Best of 2012: Albums & EP's

>> Saturday, December 29, 2012

I know its been a long time. And you have my apologies. I will explain what is going on with the blog in an upcoming post in the next week or so. But, as promised, here are my favorite records of 2012. I'm not able to go into as much depth as in years past, so, this is it. No best songs/album covers/cover songs/or worst records this year, again, I'm sorry.

Now, onto the goodstuff. This year was a tough year for me musically. Nothing, outside of maybe 3-5 albums really stuck with me, so putting together this list was a real challenge, probably the hardest year-end list in my 5 years to date. But, I think, I did it. Keep in mind that the top five records are all timers. Records that will never leave my rotation. I hope you enjoy.

1. The Lumineers – The Lumineers 

This is hands down, my favorite record of the year. Solid from beginning to end without a skipper.

2. Zach Fleury – Be Still, Neverland, Egypt (also my favorite album cover of 2012)
This is the closest that any record came from upsetting The Lumineers from the top spot. And if this record had another month of spins, it just might have done it.

3. Ambassadors - Litost 
The out of nowhere record of the year. I love just about every track. In another year, without Zach and The Lumineers, this would easily claim the top spot.

4. Ingrid Michaelson – Human Again 
I didn't want to like this record. I have never considered myself an Ingrid fan. I always considered her a cutsie pop folk one hit wonder. But damn, I was wrong. There is so much depth in this album, so much heart and break. It was my surprise record of the year, maybe decade.

5. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis – The Heist 
When I started writing this list a month ago, this was number 11. This is the first record of this year that has gotten better the more I have listened to it. I do not know if that is more about the lack of quality of this year over all, or the immense talents of Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. I vote for the latter.

6. fun. – Some Nights
 Yeah yeah yeah. This album is overplayed and whatnot, but damn, it is good. If you know me, you might be shocked about their inclusion on this countdown. Yes, it’s true that I generally rebel when my favorite indie artist make it huge, but, I cannot help but love this album and forgive all of you for finally catching on.

7. FM Radio – Out Of The Blue 
Oh, now this is just my speed. I have been a fan of Schuyler Fisk since her debut album “The Good Stuff” came out in 2009. But this duet project with Tim Myers outpaces her previous efforts by tenfold. And considering how good her two solo releases were, that says a hell of a lot.

8. Good Old War – Come Back As Rain 
Those who know me, and read this blog, know how I feel about familial harmonies. If you don’t know, you should figure out that I love them. No amount of practice can replace how naturally voices of a shared gene pool layer together. This record soars.

9. Delta Rae – Carry The Fire 
Damn. I didn’t want to like this band. They were kinda thrust upon me on youtube. “If you like blah blah blah, you’ll like Delta Rae…” under every video. But, I gave in, and damn, this record, although occasionally a bit too country/poprockish, is so solidly written and sung, it cannot be ignored. Also, their song "If I Loved You" kills me every time, in the best possible way. (fuck this medley blows me away every time)

10. Tim Myers – Technicolor 
A ruckus riot of a record. Played loud and often.

11. Lemolo – The Kaleidoscope 
An overly mellow, and stunningly beautiful record. Although, I feel the ladies soar their best when the pace quickens, as in the latter half of “We Felt The Fall” that does not mean their record is not a win. It is a solid, long awaited debut for this local duo.

12. First Aid Kit - The Lion's Roar
Some records stick to your ribs and force you to fall in love with them. I was resistant to this record from day one. I was so head over for the first record that I braced myself for disappointment on the second, and nearly talked myself into it. But, this heart of this record won out.

13. Gentleman Jesse – Leaving Atlanta 
This record is the truest rock record I have heard in years. Feels like a honest, heart of 80’s garage punk rock around. So natural and right sounding.

Top 3 EP's of 2012

1. The Native Sibling - Water Too Deed, Words Too Shallow
Far and away the best EP of the year, if the was a full length, it would be top 5 for sure. I urge you to listen and keep track of this duo as the grow in the future. Big things.

2. Kris Orlowski & Andrew Joslyn - Pieces We Are
Kris has been around for sometime now. I have heard him, seen him in concert, and frankly been unimpressed. Now, that sounds harsh, but until this record, he didn't give me reason to take notice. This is a huge step forward for this cat, and hopefully more will come.

3. K’naan - More Beautiful Than Silence
At first I was sad that this was not a full length, as I was so supremely impressed with this two previous releases, and although this was good, it was not on the same level as the others. I hope he is saving the great songs for his next full record.


Chris December 31, 2012 at 12:36 PM  

Loved the Zach Fleury song, going to listen to the rest of the album on spotify this week. Thanks!

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