Music is a big thing for me. I typically make it a point to buy the music I’m exploring because I have a job and the actual purchase of an album makes me feel more involved with it. So here are the albums and artists that have helped me get through 2012. If you haven’t already, you’ll probably hear most of them in car commercials or movie trailers.
1. The Lumineers – The Lumineers
My Ipod stopped working properly halfway through the year, when it broke it was stuck on the Lumineers album. I didn’t see this as a problem worth fixing for two months.
2. Leonard Cohen – Old Ideas
Certain Cohen songs always manage to get stuck in my head and they play there, like a mantra. Lyrics to give me hope, or to day dream to (You told me again you prefer handsome men, but for me you would make an exception), pronouncements of authority (Sentenced to death by the blues) and words to keep the party going (The whole damn place goes crazy twice and it’s once for the devil and it’s once for Christ). Old Ideas continues to haunt me and to give me new ideas, as my favorite songwriters reach the twilight of their years I’m happy to see them creatively strong in Leonard’s case he’s even talking with God (I’d love to speak with Leonard, he’s a sportsman and a shepherd, he’s a lazy bastard living in a suit.).
3. The Gaslight Anthem – Handwritten
For sheer amount of times played, Handwritten has been played more time than anything else I’ve gotten this year. Brian Fallon’s writing about blood and writing and the promises made there strike a chord with me. The imagery and questions always seem to echo my own feelings.
4. Of Monsters and Men – My Head is an Animal
I personally think this album is incredibly entertaining. I love the ghost stories and strange stories coupled with the wall of sound approach.
5. Bruce Springsteen – Wrecking Ball
Unlike the optimism of Working on a Dream (which kind of sucked) Bruce returned here to being pissed off.
6. Mumford and Sons – Babel
Truthfully, the album starts to taper off for me after Lover’s Eyes, but the first seven songs of this album are so strong that they simply tower above most of what is left (except for a very enjoyable cover of The Boxer).
7. Jordan Allen – No Regrets
I’m not being flattering, and not just trying to do a plug for a friend and local artist, this was legitimately one of my favorite albums that I got this year. No Regrets, Texas Forever – right on.
8. Delta Spirit – Delta Spirit
There’s a lot of discussion about how Itunes is destroying music. I do not agree with that. I discovered this album solely because of Itunes Genius and it has been one of the best listening experiences all year.
9. Brandi Carlile – Bear Creek
I love Brandi Carlile. Give up the Ghost is one of my favorite albums of all time and Bear Creek follows suite.
10. 2 Mello – Superproducer
Again, I’m not just plugging a friend and local artist, I listened to this album quite a bit. While I am at though you can get the album for free here ( http://scrubclubrecords.com/free-music-albums/2-mello-super-producer/ ) and once you listen you’ll know I wasn’t lying. I don’t know much about rap, but Cool Music starts with a sample of Abed from Community, and I love anything that will do that. In addition the lyrics are impressive.
Best albums that I listened to this year which didn’t come out in 2012:
Fitz and the Tantrums – Pickin up the Pieces – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrGq1Zmfnvc
Merle Haggard – Mama Tried
Gram Parsons – Grievous Angel
Drive – By Truckers – Southern Rock Opera
Local Natives _ Gorilla Manor
The Mynabirds – What we Lose in the fire We Gain in the Flood
Grouplove – Never Trust a Happy Song
Hayes Carll – KMAG YOYO
The Head and the Heart – he Head and The Heart