M&T Best Songs of 2017

We've compiled a playlist of the 75 best songs from the year that was and highlighted our top 10 below. Make sure to subscribe Read More

M&T Best Albums of 2017

The moment you've all been waiting for...our favorite albums of 2017. We've compiled a list of the 40 best albums of the year and highlighted a Read More

January 2018 Spotify Playlist of the Month

Welcome to 2018. Hopefully we never hear the words 'bomb cyclone' ever again after this far-from-temperate January day here in NYC. To keep you Read More

Best of 2011

M&T Best Albums of 2011: #14

Posted on by Eric in Best of 2011 | Leave a comment

#14. Cults- Cults

The New York duo of Brian Oblivion and Madeline Follin aka Cults burst onto the music scene with their 2011 self-titled debut after previously releasing some of those tracks as a 7″ EP. The pair formed Cults while at school in 2010 and needless to say it has been a match made in indie-pop heaven since then. After listening to Cults you will be hard-pressed to find another album from 2011 that matches its pop sensibilities and catchy melodies track for track.

With most of the tracks coming in around 3 minutes, Cults is far from the underdeveloped album that one would expect with such a short runtime. The record kicks off with “Abducted”, begging its listeners to ask- “Who knew a story of heartbreak could be so upbeat and danceable?” “Most Wanted” paints another lively picture of heartbreak while tracks like “Go Outside” and “Never Heal Myself” make for the perfect summer soundtrack.

Featured Tracks: “Oh My God”, “Abducted”, “Go Outisde”

M&T Best Albums of 2011: #15

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#15. Dawes: Nothing Is Wrong

Such an appropriate album title for Dawes’ follow up to North Hills, Nothing Is Wrong,  exactly how I felt after listening to this album over and over again.  The boys from California did it again, bringing back that vintage sound that is so refreshing and comforting.  Taylor Goldsmith continues to grow as a lead man and guitarist.  He really gets to show off his range on this album, featuring soothing vocals on “So Well” to shredding solos on “Fire Away.” Brother and drummer, Griffin, also got a chance to show his range, belting out the vocals on the upbeat track: “How Far We’ve Come.”

People that follow our blog know that Dawes is one of our favorites.  We’ve seen then more them on many occasions, almost too many to count. They are a tremendous live act, and if you haven’t seen them yet you need to step up your game. The reason I bring this up is because there were a couple of tracks on this album that I liked, but after I saw them live, I was absolutely blown away.  “If I Wanted Someone” gives the crowd a chance to sing-a-long as well as rock out to the dirty guitar play and the funky keys. “A Little Bit of Everything” is a truly heartfelt track where Taylor’s passionate vocals are simply stunning.  So the next time you see that Dawes is playing in your area (they tour a lot) you better go, because these guys just keep getting better and better.

Featured Tracks: “Time Spent in Los Angeles”, “Fire Away”, “If I Wanted Someone”





M&T Best Tracks of 2011: #15

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#15. Rubblebucket- “Came Out of a Lady”

Although the band had previously released this song in 2010, Rubblebucket’s romping dance jam “Came Out of a Lady” was also included on their 2011 LP Omega La La. So we cheated on this one a little bit, but it’s simply too good to not be included in our Best Tracks of 2011. Between frontwoman Kalmia Traver’s extensive vocal range, band leader Alex Toth’s blaring horn arrangement and the catchy as hell whistling, this track could not be denied from our countdown.

In my opinion Rubblebucket is one of the best live bands around and catching this one performed live is a sight to see. Stage dives and crowd surfing are the norm and you may even get a parade of horns through the crowd if you’re lucky. Stay tuned for the #15 album of the year and make sure to check back everyday until New Year’s Eve as our countdown rolls on.

M&T Best Tracks of 2011: #16

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#16. Death Cab for Cutie: “You are a Tourist”

When I think of how to describe Death Cab for Cutie’s sound, the first word that comes to mind is melancholy. The majority of their music has a gloomy, entrancing feel. Not this track, not “You are a Tourist,” it’s an uplifting, upbeat, pop hit (I never thought I would say that about a DCFC song). The mesmerizing riff was unavoidable this summer.  Every time I turned on the radio I felt like I heard it, not to mention every time I hung out with Neil this summer he was humming it. I didn’t hate. It’s a great tune. It also speaks measures of how Death Cab has grown as a band and can play a variety of music.

M&T Best Albums of 2011: #16

Posted on by Eric in Best of 2011 | Leave a comment

#16. Vetiver- The Errant Charm

The first time that I saw Vetiver play was an opening set sandwiched between Peter Wolf Crier and Dawes at Royale. I remember thinking of frontman Andy Cabic at the time, “Who is this guy trying way too hard to be like Bob Dylan?” Back then I had only heard selected tracks from 2009’s Tight Knit and thought the band’s live show to be a bit underwhelming… It pains me to write this first paragraph, but it’s true.

Fast forward to September of this year and Vetiver is opening for Eric D. Johnson and the Fruit Bats at Middle East Downstairs. The experience that night was quite the opposite. I had previously been guilty of passing quick judgement, a faux pas in the music industry to say the least, and now I was the one with the pie in my face, but oh did it taste good.

That night Vetiver ambled their way through a set that was heavy on their latest disc, The Errant Charm, a record which I liken to a modern day Fifth Dimension. Tracks like “Right Away” and “Can’t You Tell” already seemed so familiar, like I had heard them a million times before. After listening to The Errant Charm many a time since that fateful night, Cabic’s cool demeanor and smooth melodies never cease to impress on tracks like “Fog Emotion” and the entrancing opener “It’s Beyond Me.”

Even more than a look at one of this year’s best albums, this is an apology from a poor little blogger in Boston. Vetiver I hope you can forgive me for ever thinking you weren’t capable of anything short of one of the most beautifully crafted folk rock records in recent memory.

Featured Tracks: “It’s Beyond Me”, “Right Away”, “Can’t You Tell”

M&T Best Albums of 2011: #17

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#17. Akron/Family-Akron/Family- S/T II: The Cosmic Birth and Journey of Shinju TNT

Akron/Family’s fifth full length disc has far too long of a title to repeat consistently throughout this otherwise short post, so let’s just call it S/T II. An album full of twists and turns, S/T II truly is a Journey. “Silly Bears” kicks things off with a fun-loving high-energy jam that, upon first listen, gives the impression that A/F is off to the races and isn’t about to look back. Then, all of the sudden they slam on the brakes with “Island”, a beautifully growing track that leaves the listener wondering what’s actually in store for the rest of S/T II. I suggest you find out for yourself, but I will say the representation of emotions captured by A/F will closely resemble a roller coaster.

Featured Tracks: “Islands”, “Silly Bears”

M&T Best Tracks of 2011: #17

Posted on by Neil in Best of 2011 | Leave a comment

#17. Braids- “Glass Deers”

Braids’ Native Speaker was the perfect companion for any extended drive I went for over the course of this year. The album has a certain mystique to it; from swimming guitars that throw my thoughts to a far away deserted island to the ethreal vocals of Raphaelle Standell-Preston, whose reverb drenched lyrics float delicately above each melody. “Glass Deers” has to be the ever-so-slight standout from this disc, not only because it showcases the best of what Braids has to offer, but also for those animalistic guttural screams Standell-Preston unleashes in the latter half.

M&T Best Track of 2011: #18

Posted on by Caroline in Best of 2011 | 1 Comment

#18. St. Vincent- “Surgeon”

A lot of critical and blogosphere buzz has surrounded St. Vincent and her album, Strange Mercy, over the past few months. But the buzz all began with the first fuzzy hums of Strange Mercy‘s lead single, “Surgeon.” Annie Clark seduces her way through the first few minutes of the song, clipping along at a leisurely pace. But before Clark gets bored “spending the summer on her back,” the tempo picks up, and layers of weirdness begin to accumulate. While Asian strings, trilling woodwinds and an extraterrestrial guitar solo should have toppled the song, it ends up succeeding, and is Clark’s most adventurous piece to date. Thanks to St. Vincent’s wild imagination, “Surgeon” is one of the only songs of the year to pack an epic, intricate musical journey into just four short minutes.

M&T Best Albums of 2011: #18

Posted on by Eric in Best of 2011 | Leave a comment

#18. Tan Vampires- For Physical Fitness

The New Hampshire based band, Tan Vampires, churned out one of the best records of the year and they were also one of the biggest surprises in my mind. Without their appearance at this year’s Nor’easter Festival it very well could have taken me a few more months to discover this wonderful band.

On For Physical Fitness lead singer and chief songwriter, Jake Merhmann, crafts songs that hit a wide spectrum of themes both sonically and lyrically. There are the slow, deliberate tracks that focus on paranoia and lost innocence (see “Secret Carnivore” and “I Can Hear Them In The Dark”) and then there are the up-tempo and lyrically liberating tunes (see album opener “Digital Rot” and “Sweep Up The Pieces”), and a little something for everyone in between.

This is an album that comes highly recommended by the whole Maimed & Tamed crew and we have already gotten plenty of our friends and colleagues hooked on it, so do yourself a favor and check out the full album on the band’s website and buy yourself a copy.

Featured Tracks: “Customer Satisfaction Survey”, “Digital Rot”, “I Can Hear Them In The Dark”

M&T Best Albums of 2011: #19

Posted on by Caroline in Best of 2011 | Leave a comment

#19. TuNe-YaRdS- w ho k i l l

TuNe-YaRdS’ w ho k i l l is a whirlwind of an album. It rushes by, changing pace and direction, always teetering on the edge of crashing completely. Merrill Garbus’s androgynous voice is integral to the band’s signature sound. It is capable of creating everything from police sirens to yodels. It’s the most interesting instrument I’ve heard in a long time. Garbus uses her tool to enhance the mood of every song and theme she takes on.  “Powa” is a subtle, feminine slow jam. Yet on tracks like “Gangsta” and “Riotriot,” this white girl from New England serves up unforgiving indictments of racial inequity and police brutality. Merrill Garbus isn’t satisfied, and she’s going to howl and screech about it until we listen.

Conceptually, w h o k i l l hits the nail on the head. It’s a perfect package of songs that represent the bubbling frustrations of our nation. But even if her songs weren’t so lyrically on-point, you have to give it up for TuNe-YaRdS for their musicality alone. Watching Garbus recreate this album live is jawdropping. Through the help of a backing band and loops, she is able to perform the dense songs of w h o k i l l to a T. I’ve watched countless live performances (it’s one of my many procrastination mechanisms), and no matter what crazy vocal stunts Garbus pulls, she hits the notes every time. I don’t know what TuNe-YaRdS’ next album will turn out like. At the rate they’re going, it could be pretty damn weird. But I do know that I’m going to hang on for the ride.

Featured Tracks: “Powa”, “Bizness”