All right folks, here's my pick of favorite albums and songs from 2012. This is extremely hard for me as I am a huge music fan and have my built in predjudices and favorites, but... I listen to a wide range of established artists and new, young artists, international to local and I'm loyal to the bands and solo artists I love. This is just one music fans opinion. Please share your favorites. That is how we all discover great new music. Tell your friends!
Well, after all these years I guess I still like my rock and roll pretty wild and experimental, and this was a great year for that kind of music, from veterans like Robert Pollard and Guided By Voices massive output of quality albums to Jack White's solo debut to newer bands like Ty Segall Band, Parquet Courts and Tame Impala. There was a lot of great music from roots and americana artists like Alabama Shakes and Todd Snider as well as classics from seasoned singer/songwriters Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Leonard Cohen.
The highlight of the year for me has got to be the trilogy of killer new Guided By Voices albums that were released plus two solo albums from Robert Pollard! I don't know how he does it but none of it is throw away crap either. I would have taken a sixth release from Mr. Pollard. Favorite 2012 GBV song? It's got to be The Unsinkable Fats Domino.
For a top notch album of 3 to 4 minute killer rock tunes, crisp lyrics and pure bombastic emotion it's hard to beat Jack White's solo debut Blunderbuss, but for me two of Guided By Voices three albums did, and that's no mean feat. For pure emotion, production and songcraft, the old master Bob Dylan is right at the top. But the album that resonated with me the most lyrically and sonically was Todd Snider's Agnostic Hymns and Stoner Fables. Not only is it just great music but it is extremely timely and relevent to the life I know. Todd is pissed but he knows that humor can go a long way when it comes to finding a little relief from the violent, greedy world that surrounds us. Todd's album affected me the way everyone was saying Bruce Springsteen's Wrecking Ball album was supposed to. I don't have that one yet. The songs I've heard are cool but... you know, you can't fall in love with everything. Anyway, Todd Snyder's album was playing on repeat in my player more than any other album this year.
When it comes to the power of a single song there were a lot of great ones, but what can you say about the Alabama Shakes song Hold On except "wow"? It's rockin' and timeless and the guitar riff sticks, but the vocal is in a category of it's own. The only single that came close for me was the brand new song Doom And Gloom from the 50 year old Rolling Stones. Bob Dylan's entire album Tempest was amazing but his song for old friend John Lennon, Roll On, was truly special. Jack White turned on americana and country fans as well as rock fans with his slippery, sly tune Love Interrupted. And Patti Smith stood tall as Rock Poet and Priestess with Banga. Another killer album and hot, funky track of the same name was Dr. John's Locked Down. The good doctor came to Nashville to play and create new grooves with The Black Keys Dan Auerbach producing and some of Music City's finest playing. Dan Auerbach also helped Nashville underground favorites Jeff the Brotherhood rise above ground with their first major label release Hypnotic Nights and my favorite cut Dark Energy.
Ok, here are my top album and song lists from what I've heard that came out this year. The order is how I feel tonight but it could change tomorrow depending on my mood, but this is my favorite music of 2012. Please share your faves with us in the comments.
Thanks, Happy New Year!
Favorite Albums Of 2012
1. Agnostic Hymns & Stoner Fables - Todd Snider
2. The Bears For Lunch - Guided by Voices
3. Tempest - Bob Dylan
4. Let's Go Eat the Factory - Guided By Voices
5. Blunderbuss - Jack White
6. Locked Down - Dr. John
7. Psychedelic Pill - Neil Young And Crazy Horse
8. Old Ideas - Leonard Cohen
9. Hypnotic Nights - Jeff The Brotherhood
10. Slaughterhouse - Ty Segall Band
11. Mouseman Cloud - Robert Pollard
12. When I'm President - Ian Hunter
13. Banga - Patti Smith
14. New Multitudes - Jay Farrar, Will Johnson, Anders Parker, Yim Yames
15. Class Clown Spots A UFO - Guided By Voices
16. Ghost On The Canvas - Glen Campbell
17. I Bet On Sky - Dinosaur Jr.
18. Americana - Neil Young And Crazy Horse
19. Jack Sells The Cow - Robert Pollard
20. Transendental Youth - The Mountain Goats
21. Mr. M - Lambchop
Favorite Songs Of 2012
1. Hold On - Alabama Shakes
2. Doom And Gloom - The Rolling Stones
3. Roll On John - Bob Dylan
4. New York Banker - Todd Snider
5. Love Interrupeted - Jack White
6. Walk Like A Giant - Neil Young And Crazy Horse
7. Banga - Patti Smith
8. Stoned And Starving - Parquet Courts
9. The Unsinkable Fats Domino - Guided by Voices
10. Cherokee - Cat Power
11. Sixteen Saltines - Jack White
12. Narrow Way - Bob Dylan
13. I Bought My Eyes - Ty Segall Band
14. Twisted Road - Neil Young And Crazy Horse
15. Feels Like We Only Go Backwards - Tame Impala
16. My Children, My Angels - Dr. John
17. Dark Energy - Jeff The Brotherhood
18. Waving At Airplanes - Guided By Voices
19. Pay In Blood - Bob Dylan
19. Locked Down - Dr. John
20. Vampire Girl - Buddy And Jim
21. Who's Running My Ranch? - Robert Pollard
22. Everything Is Miles From Everywhere - Guided By Voices
23. (If I Had My Way) I'd Tear This Building Down - Elizabeth Cook
24. Fiction - The XX
25. When I'm President - Ian Hunter
26. Transendental Youth - The Mountain Goats
27. In Between Jobs - Todd Snider