The Ledge #502: Best Records of 2021 NYE Countdown

Bring a thimble and I’ll pour my thoughts out – Paul Westerberg, “How Can You Like Him?”

With the big night lining up with a Ledge weekly broadcast, the decision to do a “Casey Kasem” was easy. So this show is a true marathon. First off, there’s a countdown of the 20 best reissues, box sets, compilations, and tribute albums of the year. Then there’s a countdown of the 40 best albums of 2021, and we hit the stroke of midnight in the eastern and central time zones with tracks from some of the great singles and EP’s of the year, along with tunes from a number of great albums that barely missed the cut of making the big countdown.
Honestly, while the world is melting down we are somehow seeing a cultural renaissance. How else could I put together a six hour playlist of nothing but music from the past year? It’s simply incredible how much wonderful music is coming out on a weekly basis from all over the world. This is why I do The Ledge, and why there’s an episode every month that consists of nothing but new releases. 
I sincerely hope everyone enjoyed their holiday season, and that 2022 turns out to be a magical year for you all!
I would love it if every listener bought at least one record I played on either of these shows. These great artists deserve to be compensated for their hard work, and every purchase surely helps not only pay their bills but fund their next set of wonderful songs. And if you buy these records directly from the artist or label, please let them know you heard these tunes on The Ledge! Let them know who is giving them promotion! You can find this show at almost any podcast site, including iTunes and Stitcher…or


Here’s the tracklist of the entire show, beginning with a countdown of tunes from the 20 best reissues, box sets, and tribute records of 2021:
20. The Beatles, Don’t Let Me Down (First Rooftop Performance)
19. The Rolling Stones, Fiji Jim
18. The Jacks, (You’re) so Wrong
17. The Dogmatics, Sister Serena
16. Green Day, 2000 Light Years Away
15. Sex Pistols, Anarchy In The UK
14. Neil Young, Helpless
13. PJ Harvey, The Life And Death Of Mr. Badmouth (Demo)
12. Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Walls (No. 3)
11. Swell Maps, One of the Crowd
10. Elvis Costello & The Attractions, Pump It Up (feat. Juanes)
9. Bob Dylan, Blind Willie McTell (Take 5 – Infidels Outtake)
8. The Pretty Things, L.S.D. (Saturday Club Presented by Brian Matthew, May 1966)
7. The Pretenders, The Wait (BBC Live Session)
6. Kurt Vile, Run Run Run
5. Richard Hell & The Voidoids, The Kid with the Replaceable Head 
4. Gang of Four, Damaged Goods
3. John Lennon, God (Take 42 / Raw Studio Mix)
2. The Replacements, Raised in the City (Studio Demo)
1. George Harrison, All Things Must Pass – Day 1 Demo
And now tracks from my countdown of the best albums of 2021:
40. Indonesian Junk, One More Try
39. Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Human Race
38. Beebe Gallini, Little Sister
37. Colleen Green, Highway
36. The Hold Steady, Spices
35. Dry Cleaning, Unsmart Lady
34. Lord Huron, Mine Forever
33. Dinosaur Jr., I Met The Stones
32. Juliana Hatfield, Gorgon
31. Nick Cave & Warren Ellis, Old Time
30. Mountain Movers, I Wanna See The Sun
29. Guided By Voices, High in the Rain
28. The William Loveday Intention, They Wanted the Devil But I Sang of God
27. Michael Beach, Curtain Of Night
26. Acid Dad, She Only Eats Organic
25. Gentleman Jesse, Become Nothing
24. Split Single, 95 Percent
23. Blunt Bangs, She’s Gone
22. Ty Segall, Pictures
21. Shannon & the Clams, Year Of The Spider
20. The Courettes, I Can Hardly Wait
19. The Umbrellas, Lonely
18. Geoff Palmer, What Would Paul Westerberg Do?
17. Brad Marino, Local Show
16. Chime School, Fixing Motorcycles
15. Scientists, Moth Eaten Velvet
14. CTMF, Where the Wild Purple Iris Grows
13. Courtney Barnett, Take It Day By Day
12. IDLES, The Beachland Ballroom
11. The Blips, Throw Me Around
10. Parquet Courts, Walking At A Downtown Pace
9. Viagra Boys, Ain’t Nice
8. Aaron Lee Tasjan, Sunday Women
7. Night Beats, Stuck In The Morning
6. John Murry, The Stars Are God’s Bullet Holes
5. Amyl and The Sniffers, No More Tears
4. Jeremy Porter and The Tucos, Dead Ringer
3. The Exbats, Ghost In The Record Store
2. Kiwi jr., Undecided Voters
1. The Shadracks, Don’t Let Go
And, finally, another two hours of great 2021 singles, EP’s and albums that barely missed the countdown:
1. Watts, Queens
2. Dany Laj And The Looks, You And Me
3. French Girls, Independent Woman
4. The Shang Hi Los, Skipping Records
5. Lydia Loveless, Let’s Make Out
6. Liz Phair, Bad Kitty
7. The Ex-Bombers, Beat Heart Beat
8. Pearl Harbour, Trouble
9. Hayley and the Crushers, Jacaranda
10. Tommy And The Rockets, Listen to the Heartbeat
11. Psychotic Youth, Talk to Loretta
12. The Queers, Valleri
13. K7’s, Censorshit
14. Lars Frederiksen, Tomorrows Girls
15. Independent Country, Left Of The Dial
16. Civic, As Seen On TV
17. Berlin Blackouts, Make Punk Rock Great Again
18. Chubby and the Gang, I Hate The Radio
19. Killer Hearts, Do Your Thing
20. Liquids, Dont Wanna Get to Know You
21. Local Drags, Give A Shit Anyway
22. Vista Blue, Stealing Signs
23. Tommy Ray, Beer Wine & Whiskey
24. The Routes, Broken Goods
25. The Peacers, Ghost of a Motherfucker
26. Low Rats, Taxi Driver/Brand New Cadillac
27. New Rocket Union, Out of Mind
28. Friends Of Cesar Romero, The Lonely Popular Girl
29. Teenage Bottlerocket, You’re Never Going out of Style
30. RMBLR, Machine Gun!!
31. Hard-Ons, Fucked up Party
32. Apollo 66, Fly Trap
33. Dan Israel, Pandemic Blues
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