The criteria are pretty simple. The band must be at least "mostly" Canadian. In the case of a solo artist, it's pretty obvious. I'm dealing only with full length albums. No singles. No EPs. It must have been released in the year 2011. Simple.
I'm trying to meet a deadline here, and I won't be able to go into depth about each record the way I've done in the past. At some point in the very near future, I may or may not edit this post to include detail.
For now, with a video and minimal commentary for each, my favourite 15 Canadian records of 2011:
14. Destroyer -- Kaputt
13. Chad VanGaalen -- Diaper Island
12. Feist -- Metals
This video, from the "Later with Jools Holland" show, features the gals from Mountain Man on backing vocals.
11. Kathryn Calder -- Bright and Vivid
10. Colin Stetson -- New History Warfare Vol. 2: Judges
Listening to this album requires a lot of patience, and it's not the kind of thing I can listen to every day. That's what prevented this from appearing in the top third of this list. One man. One horn. Amazing.
9. Austra -- Feel it Break
A little more bloop bleep than I usually care for, and I really dislike this video, but..
8. Dan Mangan -- Oh Fortune
7. The Dears -- Degeneration Street
6. Jenn Grant -- Honeymoon Punch
5. Braids -- Native Speaker
Kids. These are freakin' kids.
4. Lindi Ortega -- Little Red Boots
Yes. It's a country record. And it's great.
3. The Luyas -- Too Beautiful to Work
People say they sound exactly like Broadcast. I can't really argue.
2. Drawn Ship -- Low Domestic
A very late addition to the mix. Maybe just a "flavour of the month" for me, but I kinda doubt it. Some songs on this record sound like they should be on Helium's Pirate Prude EP, which I still listen to all the time, 17 years after it was released.
Oh, and they're a two-piece.
Sadly, no video. Not anywhere where I could find it, anyway, but here's a song:
Glass Eye by DRAWN SHIP
1. The Rural Alberta Advantage -- Departing
They didn't disappoint me with their sophomore effort.
They made a few really creative videos, thanks to Saddle Creek Records. This is pretty great:
So there you have it. Without much commentary. The "non-Canadian" list is going to be much more difficult to parse, and it should be up soon. I'm supposed to have it done by Friday. We'll see.