My Favorite Songs of 2012: you should’ve Started Listening to these yesterday

Last year when I started compiling my favorite tracks of 2011, the list kept growing until it was 50. (I don’t even remember the original number I was aiming for.) So here’s a new 50 for 2012. Some of these are on records I’ve discussed over the last couple of weeks and some of these aren’t. Let’s have some fun. Not ranked, just listed.

1. “Oldie” – Odd Future/The OF Tape Vol. 2/Odd Future Records

I’ve written about this piece before. Head over here to find out why this ten minute hip hop track should be the only song you listen to this year if you think yourself clueless about hip hop. (But let’s face it. No one is clueless about hip hop. It is our culture and follows all of us around everywhere.)

2. “Tan Leather” – Action Bronson/Blue Chips/self released

3. “Disappeared” – Aimee Mann/Charmer/SuperEgo

I wrote about Charmer for Chunky Glasses back in September. I am a huge Aimee Mann fan. If you made me pick my favorite record from her it would be a discography-tie. I love The Forgotten Arm just as much as I love Lost In Space and Bachelor No. 2 Or The Last Remains of The Dodo. If you haven’t, go listen to Aimee Mann.

4. “Flashlight” – The Amazing/Gentle Stream/Subliminal Sounds

This track pretty much sounds like the “Garden State” soundtrack. It is airy, has a flute and the snare sound of all things folk.

5. “Baby” – Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti/Mature Themes/4AD

When I first heard this track in late summer on Sirius XMU I was impressed. Then, I learned it’s a cover of Donnie and Joe Emerson’s song of the same name. Then, when I heard their version, I was even more impressed because of how it exactly mirrored it. Paying tribute on the sidelines of the weirdest of 2012, thanks for unleashing this gem on us, Ariel.

6. “All Your Gold” – Bat For Lashes/The Haunted Man/EMI

Took me a long time to come around to this record. While most of it for me – personally – is unlistenable and too dark (too dark?! You ask? Yes, it….is. MEH. Although I do love the album art.) I was listening to the record during a last minute Christmas present wrapping session, trying to digest some records I may have overlooked. When I found the even-weirder video of her gently throwing her body around a rocky beach, I was sold.

7. “Erase Me” – Ben Folds Five/The Sound Of The Life And The Mind/ImaVeePee

I will not hide my love for Ben Folds.

8. “The Only Place” – Best Coast/The Only Place/Mexican Summer

I hate Best Coast. And Bethany Cosentino. I walked out during her sold out 930 Club show. She is terrible. But I love California. And this song is decent. I guess.

9. “Octopus” – Bloc Party/Four/Frenchkiss Records

This band isn’t for me, entirely. But this track is a tight progression of overlapped-ness.

10. “Fall In” – Cloud Nothings/Cloud Nothings/Carpark Records

11.”Sunday (Psychic Conversation #9)” – Crocodiles/Endless Flowers/Frenchkiss Records

Every time I hear this song, even though I know they’re not, I think they’re singing “Lip Service” instead of “It’s Sunday.”

12. “Who” – David Byrne & St. Vincent/Love This Giant/4AD

I kind of like this song. I don’t really care for the record much. But as far as I’m concerned, David Byrne can do no wrong.

13. “Virginia Girl” – Deer Tick/Tim EP/Partisan Records

No one paid attention to the Deer Tick release of 2012. I think they are coming out with a new record next year? I hope so. John McCauley loves Nirvana – they do tribute sets as “Deervana.” I love Nirvana and I love Deer Tick. Say no more.

14. “Don’t Pretend You Didn’t Know – Dinosaur Jr./I Bet On Sky/Jagjaguwar

15. “The Socialites” – Dirty Projectors/Swing Lo Magellan/Domino

16. “Like Ice Cream” – Divine Fits/A Thing Called The Divine Fits/Merge

17. “Zumm Zumm” – Django Django/Django Django/Because Music

This band should’ve won The Mercury Prize. Alt-J is dumb. Django Django is an excellent record. Shame on you, the entire isles of Brittan.

18. “I Got Nothing” – Dum Dum Girls/End Of Daze EP/Sub Pop

19. “Only Son Of The Ladies’ Man” – Father John Misty/Fear Fun/Sub Pop

20. “Periphery” – Fiona Apple/The Idler Wheel…/Epic

I’m not typing out the entire title. That’s what you get, Fiona, when you name your records entire poems. Although when you do read it out, it is just as beautiful as the rest of the poetry on this record. What the hell: The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do. This song isn’t my favorite. The entire record is. I cannot chose, but I guess today – I like this track best.

21. “Presence of Mind” – The Fresh & Onlys/Long Slow Dance/Souterrain Transmissions

22. “I’m His Girl” – Friends/Manifest!/Fat Possum Records

23. “I’m Only Lonely” – Gentleman Jesse/Leaving Atlanta/Douchemaster

“I’m only lonely/when I’m around you.” Get ready to rock.

24. “Eight” – Grimes/Visions/Artbus

The only true crime of 2012 is that this song is only 1:48 long. Shame on my greed. Who knew that they still make ’em like this.

25. “John Johnny” – Heavy Cream/Super Treatment/Infinity Cat

I love everything about this band. Girls singing and playing fuzzy, rockabilly, filthy, garage songs that make you wanna dance around your bedroom. Challenge accepted. Bonus: they share a label with really great acts like Those Darlins, Jeff The Brotherhood and Pujol.

26. “Make Up Your Mind” – Here We Go Magic/A Different Ship/Secretly Canadian

We already talked about this record, so go listen to it already.

27. “If Heaven is a Ghetto” – Hodgy Beats/Untitled EP/released by OFWGKTA Tumblr

This song is 1:46 of pure Heaven. This 8 track EP is underrated and went overlooked this year. When it first dropped in February, it was free to download. Doesn’t look like that so much anymore….perhaps updates on this to follow.

28. “Night And Day” – Hot Chip/In Our Heads/Domino

29. “This One’s Different” – Howler/America Give Up/Rough Trade

Actually, this whole record is great. It makes me want to live in a Minneapolis garage.

30. “Trash Tongue Talker” – Jack White/Blunderbuss/Third Man/XL/Columbia

I can’t not just say it….JACK WHITE, YOU GUYS.

31. “Evil’s Sway” – Japandroids/Celebration Rock/Polyvinyl

I found my all-time favorite quote about Japandroids yesterday, via my friend Andrew’s blog: “If you don’t like Japandroids you hate teenage love and getting drunk in public parking lots and fuck you.” -Kurt Braunoher

32. “Sixpack” – JEFF The Brotherhood/Hypnotic Nights/Warner Brothers

Dan Auerbach produced this record. It’s pretty rock-epic. Even that tiger on the front knows it.

33. “Survival Tactics (Feat. Capital STEEZ) [Prod. By Vin Skully]” – Joey Bada$$/1999/self-released

On Christmas Eve Capital STEEZE died. And as much google-ing I do, I cannot find how….It is a goddamned fucking shame not just because he was only 19, but because he clearly had a long successful life ahead of him.

34. “Alone & Stoned” – King Tuff/King Tuff/Sub Pop

35. “Brains” – Lower Dens/Nootropics/Ribbon Music

36. “The Stars Keep On Calling My Name” – Mac Demarco/2/Captured Tracks

I put the youtube of this song on my aunt’s Facebook wall, thinking she would enjoy it. She told me it reminded her of Bob Schneider. Hmmm, ok.

37. “Turn It Around” – The Men/Open Your Heart/Sacred Bones Records

38. “Plumage” – Menomena/Moms/Barsuk

This record is MEH CITY, but people like it. I guess as per Portland rock, it’s a bit more upbeat than we’re used to.

39. “In My Bed” – The Orwells/Remember When/Autumn Tone

I could listen to this song over and over and over again. I have and I will. Same goes for the record. MMM MMMm good.

40. “Borrowed Time” – Parquet Courts/Light Up Gold/Dull Tools

I found this record too late this year, but whatever. Sirius XMU was playing them for a while before it struck me that I needed to possess this record so I could listen to its’ glory constantly. Fuzzy, loud, manic guitar rock and roll. We have arrived.

41. “Elegant Design” – Pond/Beard, Wives, Denim/Modular Fontana

Definitely a stand-out track from a mostly-boring record. LOVE IT.

42. “Drifting In And Out” – Porcelain Raft/Strange Weekend/Secretly Canadian

God, I love this song. Trance out to the whole record why-don’t-ya?

43. “It All Means Nothing” – Screaming Females/Ugly/Don Giovonni Records

More on how much I love this band here.

44.”September”  The Shins/Port Of Morrow/Interscope/Columbia

This whole record is terrific and got shoved out of the way all year. James Mercer still has it.

45. “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards” – Tame Impala/Lonerism/Modular Recordings


46. “Still Life With A Hot Deuce On Silver Platter” – Titus Andronicus/Local Business/XL

Stickles said it best himself, that this song title sounds like it could be a KISS song – or a big load. I’ll say it again. It is the greatest song title ever written. Titus is better than you and me, just face it.

47. “Crybaby” – Ty Segall & White Fence/Hair/Drag City

48. “Swim And Sleep (Like A Shark)” – Unknown Mortal Orchestra/single from upcoming release/Jagjaguwar

They released this tune back in September and I can’t get enough. Saw them open for Yuck back at the Black Cat here in DC last year and they opened with my favorite track of theirs, “Nerve Damage!” I can’t wait for this 2013 release.

49. “Heavy Metals” – White Rabbits/Milk Famous/Mute

This track sounds like it’s moving backwards as it moves forwards. Dig? What a perfect album opener. Not to mention this album art kills it.

50. “Rella” – Odd Future/The OF Tape Vol. 2/Odd Future Records

I unintentionally placed an OF song as the #1 and #50 spot, I SWEAR. If you paid attention closely….as for these two outliers…this entire list is alphabetical. GO FIGURE/thanks iTunes. “Rella” is a tight track. It is offensive and, quite frankly, disgusting. But hey: “This is my e-lectronic presskit.” The video for this single is even better, directed by Tyler himself – who shows up in the end as a Centaur. They break their own fourth wall, which is a key to my heart. Thanks guys: “All I hear in my interviews/is why is this cool with you?/you niggas are so unusual.”