The Ledge #502: Best Records of 2021 NYE Countdown


So your favorite online radio DJ decided to spend a bitterly cold New Year's Eve playing over six hours of the best music of 2021. But what else would I have done? New Year's Eve is amateur night, and I haven't ventured out of my house for the big night in years.

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


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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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