Features / Lists

What We Missed In 2011

As thorough as we try to be with daily content and our end of year recaps, with so much good music readily available, there are bound to be the ones that we miss. Instead of being shy about it, we’ll come right out and say it – we kind of dropped the ball on these guys. Keeping in step with the rest of Quit Mumbling, these selections range from hip-hop and electronic to throwback alt-rock, and everything in between. Here are ten that we missed in a year overshadowed by tUnE-yArds, Kurt Vile, and Nicolas Jaar.

 

Pictureplane

Have you ever taken ecstasy at a gay club? Me either. But! Given the situation, I could guess what I’d like to dance to, which is to say, Pictureplane’s crunchy, jamming, endearingly flamboyant Thee Physical album. Pictureplane has been producing solid music — both individual and remix work — for a little while now, but this one’s the show stopper of his catalog…and we slept on it! -LC

Pictureplane – “Trancegender”

 

Rihanna feat. Calvin Harris – “We Found Love”

She had us at “Umbrella,” but it was “We Found Love,” her 11th number one single, that made us go permanently crazy for her. We didn’t exactly miss this one. The song follows you everywhere, and with every listen you somehow start to love it more and more. The combination of Scottish producer Calvin Harris’s spiraling beat and her repetitive words make this one of the most accessible party jams imaginable, but we’re not complaining. It’s fun, sexy, and catchy as hell. Plus, we can’t get out of our head that this song’s really about a Walmart on Black Friday (“We found love in a….”) -Stuart

Rihanna – “We Found Love” (feat. Calvin Harris)

 

AraabMuzik

Who would have thought that the man behind Dipset’s epic “Salute” beat had an inclination for Jersey club traxx. Well, barring those epic Youtube videos featuring AraabMuzik absolutely assaulting the MPC over tracks like those found on Electronic Dream. Teasing and tweaking with a heavy hand and delivering more exhilarating versions of the original tracks (and perhaps giving us all greater comfort with the source material). Electronic Dream, AraabMuzik’s first official full length release, is an incredible exploration of this dude’s talents and his proclivity for crafting trippy masterpieces from chintzy dance tracks. He’s stated that he wishes to continue down this avenue and we’re all for it. -LC

AraabMuzik – “Electronic Dream”

 

Sepalcure

Albums fall through the cracks and when they’re released in November, sometimes they are neglected on December lists.  And although we spotted Machinedrum on our Top 10 Mixes, we neglected to give plaudits to his main project, Sepalcure.  In whatever stage we are with post-dubstep, you can’t help but get the feeling that a lot of ground has been covered.  In the rush to mesh mutilple genres together, the medium has been diluted to the point where new sounds can be drowned out.  The embrace by everyone of off-signature beat sequences and garage-esque RnB vocals has made the music released as of 2009 and onwards blend in a haze.  But even within the creative staleness, there are moments of ingenuity that can rekindle the spirit.  What works for Sepalcure is their embrace of 2 Step and UK Garage, not their attempt to redefine everything.  Not everything has to be revolutionary, sometimes good will suffice – Sepalcure’s self-titled release is just that.  Brooklyn can bring the dance riddims too! -Juan

Sepalcure – “Breezin”

 

Wild Beasts

Mercury Prize-nominated Wild Beasts released 2011’s Smother, the English band’s third album that’s a rumination on the darker side of love, filled to the brim with angst and moody desire. Melodies are both sparse and lush, with meticulous orchestration that directs an album that feels like it’s leading up to the cusp of action. It’s about “that mad human dynamic of doing the right things for all the wrong reasons or doing the wrong things for all the right reasons.” Vocalist Hayden Thorpe is stuck in a purgatory between anguish and bliss, and ultimately, the album concerns the simultaneous vulnerability and torment in midst finding and exploring love. It aches, it bleeds, and lets it all out in an empty room filled with quickly shifting light. –Kenny

Wild Beasts – “Deeper”

 

Oneohtrix Point Never

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly how we slept on this one. We knew it was out there. We even knew we sort of liked it. Still, nothing from the album initially stood out as exhilarating. After sitting with this album for a couple of months though, the immediacy of the high points of Replica is strikingly obvious. Take “Nassau”, which can feels empty and repetitive initially. Sit with it. That dramatic piano loop that builds to overtake that initial vocal loop is awesome, and serves as a great bridge to the latter half of the album. –LC

 

Maya Jane Coles

Even kids in Kansas can make the claim that house music is now the mainstream. I’m not telling you anything new. But before you throw your fist in the air and scream for a rock rebellion, sift through the bullshit of Guetta and Avicii to the world of the underground. For me, Maya Jane Coles was the door that lead me down the rabbit hole. Sure MJC has been around for a bit, but 2011 was no doubt her year of breakthrough. Debuting at number 9 on the RA 2011 DJ Poll, winning Producer of the Year by DJ Mag, and claiming the title of Best Breakthrough by Mixmag is one hell of a rap sheet for a scene that can be a notorious boys club. All honors were well deserved as this past year found MJC continuously bringing forth some the of darkest, most soulful, grooving mixes we heard. From an incredible Essential Mix, remixes appearing on Crosstown Rebels and Defected, several stellar EP’s, and live shows along side Jamie Jones and Seth Troxler (to name a few more of my favorites), we’ll go ahead and put MJC on a much deserved pedestal. -Bear


 

Pure X

As soon as you put on Austin band Pure X’s debut LP Pleasure, you can’t help but disappear right into its 90s reverie. It pulls you in with the fuzz of its guitars and pining vocals, as each track dissolves into the next without much commotion, forming a slow-burn of a daydream back to a time when afternoons seemed to have no end, and everything else just sat abstractly in the distance. It hints at the monotony of sunshine in the dead of summer, and like a more spaced-out, consumed Yuck, Pleasure transports you to the comfort of your friend’s garage, weird lighting and all, when bagel bites were a legitimate meal, and the few hours after school were the most vivid part of your days. –Kenny

Pure X – “Dry Ice”

 

FIDLAR

We pride ourselves as an LA blog and somehow missed one of the city’s favorite new bands. Locals, don’t be too mad at us though. We are ready to push the shit out this loud throwback. So much about FIDLAR screams Los Angeles: their Black Flag, Germs fueled punk attitude and Seeds inspired indie take on garage rock. They’re badass and if that’s not enough for you, grow a pair. -Stuart

FIDLAR – “Max Can’t Surf”

 

Azealia Banks

If music followed a similar ratings guide to film, then all things Azealia Banks would have made a major leap past NC-17. Not just because of her habitual use of that one word that no one can say (bunt…stunt..yeah, that word) but because of her ability to put forth vibes of straight XXX while flexing her muscle as a rapper or chanteuse. “212” would have (should have) easily broken our top ten list last year, and makes a strong case for the hardest-hitting track of 2011. While a lot credit can be given to the face-fracturing beat and combustible vocal distortion, there’s just something about the essence of Mz. Banks that only makes us want to go harder. -Bear

Azealia Banks – “212”

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,