Top Albums of 2011 (Part 1)
Ok, I’m a bit on the late side getting my best of 2011 list together. It’s been really tough deciding who gets the honor of being in the top 20, as numerous artists proved their worth last year. However, some just stood above the rest and brought home the bacon! Take a glance at the winners below- and top songs coming soon!
20. Girls’ Generation: 1st Japanese Album – SNSD
I have to say I am quite impressed by these girls. I never thought I would actually enjoy their music, as it took me a while to warm up to Kpop and the idol-y feel of the group. The fun and catchy beats of their tunes will have you grooving in no time! I’ve had a hard time enjoying Japanese releases of Korean artists, mainly because most of them just re-write the song into Japanese and call it a single. Not only is this lazy, often times the ‘new’ songs sounded horrible and extremely awkward (I’m talking to you 2ne1! D:<) While SNSD released 2 re-written songs as singles, the majority of the album includes brand new tunes. Also, the Japanese versions actually sound good and are on the same level as the original Korean releases! It’s a miracle! Otherwise my only problem with this release is the title. I think the Korean music industry wins the award for laziest album naming EVER. Virtually all releases are named ‘(insert artist here) 1st album, 2nd mini album etc… or have that tacked onto the end of it. Sorry, I’m one of those people who think that releases should be named creatively and after what the artist wants to represent. At least this isn’t quite a self-titled release…
19. My Life 2: The Journey Continues (Act 1) – Mary J. Blige
Very happy Mary finally got to drop her album at the end of 2011! And dang this album has a LOT of songs! That’s good and bad… Mary has always been a solid and amazing artist, and My Life 2 is an absolute representation of her talent. Most of the songs are top notch and carry a great message along with them. This is definitely an album to pick up if one is looking for inspiration- or just to jam to! This record features quite a few artists- including Beyonce, Nas and Rick Ross. While this album is most certainly a great release, I think I would have enjoyed it much more had there not been so many songs. I think about 4-5 songs could have been cut, honestly. There are parts where it drags just a little too much. Had this happened, this album would have ranked much higher on my list. Still great release though!
18. Japanese Singer – Ken Hirai
Yet another artist I was just introduced to in 2011. Seriously, this guy has a lot of talent. Definitely one of Japan’s premiere R&B artists! Although, his stuff is a bit weird and his voice and style can take some getting used to. After you’re past that you can truly appreciate the selection of songs this album offers. There are a good number of slower R&B numbers on this record, but there are also some surprising (and a bit frantic) uptempo songs as well. He is also one of several artists that made the cover of his album a tribute to Japan after the Tohoku earthquake hit in March last year. So, highly recommended artist- but like I mentioned with Feist’s album, not for everyone.
17. All of you – Colbie Caillat
Well, it’s about time she had a new release! LOL Very pleased with how this record turned out, and also happy it’s shorter! While her last effort Breakthrough was a great release, it got a bit bogged down by excess songs. I wish the 2 bonus tracks Stereo and Maria took the place of a couple ‘eh’ songs on the record because in my opinion, they are stronger. All of You features the standard Colbie fare and delights the listener with it’s easy breezy, mid-tempo tracks- perfect for a bright summer day!
16. Pieces of Me – Ledisi
I have to say, I was disappointed with Ledisi’s last release. It lacked depth and lagged in places. Thankfully, Ledisi went back to her slower, more powerful self. The songs on here are true to her soulful persona and showcase her amazing abilities. Highly recommended to everyone! Ledisi’s taking OVA 😛
The rest of the albums to come soon! I promise!