Dominion Top 20 Albums of 2011

By on January 17, 2012

We at Dominion think that 2011 was a great year for the many flavours of schwarze musik and so we put our heads together to come up with what we thought were the Top 20 albums of 2011.

This list is published in Dominion 14 which is available as a digital download here or as part of Terrorizer #218 as a digital download here or a physical magazine here.

What were your favourite albums of 2011?

20. THE HIRAM KEY
‘Amerikafka’
SPIRAL STAIRCASE

What we said: “As a unit The Hiram Key are near untouchable as songwriters. Their individual pedigrees bring elements from different disciplines of gothic music, which have combined to create something that will appeal to many.”

19. DIARY OF DREAMS
‘Ego:X’
ASCENSION

What we said: “‘Ego:X’ is solid, the production and mixing do the music justice and despite its length, the album never stalls.”

18. THE DANSE SOCIETY
‘Change Of Skin’
SOCIETY

What we said: “A bold step forward, unfettered by the past with songs like ‘Slowfire’, ‘Resurrection’ and ‘End Of Days’ showing off the extent of the band’s ambitions, as well as just how far they have come in such a short space of time back together.”

17. SOL INVICTUS
‘The Cruellest Month’
PROPHECY

What we said: “‘The Cruellest Month’ manages to stand with one foot in tradition and the conventions it honours, and another in something wholly contemporary, contemptuous to nostalgia or any form of stagnation. An impressive feat”

16. KMFDM
‘WTF?!’
KMFDM

What we said: “KMFDM seem angrier, more focused and pissed off than ever, and this is a real punch in the face to all those disco bunnies who think “industrial” means a few distorted beats. This is the real deal; hard, precise and a call-to-arms, as well as to the dance floor.”

15. GOD MODULE
‘Séance’
METROPOLIS

What we said: “From the start it’s clear that ‘Séance’ heralds a reinvigorated God Module and while the subject matter may have returned to darker obsessions, there is still a sly element of fun throughout.”

14. COLD CAVE
‘Cherish the Light Years’
MATADOR

What we said: “What makes ‘Cherish The Light Years’ so damned refreshing is how they have embraced the more garish side of gothic rock and darkwave from a quarter century ago.”

13. ORDO ROSARIUS EQUILIBRIO
‘Songs 4 Hate & Devotion’
OUT OF LINE

What we said: “A stunning collection of 13 powerful new songs that run shivers up the spine. Minimalist, intense and hard-to-categorise, this rich-yet-fragile recording is an absolute delight to the ears.”

12. YOU SHRIEK
‘Somewhere Between (Heaven and Sorrow)’
SUICIDE NOTE

What we said: “What a fabulous collection of songs this is; from the retro ‘Lilith In Libra’ to ‘Goodbye Berlin’, this recording oozes quality and shine. ‘Somewhere Between…’ is an album of musical jewels.”

11. S.C.U.M.
‘Again Into Eyes’
MUTE

What we said: “What ties this album together so well is the atmosphere the producers and the band create, hazy drones lending the entire record a bucolic quality, which, juxtaposed with the murkier tones, make for an enthralling contrast. Stunning.”

10. AUSTRA
‘Feel it Break’
DOMINO

What we said: “Veering from the shimmering, demure pop of ‘Lose It’ to the stunning gothic overtones of the throbbing ‘Beat And The Pulse’, the album has been nominated for Canada’s equivalent of the Mercury, and it won’t be long before international audiences catch on.”

9. PETER MURPHY

‘Ninth’
NETTWERK

What we said: “The hit song quality is still present throughout, and while it may not reach the heights of the heyday of his solo career, this is still a strong offering.”

8. VIC ANSELMO
‘In My Fragile’
DANSE MACABRE

What we said: “This has a manic a persona[$itals ap] narrative that will delight fans of the crazier moments of Tori Amos or KatieJane Garside.”

7. THE HORRORS
‘Skying’
XL

What we said: “‘Skying’ serves up an inspired mélange of shoegaze and the Krautrock sounds of Neu! and Can, highlighted by the stunning motorik epic ‘Moving Further Away’.”

6. WITHIN TEMPTATION
‘The Unforgiving’
ROADRUNNER

What we said: “Within Temptation are all about drama, high impact and emotive sound, and this album delivers in all respects.”

5. AESTHETIC PERFECTION
‘All Beauty Destroyed’
OUT OF LINE

What we said: “The overall sound of the album is accessible and DJ friendly, but far more sinister in atmosphere with Dan’s ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ multiple vocal delivery style crashing headlong into the hard dance beats.”

4. DEVILISH PRESLEY
‘The Dark Triad’
NOVEMBER TENTH

What we said: “This album nibbles the ears with the harmonic passion of rough sex, yet contrasts with the gentle sadness of inner torment. Devilish Presley have created a monster that rocks.”

3. ANNE-MARIE HURST
‘Day Of All Days’
JUNGLE

What we said: “With its soft acoustics set to an atmospheric soundscape of haunting backing vocals that veil Anne-Marie’s beautiful harmonies, this is an album worthy of a place in any collection.”

2. MISERYLAB
‘Void Of Life’
CARBON NEUTRAL DIGITAL

What we said: “Miserylab may not be a household name in the UK gothic scene, but with albums like this prove they can cut it with the best of them.”

1. ESBEN AND THE WITCH
‘Violet Cries’
MATADOR

What we said: “With the shock of a knee-high mist materialising into corporeal form, swirls of noise solidify then explode into your ears, riding atop glorious guitar and rhythm lines. Thus, the opening track clutches you to the bosom of Brighton’s enigmatic Esben And The Witch; you are going to a dark, scary place.”

Miranda Yardley

About Miranda Yardley

I'm Miranda. Bite me.

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