The Top 40 Albums Of 2011: 10 – 6

From Zomby to The Kills

Clash continues it’s in-depth rundown of it’s Top 40 Albums of 2011 with Zomby, My Morning Jacket, Adele, The Kills and Metronomy.

10. ZOMBY ‘Dedication’

Snooping around a smoky limbo whilst enchanting wisps of ghoulish jungle breaks to evaporate into fraught silences, Zomby’s nailed the claustrophobic zeitgeist that sees modern dance producers groping their way through an era of scant rules. Few know where British bass culture is heading. Zomby doesn’t give a fuck and invigorated with ambiguity – this recluse has made the most of no-man’s land.

Best Bit: Zomby’s distracted constructions perhaps sum up 2011’s bass vacuum as he deploys any style at will.

Matthew Bennett

9. My Morning Jacket ‘Circuital’

We knew Kentucky’s finest could do reverb-drenched country rock, or reverb-drenched sweaty funk, but nobody expected a reverb-drenched psychedelic soul album that borrowed from the sounds of Thailand. Jim James’ explorative nature continues to surprise; ‘Circuital’ is fuzzy, groovy brilliance.

Best Bit: The unnerving kids choir chanting in ‘Holdin’ On To Black Metal’.

Simon Harper

8. Adele ‘21’

A stunning record of heartbreak and pride turned Adele into a record-breaking storyteller. Her power and attitude – inspired by country, soul and hip-hop equally – were matched by complimentary production from Rick Rubin and Paul Epworth. Totally deserving of every sale.

Best Bit: Despite its over-exposure, ‘Someone Like You’ still never fails to touch.

Simon Harper

7. The Kills ‘Blood Pressures’

On the fourth outing from the Anglo-American duo, Alison Mosshart’s sultriness – consolidated by her time in The Dead Weather – raged over Jamie Hince’s perfect primal blues aggression to produce their darkest, fizziest and sexiest album yet.

Best Bit: The don’t-mess-with-me attitude of ‘Nail In My Coffin’.

Simon Harper

6. Metronomy ‘The English Riviera’

Very few people enjoy their day-to-day life, and if they do, you shouldn’t know it, because that means they boast about it, and if they boast about it, they are undoubtedly a patronising self-satisfied prick who you should never have listened to in the first place. If you choose to keep listening, you’re obviously a pathological co-dependent people-pleaser, who clearly doesn’t enjoy being so. In conclusion, most people don’t enjoy their daily life… That’s why we have escapism; and that’s why Metronomy’s fantastical trip into a fictional seaside wonderland is one of the best albums of 2011.

When listening to ‘The English Riviera’, it’s hard to focus on anything but what Metronomy’s visionary, Joseph Mount, wants you to. He reimagines a seaside market town, like Sartre did for Bouville, but where he flattened his subject into a hollow weary limbo, Mount amplifies and romanticises his. It becomes a menagerie of exotic British thoughts and themes, set in a coastal sandy utopia that could be but isn’t; Totnes. You don’t relate to the lyrics, you’re consumed by them. Distant seagulls squawk, the tide rushes in, and Olugbenga’s basslines continue to bounce. ‘The Look’ especially, builds around the tones of a promenade fairground. An addictive Waltzer-esque melody envelops the track, from a time before Waltzers became a haven for getting your head slapped by a fast-rotating chav and your hearing impaired by gabba remixes of N-Trance.

‘The English Riviera’ is a wonderful collection of globally listenable but musically honourable British pop music, and it’s enough to make Jimmy Saville sit up if he wasn’t already buried that way. It begs the question: why weren’t you listening to Metronomy earlier? Because their first two albums were mostly instrumental and decidedly less varied? Shut up. You pathetic people-pleaser.

Best Bit: A mystical 8-bit melody that wouldn’t be lost on ‘Mickey Mouse’s Castle Of Illusion’, and a titillating lyrical narrative. ‘Corinne’ is Metronomy’s Lolita.

Joe Zadeh

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Read Clash’s full Top 40 Albums Of 2011 HERE

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