I missed the mark on favourite albums for 2012 before the year ended but it's not too late to do a little revisiting, is it?
The prerequisites for this list were a) that I could listen to the entire album and love it all. Every.single.song. More points for seamless transitions.
That's it. And, granted, I probably have a few more to listen to but those are the listed at the bottom.
It's rare to find an album that you can listen to all the way through and be able to go back again to it nearly a year later (i.e. this past weekend) and fall in love with it all over again. These made the top 3 of 2012. Comment below if you have ones of your own to share.
In particular order, top 3 albums for 2012. If you have an addition, add it to the comments!
#1. Kishi Bashi, 151a
I first heard about Kishi Bashi via NPR's All Things Considered in February 2012 and immediately fell in love with 'Bright Whites'. I didn't really know anyone could write such good, pop music. I was able to drag a friend of mine to his gig when we had about 3 other commitments that evening and it was one of the best gigs I went to EVER.
Imagine how you feel at the beginning of a new love relationship and that's how I feel about this album. Love (heck, why not life?) should feel like a Kishi Bashi song. Whimsical sounds and musical joy exuding everywhere. I didn't even realize that the album had re-started after the last track but I didn't care. It was like listening to it for the first time all over again.
Kishi Bashi returns to Fitzgerald's on March 8. I highly suggest you get your tickets. And, get the album, of course!
Download the Manchester mp3 for free at kishibashi.com.
2. Lower Dens, Nootropics
Somehow I came upon the video for Brains. Once I got beyond the video and digged more into this band, I was curious of her musical past in Houston and feel badly for not making it to a gig when she was a solo artist in Houston. Needless to say, I'm so happy she continued to pursue music especially with the lineup right now.
They say this is a great album to drive long distances to...or in my case, listen to whilst drinking an entire bottle of wine whilst gazing at the cracks in the 25-foot cement ceiling caused by 100+ years of existence. I was an advocate for this album to many people and it was the first band in maybe 15 years that I really jarred me in a good way. The last time I felt that way was with The Cure.
And, you know what happened with that. (If you don't, I started an international fan club for them and ran it for about 5 years).
Don't worry, I won't be starting a fan club for Lower Dens. I am excited to see them play live again (probably my 2nd favourite gig this year) and see what comes next.
Buy Nootropics here.
3. Exitmusic, Passage
NPR agrees with me on this one.
Little did I know that when I went to see School of Seven Bells that I would end up entranced with the opening band and leave during the middle of the set for the headliner. Sorry, it was a school night.
This emotional set had reverberating vocals of Aleksa Palladino combined with a perfectly intense percussion set. You could feel those drums and the rawness of her voice all at the same time creating a lush, haunting cacophony.
I always say to not miss the opening bands. They truly are like a box of chocolates but so far, each one has been devoid of those gross orange flavours nestled between cheap milk chocolate. They've been creamy truffles.
Honorable Mentions: Tennis, Beach House, Grizzly Bear.
Check 'em out if you haven't yet.
These are some I still need to sit down and listen to all the way through but definitely have a wealth of good ditties: Alabama Shakes, Alt-J, Cat Power, Dirty Projectors, Sharon Van Etten, Tame Impala, Ty Segall.