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ATP! 2011: Albums Of The Year

10. LIGHTS - Siberia
Good Fight Entertainment

LIGHTS’ new album surprised by infusing elements of the marmite dubstep genre into her already well-established electronic maranatha, blended together with more musical pleasantries than Lady Gaga’s bedside cabinet, showing a powerful evolution and maturity in her work. The claim that inspired the title, that her family would even be happy in Siberia, wraps up the album in a deep sense of enthusiasm and hope, one that, along with powerful songs such as ‘Toes’ really makes this album one of the standout musical releases of the year.

9. Balance and Composure - Separation
No Sleep Records

2011 saw the release of Balance & Composure’s hotly anticipated first full-length release, 'Separation' which has made a huge impact on the post-hardcore scene. The album is neatly produced, cleverly written and perfectly performed. The Penn state quintet have blended passion, innovation and talent into a debut to be proud of.

8. Simple Plan - Get Your Heart On
Lava/Atlantic Records

Even after twelve years of being together as a band, Simple Plan still manage the churn out the hits one by one with their fourth full-length studio release, 'Get Your Heart On'. With songs like 'Jet Lag', which has already gone double platinum in Australia alone, this album is one not to be missed and has easily stolen the title for best pop/rock album of the year.

7. Title Fight - Shed
SideOneDummy Records

Marrying elements of modern pop-punk with 80’s hardcore, Title Fight’s debut full-length album is as versatile as it is engaging. Considering the members’ involvement with other hardcore, straight edge, and youth crew outfits and the influence of Walter Schreifels as a producer, it isn’t surprising that Title Fight have emerged with a distinctively stronger and raw sound here, shifting from hard double-time tracks to broader melodious landscapes with the same passion, and balancing out the old school influences with a fair share of mellow moments that hint towards a more progressive direction. Its urgency, aggression, and infectious melodies make ‘Shed’ one of the strongest releases of 2011.

6. Manchester Orchestra - Simple Math
Columbia Records

With every album Manchester Orchestra seem to grow more ambitious on larger and grander scales. ‘Simple Math’ is a culmination of everything this band have hinted at for the past five years, finding that balance of crushingly heavy and delicate vulnerability with a direction that drives the bands elaborate concept forward. Each track powerful enough to stand alone, yet forming the most succinct and impressive package Manchester Orchestra have produced to date.

5. Aficionado - Aficionado
No Sleep Records

Aficionado’s self-titled album shows just why seven band members is the optimal number and why every self-respecting rock band should have a flautist. Yet it’s the tempo shifts and haunting dual, male/female vocal harmonies, on tracks like ‘Confidence is Intimidating’ and ‘Falsified Inspiration’, which show both how far the band has come since their debut and also why this album deserves its place on this list.

4. The Story So Far - Under Soil And Dirt
Pure Noise Records

'Under Dirt And Soil' is an unparallelled pop-punk debut from California's The Story So Far. While there have been an abundance of great releases within the genre this year 'Under Dirt And Soil' holds it own in a shining sea of high standards. Met with rave reviews across the board The Story So Far are set sail on a journey to the very top.

3. Seahaven - Winter Forever
Run For Cover Records

Seahaven's 'Winter Forever' stands out as a portrait of loss, alienation and bitterness painted through; Kyle Soto's angst ridden rusty vocals, aggressive guitar hooks and elegant lyricism. From the anxious rage of 'Black & White' to the vulnerable 'Honey Bee', 'Winter Forever's' constant tempo changes and dynamic variation showcase a very susceptible but also one of the most accessible records of 2011.

2. Saves The Day - Daybreak
Razor & Tie Records

'Daybreak' took three years in the making for Saves The Day amidst struggles with rotating lineups and record labels. The band come out swinging however, providing one of the best comebacks of 2011. From the title-track, which echoes their entire discography up to the present day, all the way to the ethereal, enigmatic 'Undress Me'. 'Daybreak' is a cohesive rock album from Saves The Day who continue, almost twenty years later, to write excellent music.

1. Yellowcard - When You're Through Thinking, Say Yes
Hopeless Records

The triumphant return of Yellowcard to the music world’s eagerly anticipating eardrums was marked by album of the year ‘When You’re Through Thinking, Say Yes’, a release that fans were so hungry for it was released in two versions, the electronic and acoustic versions both bathing in the pool of excellence. So for those out there who sorely missed that blend of elegant violin lines, the chugging romp of raw guitars and the melodic tones of Ryan Key, this was an incredibly good year. Congratulations and welcome back Yellowcard, it wasn’t the same without you.

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