As if thinking of my favourite songs of the year didn’t hurt my head enough, I’m going through albums. This year I listened to less new music, mainly because my obsession for certain bands (that are either dead or split up) just came back. I may have missed out, I may not have. Who knows, why should you care. I do stand-by that EPs were better than full length records this year, but again; just my opinion. I found some obscure bands at 2am due to not being able to sleep, I also couldn’t get enough of Girls Aloud’s greatest hits (Something New is the best pop song of the year easily.) Some amazing debut albums came out this year from Emeli Sande to 2:54 to Willis Earl Beal. This year, in every sense has been alright. For me personally it picked up in July. Oh and when I saw Crocodiles FINALLY in September. Anyway. I’ve given myself a headache trying to think of my favourite albums of the year. My top 5 is a solid decision, but those before? I cannot put them in order. So what I’m going to do is be a boring twit and list the first 5 in no order. Then the 5 after will be in order. I’m making life hard for myself again, I know. It’s what I do. It is the only way I know how to function it seems.
Garbage-Not Your Kind Of People.
Spiritualized-Sweet Heart Sweet Light.
Willis Earl Beal-Acousmatic Sorcery.
The Creeping Ivies-Stay Wild.
Bowl Cut-Anti-Everything EP.
Okay, I’ll stop listing records and write about my top 5.
5. Pop.1280- The Horror. Probably the most intense record released this year. It is dark, it is creepy and best of all; it is sinister. Everything cryptic you could feel is conjured up in this record. It’s not a record you play in the background whilst doing mundane tasks. No way. This is a record you play when you are alone. Do not listen to this when surrounded by anyone because they will just distract you from the music. The basslines and aggressive drums blow-up your eardrums and just freak you out. If this doesn’t move you in a menacing manner, then you’ve listened to it wrong. Simple as. I love The Horror because for me, it just has everything I love about music. I’m not a morbid person, I probably give off that vibe because I am prone to being grumpy (people need to stop being arses, that’s why. But I’m a bit shit so it all works out I guess) but this record takes you to a dark place in such a poetic manner. It’ll haunt you, but you don’t want it to leave you alone. Go with it.
4. Tamaryn-Tender New Signs.Every year a record comes out that makes you feel like you are living in a dream. It grabs your soul, and sways you. It is the much-needed hug at 3am when you cannot sleep and you miss the one you love because of distance. It is the comfort that you need when you feel hopeless. It is music for the soul, and it warms your bones. It owns a piece of your heart, and the ethereal vocals do something that just soothes you like no other. Tender New Signs was that record, for me. It is much like what The Fool by Warpaint was to me in 2010. It is on that level. So pure, and so divine. Tender New Signs is a dream that you cannot bring yourself to wake up from. Not many things in life are perfect, but this record is.
3. 2:54-2:54.The next three records are as follows: debut record of the year, EP of the year, favourite record of the year. 2:54 put out the best debut record of the year. Everything about it had that mind-blowing eerie vibe to it. Like you are being hunted down in a forest. Let’s be honest, you wouldn’t mind Colette or Hannah hunting you down would you. No, you wouldn’t. I just think they’re the best UK band around because they have something different to other bands. You can tell they are serious about the music, and play with such passion. I remember hearing the demo to Creeping in 2010 and just being hooked. I wanted more, but there wasn’t much around. I played it to death, and I’ve pretty much done the same with their record. Every song sends you into a trance that you never want to be shaken out of. I know I compare everything to Seventeen Seconds by The Cure, but I truly felt the same way listening to 2:54’s debut as I did when I first heard Seventeen Seconds years ago. Some people get excited about Christmas and such, I get excited over bands that make raw music like 2:54. If Sugar didn’t make you jolt your body, then something was up with you.
2. Dum Dum Girls-End Of Daze. EP OF THE YEAR. Anything DDG do just amazes me. Dee Dee’s songwriting on this EP just left me in awe. Season In Hell gave me hope, Mine Tonight broke my heart, I Got Nothing made me feel less alone and Lord Knows made me feel less shit about the bad in me. The cover of Trees And Flowers reduced me to tears (doesn’t take much, shut up.) End Of Daze feels like starting over. When you listen to End Of Daze, you feel as if you are being cleansed of all the bad that has gone on. Any bad you have done or any bad you have had done to you; it all fades as you listen to the glorious EP. I’ve taken walks listening to Dum Dum Girls, I’ve nearly broken gym equipment listening to them. I’ve found peace listening to them, in Dee Dee’s words. It is like finding a safety net, a cure for all. If you want hope and love, you will find it in a Dum Dum Girls song. Season In Hell is one of my favourite songs of the year because it just makes you feel like everything is worth it. When she sings, “Doesn’t the dawn look divine” it just lifts you up. End Of Daze is the purest healing process you will ever be exposed to. Be vulnerable, and take the words in.
1. Crocodiles-Endless Flowers.To hell with what anyone thinks, this is the best record of the year. You shouldn’t need telling why, but whatever. Maybe you do. Everything about Endless Flowers is wonderful. Summer Of Hate and Sleep Forever were quite brutal and raw. Endless Flowers is a gentle caress. No Black Clouds For Dee Dee is a gorgeous ode to Brandon’s wife (Dee Dee from Dum Dum Girls) and I think anyone who is in love will fully relate to the song. Everything about it is innocent and beautiful. Dark Alleys is my favourite. It’s over 5 minutes of euphoria. Seeing some of the songs from Endless Flowers, Summer Of Hate and Sleep Forever was truly one of the best things I experienced this year. Maybe it was because I had waited over 3 years for it. I guess I could class 2012 as just waiting things out, because the good finally happened. My girlfriend gave me a copy of Endless Flowers on vinyl as a Christmas present, and part of me doesn’t want to ever play it because I want it to stay as perfect as it is. Then the other part of me wants to hear it in all its fuzzy glory. I obviously will play it. Maybe I love the record even more now she bought me that, and it just reminds me of her. But it is truly my favourite record of the year because well, I just love Crocodiles. They’ve been a crutch over the past 3 and a bit years; Endless Flowers just reinforced my love for them. Not that it needed doing, but you get my point. I could go on forever about this record, but I’ve said enough. It’s my favourite, simple as.