By Jack Bragg, Courier Editor-in-Chief
5. The Hundred Days- Really?
With their fresh San Francisco sound infused with dance-like beats, local band The Hundred Days struck gold with their debut. Songs like Tattoo Girl and Sex-U get the album going in a very strong direction. With an approachable, yet entirely unique sound, The Hundred Days easily secure the number 5 spot.
4. Young the Giant- Young the Giant
Another California native band, Young the Giant made huge strides in 2011. Their debut self-titled record was such a critically acclaimed piece, that the bad shot to stardom, and for good reason. Songs like “My Body” and “Cough Syrup” are excellently written songs with lyrics that are both catchy and meaningful. The album as a whole feels like an indie rock journey and each song holds its own significance in the context of the album. At number 4, Young the Giant easily solidifies a spot on the list.
3. The Black Belles- The Black Belles
Jack White’s newest discovery, The Black Belles, come in at number 3 on the list with their unique take the alternative sound. After first gaining recognition with the “Colbert Bump” and performing “Charlene” on the Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report, the band used
their appearance as a springboard for the release of their debut album. With their raw, shrill sound, The Black Belles are unlike anything you’ve ever heard. Songs like “Honky Tonk Horror” and “Pushing Up Daisies” are haunting and make for a great listening experience.
2. Grouplove- Never Trust a Happy Song
LA band Grouplove easily secure the number 2 spot with their debut album. Featuring songs like “Colours” and “Tongue Tied” that give the album a happy-go-lucky, optimistic feel, Never Trust A Happy Song is a delightful album from start to finish. While the band sound reminiscent of groups like Pheonix and OK Go, they bring a unique young flavor to the genre. The youth of the band is definitely heard through the music and as such, the album feels bright, warm, and carefree. For proof of how good the songs make you feel, watch any recent Ipod commercial, chances are you’ve already fallen in love with “Tongue Tied”.
1. The Joy Formidable- The Big Roar
Well here it is. Capping off the number one spot is the Joy Formidable, a Welsh band with a heavy sound. Not only is The Big Roar one of my favorite indie albums of the year, it has quickly become one of my favorite albums of all time. With an incredibly varying stylization of the music that somehow still manages to stay rooted to a distinctive base, the songs on this album not only feel like individual experiences, but as individual works of art. Songs like “Whirring”, “A Heavy Abacus”, “Cradle” and “Chapter 2” make this album feel like a truly
distinctive album within the alternative genre. The Joy Formidable easily secure the top spot on this year’s list.