Courtesy of the artist.
Thee Oh Sees. Courtesy of the artist.
Garage rock has undergone a serious rejuvenation in recent memory. Over the last few years, bands like The Black Keys and Best Coast have surfaced in the mainstream, and as a result, garage-rock artists that might have gone unnoticed less than a decade ago are now landing major attention (see: Thee Oh Sees and Black Lips). A little more than a year ago, Robin Hilton wrote that we might consider the 2010s to be "the decade of garage rock." If that's the case, then 2011 was a strong entry for year No. 2.
The rate of output from most garage-rock artists makes narrowing down the best of any year a daunting task, but this year it seems especially tough. We saw releases from nearly every major act in the genre, along with strong debuts and follow-ups from many smaller names. It's an exciting time to be a garage-rock fan — and an excellent time to convert, if you're not already on board.
So without further ado, here's a totally subjective list of five tremendous garage-rock songs from 2011.