At this stage, it would be hard to argue that there was a better, more universally acclaimed and globally received album than Adele‘s 21, featuring consistently on “Best” and “Top” lists for 2011. Rolling Stone named the album #1 in their 50 Best Albums Of 2011 list that came out today, saying that the magic of 21 was all in the voice, both literally and figuratively; “More than any other album this year, 21 made you feel its pain – from the triple-hankie tear-jerker ‘Someone Like You’ to ripsnorting revenge songs like ‘Rumour Has It,’ where Adele rides a roiling groove and flattens everything in her path.”
Strangely enough, however, Rolling Stone gave the #2 spot to Jay-Z and Kanye West‘s Watch The Throne which, while possibly being the most hyped album of the year, wasn’t as well received as Kayne’s 2010 effort, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. The Top 10 also features Lady Gaga‘s Born This Way at #6, which also failed to strike a chord with the critics this year, despite its epic release and subsequent run of artful, shock-value Gagaist videos. Predictably enough however, Rolling Stone fit Radiohead‘s King Of Limbs in at #5, controversial because it was considered a sub-par Radiohead offering, but believable enough given that despite criticism, the album has still found its way into an overwhelming number of Top 50 lists.
The music loving folk at NPR, Q, Uncut, Stereogum and Paste have all weighed in on the top 50 albums of 2011, and they all have one thing in common — Bon Iver‘s Bon Iver.
It really is the year of the ‘indie’ artist, and following Arcade Fire‘s Grammy win earlier this year, the music industry has shifted its focus to Bon Iver (who is nominated for 4 Grammys in the 2012 awards), a band that, while having been around for a while, has only just begun to enter mainstream consciousness. Perhaps it was Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon‘s collaboration with Kayne West on My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy last year, or maybe it just so happens to be that the world is finally ready to grapple with non-pop centric sounds — whatever, 2011 (musically at least) was the year of Bon Iver.
If you think about it, Britney Spears is one of the last pop stars created during the “old” era of the music industry (meaning, before the advent of mp3’s). Her career as a bubblegum teen idol was launched in the late nineties, right at the same time as a little show on MTV called TRL was beginning to take off. The fortunes of these two properties became inextricably tied together, and thanks to some crazy catchy tunes and some truly iconic music videos that got tons of on-air exposure during the last gasp of MTV’s infatuation with the music video format, Britney Spears quickly became not only the biggest star in the music industry, but one of the most famous celebrities in all the world.
As everyone knows, her tabloid notoriety would soon go on to eclipse her musical output, and there was a period of time there when a lot of people thought that Britney Spears might not make it to her 30th birthday. However, to her credit, Britney was able to pull her life back together and re-dedicate herself to her music career, and her focus is now unquestionably sharp. As we look back upon her body of work on the occasion of Brit Brit’s milestone 30th birthday—an incredible six Number One albums, nineteen Top 40 singles (!)—it’s a testament to her longevity and outstanding career output that we had an incredibly difficult time putting together this list of the 30 Greatest Britney Spears Songs (which you can also listen to on Spotify).
Feel free to debate our choices in the comments below!
Another year, another 50 albums you need to know, according to Paste Magazine. Yep, 2011 is coming to a close, and we’re about to be slammed with the “tops” and the “bests” of the year, not to mention the “musts” and the “watch this spaces” for 2012. Paste Magazine has kicked off the festivities with their top 50 favorite albums of 2011, and while 50 seems like a big number, it’s certainly not enough.
Of the lesser knowns, how could Youth Lagoon, The Weeknd and Atlas Sound fail to make the cut? It’s been a big year indeed, and it looks like culling a list down to even a generous 50 is a ruthless task. Hats off to Paste Magazine for taking a decisive plunge into rating 2011’s vast and amazing releases.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING! It’s time to tackle that tender turkey for your super thankful Thanksgiving meal, and we’re here to provide you with some extra sexy beats to get you through the entire process, all the way from the moment you take your first (but not last!) sip of your mimosa to the time when it’s time to say “grace” around the dinner table. So we made the following playlist, “VH1’s Songs To Baste Your Turkey To”, which can be found on Spotify. On your mark, get set … BASTE!
You’re in the kitchen, everything you need to make the perfect turkey laid out on the bench in front of you. You’re probably feeling some anxiety, or if you’re anything like us you’re having an existential crisis and are considering fleeing the scene. IT’S GOING TO BE OK. Before you start, make yourself a mimosa and relax. Play: Adam Sandler’s “Turkey Song” — it’s pretty funny, and along with the mimosa should help take the edge off.
Now that you’ve calmed down, it’s time to preheat the oven and grab your Turkey. This part is a purgatory of doing tiny, banal preparatory tasks. Play: The Offspring’s “Intermission” while you prepare to prepare, and relish the final moments of your sanity.
Here comes the gross part — stick your hand up your turkey’s butt and remove the neck and giblets. Yes, ew. You might want to finish that mimosa and make yourself a new one before you start. Play: This is a call to arms (Survivor’s “Eye Of The Tiger”) so steel your resolve (Christina Aguilera’s “Fighter”) and de-giblet that turkey (Queen’s “Another One Bites The Dust”). The delicate and squeamish need not apply, this is ultimate battle — The Battle Of The Turkey Innards. Read more…
Taylor Swift has been blazing across the country on her Speak Now tour, and in her warm, earnest way, she’s been welcoming city-specific guests to share the stage with her while she pays unique tributes to all the towns she visits. And now, on the final leg of her tour, Taylor is in that town, New York City, and the opportunities for tributes and guests are almost endless. For her first New York show last night at Madison Square Garden, Taylor played “one of the greatest songs ever written,” The Goo Goo Dolls‘ “Iris,” with the band’s frontman Johnny Rzeznik. With one last show set to light up the Garden tonight, we’re speculating who of the New York set will join Taylor on stage. Will it be a Strokes affair? Mother Monster? Or a spectral visitor from the afterlife?
If you missed this week’s VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown, you’re in luck. Not only is it re-airing tomorrow at 7:30 a.m. on VH1, but we’ve got this week’s complete list of the week’s 20 hottest videos for you. After losing the top spot to Adele last week, our brand new VH1 Unplugged star Kelly Clarkson is sitting pretty in the top spot of this week’s countdown with “Mr. Know It All.” Check out the complete list of videos below, and be sure to visit Top20.VH1.com to vote for your favorite videos all week long.
So, what’s your favorite? Is it a Jackson 5 classic like “ABC”? Or something for MJ’s early solo career, like “Thriller”? Are you more of a contemporary fan for songs like “You Rock My World”? Or do you just love it all and can’t make up your mind so you wish you could vote for everything? It doesn’t matter what your opinion is, if you’re black or white or whether or not you can do the moonwalk — we want to hear from YOU!
Don’t forget, the world broadcast premiere of This Is It is happening TONIGHT at 9 p.m. ET, only on VH1!
As Jay-Z and Kanye West‘s Watch The Throne tour kicks off this week, there’s really not all that much else to talk about. Between set lists, leather outfits, copious bling and “OMG WILL PREGONCÉ OR FRANK OCEAN OR BOTH MAKE AN APPEARANCE?”, it’s a truly immersive experience, permeating all facets of daily life and conversation. So while we wait very impatiently for our turn to Watch The Throne, we’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite collaboration albums of all-time.