Faris McReynolds of One Finger Riot

Faris McReynolds

Faris McReynolds

Young HuntingRust

LA dream-poppers Young Hunting self release another sad, beautiful love song. A swirling mixture of distorted sound waves, clean guitars, and pulsing repetition, their lush and droning shoegaze pop stands out in the predictable LA scene.

Cat’s EyesCat’s Eyes

This record was a total surprise. Where many bands are content to emulate the sound of their favorite past records by stamping a vintage sound on generic tunes, Cat’s Eyes actually writes the melodies that take the listener there, and beyond. Equal parts orchestral pop and darkly mysterious, this record takes wistful 60s femininity on a date with Nick Cave, and the results are fantastic.

Trish Keenan’s Mind-Bending Motorway Mix (no official release)

When Trish Keenan of Broadcast tragically passed from H1N1 in January, a mixtape she’d made for a friend went viral among her fans. Not an actual release per se; and none of the music contained on this was recorded in 2011, but it did come into the world in 2011. For the fan of all things eccentric, obscure and psychedelic, this mixtape was my best of 2011.