Skip to main content

2012: 8 Great Albums

I didn't buy a whole lot of new albums in 2012, and my choosiness mostly paid off. Of the nearly 30 albums I bought, only 3 were truly disappointing: The Jealous Sound's A Gentle Reminder, Vicious Vicious' self-titled LP, and Alanis Morissette's Havoc and Bright Lights. Even those weren't truly bad, they just didn't live up to expectations.

Below are 8 albums that I dug the most. Work from Fiona Apple, Ben Folds Five, Gaz Coombes, The Divine Fits, The Killers, Miguel, Nada Surf, P.O.S., and The Shins didn't quite make the cut, but still deserve mention.

I haven't ranked this list in the last few years, mostly because I realized how arbitrary it was. But I've gotta say that, weirdly, Van Halen's A Different Kind of Truth is my album of the year. How something that had so many strikes against it (the general stink of being a "reunion" album, the absence of Michael Anthony, the recycling of 30 year-old riffs and song ideas, the fact that Eddie Van Halen's body is being held together with duct tape and dental floss at this point) ended up being so artistically vital is beyond me. In my mind, the album single-handedly rewrites the band's history, relegating the Van Hagar (and Van Cherone) years into a sidebar and placing the emphasis squarely back on Eddie's gifted playing and David Lee Roth's insane charisma and weird one-liners.

The Honeydogs: What Comes After
Check out: Particles or Waves, Aubben, Fighting Weight, What Comes After, Better Word

David Mead: Dudes
Check out: I Can't Wait, King of the Crosswords, Guy on Guy, No One Roxx This Town No More

Motion City Soundtrack: Go
Check out: Circuits and Wires, True Romance, Timelines, Coma Kid,  Bad Idea

Rush: Clockwork Angels
Check out: Caravan, BU2B, Halo Effect, The Wreckers, The Garden

Van Halen: A Different Kind of Truth
Check out: She's the Woman, You and Your Blues, As Is, The Trouble With Never,  Stay Frosty

Rufus Wainwright: Out of the Game
Check out: Out of the Game, Jericho, Montauk, Respectable Dive, Perfect Man, Candles

The Walkmen: Heaven
Check out: We Can't Be Beat, Love is Luck, Heartbreaker, Song for Leigh, Heaven 
Robbie Williams: Take the Crown
Check out: Be a Boy, Gospel, Candy,  Shit on the Radio, Into the Silence, Losers


Anonymous said…

Popular posts from this blog

Why Weezer is the Definitive Gen X Band

I’ve been thinkin’ ‘bout my g-g-g-generation.   One of the more fascinating side effects of the ever-intensifying culture wars is the emergence of generational mud-slinging battle between Baby Boomers and Millennials. Social media has played the role of both venue and promoter, and news outlets have done their best to cheer it on. As a member of the cohort that's situated between the two factions - Generation X - and thus removed from the fray, I've regarded this as an amusing sideshow in the never-ending circus of nauseating Internet discourse. The most illuminating part to me is how the conflict, and various reports about it, consistently omits the existence the generation between these two, and how very appropriate that is.   Now I'll start with the disclaimer that I'm well aware that no group of people is homogeneous. Generation X encompasses many different personality types, cultural experiences, economic realities, and a possible 15-year age difference (Gen Xers

20 From 2020

Every year since 2003 (coincidentally, the year I started this blog), I've made a compilation of some of my favorite songs of the year. I love the act of compiling and ordering, finding songs that speak to one another lyrically and that flow together seamlessly.  In order for the mixes to have longevity, I've typically avoided choosing too many songs that lyrically reflect the events of the year. That's gotten harder every year since 2016, and I was initially worried 2020 was going to be the tipping point. This year's mix might have looked a lot different if the presidential election had gone the other way. It would have certainly been more angry and despairing, and would have included such topical songs as Ben Folds's "2020," Ben Gibbard's "Proxima B," and Sloan's "Silence Trumps Lies." All good tunes, but I'm not sure how much I'll want to revisit them. Thankfully, instead, we have a mix with a variety of moods and cov

12 More by Jimmy Eat World

Sometimes an artist just needs 12  more  songs to summarize their career. Case in point... Sometimes your favorite band sneaks up on you. I'd been a Jimmy Eat World fan since the late 1990s, and have never missed one of their albums. But they didn't become my favorite band until a 2013 concert at First Avenue, where I found myself singing along with every single song by heart. It was then that I realized that for every phase of my adult life, Jimmy Eat World has been there to soundtrack it. You'll definitely want to check out the  12 by Jimmy Eat World  list to relive the first part of their career. 1. "Big Casino" (from Chase This Light , 2007) A highly caffeinated tune that contains one of my top ten all-time Jimmy Eat World lyrics: "Well there's lots of smart ideas in books I've never read / When the girls come talk to me I wish to hell I had." 2. "Always Be" (from  Chase This Light , 2007) Chase This Light came out when I was 30 yea