The Best (Other) Songs of 2011.

Posted on December 16, 2011


I know Lita has nothing to do with this list but hey, she got arrested the other day, this was her mugshot, then she was on RAW just a few days later looking stunning. Who knew? Well done Lita. This is a list of songs I really enjoyed this year, that don’t feature in the forthcoming album of the year list. So there are songs from the 10 albums I’ll list next week that I prefer to some of these, but this is a different platform. So here’s a few that I liked, some of which were off EPs, some were from otherwise disappointing albums, some are previews of stuff to be released next year. Either way, I heard them this year.

Glassjaw – ‘Gold’
From the ‘Coloring Book’ EP that came out early this year, a lot of Glassjaw fans (PAUL STOTT) have expressed a strong distaste for this collection. Now, I can understand that, it doesn’t sound like Glassjaw are supposed to sound, but that doesn’t make it any less fantastic. The songs that made up that EP sound genuinely like nothing else I can think of right now, and that should be applauded. If there ever is another full length, I for one can’t wait. This is ‘Gold’, the second track, with an absolute skyscraper of a chorus.

Hawk Eyes – ‘Crack Another One’
The former Chickenhawk, as every review will tell you, released an EP towards the end of this year called ‘Mindhammers’, with a full length coming next year. It takes their mental riffery and moulds it into a more refined beast. This is the lead track, ‘Crack Another One’, and it is bloody fantastic.

Rival Schools – ‘Wring It Out’
So Rival Schools returned this year with another full length, and it was exactly what you’d expect from the band. Top quality, endearing rock songs, impossible to dislike. This is ‘Wring It Out’, a single taken from ‘Pedals’, and it just sounds gorgeous. This was very unlucky not to be in the albums list, and maybe over time it’ll be pushed there. Still, here you are.

Feist – ‘The Bad in Each Other’
I know a lot of people who heard the Feist record this year and went off on a mad bumming session declaring it the greatest thing since sliced bread. Now, I like the album, don’t get me wrong, but this is the only track off it that has really stuck with me, from very first listen to now. The mood change into the chorus is just delightful. Enjoy.

Mogwai – ‘Letters to the Metro’
The brilliantly titled ‘Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will’ was another consistently stellar addition to Mogwai’s back catalogue this year, but they’ve almost released so many decent records of the same ilk that its hard to get excited about them anymore. And, and maybe this is a guilty remark, but I love Mogwai the most when they go all piano and reverb, as opposed to the giant slabs of noise. This was my favourite track off the record.

Boycotts – ‘Call and Collect’
Came across this band in Liverpool in summer, and there was just something beautifully endearing about them. A difficult prospect live, they are essentially just a very clever and lovely pop band. This is a song from their end of year EP ‘Polaroid Heart’ that I had in my head for weeks after that scouse gig. I might have ripped off the chorus vocal a few times. Lovely.

Shoes and Socks Off – ‘And No One’s Seen Him Since’
It wouldn’t be an end of year with Shoes and Socks Off. A quiet year for Toby Hayes really, just a load of touring and a record with another band, Love Amongst the Mannequins. A number of SASO videos appeared this year, and new songs have been dominating the live set. A new record will surface next year, and this should be on it, and it is characteristically wonderful. An absolute standard bearer.