Filed Under:Critical Mass

Bon Iver, Bon Iver Tops the 2011 Lists

Perhaps the Sioux City Weekender said it best? “When we all die and go to heaven, Bon Iver will be playing over the loud speakers directly from God’s iPod. Justin Vernon’s sophomore disc could not be improved upon.”

Below are list of websites who made good choices in 2011 – they put Bon Iver, Bon Iver (the four-time Grammy-nominated artist) at the top of their critical lists.


“Bon Iver is masterfully assembled– an ambitious, occasionally devastating exercise in arranged sound.”
Pitchfork #1

“Justin Vernon followed up one of the most heartbreaking albums of the young millennium,
For Emma, Forever Ago, with something entirely different and original.”
Paste #1


“[An] outstanding follow-up”
Exclaim #1


NPR Listener Poll #1


“A slow-and-steady road trip through the heartland, punctuated by bold saxophone,
woozy synths and stunning string crescendos. Vernon’s falsetto is undoubtedly
his greatest gift, but the tale weaved by the non-lyrical parts of “Bon Iver” alone
make it one of the year’s best.”
Billboard #2

Urban Outfitters #2


Bon Iver, Bon Iver is, in many ways, the polar opposite of For Emma.
Where that record found expression in stripped-down, haunting arrangements,
Bon Iver traffics in lush, abundant orchestration, a smorgasbord of instruments
not vying for attention so much as adding individual brushstrokes to a breathtakingly
vivid canvas. Calling it “expansive” feels cheap; this is a record with no horizons in sight.”
PopMatters #2,  Artist of the Year #2


“He didn’t rest on his laurels and create For Emma: Vol. 2.
If anything, he created Bon Iver Mach 2, now with saxophones”
Consequence of Sound #2


“Complementing the isolated Americana landscape of For Emma, Forever Ago
with a warm and orchestral bloom is a colossal achievement.”
Under the Radar #3


“A sweeping work condensed into a tight, 10-song suite, Bon Iver flows from one picturesque
scene to the next, at a purposeful but never hurried pace. With all its downy synthesizers,
red-light saxophones, and ornate string and woodwind accompaniments, the album could
have turned out busy and overworked, yet its arrangements swell and retract so organically
that it never feels cluttered—even at its grandest, the record retains the intimacy of
Bon Iver’s comparatively sparse debut.”
Onion AV Club #3

Multi-Love by Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Neverending Fountain (alt. version) by S. Carey
Bullet Proof.. I Wish I Was by S. Carey
Forgiven/Forgotten by Angel Olsen
May As Well (Bonus Track) by Angel Olsen
Continental Shelf by Viet Cong
Silhouettes by Viet Cong
How Can You Really by Foxygen
Cosmic Vibrations by Foxygen
Forever Dilating Eye by Sinoia Caves
Thousand Eyes by Lia Ices

Multi-Love by Unknown Mortal Orchestra

Neverending Fountain by S. Carey

Silhouettes by Viet Cong

Continental Shelf by Viet Cong

Jackson, WY - Pink Garter Theatre

Jackson, WY - Pink Garter Theatre

Lisboa, PT - ZDB

Viet Cong
Victoria, BC - Upstairs Cabaret

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