Abridged version of abridged reviews, because I'm a terrible blogger.
Braids - Native Speaker (2011)
is equal parts Animal Collective and Gang Gang Dance. It's a solid knock-off of the aforementioned artists' neo-psychedelia, but better albums of its nature have been released this year.
Cut Copy - Zonoscope (2011)
I've really got to get out of the habit of waiting until I've forgotten what an album sounds like to write a few words about it. Zonoscope
is the top album I've heard this year that I remember almost nothing about. It's a pretty good synth pop indie album, and that's pretty much all I've got.
Lia Ices - Grown Unknown (2011)
I've got to thank someone here on Music Banter for this recommendation, though I can't remember who. Grown Unknown
is nothing remarkable, but it's a lush and often beautiful album by a pretty typical singer/songwriter. I could have heard Lia Ice's voice a thousand times, but even so, it's one of the better releases of its kind this year.
The Devin Townsend Project - Ghost (2011)
What comes to your mind when you hear the term "New Age"? The sounds of flutes and ocean waves? Soft peaceful chanting? Colour therapy and incense? Tarot cards and healing stones? All of these massively useless concepts are summarized in Devin Townsend's Ghost.
Frankly, I half expected this man's artist page to have a photo of this bastard