2011: albums of the year

Nobuo Uematsu – Final Fantasy VI Definitive Soundtrack
I am profoundly grateful to Dave King for ripping this direct from his SNES. Out of many profound childhood video game experiences, Final Fantasy IV and VI are the most personal: everything I need to know about life I learned from Terra, Locke, and Mog.

Rustie – Glass Swords
Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat. This album is what, baroque video game dubstep? It’s so rare for a record to be so totally over the top and to stand up so well to repeated listening. And it samples Ocarina of Time. What’s not to love?

Zomby – Dedication
Obviously, we’re well into nostalgia territory here: this album is, like Burial’s work, looking back to a scene that doesn’t exist anymore. Burial touched on rave and hardcore: Zomby’s album is, in its own way, pure trance.

Honorable mentions to: Bibio – Mind Bokeh, Roman Flugel – Fatty Folders, Machinedrum – Room(s), Africa HiTech – 93 Million Miles, and Amon Tobin – ISAM.