Best Albums Of 2012…So Far. *UPDATE*
Well, due to a couple of stellar new releases my best of the 2012 has changed fairly dramatically. As you can see I’m still pretty hot on the new Spiritualized, and AIR’s moon album’s made it to #3. Aside from the Django Django album that remained in exactly the same position, everyone else dropped down a bit. The Weller album has been the most volatile of the lot, going up and down the chart all the time (making it all the way to #2 a few weeks back) while the Mark Lanegan Band is falling fast. As the year goes on I can assume a few new one’s will be wedging their way into my ranking here, and I’ll do this again sometime in November, with the final chart rankings making an appearance sometime in early to mid-December. I still haven’t the courage to pick up the new Beach Boys album, but I think I probably will as it’s getting almost universal praise and doesn’t sound even remotely like the massive embarrassment that I was expecting. Have you folks heard any of these? Love to get your feedback. Oh, and Nazz, I haven’t yet heard Japandroids, but I will before the end of the year. Promise.
#1. Spiritualized: Sweet Heart Sweet Light (Was rated #1—no change): “Still a marvel of a record, even after umpteen listens. His best since the fantastic ‘Ladies and Gentlemen..”
#2. Here We Go Magic: A Different Ship (New entry!): “Wow, this one is #2 with a bullet! It may overtake Spiritualized to capture the #1 spot by the end of the year.”
#3. Air: Le Voyage Dans La Lune (Was #4—up one): ”
#4. RUSH: Clockwork Angels (New entry!): “This is a really, really great return to form for Rush. Their best since Moving Pictures, easily.”
#5. Beach House: Bloom (Was #3—down 2): “I love this record. It’s a cross between My Bloody Valentine and Dream Academy (‘Life In A Northern Town’ fame). I reach for this a lot.
#6. PIL: This Is Pil (Was #2—down 4): “Some of the novelty has worn off, but still an entertaining listen.”
#7. Django Django (No change): “Best new band of the year by far.”
#8. Paul Weller, Sonik Kicks (Was #5—down 3): “Over-familiarity with Weller is hurting the chances of Sonik Kicks getting much higher on the list. But you never know…”
#9. M Ward: A Wasteland Companion (Was #6—down 3): “The reason this is so low is due to the fact that I haven’t listened to it all that much. I predict it jumping up a few notches by the end of the year.”
#10. Andrew Bird: Break It Yourself (Was #8—down 2): “See above comments on the M Ward album…same problem)
#11. Orbital: Wonky (Was #9—down 2): “Still enjoyable in a wonky sort of way, still a great return to form, just not as consistently good as the others.”
#12. Mark Lanegan Band: Blues Funeral (Was #10—down 2): “I am finding the lyrics a little corny, to tell you the truth, which is affecting my enjoyment.”
#13. The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Aufheben (Was not rated at the time): “Still a very cool band, and a good effort.”
…and, a new reissue campaign that’s about damn time:
Also, I would be remiss to not mention the reissue campaign of BLUR…the 2-CD ‘box’ sets are the ones I have, and they all sound wonderful. Great packaging, and Think Tank is by far the most interesting of the lot, as far as B-sides and rarities go…
…and Frank Zappa, much overdue. As of this writing, a semi-deluxe edition of Paul Simon’s Graceland has been added to the rotation. An album that is worth revisiting, one that I can finally appreciate (I didn’t really when it first came out).
Whew, thank god my record store accepts used books (of which I have many, many boxes in the garage) for trade! I’d be one broke Mo-Fo, let me tell ya…