Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Nobody Cares 2012

What a great year for music this was!  As happens all too often I found myself falling woefully behind in staying current on all the great bands that released records this past year.  This was, per usual, exacerbated by the bricolage of genres that I consider to be truly good music.  A few years ago I finally had to update some of my iPod mixes because certain loved ones didn’t appreciate transitioning from the serenity of The Innocence Mission, to the distinct Palestinian oud stylings of Adel Salameh, to Misericordiam’s brutal death metal, to the hoedown bluegrass of The Hillbilly Gypsies, followed by the eclecticism of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros.  Of course I appreciate the art and talent in all of those genres, which is why this year’s ‘Nobody Cares’ list is, once again, a glimpse into the strange (wonderful) world of Greg’s musical taste.

As in past years, I have selected a few releases that I believe stand above the others, even if by slight margins, and have written a bit about why I (and you should) think these releases are awesome.  These are in no particular order, other than alphabetical, as it was difficult enough just to pick six from the list of over 60 excellent releases from 2012:

Deep Sea Diver – History Speaks

For those who may remember Matt Wignall, formerly of Havalina Rail Co., one of the greatest and most underrated bands ever to walk the face of the earth, Matt moved on after the demise of Havalina to further his already burgeoning professional photography and videography career.  He also honed his skills as a highly sought after recording producer / engineer for such indie rock greats as Delta Spirit, Cold War Kids, The Fling, and of course, Deep Sea Diver.  Matt is also married to the stunningly beautiful, world famous raw foodist, Judita Wignall (RawJudita.com).

Fronted by Jessica Dobson (who used to play guitar for such no-names as like, Beck, The Shins, Conor Oberst, Spoon, etc.), alongside her husband Peter, Michael Duggan and others, Deep Sea Diver is a welcome fresh breath to the uniquely unclassifiable world of indie rock.  History Speaks follows their impressive 2009, six-song EP New Caves with greats such as “Ships,” “NWO,” and “You Go Running.”  Order it on vinyl! 


Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros – Here

If you haven’t yet seen South By Southwest Film Festival Headliner award-winning rockumentary, Big Easy Express, first of all, what’s wrong with you, and second of all just go out and order it now because it costs less than 15 bucks.  The film documents the Spring 2011, epic six-city railroad tour of Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, and Old Crow Medicine Show.  I’ve seen the Zeros live once, but seeing them again on this rewarding look into their lives, plus two other outstanding bands, playing and creating music together (on a train!) was a real treat.  And yes, their latest record, Here is awesome.  I recommend playing it on vinyl.

The Lumineers – The Lumineers

One of the few bands I had the pleasure of seeing live in Kansas City before I moved back to Texas.  This record just kills, from start to finish, and you pretty much have to live under a rock not to have heard their hit, “Ho Hey”, but they’re a great band nonetheless.  Get vinyl.

mewithoutYou – Ten Stories

Another band I got to see while in Kansas City, mewithoutYou’s opus Ten Stories is a holistically complete artistic masterpiece.  From the deeply complex and poetic lyrics, to the marvelous, 28-page lyric booklet with original paintings by Vasily Kafanov, to production by none other than the master, Daniel Smith (Danielson Famile, Sounds Familyre Records), this record is a consummate gem.  The select few who nabbed one of the exclusive, limited edition box sets now holds a truly complete work of art from the hearts and souls of this awesome band.  Obtain it on vinyl.

The Peach Kings – Handsome Moves EP

Found out about these guys through the awesome clothing company Alternative Apparel.  And yes, I realize it’s only an EP, not a full-length, but it’s really good rock ‘n’ roll so check it out.  Also available on vinyl.

Rival Sons – Head Down

In the past five to ten years I’ve gone pretty crazy for the resurgence of roots rock from bands like Dirty Sweet, Night Horse, Stonerider, The Black Keys, J Roddy Walston and The Business, The Greenhornes, and Year Long Disaster.  One band that continues to lead the pack is LA blues-rock foursome, Rival Sons.  Acquire it on vinyl.


And here's the rest!

Antestor – Omen

Band of Skulls – Sweet Sour
Jessie Baylin – Little Spark
Beneath the Massacre – Incongruous
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy – Rattle Them Bones
Blue Stahli – Antisleep – Vol. 03
Burlap to Cashmere – Burlap to Cashmere
Carolina Chocolate Drops – Leaving Eden
Celldweller – Wish Upon A Black Star
Celldweller – Soundtrack for the Voices in My Head, Vol. 2
Converge – All We Love We Leave Behind
Mike Coykendall – Chasing Away the Dots
Del Castillo – Infinitas Rapsodias
Delta Spirit – Delta Spirit
Eluveitie – Helvetios
First Aid Kit – The Lion’s Roar
Five Iron Frenzy – It Was a Dark and Stormy Night EP
Flatfoot 56 – Toil
Foghorn Stringband – Outshine the Sun
Gentleman – Diversity
Good Night, States – Country/Static
Holidays Rule – Holidays Rule (Various)
Homestead – Maybe This Christmas (Single)
Jesca Hoop – The House That Jack Built
Seckou Keita – Rewmi EP
Langhorne Slim & The Law – Way We Move
m.ward – A Wasteland Companion
Miseration – Tragedy Has Spoken
Gaby Moreno – _Postales
Alanis Morissette – Havoc and Bright Lights
Mount Carmel – Real Women
Mumford & Sons – Babel
MxPx – Plans Within Plans
Old Crow Medicine Show – Carry Me Back
P.O.D. – Murdered Love
Pomplamoose – Hey! It’s Pomplamoose
Baba Sissoko – African Griot Groove
Sigur Rós  – Valtari
SkillinJah – Reality
SkillinJah – Skillmatic
Sleepy Man Banjo Boys – The Farthest Horizon
SOJA – Strength to Survive
S.O.S. – A Benefit Album
Sufjan Stevens – Silver & Gold
Stonerider – Fountains Left to Wake
Rosie Thomas – With Love
The Big Fix – Dead Wrong
The Chariot – One Wing
The Fling – Milk & Honey
The O.C. Supertones – For The Glory
The Weakening – Chains of Pluto
The Weird Weeds – The Weird Weeds
The Welcome Wagon – Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices
Jack White – Blunderbuss
Wild Belle – Wild Belle
Denison Witmer – The Ones Who Wait
Denison Witmer – The Ones Who Wait, Part 2 EP
Wovenhand – The Laughing Stalk
Stephane Wrembel – Origins 


Sseifert7 said...

Well?  Wow.  Geez.  ummm...
I always enjoy reading your reviews, even though I am extremely incognizant of the subject matter. I am however impressed with two things in particular; that I actually recognized one of the bands (Old Crow Medicine Show), and that you audaciously used "bricolage" in a sentence! ~

Sdovi said...

Hey Greg, Thanks for posting this every year, I really enjoy it.