Wallace Wylie

Wallace Wylie’s Best of 2011

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The Mountain Goats – All Eternals Deck
Or how John Darnielle got his groove back.

Tunabunny – Minima Moralia
I wasn’t going to put this in my Top 10. Not because of dislike, but more because I didn’t want Collapse Board to look like one big cosy family that always agreed. Better to maintain credibility I thought. That’s before I was standing in line at the bank and I began to hear music in my head which I quickly realised was the music of Tunabunny. They’re here because they earned it.

Yelle – Safari Disco Club
Elegant, sprightly and ridiculously danceable pop music.

Lykke Li – Wounded Rhymes
Don’t pull your pants. Buy this album instead.

The Drums – Portamento
Seems like The Drums lost a lot of fans with this album. I’m not sure why.

(I would like to add that I still haven’t heard the new Fall album, and I’ve also been enjoying the new Emika album. As you were.)

On other fronts, the Phil Ochs documentary There But For Fortune was, as expected, both fascinating and heartbreaking. How To Wreck A Nice Beach by Dave Tompkins is a hilarious and detailed history of the Vocoder in both war and pop music. It came out in 2010 but it deserves a mention for being my favourite music book that I read this year. I’ve been dipping my toe into Listen To This by Alex Ross, author of the utterly brilliant The Rest Is Noise, and though he favours more serious musical acts like Radiohead and Bjork when not dealing with Classical his writing remains faultless. (Just in case anybody thinks I’m cheating by mentioning another 2010 book, I’m talking about the updated 2011 paperback edition).

My favourite piece of music writing this year was The Question of Authenticity and Lana Del Rey by Brigette Adair Herron. It’s never pleasant to find out you’ve been acting unreasonably, but this piece managed to do just that by exposing me to both the greatness of ‘Video Games’ and the nastiness surrounding Lana Del Rey and her critics.

So, this is Wallace Wylie signing off for 2011. Take care out there.

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