Hibernation

Andrew Stewart
Rhinebeck, NY 1/12