The Breakdown’s Top 10 Albums Of 2012

Posted: January 4, 2013 in Uncategorized
Here is a list of the albums that rocked my world in 2012. They are all awesome. If you’ve not heard of them or listened to any of them, I highly recommend you do so. I realise not all of them are 2012 releases, sometimes I am behind the 8-ball, in fact No.1 is a 2011 release. But read on and be inspired. I have included a standout track from each album so you may get a feel for the artist.
10. Other Lives – Tamer Animals
Acoustic song writing genius. Has a real start to finish, flowing feel to the album, with a couple of standout tracks thrown in as well.
9. Crystal Fighters – Star of Love
Latino indie pop with some appearances of fat dub-steppy bass. Did you ever think that sentence would exist? This Argentinian group, who now call London home, have greatly impressed on this album with their originality. Some really ground breaking bass parts, combined with some blissful pop hooks have made something that is well worth a listen.

8. Of Monsters and Men – My Head Is An Animal

Another musical success story out of Iceland. I had the very good fortune of being able to see this band play live in Vancouver in an intimate small venue. It was very close to the show of the year for me. A male and female lead singing team, that genuinely share the duties, fronting haunting acoustic song writing. A fantastic album.

7. Bravestation – Giants and Dreamers
The Canadian group have brought the rare genre of “tribal pop” to the indie forefront. This album flows and rolls through bass driven melodies from start to finish. It’s new, original, yet still widely appealing.  When I play this album in my cab I am continually asked who the music is by curious passengers. It’s mellow, so very good for quieter moments.
6. Yeasayer – Fragrant World
The Brooklyn based indie giant have dropped their third studio album, and have picked up where the other 2 left off. Delivering a brand new, yet amazingly in keeping with, their own original sound. Their song writing skills are unparalleled. Such is their genius, they can have you feeling like you’re on an acid trip, but still listening to commercial radio. There are numerous standout singles on this album, and numerous wacky Yeasayer moments, but the album still maintains a brilliant cohesiveness.
5. Alt-j – An Awesome Wave
My top ten this year is dominated by bands creating new sounds and genres. This one is possibly the most original of them all. It combines a vocalist like one I’ve never heard, fat rolling bass and indie pop song writing. To explain it here would be like trying to explain what it feels like to have an Asian child braid your pubic hair. Weird. And difficult. I ranted in one of my episodes this year about how their genius would fly over the masses’ heads, however they are proving to be the MGMT of 2012. Tickets to their Vancouver show sold out in under 2 hours, so they are achieving mainstream success now as well. Go get em.
4. Future Islands – On The Water
Another band with a new sound. These songs I would describe as catchy modern ballads, with an extremely unorthodox vocalist. Sometimes he sounds like meatloaf. Sometimes he sounds like the Cookie Monster. You have to hear it to know what I’m talking about, but know its well worth a listen (or 70, in my case).
3. Fredrik – Flora
My obsession with this European collection of weirdness is heavily influenced by the times I spent this summer in the BC coast mountains on my own with this as my soundtrack. It’s different, but its brilliant.

 2. Gardens and Villa – Gardens and Villa

I honestly had the hardest time separating this album from Wu Lyf to get number 1. This was number 1 for most of the year. So different, so never-been-done-before, so inventive, so laid back, so catchy. An album bordering on perfection.
1. WU LYF – Go Tell Fire to the Mountain
It only just became clear very recently that I could not put this album anywhere but number 1. The vocalist is the main reason, his voice is incredible. Put together with anthemic songwriting and Foals-esque guitar work, it cannot be beaten. You could say that if Animal from The Muppets became a singing drummer and teamed up with the love child of Foals and At The Drive In, you would have Wu Lyf. Their music has a raw, truthful, inescapable and yet ultimately simple beauty to it.
Honourable Mentions
Poor Spirits -Forever Cruising
The Maccabees – Given To The Wild
Electric Guest – Mondo
Four Tet – There Is Love In You
Beats Antique – Electrafone
Young Wonder –  Young Wonder
HUMANS – Traps
Caveman – Coco Beware
Chromatics – Kill For Love
Keep Shelly In Athens – In Love With Dusk / Our Own Dream (EP’s that I listened to together)
Would Likely Have Made the Top 10 If They Had Released An Album
Wildcat! Wildcat!
Gold & Youth
Au Palais
  1. Olivia Rey says:

    I feel the new album from the XX “Coexist” should be on that list! “Swept Away”, “Reunion”, and “Sunset” are my favourite trax, but the whole album is good.

    • Bear in mind this list is subjective. It was my personal list. I love the xx but coexist didn’t grab me the way xx did. What I like though is that this list was obviously close enough to your own selections enough for you to lament the absence of one of your faves :)

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