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Music

The best local albums of 2011

The blood-letting, tear-jerking, and aural ancestral communions that still demand attentionThe blood-letting, tear-jerking, and aural ancestral communions that still demand attention

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Courtesy photo

Sharp-dressed men: SA’s Education

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Courtesy photo

Education’s Age Cage

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Courtesy photo

Bryan Hamilton’s Welcome To Dreamland


6. Hyperbubble’s Drastic Cinematic
Synth-popper duo orchestrating fictional film noir soundtrack. As eccentrically badass as it sounds.

7. Chisme’s Storytellers
MC R-E-L and producer Pointing Fingers drop lo-fi hip-hop as appropriate for the club as a headset.

8. Mexicans with Guns’ Ceremony
The masked beat junkie presents dance as spiritual communion with our Mexican and South American ancestors.

9. Mega Man’s Mega Man The Album
The Grasshopper Lies Heavy, Daytes, and XRY covered some of gaming’s best eight-bit tunes and released them on cassette inside game cartridges. Sick.

10. Greg G’s Gold Rush
A stellar collection of hip-hop that is all things to all palates. Greg G remains artful gold undiscovered by the mainstream.

The year’s five best EPs

great85

1. The Great ’85 - Believe It
The Great ’85’s Believe It is packaged to look like mail. It’s only appropriate then that their EP is a love letter to SA’s millenials, born into disillusionment in both rarefied weather and a rejecting economy. Whether clamoring their loss of innocence (“The Great Snow of ’85”), aimless toil (“A Hard Year”), or shared misery in love (“Believe It”), The Great ’85 could not be more relevant to the creative professional and professionally creative. Meanwhile, guitarist Nick Mery and producer Edwin Stephens (Blowing Trees) crafted something elegantly raucous, full of mournful horns, booming synth drums, hijacked news reports, and guitar cable noise. The Great ’85 captured the mania of living in 2011, making it beautiful, heart-breaking, and redemptive. As such, the news of their quiet disbanding is a shot to the solar plexus. May their lone doc endure.

sa_20111228_poppistol

2. Pop Pistol’s Disappearing Edges
Pop Pistol's android sex rock coalesced into an EP that bests their debut. In exploring long-form composition in a short format, they delivered greater dynamics and restraint. See the stratospheric fifth minute of opener “Skyscrape the World,” where they blast a danceable wave of rock.

3. Trip the Light’s Fantastic EP
More than a record for rainy days or staying in bed. Trip the Light’s Anthony Burchell celebrates computers and instruments from all eras. On a Facebook picture featuring floppy drives and an old tube monitor he wrote, “I make music with all the junk your parents threw out.”

4. OBX’s Rage
An EP about scaling the ladder or dying trying, full of both achievement anthems (“Rage of a Bull,” “While My”) and celebrations of skeezy living (“This Is My Life”). This is San Antonio’s Everyman, a toilsome truth-teller aspiring to clean underwear and lemon chicken.

5. Egshan’s 111
Only a fool would pretend that Egshan don’t have more camp than the Occupy Movement. Their eclectic stoner rock is mercilessly groovy and capital P Professional. Muscular polish shines on the blues rocker “Blue Day” and the psychedelic “Static.”

Check with the Current on Wednesday for 2011 favorites from Music Editor Enrique Lopetegui and Arts Director Chuck Kerr on Wednesday.

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