All the Young Punks’ Top 40 of 2012 (part 1)
It was a strong year for new releases, especially indie (which comprises the vast majority of my list). I could easily do a Top 80, but, alas, we have to make difficult decisions. Here’s the first part of the All the Young Punks Top 40 for 2012. Nos. 11 through 40 are presented here in dramatic countdown fashion.
40. Craig Finn – Clear Heart Full Eyes. Great story telling by the Hold Steady frontman.
39. Eternal Summers – Correct Behavior. Instantly likable new wave pop music.
38. Black Moth Super Rainbow – Cobra Juicy. A little more rocking than past BMSR offerings.
37. Willis Earl Beal – Acousmatic Sorcery. On his debut album, this Chicagoan entertains and confounds. He was a highlight of Pitchfork fest for me.
36. Crystal Castles – III. Crystal Castles and Purity Ring essentially made the same album in 2012. I liked Crystal Castles just a little bit better.
35. Guided By Voices – Let’s Go Eat the Factory. “Classic” GBV’s comeback resulted in three albums in 2012. This was the first.
34. The Babies – Our House on the Hill. Side projects should be fun and this one from members of Woods and Vivian Girls is a blast.
33. Chuck Prophet – Temple Beautiful. Indie vet turns in a great album.
32. Dan Deacon – America. An epic journey as Deacon reflects on the “frustration, fear and anger” he feels about his country.
31. King Tuff – self titled. Great quirky garage rock.
30. 2:54 – self titled. A very cool debut from U.K. sisters Colette and Hannah Thurslow.
DO YOU WANT TO CUT TO THE CHASE? ALSO CHECK OUT: All the Young Punks top 10 albums of 2012 here.
29. The Fresh & Onlys – Long Slow Dance. A great collection of pop, pysch and garage songs.
28. Cloud Nothings – Attack on Memory. Steve Albini helps toughen up Dylan Baldi’s musical project (now a band).
27. DIIV – Oshin. A blend of Real Estate and New Order, Zachary Cole’s side project was pretty neat.
26. Grass Widow – Internal Logic. Nothing groundbreaking about this girls group — just a solid output.
25. Spiritualized – Sweet Heart Sweet Light. I didn’t get this band in the past. This album changed my mind. Hey Jane is a standout.
24. Parquet Courts – Light Up Gold. I almost overlooked this punk / post-punk treasure.
23. Japanadroids – Celebration Rock. Good rockin’ and a Gun Club cover!
22. Wild Nothing – Nocturne. Dreamy pop that recalls ’80s grandeur.
21. Ty Segall Band – Slaughterhouse. Everything Segall put out in 2012 was great. This was the hardest of the bunch.
20. Metz – self titled. If you prefer your rock ‘n’ roll to be of the maximum variety, you have to check out this skull crusher.
19. Grimes – Vision. One of the most irresistible albums of the year, this young Canadian, Claire Boucher, put out a unique and original electronic album.
18. Peaking Lights – Lucifer. By the time you get to the second song, Beautiful Son, you realize you have a pretty intriguing album — electronic that draws on reggae, psychedelic and more.
17. Dusted – Total Dust. Holy Fuck’s Brian Borcherdt took an alternative path on the lo-fi offering from his band Dusted. Parts of it are stunning.
16. Santigold – Master of My Make-Believe. Not a token major label pick. This is a thoroughly enjoyable second album from the artist fka Santogold.
15. Beach House – Bloom. Beach House makes magic on Bloom, continuing where it left off with Teen Dream.
14. Suckers – Candy Salad. Big pop, synth, folk all in one album, and Suckers actually pull it off.
13. Sharon Van Etten – Tramp. A career album from the artist I used to consider a folkie. Very edgy — and great.
12. Thee Oh Sees – Putrifiers III. I’ve never met an album by Thee Oh Sees I didn’t like and this one I love for its great garage rock.
11 . Lotus Plaza – Spooky Action at a Distance. The best thing next to a new Deerhunter album, this is guitarist Lockett Pundt’s impressive side project.
NEXT UP: All the Young Punks Top 10 of 2012.