2011 has seen more releases than ever before – major label, independent, digital exclusives and a whole lot more. And yet when was all was said and done, it was just two albums that pretty much dominated this year’s edition of The Highwire Daze Best CD of 2011 Survey. In no way a scientific poll, Highwire Daze randomly asked several of your favorite bands and solo artists to send in what they felt was the very best CD of 2011 and why.
The Foo Fighters and Symphony X came in tenfold from a wide variety of musical talent. The poptastic Britney Spears was even selected by one of our surveyed artists.
We asked members from bands ranging from pop rock all the way to death metal to participate – and here are the various responses that were sent in. When you are finished reading this, be sure to add your own favorite of the year in the comment section at the conclusion of the article. And now presenting the results…
And The Bands Present Their Selections…
Jeanne Sagan of All That Remains
“Alkaline trio– damnesia. It’s one of my favorite bands and I’m a sucker for acoustic versions of songs.”
Oli Herbert of All That Remains
“My favorite album of 2011 is Dream Theater’s “A Dramatic Turn of Events“. It is arguably there most ambitious album to date and features one of the worlds best drummers, Mike Mangini. I have been a DT fan since 1992 and have garnered a huge amount of influence from both there compositions and of course guitarist , John Petrucci. Speaking of John, this release features his most poignant performance to date. I feel it captures the great phrasing of his earlier material and ever growing technical prowess. It is hard for me to pinpoint one song that is my favorite as they are all amazing and akin to their earlier releases, “Scenes Of A Memory“, “Images and Words” etc, meant to heard as a collective. I consider myself to be a fairly jaded listener and I honestly can say that there is not one boring moment on the entire CD.”
Greg Hildebrand of An Early Ending
“2011 had about a dozen releases whose music I really valued and enjoyed, but my favorite was Taking Back Sunday’s self titled release. It has now made its way back to my current playlist for the fourth or fifth time. TBS is a band that I grew up with and has seen a number of changes in that time. Although I’ve enjoyed their music all along, their latest release reflects how far they’ve come. The original members are all in the mix and the new music has the same hook they originally had, with all the kinks worked out… There’s not a bad song on the record, you can light it up and enjoy the whole thing.”
Fronz of Attila
Tyler The Creator – “Goblin”
“I like it because his shit is super offensive but artistic at the same time. It’s apparent that he doesn’t give a fuck and I enjoy that type of vibe. The track “She” is one of my favorite tracks of all time. So creepy and offensive, I love it!”
JB Brubaker of August Burns Red
“My favorite album of 2011 was Separation by Balance & Composure. I was a big fan of the last two EPs they put out and was really excited for their debut full length. It’s rare for a band on their first full length to be so skilled at songwriting, but Balance & Composure know what they’re doing. The album is all over the place dynamically, has really catchy parts, aggressive parts, ambient moments, and I’m able to simply connect with the songs. This record makes me feel a certain way, and I like it.”
Seth Hecox of Becoming The Archetype
“Mastodon’s “The Hunter” was a great album from a great band. They kept the prog elements that saturated Crack The Skye but put some muscle back into this album. The songwriting is great as usual, but the blend of heaviness and prog elements is perfect in my opinion. I’m expecting Mastodon to start making horrible albums soon because they’ve got to have run out of awesome ideas, right? If not, they’ve got a good chance to be one of my favorite heavy bands of all time once they’re done.”
Justine Ethier of Blackguard
“The best CD of 2011 for me would be Symphony X – Iconoclast. The four years of wait was totally worth it. When I first play this CD my nose started bleeding from beginning to end. Also, the musicianship shown on that CD is just amazing!”
Paul Zinay of Blackguard
“The most fun filled CD of 2011 is A Day To Remember’s, What Separates Me From You. This record is so catchy it should have been launched into space as soon as it was completed because mankind was not meant to have this much fun listening to a CD.”
Tony Gambino of Blessed By A Broken Heart
“I know I’ll probably be made fun of because of this, but I got obsessed with The Band Perry (and their self-titled ep). I guess I’ve started to hate most music nowadays, it’s become over saturated with copycats, and become a product instead of artistry. So when I heard this album, even though an unlikely match since I’m not too into country, I was pumped. They are true musicians and writers. Killer album.”
Beau Bokan of Blessthefall
“My favorite album of 2011, besides Lights – Siberia (which would be a biased decision), would have to be Blink 182 – Neighborhoods. Blink is my all time favorite band. Going 8 years without putting out a record would have sank any other band. But Blink came back and my 3 heroes put together something amazing. A great mix of mature song writing as well as song summertime bangers. I can’t wait to see what they’ll do next!”
Jeremy Wagner, Broken Hope / Lupara, author of The Armageddon Chord
“Q: What was your favorite CD of 2011 and why?
A: Diamond Plate “Generation Why” album (Earache Records)
I chose this because it’s the finest example of the new-wave-of-US-thrash…completely relentless, full of great energy, and the production is stellar. The best debut of 2011.”
Scott Middleton of Cancer Bats
“White Wives – Happeners
We toured with these dudes last year and had a blast! After the tour I got their record and haven’t been able to stop listening to it. Super catchy punk meets indie rock with really smart and insightful lyrics. I love the 2 vocal approach, and how aggressive they can be and yet be incredibly melodic and dynamic. What started as an Anti-Flag side project, turned into what I think is one of the best punk bands in the world at the moment. The kind of songs you don’t get sick of on repeat, and you know will stay a classic for years. I really think more people need to hear this and realize well written punk songs can be catchy without being bubble gum pop music.”
Brian O Connor of Consfearacy
CONSFEARACY “Consfearacy“…. I feel the record covers a lot of metal sounds. Great vocals and guitars. Well written record.
Dirk Baur of Coronatus
Symphony X – Iconoclast – Symphony X, for me, was always a very deep experience of extremely talented music, symphonic, very expressionistic and virtuos. Now, on the Iconoclast album, the bands style has changed to more power metal. And this change is simply sensational! Hear the guitar work of Michael Romeo, way leading for any metal musician on the planet.
Stanley Sievers of DEAD ICONS
“My favorite album of 2011 is “Wasting Light” by the Foo Fighters. I chose this album because it might be their best yet. It has ties to early FF era (Everlong etc..) which can be heard in many of the songs, yet also holds true to the newer “One By One” era modern rock formula which has served them well. This album is catchy, groovy, and basically awesome in every way in my opinion. The songs are very well written and they definitely show that the band is back and better than ever. I am going to say that it might stand up as one of the best rock albums of the decade.”
Jürgen of Diabolos Dust
Symphony X – Iconoclast
perfect song writing and great vocalist
Niklas Olniansky of Dibbukim
First of all, 2011 has been an awesome metal year with loads of solid releases. Artists like The Project Hate MCMXCIX, Symphony X, Dream Theater, Evergrey, Novembers Doom and Forefather all deserves the title “album of the year” for their performances. So believe me when I say that it was truly difficult to select only one winner. In the end it all comes down to solidity and there’s one in the bunch that totally reeks with just that – Symphony X’s “Iconoclast”. This is a killer from the first note and just keeps on delivering throughout the album. The riffs play tricks with your mind and ensnare your soul with their brilliance, the production is spot on and the vocals by Sir Russell Allen are simply heaven sent. In addition to this, every track is pure magic on its own as well as a unit, it simply won’t get much better than this!”
Jim Hart of Dogs Divive
Its just great to hear new music from these guys. I grew up on this stuff and at one time in my life Anthrax was one of those bands that I could just not get enough of. One of my favorite concerts ever was “The Clash Of The Titans “ tour. This album has all the classic Anthrax sound and its energetic and new. Plus its nice to see dudes older than me still kicking ass…lol
Ben of ELM STREET
Favourite CD of 2011 is easily Accept’s “Blood Of The Nations“. When you thought that Accept were done after all these years without Udo, they came out with an album that kicked everyones ass and proved them wrong!
Every song is powerful, memorable and just plain vintage Accept. Loaded with a modern sound but still keeping their old-school influences and sounds it’s a killer album from start to finish.
Accept is definitely back and you really don’t even realise Udo’s missing, as much as we love him Mark’s voice is really welcoming and respects go out to him for replacing one of the greatest German frontmen.
Jesse Ketive of Emmure
“The best CD of 2011, I would have to say is newest Decapitated record! I have always been a death metal fan (real death metal from the late 90s and early 2000,2001). Decapitated killed it with their second CD and now came back with a super powerful new but a simmilar classic sound! Production and playing is outstandig as well.”
Drew of Farewell To Freeway
“My personal favorite record of the year is “Wasting Light” by Foo Fighters. It’s a solid record front to back with a bit of an old school Foo Fighters feel to the songs. A creative record while still keeping that Foo Fighters sound. Love that they threw a more aggressive track like “White Limo” that comes out of nowhere. Great guitar and drum tones on the record;very real and natural sounding. Don’t think there’s a bad thing about this record. My favorite song on the record “Dear Rosemary“, featuring Bob Mould and Krist Novoselic.”
Harry of Girl On Fire
“Foo Fighters – Wasting Light (2011)
Produced by Butch Vig (Nirvana’s Nevermind) and recorded in Dave Grohl’s garage, Wasting Light is a refreshing return to form for the Foo Fighters. The album is jam packed with raw/diverse songs that evoke memories of their first album The Colour and Shape. My personal favorites are “Rope,” “Walk,” and “I Should Have Known.”
Doc Coyle of God Forbid
“My favorite album of 2011 is The Hymn Of The Broken Man by Times Of Grace. It contains great songs that are expertly produced and performed, by some of my favorite metal musicians, Adam D and Jesse Leach. I love Killswitch Engage, but this album has an emotional under current that spoke to me and moves me every time I hear it, in a different way than recent Killswitch albums. It’s perfect blend of heavy, hook, and heart.”
Shane Ochsner of Hands
“My favorite album of 2011 was “Wasting Light” from Foo Fighters. No contest! Not only did they write an amazing set of songs that flow together flawlessly, but they recorded it on tape, in a garage! Which is so awesome, especially in a time where digital editing and plug ins run the music industry to create souped up, perfectly aligned albums. What you hear on “Wasting Light“, is real. And REAL is hard to find these days! Seasoned musicicans playing to the best of their ability. Having years of writing, touring, and recording under their belts. No samples, no re-amp, no plug-ins. Great album! Well done, Foo. Well done.”
Evan Hughes of I Declare War
Thrice – “Major/Minor”
“Thrice has been my favorite band for the past 7 years and with Major/Minor they have completely outdone themselves. To me, Thrice is a band that has grown and matured over the years along with myself. This album is excellent on every level. From the subtle guitar intricacies to the creative drumming, the album is totally engaging from start to finish. The news of their upcoming hiatus has saddened me a little, but if this ends up being their last album it will be a perfect ending to a long and exciting career for them.”
John McEntee (Incantation, Funerus, Ibex Moon Records)
My favorite CD of 2011 is Autopsy – Macabre Eternal. It’s just a great CD – has everything Autopsy was back in the day and also has some great new surprises. it always great to have a new album from one of my all time favorite bands.
Clay Nevels of I, Omega
Favorite Album of 2011- Thrice–Major/Minor
“Thrice has always been a favorite and every album they’ve put out has showcased their ability to evolve . Major/Minor was a perfect culimation of all the sonic avenues they’ve pursued in their career and is slowly becoming my favorite album that they have released. With them recently announcing their hiatus from music, Major/Minor really was the perfect album for them to leave us until(if) they return.”
Scott Featherstone (vocals) of ION VEIN
Anthrax – Worship Music
Why: I simply could not stop listening to it! Great riffs, great playing, and Best vocals of any Anthrax album.
Chris Lotesto (guitar) of ION VEIN
Mastodon – The Hunter
Why: The opening riff grabs you by the throat and doesn’t let go…these guys continue to come up with cool and interesting material time and time again….pretty amazing!
Rob Such (bass) of ION VEIN
Fair To Midland – Anchors and Arrows
Why: Because in my opinion these guys are THE BEST new band in YEARS…unmatched songwriting meets musical talent! Plus this album is truly ALL KILLER AND NO FILLER…and I’m one picky son of a bitch!!
Chuck White (drums) of ION VEIN
Dream Theater – A Dramatic Turn Of Events
Why: I just keep going back to the new album for some reason. Maybe the new addition…. F’n awesome drummer…overall the band as whole just seems better!
Dave Matrise of Jungle Rot
“I would have to say Toxic Holocaust’s, Conjure & Command is the best CD of 2011 . I just love the aggression that comes through in there writing. This band is helping out a lot in bringing back the old school sounding death metal, and it’s time for a change in the underground scene today. We need more bands like this to bring it back!”
James Genez of Jungle Rot
“Disma “Towards The Megalith” is one of my favorite albums of 2011. It’s been in heavy rotation around here (Wisconsin). I love the old school feel, even the writing and riffs are straight out of 1990, the early days of death metal, when I was a young whipper-snapper.. when death metal was special. The record takes me back like that.”
Dolk of Kampfar
Absu – Apzu
Its simply because its a new Absu album. Its been way too long already! 😉
Chris Adler of Lamb of God
Decapitated – Carnival Is Forever
“While possibly not the historic death metal landmark that Organic Hallucinosis will occupy in the legend of metal, this is proof that it’s not about how you get knocked down – it’s all about how you get back up. Vogg is a genius. RIP Vitek.”
Kyle Maax of MAAX
Midnight “Satanic Royalty” It’s everything todays over abundant crop of bands don’t do. It’s evil, it’s sleezy, it’s rock & roll, it’s a kick in the teeth, it’s Midnight!!!…self proclaimed Satanic Royalty!!! take notes!
Phil Demmel of Machine Head
“Foo Fighters– Wasting Light
I’m never disappointed by this band and this record is no exception. Solid from front to back with hard rockers and hooky riffs and melodies, WL put a huge “Fuck Yeah!!!” expression on my face on first listen.”
Matthew Leone of Madina Lake
Awolnation “megalithic symphony”
“In truth, I spent most of 2011 cleaning out my musical closet, subsequently listening to older numbers, but newer band, Awolnation grabbed me by the cluster immediately. They’ve got everything I enjoy in a band, from concept and mystique, to the discovering of a new unchartered musical path. It’s a band that puts their soul into every nook and cranny of their art, which these days, is an almost antiquated notion. They’re pushing forward on a “rock” baton that has been laying on the track for a few laps now.”
Joe Cotela of Man Made Machine
Foo Fighters – “Wasting Light”
“From the opening track you felt energy and feel of the Color and Shape days. I purchased it to get the piece of recording tape they included on the day it came out and I must’ve had the cd in my car on repeat for a month straight. Dave Grohl continues to establish himself as one of the greatest rock n’ roll has ever seen. I can’t wait to see what he puts out next.”
Carson Allen of Me Vs Myself
“Science & Faith” by The Script
“Jan 18th, The Script released a record that would not only be the number one record I listen to the most, but a record that really motivated me as a songwriter. Every song on “Science & Faith” has its own unique quality. As a singer, I’ve always admired Danny’s voice and delivery of thought out lyrics.. and at times I even find myself hating him for being so talented. All in all, The Script really kicked ass on this record, and set the bar high!”
Nicholas of Me Vs Myself
Foo Fighters– Wasting Light
Rock record of the year. Was lucky to see them in Spaceland down in LA with few other folks. This was also one of the first venues Foo Fighters ever perform at back in 1995. And the night I saw then was the eve of Spaceland’s closing, before the venue reopens as Satellite. They played the record beginning to end with no breaks. It was truly amazing. Also was on my birthday, so a night to remember indeed. Thank you Foo Fighters for making such a great rock record.
Dave Gregor of Morta Skuld
Forbidden was the best album for me this year, it had a great production and they kept the material very interesting and style was the same but stands the test of time. They are an amazing band.
R.D. Liapakis of Mystic Prophecy
SYMPHONY X – ICONOCLAST … I personally believe they are one of the best bands in Metal Music … there are really no words strong enough to describe this album … anyone who is involved in music can easily understand that these guys are musical geniuses … their composing and technical skills, along with a perfect voice that matches this style … in a nutshell, a perfect technical band with great melodies and power !!!
Nick Giumenti of My Ticket Home
“Favorite record of 2011 for certain is “Rising Sun” by Stray From The Path. Besides being one of our favorite bands, Stray has an incredible view of real music and how the industry should be and in there last album they shared that view openly and without exception. They are a perfect example of a band that stands for something real, and we very much admire and respect that.”
Nathan Ryan – solo artist
I would have to say my favorite CD of 2011 was D.R.U.G.S. debut album cause not ONE song is bad. I jammed with them all summer at warped your and kept listening them even went I got back. Never gonna get sick of it 🙂
Kramer Lowe of Onward To Olympas
“I would have to go with Oh, Sleeper’s – Children Of Fire. The last CD before kind of put them in a spot where it was just average and people slowly started forgetting about them, though it seemed. This new album came out with a bang. Great transitions, structure, melody, heaviness, all the above. Definitely help put their name back on the map.”
Jeremy Sullivan of PARENTZ
The best album has to be the new m83 hurry up we’re dreaming. Some weird songs for sure, but he’s the king of that sound, nostalgia, synths, big 80s toms, children-voiced monologues (and not children like Balam Acab pitched up children, but actually kids) whatever. he’s got it. That Balam Acab Wander/Wonder was a close second I’d say.
John Ioannidis – Keyboard player of Persona non Grata
“I am afraid 2011 didn’t give us a outstanding album, something fresh or new at least from what I have in mind.
I personally like the EP of Adrenaline Mob. Apart from being a new beginning for Mike Portnoy i was pleasantly surprised from production, rock and solid, a typical characteristic of Mike’s.
I am also a big fan of Russell Allen and I have to say that this album is one of his best moments.
Yannick d’Assignies of Phathom
“My favorite album of 2011 is hands down ‘Wasting Light‘ by the one and only Foo Fighters. I had the chance to see them at both the Roxy and Spaceland (right before it switched names) and seeing the Foos rock such small venues and play the entire album live made me fall in love with it. I listened to that album religiously and I can say no album has rocked me like ‘Wasting Light‘ in 2011!”
Yotam ‘Defiler’ Avni of Prey For Nothing
“My Favorite CD of the year was Symphony X – Iconoclast. I don’t see myself as a progressive metal fan or Symphony X fan – even though I always thought they were an excellent band. Thing is – when I listened to their latest effort I was blown away! I never imagined the band that wrote cheesy prog-power songs like “From The Ashes” just a decade ago could turn into this riff-monster. Iconoclast might have came from a progressive metal band, but it’s the thrash metal album of the year, and it’s sheer power and life – full diversity is what makes it so good, and so not typical Symphony X material.”
Jouni Matilainen of RE-ARMED
A – Ritual from The Black Dahlia Murder. Full of catchy hooks, skilled and not over produced american metal album! Also album’s artwork is just great, something little bit different than you could expect from that band. Atmosphere on this album is also dangerous which is nice!
Marshall “fucking” Beck – Reign of Vengeance
REIGN OF VENGEANCE “Disemboweling Swine“- Because we wrote the album to be.
Ryan Hayes of Righteous Vendetta
“The best record of 2011 hands down was “Hands” Give me Rest. I never was a huge Hands fan but this thing came out and punched me in the mouth. It is heavy, beautiful, tight, and raw all at the same time. I have never heard so much passion come out of a record. Amazing.”
Human Furnace of Ringworm
“The best CD of 2011 would be Foo Fighters, Wasting Light, because it’s a really good CD by an excellent band,..and DEVO’s “Something for everybody” which came out in 2010”
Eddie Cano of Scarlett O’Hara
I would have to say,
My favorite Album of 2011 would have to be “Hell is what you make it” by “Breathe Carolina”
It’s a perfect club mix between pop and electro and still they managed to keep their genre exactly the same.
They really impressed me with every track, “Blackout” in particular, there isn’t one song on their CD that wasn’t memorable. I expect to see big things from them in the future!
Anthony Lojeski of Seven Day Sonnet
“My favorite album released in 2011 was hands down City and Colour’s Little Hell. The album is an absolute emotional rollercoaster that delves deep into the trials and tribulations that we all face each day. The lyrics are honest and intimate and at the same time haunting due to their eerie and melancholy subject matters. It is an album that truly evokes emotions in myself that not many songs, let alone a whole album, can do. The deliver of the lyrics is beyond perfect and the craftsmanship of the music is second to none. If you do not have this album and are looking to experience something sincere, honest, and real this is for you.”
Mike Scarlata of Seven Day Sonnet
“My favorite CD of 2011 has got to be Moment of Impact by the band Eye Empire. When I had heard that this band had formed, and looked at the members, I knew I’d be getting a great record. I loved Submersed, Stuck Mojo, Stereomud, and Switched. Every track on this record is phenomenal. From melodic slowly driven rock songs with excellent vocals to heavy beat down your door guitar riffs with in the pocket syncopated drum beats. Overall great record and a must have for your Ipod.”
Esa of Silverdollar
In Flames, Sounds of a Playground Fading
“True craftsmanship in songwriting, arrangement and variety in songs, they’re still developing but still in In Flames style!”
Liv of Sister Sin
“The best CD in 2011 is The Haunted’s album, Unseen. This album is innovative and genius in every way!”
Matt O’Brien of Sleep City
“Thursday’s “No Devolucion” for me. The atmosphere on the CD is incredible from track to track, and they really got into the ambient side of their work which was great to hear. Sad to see them go for sure, but at least they went out on top!”
Max Zigman of Son of Aurelius
“My favorite of the year just off the top of my head has to be Protest the Hero’s Scurrilous. Machine did a fantastic job of keeping dynamics in the recordings, its unlike many albums in this genre in that it sounds very organic and everything sits in its own place. And the songwriting is just off the chain. Awesome album.”
Mike Sarkisyan of Spineshank
“Machine Head “Onto The Locust” need i say more?”
Lars of STORMWARRIOR
ROB HALFORD – “Live at Saitama Super Arena”
Why? Because this is Heavy Metal and not some kind of stupid Lou Reed & Whatever – Connection…!!!
Aad & Sinister of Supreme Pain
Than I have too say .. ROSE FUNERAL .. GATES OF PUNISHMENT.
This record is so Aggressive and brutal and super well played .. a real death metal piece !!!!
Michael De Wolf of Taproot
“My favorite album of 2011 is Britney Spears: Femme Fatale. Why? Because it f’n ROCKS, keeps me happy, and is solid from start to finish… I also enjoyed Rival Schools: Pedals. It too rules.”
Phil of Taproot
“The best album in 2011 is, The Greatest Video Game Music by the London Philharmonic Orchestra. From Super Mario Bros. and Zelda to Metal Gear Solid and Splinter Cell, even Angry Birds, this album has something for everyone…that loves video games.”
Amos Williams of TesseracT
“Ghost by Devin Townsend. It is one of those rare albums that transports you to another world. Perfection.”
Ricky Armellino of This or the Apocalypse
“Defeater– “Empty Days and Sleepless Nights“. Such a powerful, emotional, record.”
Phillip “PJ” Kinzer, Jr. of Thrust Management / InVogue Records
My favorite is : Major/Minor by Thrice, simply because it is compelling and tells a story not only lyrically through the first note to the last note..but musically as well. Truly a great influence to have!
Joey “Superstar” Severance of Tornado
My favorite album of 2011 is Tornado – Amsterdamn, Hellsinki and the reason being is simple. It’s the album I’ve been waiting years to hear where every track is catchy in every aspect. Especially song wise, riff wise, shredding wise and vocal wise . If it has to be a band other than my own, then Symphony X – Iconoclast (for the same reason as Tornado)
Tobias of Torture Division
My favorite CD of 2011 is without a doubt “All Guts, No Glory” by Exhumed. They are one of my all-time favorite death metal bands and on this “comeback” album they show that they’re as good as ever. Songs like “As hammer to anvil” and “Distorted and twisted to form” are instant classics! –
Justice of Trapped Under Ice
“Take Offense – Tables Will Turn – Chula Vista ‘s Take Offense released an LP that combines element of Suicidal Tendencies, Cro Mags, Warzone, and modern hardcore to create something timeless and original. Each song makes me feel like its 1980-something, I’m 17, and mad at everything in sight.”
Aaron Graves of Vampires Everywhere
“Favorite album: In Flames – Sounds of a Playground Fading
In Flames has always been one of my favorite bands and I love their maturity and growth with each album. No matter how much they change their sound, they always still manage to sound like In Flames. I respect the fact that they actually make an attempt to change and grow. This album does it all for me. It has the riffs, the melodies, the singing, the screaming, the programming, and the solos. Colony and Clayman are timeless albums, but I wouldn’t want to hear the same album regurgitated over and over throughout the years. Props to them. Sounds of a Playground Fading is hands down, the best album of 2011.”
Michael Vampire of Vampires Everywhere
“My favorite record of 2011 has to be Wednesday 13 “Calling all Corpses“. It brings back the whole shock rock vibe & it’s fun to get loose to! If you love horror punk this is your record!”
Davey Muise of Vanna
Balance and Composure – “Separation”
“It’s such a throwback to grunge and raw rock and that’s what I grew up on in the 90’s. Balance are young kids from that thriving post hardcore/rock Philly scene and it’s so refreshing to see younger dudes making great honest music and doing it their way. I do not skip a single track on that record and when it ends I but let it play again. That record is for sure my soundtrack to spring/summer 2011.”
Chris Mehrtash the singer/lead guitar of Vegas Is North
My favorite CD of 2011 had to be Blink 182: Neighborhoods, because it’s my favorite band in the whole entire world! No matter what I will always love blink. I grew up listening to them and they play huge inspiration factor to me and my band. Plus who doesn’t love blink? Great comeback album.
Jordan of Victorian Halls
“The album I connected with the most in 2011 is Bayside’s “Killing Time“. Their music has always progressively gotten better along with each album they release. They blend old school punk roots with intricate musicianship and that has always been a great factor to the reason why Bayside is in my top 5. Anthony Raneri’s lyricism takes me to a realm where everything is okay again. It gives me something I can relate to, plus it’s just the right amount of catchy and distinctive compared to all the other bands out there.”
Sean Lenart of Victorian Halls
“My favorite CD of 2011 is Grouploves’ “Never Trust A Happy Song“. The songs are simple, familiar, and still creative, without recycling. You can tell they are a song writer first band, but they didn’t get lazy with the production either. They’re definitely a band I wouldn’t mind watching night in night out on tour. This is first straight indie record I’ve really liked in a while.”
William Ryan Fritch of Vieo Abiungo
“This is a really tough question as there have been lots of albums that have some great material on it, but I have to say that My Brightest Diamond’s All things Will Unwind is the most striking and bold record I have heard all year.
The quality of the arrangements and songwriting is pretty stunning, and I feel like she has lyrically found her voice. I could listen to the song “Be brave” again and again and marvel at it’s balance of spaciousness and intensity.”
Steven of Wretched
“My favorite CD of 2011 is ‘Born This Way‘ by Lady GaGa. I really enjoy the music she creates, and her lyrical topics. She’s very open about the subjects she chooses to write about. She’s breathing fresh air into modern Pop music, which has been absent for quite some time now!”
Gustaf of Yggdrasil
“I think the best album of the year is Einherjer’s “Norrøn“. It is powerful, both melodic and harsh, both new and old. They combine the best from every old Einherjer-album with new influences in a great-sounding, dynamic production.”
Wolfgang Rothbauer of Zombie Inc.
“My favourite CD 2011 is “A Dreadful Decease” from the band Zombie Inc.” —-because its an outstanding old-school Death Metal release, and celebrates the comeback of Martin Schirenc (ex-Pungent Stench) into Death Metal”
And now it’s your turn! What was your favorite CD of 2011. Please list your answer in the comment section below…
(Compiled by Kenneth Morton – Top 10 Graphic by Yannick d’Assignies)