Roose’s Top 10 Albums From 2011

This year in music was incredibly interesting to say the least.

Some big bands made their return to the studio, others made their debuts while some lesser-known acts broke through the scene to become major successes.

The top 10 list you’re about to see is guaranteed to go to go against the grain. No Adele, no Kanye and no Taylor Swift will come close to this list.

Instead, some main stream and mostly Indie will crack my top 10 favorite albums of 2011.

There is no way to really label this list. I can’t call it the “Top 10 of 2011” because I simply don’t listen to rap. I can’t call it the “Top 10 albums to fall under the radar” or the “Top 10 Indie” because those would simply not be true.

But I’m going to call it the top 10 anyway because it’s my blog and my list, dammit!

So without further adue, here is my list of favorite albums that will certainly piss off some while exposing others to fantastic music:

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Album review: “Man in Motion” – Warren Haynes

Artist: Warren Haynes
Album: “Man in Motion”
Release date: May 10, 2011

 

Being a fan of Warren Haynes’ work for the past five years or so, I had to get my hands on this album. The former guitarist of Gov’t Mule, Allman Brothers Band and the Dead hits this album hard with a strong backing band.

The album was recorded live in the studio, the only true way to capture the emotion put behind blues, soul and funk. With Haynes being a master at his craft in the jam band scene, this was an easy task for him to take on. Haynes has always been one to play his emotion through the guitar and his solos on this album are another great example of that.

By having only 10 tracks on the album, it gave Haynes and his band the freedom to work with each song, jamming them out to their fullest potential without having to worry about restrictions. Not a single track on “Man In Motion” fell under the five-minute mark and that is perfect in my eyes.

Ivan Neville is probably the biggest name in Haynes’ supporting band. Neville, a NoLa musician, is a master at the keys and the perfect person for capturing the sounds Haynes was going for in this album. Other members of his band include bassist George Porter, pianist Ian McLagan, Ruthie Foster on backing vocals and Ron Halloway on sax.

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Concert Review: Dave Matthews Band

Dave Matthews

Band: Dave Matthews Band
Date: June 24-26, 2011
Venue: Bader Field in Atlantic City, NJ
Rating (5-star rating): 5

It had been a seven-month wait for me to see my favorite band. This time, I didn’t have to travel to Philly, Camden or Hershey to dance my ass off but instead ride my bike over to Bader Field and take in the show.

The three-night stand marked my 14th, 15th and 16th DMB shows with the 16th being potentially the greatest DMB show I’ve ever attended. Busting out covers, gems and songs we thought were dead, DMB rocked AC harder than expected.

Friday [setlist]: They kicked off the weekend with a good show on Friday. They played a pretty mainstream set with a few surprises tucked in. Opening four songs sounded like any typical festival with “Don’t Drink the Water,” “You Might Die Trying” and the “Proudest Monkey/Satellite” combo.

But it was the fifth song that shocked many hardcore fans: “Captain.” This song hasn’t been played since 2005 and is one of the best songs lyrically off the 2002 album “Busted Stuff.”

The band continued on with more typical festival-songs and even featured guest guitarist David Ryan Harris to come out on stage for “Jimi Thing.” They finally broke up the run with a song many people thought was new. Instead, it was a cover of Morphine’s 1994 song “Buena,” which featured a bari sax solo by Jeff Coffin.

After giving every woman in the audience an orgasm with “Crash Into Me,” Matthews brought out his tiny Gryphon guitar and played the opening chords to “Shotgun.” Much of the crowd stood frozen, either trying to figure the song out or too shocked to do anything (I was screaming like a girl). Once the band joined in on Shaotguns more familiar riff, the place blew up.

The encore was one of the coolest ones I’ve heard. A four-song set, Dave again came out with the Gryphon and played a beautiful rendition of Procol Harum’s “A White Shade of Pale.” The band then joined in on “Stay or Leave” and “Grey Street.” With one more song left in the tank, Tim Reynolds went Led Zeppelin on us and played the opening riff to “Good Times Bad Times.” The rest was history as they tore apart Zeppelin’s hit, musically and vocally.

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