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31/12/2011 Mega-Critic-Chart: Best Reviewed Albums Of 2011

The best albums of 2011 (update december, 31)

“The ratings come from a formula that includes a) average of ratings from different sources and b) numbers of magazines that rated the album.

The magazines I used for the ratings were:
USA: All Music Guide; AV Club; Cokemachineglow; One Thirty BPM;Pitchforkmedia, Popmatters, Rolling I Stone, Slant, Spin, Tinymixtapes
UK: Drowned In Sound, The Guardian, Music OMH, NME, No Ripcord
EUR: Gaffa; Humo; Jenesaispop; Mondosonoro; Nojesguiden; Plattentests; Playgrounmag; Sentire Ascoltare; Stroria Della Musica

The final numbers is the average rating and number of reviews in brackets (over 25)


100 John Maus: We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves 73,3 (17)
99 King Creosote & Jon Hopkins: Diamond Mine 73,4 (8)
98 Youth Lagoon: The Year Of Hibernation 73,5 (13)
97 Veronica Falls: Veronica Falls 73,5 (18)
96 The Kills: Blood Pressures 73,5 (21)
95 Explosions In the Sky: Take Care, Take Care, Take Care 73,7 (22)
94 Dirty Beaches: Badlands 73,8 (12)
93 Kate Bush: Director's Cut 73,8 (16)
92 Megafaun: Megafaun 73,9 (13)
91 The Roots: Undun 73,9 (14)
90 WU LYF: Go Tell Fire to the Mountain 73,9 (19)
89 Liturgy: Aesthethica 74,0 (10)
88 Black Lips: Arabia Mountain 74,0 (20)
87 The Psychic Paramount: II 74,2 (9)
86 Wire: Red Barked Tree 74,2 (18)
85 Toro Y Moi: Underneath the Pine 74,2 (22)
84 Slow Club: Paradise 74,2 (11)
83 J Mascis: Several Shades of Why 74,2 (19)
82 Crystal Stilts: In Love With Oblivion 74,3 (16)
81 Friendly Fires: Pala 74,4 (20)
80 Jay Z / Kanye West: Watch the Throne 74,5 (23)
79 SBTRKT: SBTRKT 74,6 (20)
78 Russian Circles: Empros 74,7 (10)
77 m83: Hurry Up, We're Dreaming' 74,7 (22)
76 Akron/Family: Akron/Family II: The Cosmic Birth and Journey of Shinju TNT 74,8 (17)
75 Future Islands: On The Water 74,9 (14)
74 Zola Jesus: Conatus 74,9 (22)
73 Foo Fighters: Wasting Light 74,9 (23)
72 My Brightest Diamond: All Things Will Unwind 74,9 (15)
71 Chad VanGaalen: Diaper Island 75,0 (14)
70 Cut Copy: Zonoscope 75,1 (23)
69 Peaking Lights: 936 75,2 (12)
68 The Decemberists: The King Is Dead 75,3 (24)
67 Marissa Nadler: Marissa Nadler 75,3 (18)
66 Tyler, the Creator: Goblin 75,4 (24)
65 Earth: Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light 1 75,6 (11)
64 Gil Scott Heron / Jamie xx: We're New Here 75,6 (18)
63 Eleanor Friedberger: Last Summer 75,7 (21)
62 Saigon: The Greatest Story Never Told 75,9 (7)
61 Paul Simon: So Beautiful or So What 75,9 (13)
60 Nicolas Jaar: Space Is Only Noise 76,1 (14)
59 Battles: Gloss Drop 76,5 (23)
58 The Black Keys: El Camino 76,5 (21)
57 My Morning Jacket: Circuital 76,5 (23)
56 Yuck: Yuck 76,6 (22)
55 Okkervil River: I Am Very Far 76,7 (23)
54 Wild Flag: Wild Flag 76,8 (17)
53 Julianna Barwick: The Magic Place 76,8 (15)
52 Real Estate: Days 76,8 (24)
51 Beastie Boys: Hot Sauce Committee Part Two 76,9 (23)
50 Iceage: New Brigade 77,0 (15)
49 Laura Marling: A Creature I Don't Know 77,0 (19)
48 Big K.R.I.T.: Return of 4Eva 77,1 (7)
47 Beirut: The Rip Tide 77,2 (25)
46 Radiohead: The King of Limbs 77,2 (24)
45 The War On Drugs: Slave Ambient 77,3 (21)
44 Elbow: Build A Rocket Boys! 77,3 (17)
43 Drake: Take Care 77,4 (19)
42 The Mountain Goats: All Eternals Deck 77,4 (19)
41 The Pains of Being Pure at Heart: Belong 77,5 (25)
40 Katy B: On a Mission 77,6 (20)
39 Björk: Biophilia 78,2 (24)
38 Arctic Monkeys: Suck It and See 78,5 (23)
37 Kurt Vile: Smoke Ring For My Halo 78,7 (23)
36 A Winged Victory for the Sullen: A Winged Victory for the Sullen 78,8 (7)
35 TV on the Radio: Nine Types of Light 78,8 (24)
34 Feist: Metals 78,9 (22)
33 The Antlers: Burst Apart 79,1 (21)
32 Oneohtrix Point Never: Replica 79,1 (20)
31 Panda Bear: Tomboy 79,2 (24)
30 Mastodon: The Hunter 79,5 (19)
29 Wilco: The Whole Love 79,6 (25)
28 Iron & Wine: Kiss Each Other Clean 79,6 (25)
27 Gillian Welch: The Harrow And The Harvest 79,7 (11)
26 Zomby: Dedication 79,9 (20)
25 The Field: Looping State Of Mind 80,3 (18)
24 The Horrors: Skying 80,3 (21)
23 EMA: Past Life Martyred Saints 80,5 (17)
22 Low: C'mon 80,6 (20)
21 Smith Westerns: Dye It Blonde 80,8 (22)
19 Fucked Up: David Comes to Life 80,9 (23)
19 Lykke Li: Wounded Rhymes 80,9 (23)
18 Tim Hecker: Ravedeath, 1972 80,9 (15)
17 Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks: Mirror Traffic 81,0 (25)
16 Gang Gang Dance: Eye Contact 81,1 (22)


15 Girls: Father, Son, Holy Ghost 81,1 (23)



14 Bill Callahan: Apocalypse 81,2 (20)



13 The Weeknd: House of Balloons 81,3 (14)



12 Wild Beasts: Smother 81,7 (21)



11 Shabazz Palaces: Black Up 82,9 (19)



10 Atlas Sound: Parallax 83,1 (24)



09 tUnE yArDs: w h o k i l l 83,2 (24)



08 St. Vincent: Strange Mercy 83,4 (23)



07 Bon Iver: Bon Iver 83,5 (25)



06 Tom Waits: Bad As Me 83,5 (24)



05 Fleet Foxes: Helplessness Blues 84,5 (25)



04 Kate Bush: 50 Words For Snow 84,5 (21)



03 Destroyer: Kaputt 85,1 (22)



02 James Blake: James Blake 86,0 (25)



01 PJ Harvey: Let England Shake 88,8 (25)

Re: 31/12/2011 Mega-Critic-Chart: Best Reviewed Albums Of 2011

Wow, this will be very useful for the album poll coming up!

I have to ask, is Only in Dreams by Dum Dum Girls just a blip on the horizon for most critics? I've hardly seen it mentioned anywhere. When that album first came out, I completely fell in love with it, and while that ecstasy has wound down a little bit, I still think it's a great LP. Seems like no one else agrees

Re: 31/12/2011 Mega-Critic-Chart: Best Reviewed Albums Of 2011

Quote: Zorg
I have to ask, is Only in Dreams by Dum Dum Girls just a blip on the horizon for most critics? I've hardly seen it mentioned anywhere. When that album first came out, I completely fell in love with it, and while that ecstasy has wound down a little bit, I still think it's a great LP. Seems like no one else agrees


It's doing pretty well on the EOY spreadsheet - it's currently at #72 (I've done some more work since I sent Henrik the posted update), which is higher than some of the albums that are ranked highly on this list (which, as you'll recall, is based solely on time-of-release reviews).

The degree of re-evaluation that goes on at the end of a given year can be pretty startling. For particularly vivid examples, just look at the Mega-Critic vs. EOY numbers for M83 and Stephen Malkmus.

Re: 31/12/2011 Mega-Critic-Chart: Best Reviewed Albums Of 2011

I am very surprised that the Roots' new album Undun isn't making a better showing. I thought it was one of the universally acclaimed albums of the year.

Re: 31/12/2011 Mega-Critic-Chart: Best Reviewed Albums Of 2011

Quote: Mike
I am very surprised that the Roots' new album Undun isn't making a better showing. I thought it was one of the universally acclaimed albums of the year.


The problem is that it was released in December. If it had come out earlier in the year it would very likely be in the top 50 (at least) on both Mega-Critic and the EOY spreadsheet. It's unfortunate.

Re: 31/12/2011 Mega-Critic-Chart: Best Reviewed Albums Of 2011

Quote: Harold Wexler
Quote: Mike
I am very surprised that the Roots' new album Undun isn't making a better showing. I thought it was one of the universally acclaimed albums of the year.


The problem is that it was released in December. If it had come out earlier in the year it would very likely be in the top 50 (at least) on both Mega-Critic and the EOY spreadsheet. It's unfortunate.


That makes sense why Undun has done so poorly on your wonderful list compilation, but isn't the ratings in this post simply based on the average ratings it gets from various publications?

The album has a score of 88 on metacritic, which is two points higher than PJ Harvey scored, so I would expect it to have no problems cracking the top 50.

Re: 31/12/2011 Mega-Critic-Chart: Best Reviewed Albums Of 2011

Quote: Mike
Quote: Harold Wexler
Quote: Mike
I am very surprised that the Roots' new album Undun isn't making a better showing. I thought it was one of the universally acclaimed albums of the year.


The problem is that it was released in December. If it had come out earlier in the year it would very likely be in the top 50 (at least) on both Mega-Critic and the EOY spreadsheet. It's unfortunate.


That makes sense why Undun has done so poorly on your wonderful list compilation, but isn't the ratings in this post simply based on the average ratings it gets from various publications?

The album has a score of 88 on metacritic, which is two points higher than PJ Harvey scored, so I would expect it to have no problems cracking the top 50.


Has Undun been released outside the U.S. yet? El Camino certainly has - the Black Keys' album came out here the same day as Undun, but it's doing much better on both lists. Mega-Critic compiles reviews from a variety of international sources, and if an album's release is staggered in different regions, it can take time for a UK or rest-of-world score to catch up to a U.S. one (and vice versa).