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Brigette Herron’s Favorite Moments of 2011: A Meditation on Decay & Rebirth

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If you are looking for: Something surprisingly heartfelt
Remember: Jeff Mangum sings to Occupy Wall Street

Jeff Mangum used to live in the town where I’m from, so I get tired of people trying to worship him like some kind of bizzarro indie god. People say a lot of weird conflicting things about this dude. When really that is all he is — some dude — some dude who wrote a great album over a decade ago. When video surfaced of him singing to Occupy protestors I didn’t think I would cry. But I did. Because in your heart there’s a spark that just screams. The words “love to be with a brother of mine” take on a new meaning in the context of Zuccotti Park. That moment was truly beautiful.

If you are looking for: Something to make you seasick
Remember: Bruise Cruise 2011

So back in February they had this thing called Bruise Cruise. It was marketed as a tropical getaway/music festival with The Vivian Girls, The Black Lips, Thee Oh Sees, Ty Segall, Quintron and Miss Pussycat, etc. Apparently none of these bands were familiar with David Foster Wallace’s article “Shipping Out: On the (nearly lethal) comforts of a luxury cruise”.

You can read the article here. It is a classic.

If you are looking for: Something to calm your contempt for the world around you
Remember: The Fall – Ersatz GB

THE FALL WILL CURE YOUR WRITER’S BLOCK. IT WILL REMIND YOU OF YOUR INNER STRENGTH. YOU WILL BE GIVEN THE GIFT OF PROPHECY. Of course, no one will notice. Don’t act surprised.

If you are looking for: Something to make you feel confident
Remember: Azealia Banks – ‘212 ft Lazy Jay’

I don’t think I’ve ever seen something quite so adorable and crude at the same time. It’s hard not to sing it in public. And the hook doesn’t come in until 1 min 50, and then it never comes back! How great is that? It is truly fearless — a welcomed change from the music of the past year that hedged its bets — that was too polite and too eager for your approval. Follow the example of this song in the New Year. Be fearless and be worthy of everyone’s adoration.

If you are looking for: Something fabulous
Remember: Patric – ‘Sixteen™’

So what if my favorite single of the year was a satire of Justin Bieber? Patric fakes it so real he is beyond fake. ‘Sixteen™’ is a song that could be a joke, but has too much sincerity to be that simple. Sometimes putting on a mask, or taking on a persona, allows us to express our ideas more clearly than if we tried to speak in our own voice. Gary Numan did this. Wayne County did this. And the persona of Patric says more about the anxieties of modern America than any song or album I have heard all year.

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