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Top Albums of 2011

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With the end of 2011, I feel an overwhelming need to create a list of my top 10 albums of 2011. 2011 was a good year for music, and here’s hoping 2012 blows it out of the water.


10. The Truth Is… - Theory of a Deadman

Say what you want about theory of a deadman. Make as many Nickelback references as you like. But that doesn’t take away from the fact that they’re good at what they do. One of my favourite aspects of this band is lead singer Tyler Connolly’s ability to incorporate humour into their lyrics. They have a good balance of love songs and hate songs. They are one of those bands that can rip into girls for every bad thing they do, and I’ll still always be coming back for more. I wouldn’t call this album a departure from their pervious material, but it’s a good representation of the growth this band has gone through, lyrically and musically, and I’m excited to see what they do next.

Favourite song: Hurricane


9. Versitis Maximus – Trigger Effect

What a gem of an album. If you’ve never heard of Trigger Effect, now is a good time to educate yourself. I cannot describe the feeling I get when I listen to this band. They are an in-your-face, unapologetic punk rock band. Versitis Maximus manages to mix upbeat tempos with the sweet grooves that’ll leave you wanting more. I’ve never heard a band that sounds quite like them.

Favourite song: Leave Me Stallone


8. Storms – Hedley

Hedley is one of those bands that never seem to disappoint me. (Well, expect maybe Cha Ching, but you can’t blame the band for that one.) Their new release Storms is no different. Jacob Hoggard is, to me, one of the best song writers out there. His ability to make you feel through his words is astounding. I’m left with an incredible sense of happiness when I listen to this album. There is not one song I don’t like.

Favourite song: I Won’t Let You Go (Darling)/Beautiful


7. Better Off – Ten Second Epic

The world needs more music like this. It’s raw, emotional, intense, yet incredibly polished and dynamic. This album needs to be heard. It’s a good mix of their old and new sound, and the growth heard throughout this album is incredible. I love when a band grows and changes, yet still remains true to the core of what brought them together to make music in the first place. Does that make sense? I don’t know. But the instruments, paired with Andrew’s vocals, make for a sound that blows you away. The lyrics are mature and well done. Ten Second Epic has mastered writing catchy rock/pop songs.

Favourite song: Don’t


6. Symphony Solider – The Cab

I must admit, I’m late to the party when it comes to The Cab. I hadn’t heard of them until recently when a friend mentioned the struggles they went through to get their album released. I really commend bands that will fight with all their might (yeah I rhymed, so what?) to get their music out there. The Cab mix catchy riffs, fun/honest lyrics, and super sweet vocals together into one big stew and let me tell you, it works. I can’t help but bop my head to these tunes. Symphony Soldier tells stories of love, lust, heartbreak, and triumph. A must listen.

Favourite song: Angel with a Shotgun


5. Soul Punk – Patrick Stump

I’m not going to lie, I was (and still am) a huge fall out boy fan. Soul Punk was one of the most anticipated albums for me. I was very curious to see what Patrick Stump could come up with on his own. After years of singing someone else’s lyrics (awhadup Pete Wentz?!), it’s really quite something to finally hear what Patrick has to say. For those of you expecting to hear an extension of Folie à Deux, you will be sorely disappointed. This album is so much more than that. Patrick stump has revved up the glam, the synths, and created a piece of work that is the definition of “solo album.” Patrick stump poured his heart and soul into Soul Punk, and plays every single instrument used on the album. That’s mighty impressive, if you ask me.

Favourite song: Run Dry (X Heart X Fingers)


4. Siberia – Lights

Lights is, without a doubt, my favourite Canadian female artist. The moment she released Everybody Breaks a Glass as a free download, I knew I was going to be sold. Siberia combines the soft and vulnerable sounds of her voice, with the hard, dark beats of dubstep and synthesizers. Her first release, The Listening, was meant to me a perfected, polished album. That is where Siberia is different. It is a darker, yet more optimistic side of lights. I’m incredibly impressed with the overall sound of this album. The lyrics are superb.

Favourite song: Flux and Flow/Cactus in the Valley


3. War Paint – The Dangerous Summer

Here it is; the album rock n’ roll has been waiting for. Incredibly straight-forward and honest lyrics, beautiful guitar riffs, slick drum beats and groovy bass lines. AJ Perdomo has a knack for story-telling lyrics. He writes words that make you feel something. The sincerity behind the lyrics is what sets the dangerous summer apart from other bands in the same genre. They mean everything they say, and I’m sold.

Favourite song: I Should Leave Right Now


2. Antimacy – Dead and Divine

The production on this album is sick. I’d maybe even go far as to say it’s the best I’ve heard on any dead and divine album. The instruments and vocals on this album are dead-on. One of the most important aspects for me when listening to a hardcore band is the ability to be able to understand what is being yelled at me. Matt Tobin has an incredible knack for yelling at you in a way you understand. After all, if I can’t understand what you’re saying, why would I listen? Not only are his screams brilliant, his singing vocals are perfection. He has, without a doubt, one of the most unique voices out there. The guitar tones on Antimacy are heavy and substantial, bumping the riffs and breakdowns to a whole new level of awesome. The melodies are flawless, and add a whole new dimension to the overall sound. A+

Favourite song: Carcinoma


1. Impossible – The Artist Life

How do I put my feelings for this band into words? Here it goes. This album was easily the most anticipated album for me, having had the privilege of hear two tracks, Steel City and Music is my Misery, back in the summer of 2009. Flip to April 2011, Impossible is unleashed. Putting my emotions into words is hard with this one. This band is so close to my heart. Impossible is a bit more polished and poppy than their previous releases, but that doesn’t mean the band has lost their punk influences. Fighter Planes vs. Foreign Aid is a direct reflection of that. The story telling on this album is incredible. It tells tales of connecting through music, love lost, love gained, politics, and everything in between. Having been a fan since 2008, watching this band grow and mature in their sound is amazing. They never cease to amazes me, and keep getting better and better.

Favourite song: I’m Not the Same Anymore/Teeny Was a Friend of Mine/Steel City (what? I can’t choose.)



Honourable mentions:

I’m With You – Red Hot Chili Peppers

Kill the Lights – The New Cities

Falling in Reverse – The Drug In Me Is You

Foster the People – Torches

Adele – 21


Do you agree with my choices? Do you hate something I love? I’d love to hear your thoughts/choices!


By Shayla Miller