Well the year got off to a flying start for me in the shape of White Lies second album ‘Ritual‘. I played this to death throughout the year and it never ceases to please me. You can hear nods to 80’s bands like Tears For Fears or the early industrial sounds of Depeche Mode (then again it was produced by Alan Moulder). The stand out track for me has to be the anthemic ‘The Power And The Glory‘.
2011 brought the re-emergence of Liverpool band The Wild Swans led by original member Paul Simpson. ‘The Coldest Winter For A Hundred Years‘ is truly a monster of an album which has shown us what we’ve been missing for the last 21 years since their previous studio album. Singles like ‘English Electric Lightning‘ and ‘Liquid Mercury‘ served as ample helpings of what was to follow. Even Les Patterson (ex Bunnymen) was persuaded to perform on this album. My favourite track from this comeback platter is the awesome ‘When Time Stood Still‘.
Next up is the stupendous album ‘Skying‘ by Southend band The Horrors. The single ‘Still Life’ dominates this album and is such a landmark track for the year for me. It does in my opinion pay homage to the early sounds of Simple Minds (as previously stated). Yet you can feel the warmth in the music. ‘I Can See Through You‘ and ‘You Said‘ are also just as riveting and compulsive listening too.
Kate Bush has made 2011 her year releasing two albums (unheard of in her books). Yet ‘50 Words For Snow‘ is just awesome and majestic. I’ve already reviewed it extensively in a previous blog. Each time I play it I change my mind on which track currently holds my attention most. At this time and moment it’s the closing ‘Amongst Angels‘, though could change on my very play of the disc.
My final selection goes to The Waterboys album paying homage to W.B. Yeats entitled ‘An Appointment With Mr Yeats‘. Mike Scott’s vocal delivery is as good as ever on this album which they’ll be touring the UK and Ireland in early 2012. For me there isn’t really a title off the album which stands out for me rather than is a whole piece of music which excites and demands your attention to heard.
Other acts that have wetted my appetite during 2011 and are constantly being waxed on my CD player or in my car media player Magazine – ‘No Thyself’, John Foxx & The Maths – ‘The Shape Of Things’, Blancmange – ‘Blanc Burn’ and Noel Gallagher ‘High Flying Birds’. I am now looking forward to a great year of new music being released or seen live.
My favourite song of the year goes to a band I rate highly for the future Get Back Colquitt with ‘Madame (Won’t You Stay)’. They’re performing live on the BBC Merseyside’s Introducing Special on Friday 27 January 2012. So please don’t miss listening to these guys before they become global superstars! Hopefully I will also be attending this show.