Feb 6 2012

Cougar Microbes Writer Picks 2011: Cole’s Top 10


1. St. Vincent – Strange Mercy

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

2. Adele – 21

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

3. Cliff Martinez with various artists – Drive (Original Movie Soundtrack)

Drive the film was bad-ass. Ask all my friends, I was obsessed with it. The soundtrack is very much a reason for the films incredible machismo. The 80s derived pulses are all encompassing. Walking down the street with this soundtrack in your headphones makes you instantly feel indestructible (warning: this can be dangerous is Los Angeles).

4. Bon Iver – Bon Iver

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

5. Grouplove – Never Trust a Happy Song

When I first met Hannah Hooper of Grouplove she was describing to me how she envisioned Grouplove’s tshirts (which the company I was working for was creating). We talked about color and I complimented the artwork she brought into the screenprinting shop. Before she and Grouplove’s manager left our office they set down a copy of their EP, which included versions of “Naked Kids” and “Colours“. The EP was brash. I waited close to a year to hear ‘Never Trust a Happy Song‘ and wasn’t disappointed. The album features the energy bands like Arcade Fire seem to have lost (or perhaps matured out of).

6. Black Keys – El Camino

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

7. Destroyer – Kaputt

Kaputt was gorgeous. It is a modern headphone album reminiscent of Animal Collective’s ‘Merriweather Post Pavilion‘. Tracks like “Downtown” pair 80s saxophones with distinct harmonies. The music is entrancing and layered deep enough to find new surprises with each play.

8. Tyler, The Creator – Goblin

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

9. Lil’ Wayne – Tha Carter IV

Tha Carter IV‘ for me is a classic hip-hop disc. Lil’ Wayne was by far 2011s boldest rap star. While Kanye and Jay-Z were busy declaring there dominance with world tours and a sub-par album, Lil’ Wayne was reminding us “How to Hate a Bitch”. The album is offensive, honest and on “How to LoveWeezy shocks us with a track that is so sensitive it is hard to believe it is coming from a Young Money Millionaire.

10. Drake – Take Care

Drake’s second full length album was nothing if not grandiose. A-list cameos and production alongside Drake’s smooth (and occasionally morose) rhymes made for 2011’s most accessible disc.


St. Vincent – Cruel

Adele – Rolling In The Deep

Nightcall (feat. Lovefoxxx) by Kavinsky

Calgary by boniver

Grouplove – Tongue Tied (Gigamesh Remix)

The Black Keys – Lonely Boy

Destroyer – Song For America

Tyler The Creator – She (feat. Frank Ocean)

Lil Wayne Featuring Cory Gunz – 6 Foot 7

Drake – Headlines

Feb 1 2012

Cougar Microbes Writer Picks 2011: Emily’s Top 10

1) Gotye – Making Mirrors

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

2. Adele – 21

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

3. The Decemberists – The King is Dead

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here

4. Rufus Wainwright – House of Rufus

A massive 19-disc box set of all the magic of Rufus—live performances, albums, singles and b-sides. Even though I could never afford this, it makes the list for best releases. And my Christmas wish list.

5. Bon Iver – Bon Iver

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here.

6. Paul Simon – So Beautiful or So What

I have always surrendered to anything written by Paul Simon, but this album has charm and wit in spades. He even managed to hold back on that penchant for African drumming.

7. Florence and the Machine – Ceremonials

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here.

8. City & Colour – Little Hell

Although I’m the first to admit this album doesn’t top City & Colour’s previous efforts, it says a lot that it still crushes most other releases of the year.

9. Cake – Showroom of Compassion

Made the Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011 list here.

10. J Mascis – Several Shades of Why

I’m not usually brave enough to name a favourite album, but this year it was easy. Mascis brings the power of Dinosaur Jr, the simplicity of bare and honest lyrics, and then his godlike guitar virtuosity, to bear in this true 2011 masterpiece.


Eyes Wide Open by Gotye

Adele – Rolling In The Deep

The Decemberists – This Is Why We Fight

Calgary by boniver

The Afterlife by Paul Simon

Florence & The Machine – What the Water Gave Me (DhARMA Edit)

City and Colour – We Found Each Other In The Dark

J Mascis – Not Enough

Dec 26 2011

Cougar Microbes Top Albums of 2011: Adele – 21

Following her impressive debut ‘19‘ expectations were mighty high for Adele‘s comeback. Few could have imagined that the similarly numerically titled ‘21‘, propelled by the incredible single ‘Rolling In The Deep‘, would bring the young singer/songwriter to such dizzying heights.

Still, it would be wrong to attribute the Londoner‘s success solely to this lead single as there are plenty of fantastic moments on display ad demonstrated by the countless Adele tributes that exist on Soundcloud and Youtube.

Cougar writer Emily said “This is the album I’m not ashamed to admit I borrowed from my mum. Although Adele i always in danger of being overplayed, I still am not quite sick of her; for me it is her song writing that stands her apart from all the other ladies with pipes“.

Our boy Cole added ” I love Adele. I love her because she is more engaging with her voice and a piano than Rihanna and Lady Gaga are with million dollar stage productions. Her voice is heartbreaking and ‘21‘ has some of the most sincere young love tracks ever recorded. “Someone Like You”, “Rolling in the Deep”, and “Turning Tables” are all good enough to single-handedly carry a hit record. Whatever heartache (or genius songwriting partners) led to these beautiful songs was well worth it. I will still be listening to this album in 20 years.


Adele – Turning Tables

21 - ADELE