Best Albums of 2012 List, Part 4

classic rock - records on a wooden tableThis entry closes out our “Best Albums of 2012″ blog series. A series in which we asked our resident bloggers to share some words on their favorite albums of 2012. We were very encouraged by the diversity of musical styles in these lists. Now, without further ado, here’s our fourth and final “Best Albums of 2012″ entry.

Over the course of a year, I consume quite a bit of music. I listen to so many that it’s sometimes difficult to keep them all straight as far what came out in  ’11 vs ‘12 and such. One thing’s for sure, when I love an album, I end up playing it…endlessly. There are albums from 1972 or 2002 that I play just as much, if not more, than current music. Sometimes there isn’t just enough time in the day. Anyway, reflecting on 2012 – it was a pretty solid year in terms of music output, so here I’ll limit my list to my top five favorite albums, or else, well, I could be here all day. As a bit of a bonus, I’ve placed songs from their albums beneath each album.

Boys & Girls – Alabama Shakes

I was a bit late to the game with this album. It came out and I just didn’t jump on it. Now, I’m glad that I did. It’s very much a throwback album with lead singer Brittany Howard channeling heart and soul right out of 1967. It’s so well done, you forget it’s not from 35 years ago. Reminiscent of Aha Shake Heartbreak era Kings of Leon, this album will make you long for a time when music was a bit simpler, but the feelings were just as big.



Mixed Emotions – Tanlines

This Brooklyn duo put out a record filled with summertime dance favorites, but the good news is that they work just as well in the winter, too. An album this filled with hooks can’t be put down easily.


Open Your Heart – The Men

The Men are a shameless rock band – they make no bones about it. With them, what you get is straightforward rock and roll. And their release Open Your Heart is an onslaught of punk-infused guitar-rock, and it couldn’t be more enjoyable.



Visions – Grimes

I’m not really sure what to say about this album except that it’s very good.


America – Dan Deacon

For the record, I love me some Dan Deacon. He’s a super-intelligent guy that has a knack forDanDeacon-America intense, smart, dance tunes. Thanks to a rising Baltimore arts scene, Dan was able to catapult himself from obscurity to releasing the best album of 2012 over a catalog of just three full albums. Dan’s tunes are indie-dance jams that can rage on for around 8 minutes. But what separates him from the others in the indie-dance genre, is that Deacon shares his love of minimalism, and of composer Philip Glass, in his works. His 2012 release, America, brought along a lot of Dan’s signature blips and beeps, plus he managed to incorporate more live musicians into his recordings. He also did something not typically done by those in the dance music vein, he put on some orchestral compositions in his album…and it somehow works surprisingly well.



– Mike

Mike Rathfon is a member of American Music Theatre’s Marketing department. He can be reached on Twitter @MikeRathfon.