Now that we’ve hit December, I’m going to start looking back at 2012 in my posts, touching on some of the great things I stumbled over this year. I’m starting with albums. I chose these because, for each of these ten albums, once I loaded them on my iPod, I never took them off.
1. Alt-J, An Awesome Wave
Alt-J’s album is one of the most consistent, rich albums I’ve heard in a long while. It’s hard to believe this is a debut.
2. Spain, The Soul of Spain
Josh Haden and Spain have put out some of the warmest music you’ll come across. This is a welcome return from a band that doesn’t release new material often enough.
3. Thad Kopec, Heart of Man
This is the most recent release on this list, and makes it on not only because it’s remarkably accomplished, but because Thad put out an album this good entirely on his own. It’s five bucks over at Bandcamp, (unless you feel like pitching in more) and worth every penny.
4. Japandroids, Celebration Rock
This is the most energetic album to come out this year.
5. Chromatics, Kill For Love
This is the soundtrack for late night driving for 2012
6. Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Meat and Bone
If you drew up a Venn diagram to show the relation between the Stooges and the Black Keys, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion is the intersection.
7. Alabama Shakes, Boys and Girls
The Alabama Shakes put on two of the best shows I saw this year, if you haven’t picked their album up yet, it’s time to get in on the ground floor of the most promising new band performing today.
8. Pond, Beard, Wives, Denim.
Tame Impala is getting a lot more attention for their quite good album Lonerism, but I liked this release from Jay and Nick’s other Banda little more.
9. Max Richter, Recomposed by Max Richter: Vivaldi’s Four Seasons
Richter uses his considerable talents to take one of the most recognizable pieces of music in the world and turn it into something fresh, dynamic, and surprising.
10. Bill Fay, Life Is People
I wrote about Bill Fay’s return earlier this year, and months later I’m still amazed by the humanity of this album.
Each one of these is worth your attention. Feel free to let me know in the comments any I may have missed.