[PLAYLIST] The Best SONGS of 2011 – Part 1 (Jan-June)

The best of the best… so far. My list ordering is always fast and loose so don’t sweat the numbers too much. For more on any of these artists use the tags links at the bottom of the post. Read on and rock out!

25 – ♫ Baby Monster – Mr. Success / These guys snuck in with a jam that just kept getting better with each listen. Oooooh ooooo ooooo!

24 – ♫ The Weeknd – House Of Balloons/Glass Table Girls / Dark, dirty, and not for public consumption. But damn if I can’t get enough.

23 – ♫ Motopony – King of Diamonds / Should be higher up on the list but with another Motopony track below I am basically sneaking this track in. An amazing song.

22 – ♫ Vacationer – Trip / A love song written by sunsets for eastern facing waterfalls and delivered by toucans.

21 – ♫ Wildlife – Stand in the Water / An epic start to an epic album. Hairs on the back of the neck every time. I can’t stay seated!

20 – ♫ James Blake – The Wilhelm Scream / A perfect moment to sit back down. Talk about a grower. If you haven’t got into this track yet then kill the lights, turn the volume up big, close your eyes, and just listen.

19 – ♫ Butcher Blades/ – The Swan Machine / If tropical were a college course then these dudes would be mentoring the senior thesis kids. So epic. Can someone shoot a throwback spy hero fight scene on a beach to this jam already?

18 – ♫ The-Dream – F**k My Brains Out / The-Dream dropped this with a siamese twin track “Body Work” but it was the heavy breathing, MJ channeling latter half that really lit my fire. I broke it off solo just for this post!

17 – ♫ Pompeya – Untitled / From Russia with bassline.

16 – ♫ Theme Park – Milk / Finally, a cure for all those lactose intolerant posers. 8oz of this a day will cure what ails you.

15 – ♫ Walk The Moon – Anna Sun / Also one of the best live shows I’ve seen this year. And best videos. Damn, how the hell have I not got this album yet?Remedied….. now.

14 – ♫ Generationals – Ten-Twenty-Ten / These guys have landed a jam in a Best Of list every year so far so it’s no surprise they have done it again. And could “doing it again” be any more fun than this?

13 – ♫ Brasstronaut – Hearts Trompet / Not much out there as elegant and beautiful as this track. And then it all breaks and builds into a whole new epic being.

12 – ♫ Jack Littman – Sinking Ship / All pulsing and thumping and fantastic. Fits under a summer moon as much as a winter one.

11 – ♫ Purity Ring – Ungirthed / Creepy and swollen in all the right places. Plus, 10 out of 10 J Riches agree, this is an epic jam.

10 – ♫ Britney Spears – Till The World Ends / Haters will hate. The rest of us will be having the party of our lives. Gotta love that instantly sing-along-able hook!

9 – ♫ Punches – Sleepless City / Possibly best horns/piano/drum-machine combo of the year? Beautiful and danceable all at once.

8 – ♫ When Saints Go Machine – Kelly / That bass thump just hits so good. And I can’t think of better vocals go along with this funky jam.

7 – ♫ Things I Never Told You – Happiness / Throwback sex disco pop at it’s finest.

6 – ♫  Mitten – All That I’ve Got / Distorted intro is deceptive as soon the beautiful pop goodness is smeared all over your ears. Smooth and sweet and somehow fluffy too.

5 – ♫ Frank Ocean – Swim Good / The smoothest member of OFWGKTA delivers on all his crew’s hype in one song. At least as far as I’m concerned.

4 – ♫ Joywave – Golden State / The song uses the traditional rock forumla of guitar, bass, and drums, but I can’t remember the last time that mix cooked up such an epic show stopper like this. Must be like what hearing U2 in the 80s felt like.

3 – ♫ Patrick Wolf – The City / Huge. Just huge. Plus touching, infectious, and gorgeous.

2 – ♫ The Botaniks – Fond of Jane ft. Bernhoft / Up. Down. Left and right. This one’s got it covered on all corners of planet funk. And Bernhoft’s soraing vocals are rivaled only by The Botaniks’ impeccable production. Woooo-eee.

1 – ♫ Motopony – Wait For Me / This song leaves me speechless.

/// ZIP Files ///


Be sure to catch all the 2011 “BEST OF” lists!

40 replies
  1. JJ
    JJ says:

    I like but maybe part two will include Bombay Bicycle Club – Shuffle, or Atlas Genius – Trojans, :)

  2. Dennis
    Dennis says:

    Awesome list!  I’ve been a secret admirer of the site for a while now… and waiting patiently to see selections for your top picks so far this year.  I thought I’d finally let you know how much I appreciate the amazing music you dig up… keeps me going… you rock.

    I would have had a few of your previous picks on too – Foster the People “Helena Beat”, Grouplove “Naked Kids”, Hey Champ “Anything at all” and Generationals “Ten-Twenty Ten” on the list too…

  3. Brandon @ TBE
    Brandon @ TBE says:

    Post on “Shuffle” coming soon but I really wouldn’t be surprised if it makes next list. We’ll see about Trojans. I love it but it has stiff competition these past 6 months. Hard to pick favorites, you know. Haha

  4. Brandon @ TBE
    Brandon @ TBE says:

    Well I’m glad we got that secret baloney out of the way! Hit up these comments and let me know what you are feeling. The “Anything At All” post has Zero comments and I didn’t know anyone else was feeling it! Anyway, glad to have you in the mix Dennis!

  5. Brandon @ TBE
    Brandon @ TBE says:

    Mediafire is working for me. I can also see download numbers so it’s working for others too. Try again today or you can always download tracks individually. Enjoy!

  6. bempologist
    bempologist says:

    love the site brandon, big fan.  one question – how’d you get that pompeya track?  been dying to get their whole album and can’t see a buy link on their bandcamp it be drivin’ me crazy… 

  7. Brandon @ TBE
    Brandon @ TBE says:

    Hey Man, they sent a few tracks over way back when and that’s how I found out about them. I see what you mean about having no buy option. I’ll see what info I can get from their management. Gotta get that album!

  8. Brandon @ TBE
    Brandon @ TBE says:

    Hey Man, they sent a few tracks over way back when and that’s how I found out about them. I see what you mean about having no buy option. I’ll see what info I can get from their management. Gotta get that album!

  9. Brandon @ TBE
    Brandon @ TBE says:

    Hey Man, they sent a few tracks over way back when and that’s how I found out about them. I see what you mean about having no buy option. I’ll see what info I can get from their management. Gotta get that album!

  10. SantiN
    SantiN says:

    I guess I will never understand why hip hop has a place in this kind of music…  is it about music taste? Even if somebody explains it, I wouldn’t understand.

  11. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    James Blake and Purity Ring are the tip top for me.

    Things that you’ve missed? Something from the Elbow album, or maybe Starfucker – Death as a Fetish. That must get played a couple of times a day for me

  12. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Haven’t listened to Elbow!

    I’m a little appalled. “Seldom Seen Kid”  won the Mercury Music Prize in 2008, and the new album “build a rocket boys!” is a little more low key, but really amazing. Older albums are also worth a look.

    Single track recommendations? “Grounds for Divorce,” “One Day Like This,” “The Birds,” “Lippy Kids”

  13. Jchamar
    Jchamar says:

    Hey B, 
    Motopony is from the NW. Seeing as they made #1 and #23; maybe its time you come out here and see what else grows in the forests? #MFNW @sasquatchtweet:twitter  

  14. Brandon @ TBE
    Brandon @ TBE says:

    Haha, I mean I’ve heard some Elbow (love “One Day Like This”) Just didn’t get into Cast Of Thousands and so didn’t grab this new one. I’ll have to take a listen!

  15. Tim Livingstone
    Tim Livingstone says:

    Just wanted to thank-you Brandon for introducing me to Motopony’s “Wait For Me”.  What an incredibly beautiful song.  I made a little remix/edit of that track so I can drop it into my downtempo sets and would love to share it with you.  

  16. J Rich
    J Rich says:

    nice. going back through old posts checking for anything i missed making my best of 2011 list, and just noticed the shout out on ungirthed. thanks for the love and look for lots of purity ring appearances on my list.

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