Top 20 Albums of 2011: 10-6

10. John Maus – We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves

Because John Maus found a way to resurrect Ian Curtis with synth-pop sensibilities and a deeply philosophical outlook.

9. Real Estate – Days

Because this is how autumn sounds and feels for a 20-something.

8. tUnE-yArDs – w h o k i l l

Because Merrill Garbus takes the delightfully strange elements of Talking Heads, Dirty Projectors and Vampire Weekend and makes them her very own.

7. James Blake – James Blake

Because he was everywhere in 2011 and as winter 2012 approaches, this somber masterpiece still sounds like the perfect remedy to the cold.

6. Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues

Because Robin Pecknold and his band ask profound questions in the most gorgeous way.

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