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Turntable Kitchen’s Top Albums of 2011 (so far)

Last Friday we entered July, and thus, also the second half of 2011.  Now that we’ve passed that milestone, I thought it would be worthwhile to take a look back at the best albums we’ve heard so far.  For me it helps at the end of the year to remind of some of the best things I’d heard early in the year, and I’d hope for you, it might function as a gentle reminder to check out some great albums you may have missed this far.  As always, this list isn’t intended as an objective list of the “best of” – but rather my subjective favorites.  EPs have been intentionally excluded from this list (I’m sure I’ll do a Top EPs list by the end of the year – if not sooner).  And, of course, I’m sure I missed some great stuff, so I’d love to hear your recommendations.

And, with that in mind, here are TK’s Top Albums of 2011 (so far):


1. The Weeknd – House of Ballons

MP3: The Weeknd – High For This


2. James Blake – James Blake

MP3: James Blake – Wilhelm’s Scream


3. tUnE-yArDs – w h o k i l l

MP3: tUnE-yArDs – Bizness


4. Shabazz Palaces – Black Up

MP3: Shabazz Palaces – Swerve… The reaping of all that is worthwhile (Noir not withstanding)


5. Washed Out – Within and Without

MP3: Washed Out – Amor Fati


6. Radiohead – King of Limbs


Radiohead – Bloom


7. Cults – Cults

MP3: Cults – You Know What I Mean


8. the Antlers – Burst Apart

MP3: The Antlers – Every Night My Teeth Are Falling Out


9. Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues

MP3: Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues


10. Motel Beds – Sunfried Dreams

MP3: Motel Beds – Obey Your Lunch


11. Bon Iver, Bon Iver

MP3: Bon Iver – Calgary


12. Steffaloo – Meet Me In Montauk

MP3: Steffaloo – Meet Me In Montauk


13. Thao & Mirah – Thao & Mirah

MP3: Thao & Mirah – Eleven (feat. tUnE-yArDs)

14. The Decemberists – The King Is Dead

MP3: The Decemberists – January Hymn


15. Loch Lomond – Little Me Will Start A Storm

MP3: Loch Lomond – Elephants & Little Girls


Big thanks to Tebogo Malebogo who contributed our awesome cover art above!

Posted by Matthew Hickey


Matthew is the music editor and co-founder of Turntable Kitchen. He’s addicted to vinyl records, pour over coffee, craft beer, small batch bourbon, and pan roasting pork chops.

  • Anonymous

    loving the love for tune-yards. that record has creativity dripping out of it everywhere.

  • AnthonyJ Langford

    I really hate to say it, but as a longterm fan of Radiohead’s work, aside from a couple of tracks, Limbs is a meandering disappointment. In Rainbows’s B-side Disc had more to offer. Some very good albums here though.

  • Matthew

    Thanks for the comment Anthony! And I do have to say – I really liked the In Rainbow’s B-side disc. That said, I still enjoyed The King of Limbs personally. But I definitely gave The King of Limbs a more patient ear than I’d be inclined to give most albums.

  • Matthew

    So true. My top three should be read as nearly a tie: three very different albums, but I’m really into all three.

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  • dave

    i’ve also really enjoyed the new albums by papercuts, let’s wrestle, and white denim. still some stuff i have yet to listen to on here though… looking forward to it.

  • Matthew

    I’m definitely a big fan of Papercuts. The White Denim album is great and growing on me pretty steadily. Haven’t heard Let’s Wrestle. Since I posted this I’ve listened to a few more albums that might qualify: Beirut, Other Lives and I know there is a third one, but I’m blanking on it at the moment.

  • BlackHeron

    Great list! but I must admit that I miss on it Ducktails, Delicate Steve and Kurt Vile.

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