The B’s Knees – Best of 2011

They Might Be GiantsProtagonist” from Join Us

We love it for the Firesign-ish backing vocals on top of why we have loved everything we’ve ever loved from They Might Be Giants. And that’s a lot.

The BarreracudasDon’t Roll Your Eyes” from Nocturnal Missions

Clearly something I must have bought while researching a theme show, there’s something glammy about this tune that stuck in my head. That and their name makes me think of the Barracudas

David Wax Museum” from Everything Is Saved

It’s a joyous tune for having a broken heart. Sometimes that is all I need.

Black GumSingle Life” from Black Gum

Surfy, fuzzy, harmony, released on cassette. I love this song.

Max CapoteSi Nena” from Ana 7″

I had to make sure this tune was really from 2011. The organ really did it for me, but this little dancer has it going on all the way around.

The Tandoori KnightsI Hear Someone Cry” b/w “Bhaji Blues” and “Wild Wild East”

If it’s on Norton, it’s got to be good. King Khan and Bloodshot Bill return with this eastern delicacy that is hot on the “how silly would you like it” scale. Thank goodness.

Ry CooderNo Banker Left Behind” from Pull Up Some Dust and Sit Down

Ry channels Uncle Dave Macon after reading a Robert Scheer column.

MegafaunThese Words” from Megafaun

This song keeps me in touch with my leanings toward off-kilter tunes. At least that’s what my junior high music teacher told me I liked. I do believe she was correct.

Wild FlagRomance” from Wild Flag

From another band in the I-don’t-know-anything-about-them camp, I bought this track when I stumbled upon a sample of it working on a show this year. It hooked me in so many ways that I just had to grab it. Then I find that it’s a all-female quartet that includes the forever-popping-up Carrie Brownstein of Portlandia fame. That certainly sealed the silly cred for us.

The CatbirdsGonna Keep Drivin’

Another song released the day of the B’s Knees, how could I not include this lovely ode to sobriety checkpoints? Learn those lyrics, you never know when you’ll need them.

Fruit BatsSo Long” from Tripper

I admit that I only listened to this song in the first place while doing show research because of the band’s name. But I was greeted with this airy, Lennony slice of goodness.

tUnE-yArDsBizness” from w h o k i l l

I was driving in Kentucky with January Fairy in the car when this popped up in my shuffle. We looked at each other knowing it had to be on this list.

Endangered SpeechesRecord Companies

I’ll save the retelling of the story about this one since it’s in the show, but suffice to say that the Think Tank posse in attendance at their show was uniformly impressed by this tune lyrically and musically. It even made an appearance in our 2011 Record Store Day special.

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