Year-End Lists

Notable, browsable lists of the year's best music, movies, books, and TV shows. Year-end lists are fingerprints; aggregate statistics are smudges. Therefore, we make no tallies. Follow the link for each list to see essential commentary from its authors, at the source.

Guardian: Best Albums of 2011

01 December 2011

The Guardian: Best Albums of 2011

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012]

  1. PJ HarveyLet England Shake
  2. Katy BOn A Mission
  3. Frank OceanNostalgia, Ultra
  4. Beyoncé4
  5. Bon IverBon Iver
  6. James BlakeJames Blake
  7. MetronomyThe English Riviera
  8. The WeekndHouse of Balloons
  9. RustieGlass Swords
  10. Tune-YardsWhokill
  11. White DenimD
  12. Wild BeastsSmother
  13. King Creosote & Jon HopkinsDiamond Mine
  14. Tom WaitsBad as Me
  15. SBTRKTSBTRKT
  16. The HorrorsSkying
  17. BjörkBiophilia
  18. St. VincentStrange Mercy
  19. DrakeTake Care
  20. Fleet FoxesHelplessness Blues
  21. Gillian WelchThe Harrow & The Harvest
  22. Noah & The WhaleLast Night on Earth
  23. Laura MarlingA Creature I Don’t Know
  24. FeistThe Bad in Each Other
  25. Kurt VileSmoke Ring for My Halo
  26. Gang Gang DanceEye Contact
  27. RadioheadThe King of Limbs
  28. Jonathan WilsonGentle Spirit
  29. Kate Bush50 Words for Snow
  30. Gil Scott-Heron & Jamie xxWe’re New Here
  31. Lady GagaBorn This Way
  32. Lykke LiWounded Rhymes
  33. DestroyerKaputt
  34. Jamie WoonMirrorwriting
  35. Cat’s EyesCat’s Eyes
  36. Pistol AnniesHell on Heels
  37. Watch the ThroneKanye West/Jay-Z
  38. Nicola RobertsCinderella’s Eyes
  39. The StreetsComputers and Blues
  40. Gruff RhysHotel Shampoo
  41. Shabazz PalacesBlack Up
  42. Nils FrahmFelt
  43. Machine HeadUnto the Locust
  44. Marius NesetGolden Xplosion
  45. Colin StetsonNew History Warfare Vol. 2: Judges
  46. BeirutThe Rip Tide
  47. True WidowAs High as the Highest Heavens and from the Center to the Circumference of the Earth
  48. Ryan AdamsAshes & Fire
  49. The AntlersBurst Apart
  50. IceageNew Brigade

Sight & Sound Poll: Best Films of 2011

01 December 2011

Sight & Sound Poll: Best Films of 2011 (a poll of 100 critics and curators, published by Sight & Sound Magazine)

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012]

  1. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  2. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  3. The Kid with a BikeJean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne
  4. MelancholiaLars von Trier
  5. The ArtistMichel Hazanavicius
  6. Once Upon a Time in AnatoliaNuri Bilge Ceylan
  7. The Turin HorseBéla Tarr & Agnes Hranitzky
  8. We Need to Talk About KevinLynne Ramsay
  9. Le quattro volteMichelangelo Frammartino
  10. Tinker Tailor Soldier SpyTomas Alfredson
  11. This is Not a FilmJafar Panahi & Mojtaba Mirtahmasb

John Waters: Best Films of 2011

01 December 2011

John Waters: Best Films of 2011, as published by Artforum

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012]

  1. The Skin I Live InPedro Almodóvar
  2. Mildred PierceTodd Haynes
  3. Justin Bieber: Never Say NeverJon M. Chu
  4. HadewijchBruno Dumont
  5. KaboomGregg Araki
  6. If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation FrontMarshall Curry and Sam Cullman
  7. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  8. I’m Glad My Mother Is AliveClaude and Nathan Miller
  9. We Were HereDavid Weissman
  10. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past LivesApichatpong Weerasethakul

Piccadilly Records: Albums of 2011

01 December 2011

Piccadilly Records: Albums of 2011

[see also 2012]

  1. Peaking Lights936
  2. Kurt VileSmoke Ring for My Halo
  3. The Phoenix FoundationBuffalo
  4. Maria MinervaCabaret Cixous
  5. MetronomyThe English Riviera
  6. Wooden ShjipsWest
  7. Other LivesTamer Animals
  8. KillsBlood Pressures
  9. Black LipsArabia Mountain
  10. WidowspeakWidowspeak
  11. Shimmering StarsViolent Hearts
  12. Dum Dum GirlsOnly in Dreams
  13. Pure XPleasure
  14. Jonathan WilsonGentle Spirit
  15. PJ HarveyLet England Shake
  16. Harvey Presents LocussolusLocussolus
  17. VetiverThe Errant Charm
  18. J MascisSeveral Shades of Why
  19. Real EstateDays
  20. Washed OutWithin and Without
  21. Sun ArawAncient Romans
  22. Soft MetalsSoft Metals
  23. Kitty, Daisy & LewisSmoking In Heaven
  24. Crystal StiltsIn Love With Oblivion
  25. BeirutThe Rip Tide
  26. Bon IverBon Iver
  27. Gil Scott-Heron & Jamie xxWe’re New Here
  28. Dirty BeachesBadlands
  29. Moon DuoMazes
  30. SBTRKTSBTRKT
  31. Lanterns on the LakeGracious Tide, Take Me Home
  32. Baxter DuryHappy Soup
  33. King Creosote & Jon HopkinsDiamond Mine
  34. Laura MarlingA Creature I Don’t Know
  35. Thee Oh SeesCastlemania
  36. Holy OtherWith U
  37. James BlakeJames Blake
  38. Still CornersCreatures of an Hour
  39. HatchbackZeus and Apollo
  40. John StammersJohn Stammers
  41. A Winged Victory For The SullenA Winged Victory for the Sullen
  42. Arthur’s LandingArthur’s Landing
  43. Cashier No. 9To the Death of Fun
  44. Thurston MooreDemolished Thoughts
  45. Tom WaitsBad as Me
  46. Strange BoysLive Music
  47. Dutch UnclesCadenza
  48. 6th Borough ProjectOne Night in the Borough
  49. The War on DrugsSlave Ambient
  50. WallsCoracle
  51. BjörkBiophilia
  52. AlmuniaNew Moon
  53. ThundercatThe Golden Age of Apocalypse
  54. Gillian WelchThe Harrow & The Harvest
  55. DestroyerKaputt
  56. Nicolas JaarSpace is Only Noise
  57. Craft SpellsIdle Labor
  58. James FerraroOn Air
  59. Eternal TapestryBeyond the 4th Door
  60. Beastie BoysHot Sauce Committee Part Two
  61. The FieldLooping State of Mind
  62. Sarabeth TucekGet Well Soon
  63. TropicsParodia Flare
  64. Stephen Malkmus and the JicksMirror Traffic
  65. Hercules and Love AffairBlue Songs
  66. BoxcutterThe Dissolve
  67. Gruff RhysHotel Shampoo
  68. Crazy PWhen We On
  69. CultsCults
  70. John MausWe Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves
  71. White HillsH-p1
  72. SeahawksVision Quest One: Spaceships Over Topanga Canyon
  73. WoodsSun and Shade
  74. KWJAZKWJAZ
  75. BibioMind Bokeh
  76. I Break HorsesHearts
  77. Big TroublesRomantic Comedy
  78. Carlton MeltonCountry Ways
  79. John TejadaParabolas
  80. Azari & IIIAzari & III
  81. SepalcureSepalcure
  82. Water BordersHarbored Mantras
  83. GangliansStill Living
  84. Panda BearTomboy
  85. Little DragonRitual Union
  86. Ryan AdamsAshes & Fire
  87. Balam AcabWander / Wonder
  88. LA Vampires Goes ItalStreetwise
  89. Fleet FoxesHelplessness Blues
  90. Tune-YardsWhokill
  91. WU LYFGo Tell Fire to the Mountain
  92. RadioheadThe King of Limbs
  93. Wild BeastsSmother
  94. The StepkidsThe Stepkids
  95. Ty SegallGoodbye Bread
  96. Toro y MoiFreaking Out
  97. Danger Mouse & Daniel LuppiRome
  98. Zola JesusConatus
  99. TinariwenTassili
  100. Josh T PearsonLast of the Country Gentlemen

Fly: Top 50 Albums of 2011

30 November 2011

The Fly: Top 50 Albums of 2011

[see also 2012]

  1. The AntlersBurst Apart
  2. MetronomyThe English Riviera
  3. The HorrorsSkying
  4. Smith WesternsDye It Blonde
  5. Bombay Bicycle ClubA Different Kind of Fix
  6. PJ HarveyLet England Shake
  7. Wild BeastsSmother
  8. GirlsFather, Son, Holy Ghost
  9. The VaccinesWhat Did You Expect From The Vaccines?
  10. BattlesGloss Drop
  11. Kurt VileSmoke Ring for My Halo
  12. RadioheadThe King of Limbs
  13. YuckYuck
  14. Friendly FiresPala
  15. Anna CalviAnna Calvi
  16. Washed OutWithin and Without
  17. Bon IverBon Iver
  18. James BlakeJames Blake
  19. Veronica FallsVeronica Falls
  20. Florence + The MachineCeremonials
  21. Unknown Mortal OrchestraUnknown Mortal Orchestra
  22. Real EstateDays
  23. Black LipsArabia Mountain
  24. Laura MarlingA Creature I Don’t Know
  25. White DenimD
  26. Baxter DuryHappy Soup
  27. Fleet FoxesHelplessness Blues
  28. WU LYFGo Tell Fire to the Mountain
  29. BraidsNative Speaker
  30. Gardens & VillaGardens & Villa
  31. MazesA Thousand Heys
  32. Dutch UnclesCadenza
  33. Noah & The WhaleLast Night on Earth
  34. Gruff RhysHotel Shampoo
  35. St. VincentStrange Mercy
  36. Arctic MonkeysSuck It and See
  37. EMAPast Life Martyred Saints
  38. Lykke LiWounded Rhymes
  39. Stephen Malkmus and the JicksMirror Traffic
  40. SBTRKTSBTRKT
  41. The War on DrugsSlave Ambient
  42. ColdplayMylo Xyloto
  43. Shabazz PalacesBlack Up
  44. Cerebral BallzyCerebral Ballzy
  45. ElbowBuild a Rocket Boys!
  46. The StrokesAngles
  47. Slow ClubParadise
  48. British Sea PowerValhalla Dancehall
  49. The Naked and FamousPassive Me, Aggressive You
  50. Joy FormidableThe Big Roar

Publishers Weekly: Best Books of 2011

30 November 2011

Publishers Weekly: Best Books of 2011 [fiction, nonfiction]

[see also 2018, 2017, 2016, 2012]

    Fiction

    Nonfiction

New York Times: Ten Best Books of 2011

30 November 2011

The New York Times: Ten Best Books of 2011

[see also 100 Notable Books of 2012, 100 Notable Books of 2011]

American Songwriter: Top 50 Albums of 2011

30 November 2011

American Songwriter: Top 50 Albums of 2011

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2012]

  1. WilcoThe Whole Love
  2. Gillian WelchThe Harrow & The Harvest
  3. Adele21
  4. Drive-By TruckersGo-Go Boots
  5. DawesNothing is Wrong
  6. Hayes CarllKMAG YOYO
  7. Paul SimonSo Beautiful or So What
  8. Pistol AnniesHell on Heels
  9. The Black KeysEl Camino
  10. FeistMetals
  11. Tom WaitsBad as Me
  12. Jason Isbell and The 400 UnitHere We Rest
  13. Lucinda WilliamsBlessed
  14. My Morning JacketCircuital
  15. Bon IverBon Iver
  16. Miranda LambertFour the Record
  17. Jessica Lea MayfieldTell Me
  18. Ryan AdamsAshes & Fire
  19. RadioheadThe King of Limbs
  20. Laura MarlingA Creature I Don’t Know
  21. Fleet FoxesHelplessness Blues
  22. Bright EyesThe People’s Key
  23. The Civil WarsBarton Hollow
  24. The War on DrugsSlave Ambient
  25. Sarah JaroszFollow Me Down
  26. Pieta BrownMercury
  27. Deer TickDivine Providence
  28. St. VincentStrange Mercy
  29. A.A. BondyBelievers
  30. The Felice BrothersCelebration, Florida
  31. Robert EllisPhotographs
  32. The DecemberistsThe King is Dead
  33. HoneyhoneyBilly Jack
  34. Joe HenryReverie
  35. KORTInvariable Heartache
  36. Old 97′sThe Grand Theatre, Vol. 2
  37. Steve EarleI’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive
  38. Real EstateDays
  39. Those DarlinsScrews Get Loose
  40. Middle BrotherMiddle Brother
  41. Kurt VileSmoke Ring for My Halo
  42. Noel GallagherNoel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
  43. Jonny CorndawgDown On The Bikini Line
  44. TristenCharlatans At The Garden Gate
  45. JEFF The BrotherhoodWe Are the Champions
  46. Loney DearHall Music
  47. Caitlin RoseOwn Side Now
  48. Abigail WashburnCity of Refuge
  49. BeirutThe Rip Tide
  50. Centro-maticCandidate Waltz

Sonic: Best Albums of 2011

29 November 2011

Sonic Magazine: Best Albums of 2011 [staff lists]

[see also 2012]

  1. PJ HarveyLet England Shake
  2. Gillian WelchThe Harrow & The Harvest
  3. My Morning JacketCircuital
  4. Paul SimonSo Beautiful or So What
  5. Lykke LiWounded Rhymes
  6. James BlakeJames Blake
  7. Fleet FoxesHelplessness Blues
  8. Ryan AdamsAshes & Fire
  9. TinariwenTassili
  10. FeistMetals
  11. Bon IverBon Iver
  12. The WeekndHouse of Balloons
  13. Shabazz PalacesBlack Up
  14. WilcoThe Whole Love
  15. Frank OceanNostalgia, Ultra
  16. A.A. BondyBelievers
  17. Kurt VileSmoke Ring for My Halo
  18. Adele21
  19. Tim HeckerRavedeath, 1972
  20. Tyler, The CreatorGoblin
  21. DeporteesIslands & Shores
  22. ZombyDedication
  23. Ison & FilleFör evigt
  24. Holy Ghost!Holy Ghost!
  25. Jonathan JohanssonKlagomuren

Paste: 50 Best Albums of 2011

29 November 2011

Paste Magazine: 50 Best Albums of 2011

[see also 2010s, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012]

  1. Bon IverBon Iver
  2. Fleet FoxesHelplessness Blues
  3. My Morning JacketCircuital
  4. Tune-YardsWhokill
  5. Middle BrotherMiddle Brother
  6. Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.It’s A Corporate World
  7. WilcoThe Whole Love
  8. DawesNothing is Wrong
  9. M83Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming
  10. The DecemberistsThe King is Dead
  11. St. VincentStrange Mercy
  12. Iron & WineKiss Each Other Clean
  13. RadioheadThe King of Limbs
  14. GirlsFather, Son, Holy Ghost
  15. Adele21
  16. Deer TickDivine Providence
  17. YuckYuck
  18. The Civil WarsBarton Hollow
  19. Wye OakCivilian
  20. CultsCults
  21. BeirutThe Rip Tide
  22. Charles BradleyNo Time for Dreaming
  23. The Black KeysEl Camino
  24. The Belle BrigadeThe Belle Brigade
  25. TV on the RadioNine Types of Light
  26. The AntlersBurst Apart
  27. The Low AnthemSmart Flesh
  28. Black LipsArabia Mountain
  29. Lykke LiWounded Rhymes
  30. FeistMetals
  31. Tom WaitsBad as Me
  32. Telekinesis12 Desperate Straight Lines
  33. Ryan AdamsAshes & Fire
  34. The Head and the HeartThe Head and the Heart
  35. SerynThis Is Where We Are
  36. Childish GambinoCamp
  37. Mister HeavenlyOut of Love
  38. The War on DrugsSlave Ambient
  39. Over the RhineThe Long Surrender
  40. Foster the PeopleTorches
  41. Portugal. The ManIn the Mountain in the Cloud
  42. James BlakeJames Blake
  43. Wild FlagWild Flag
  44. Joy FormidableThe Big Roar
  45. Kurt VileSmoke Ring for My Halo
  46. Those DarlinsScrews Get Loose
  47. Holy Ghost!Holy Ghost!
  48. Real EstateDays
  49. DrakeTake Care
  50. Mates of StateMountaintops
  51. Frank TurnerEngland Keep My Bones