Top-20 releases of 2011
To begin with, this is not a reflection of the collective opinion here at PSA; this is a collection of my (Sameed) favourite releases of 2011. I hope you enjoy.
Kool Vibe – Deep Inside (Brawther’s 7inch dub)
This 7inch, released on My Love Is Underground, was limited to only 150 copies maintaining the labels elusive ethos. Paying homage to the classic house sample, the dub never left the record bag.
The Odd Trio – The Medley (Bastard, Lemonade, AssMilk)
Covering Odd Future the Jazz trio, now under their new alias BADBADNOTGOOD, reworked much of the collectives work. This edit of Tyler the Creators ‘Bastard’ provided a fantastic teaser to the mixtape.
Hype Williams – Your Girl Smells Chung When She Wears Dior – One Nation
The strange duo produced some of the strangest music of 2011, and not to everyone’s taste. Your Girl Smells Chung samples Cassie’s vocal from ‘Addiction’, reworking with vintage chords a shuffling percussion and excessive tape delay. The eccentric pair are one of the most original artists to break through 2011.
Julio Bashmore – Battle for Middle You – from Everyone Needs a Theme Tune EP
This monster house track was a staple for most DJ’s in 2011, and was dropped by everyone across dance spectrums. Not much more has to be said.
Michael Kiwanuka – Tell Me a Tale
Since our review back in May, the soulful Londoner has done it all: Numerous appearances on Giles Peterson’s show, toured with Adele and a slot before Red Hot Chillies on Jools Holland. His sound has been dubbed as vintage soul and comparisons to Bill Withers are rife, making it a massive breakthrough year for the 23 year old, sure to blow in 2012.
Gang Colours –Fireworks in Pocket – from In Your Gut Like a Knife EP
The latest talent to get gobbled up by Giles Peterson’s Brownswood label, Gang Colours debut four track EP falls into that ambiguous electronica/post-post category. Playing with psychedelic and futuristic instrumentation the EP provides perfect 5am listening, one to watch out for again in 2012.
Tyler the Creator – Yonkers
Need i say anymore?
Boddika – Warehouse – from Back & Fourth
Boddika aka Instra:mental was a huge figure in 2011. It proved difficult to select one track to sum up his year, with ‘Acid Jackson’/’Soul What’ also huge; however, this track was a central feature of his acidic sets in 2011 and fully went off.
Space Dimesion Controller – Flight of Escaped Vessels – from The Pathway To Tiraquon 6
Another of the huge breakthrough act of 2011, Space Dimension’s psychedelic sounds provided the soundtrack to some amazing R & S records nights.
Shlohmo – Places – from Bad Vibes
LA Hip-Hop’s latest son produced some outstanding music in 2011; this is my pick from his EPs etc.
James Blake – Whilhelms Scream – from James Blake
At first, I was cynical; I didn’t like his whining voice and his nervous aesthetics. In short, he annoyed me. I will be first to admit I was wrong, as his almost apocalyptic singing grew on me I was converted after seeing his band live. Much like Nicolas Jaar, he took electronic music to a visceral level, returning to live instrumentation.
Deadboy – Here for You – Here
Glasgow based NMBRS has established itself as a front runner in UK electronic music, and with releases like this its easy to see how. Following 2010’s sellout ‘If U Want Me’, Deadboy returned from his US tour with a fresh house orientation.
Joy O – Sicko Cell
As stated, 2011 was a huge year for Swamp81. This ambiguous release was kept under wraps for much of the year, before Mr Orbison claimed responsibility. A camp favourite at Outlook, in the tent not the gay sense, I was subjected to this one on a daily basis.
Unknown Artist – B1 – from Music Institute 20th Anniversary (Part 1 of 3)
- B2 , not B1
The first of three limited edition vinyl’s released on Detroit’s Kai Alce’s NDATL imprint as part of the 20th anniversary of the world famous Detroit Music Institute. Hailed as the epicentre of Detroit’s epic rise to electronic folk law, the institute played host to a who’s who of Techno/House. The release, although not made in 2011, is unreal. Salvaged from DAT’s tapes/CD’s, in a series of ultra rare and lost tracks, this release blew my mind! Unfortunately i couldn’t find B2, so heres B1.
Brawther – Do it Yourself – from Do it Yourself EP
A focal point of my sets for much of the year, this is a pure darncefloor groove. Straight up house grooves from a standout player in my 2011.
Daphni aka Caribou – Yes I Know – from Yes I Know/Jiao EP
2010 gave birth to Caribou; 2011 gave birth to Daphni, his evil twin. ‘Yes I Know’ was a feature of his outstanding RA podcast, and completely throws dance floors every time.
Wendy Rene – After Laughter Come Tears (Nicolas Jaar Edit)
It would be easy to harp on. So I wont. His album was sick; live sets, also sick; and mixes, again sick. This track was never released, being part of his mix for XLR8R magazine; however, the edit of Wendy Rene’s original, which can also be heard in Wu-Tang’s classic, is epic and hard to come by.
FaltyDL – Brazil – from You Stand Uncertain
A standout track from one of my favourite albums of the year.
Bugge Wesseltoft and Henrick Schwarz – Kammermusik – from Duo
German house mogul Schwarz needs no intro, remixing from MJ to Bill Withers; however, 2011 saw him turn his attention away to live shows, and away his house roots. With the progression of both musicians coinciding, Schwarz towards live music and Bugge towards electronic, a project seemed fitting. The collaboration merged live Jazz improvisation with carefully orchestrated compositions, making a beautiful record. ‘Kammermusik’ is underpinned with a Piazolla esc piano line and evocative percussion, making a remarkably original record.
Thundercat – For Love I Come – from The Golden Age Of Apocalypse
Thundercat is best known for his extraordinary basswork for the likes of FlyLo, Erykah Badu and Shafiq Husayn, including the bass on Cosmogrammas “MmmHmm”.Produced by FlyL and featuring Grammy award-winning drummer/brother Ronald Bruner Jnr the album included an amazing re-interpretation of George Duke’s classic “For Love I Come”, quintessential listening.