I spend all year going to shows and collecting songs and pictures and stories. I’ve spent the last month or so compiling some of my top musical memories into a music mix with accompanying booklet (my favorite little crafting project). So, here I share with you my top tracks of 2012.
Twin Atlantic spent some time in the US at the beginning of the year. I also saw just about every set they did at SXSW. Not only do I love this band’s music, but they have excellent musical taste going on tours with both We are The Ocean and Dead Sara. Dream lineup! This song comes from a special EP released this year. If you don’t know, I have a weakness for rock bands going acoustic.
Snow Patrol – “Called Out In the Dark”
This is quite possibly one of the greatest music videos of all time (at least in my book). I’ve been a fan of Snow Patrol for some time now and I enjoy the song, but what puts it over the edge is the inclusion of Steve (umm…I mean Jack Davenport). To understand my love of Jack, you have to understand that my favorite comedy of all time is the British version of Coupling. I’m not a huge video person, but this one definitely deserves a viewing or two. I’m also really looking forward to the upcoming Snow Patrol tour…
Hotel Carolina artists- “Tiny Dancer”
I was so sad to miss Hotel Carolina in Philadelphia a weekend or two ago. Some of my favorite artists at one of my favorite venues…sigh…but I can watch the videos and pretend I was there. Here’s the amazing Matt Duke leading the Hotel Carolina crew in the finale of “Tiny Dancer”.
Graffiti6– “Stare Into The Sun”
Currently listening to a livestream performance of Graffiti6. I’ve really been enjoying this band since I saw them a couple week’s ago at The El Rey. Their CD Colours sounds better each time I listen. According to the band, their song “Free” is still available for free download on ITunes. Definitely check that out! Since I’m listening to them play acoustically (love it!), here’s an acoustic version of their song “Stare Into the Sun”
I know it’s been awhile since I was able to do one of these, but there are so many wonderful CDs coming out today and I felt it necessary to invest some time into pointing them out. I hope you, in turn, will invest some time into listening! Click on the artist’s name for more info on them and how to get their new CD.
I first heard this CD about a month ago and I have been counting down the days for its release. I’m a huge fan of Ingrid Michaelson and she takes this record to darker places both musically and lyrically and I love it! My full review of the album will be printed in the winter issue of High Voltage Magazine, but suffice it to say, fan or not, I think you should check out this record.
The Church of Rock and Roll – Foxy Shazam
When I first heard this group (sight unseen) I thought they were being led by a powerful black woman. Imagine my surprise when I found out their lead singer was a diminutive white guy. The surprises are never ending with Foxy Shazam and their newest record, The Church of Rock and Roll, definitely pushes the boundaries of what is expected from a rock band from Ohio. Check them out if you want something refreshing for your ears. And when they come to your town, do NOT miss the opportunity to see them live.
I had the pleasure of discovering these Brits at The El Rey last week when they opened for Augustana. They play the kind of music that makes it easy to smile and sway along. I got the CD that night and have been listening to it on repeat. My favorite song is “Free”. I hope it can make you smile as well…
Others I hope to look into:
Listen, Learn, Love!
5. “Make A Beast of Myself” – Twin Atlantic
2011 marked the first year I attended SXSW in Austin, TX. This was a life changing experience. SXSW is heavenly; a week of live music featuring “local bands” from around the world. Highlights from this event are endless, but finally seeing Scottish rockers Twin Atlantic would be near the top of my list. Later in the year, after their CD Free was released, I really became obsessed. The entire album is genius, but “Make a Beast of Myself” gets the prize for my most played song of 2011. I started listening to Twin Atlantic web chats and I even posted on their message boards (shhh!). I saw the band again in November open for AWOLNATION and my love was cemented. I already have a ticket to spend my Valentine’s Day with them and You Me at Six at The Troubadour and have asked the band to be my valentine (still waiting for a response…)
This year’s SXSW experience was a little different than in years past (ie I actually got to GO instead of my usual just listening to all of the artists). Still, I wanted to maintain the spirit of my annual SXSW Mix being a list of artists that are mostly new to me that I somehow discovered or was inspired to write about due to my SXSW experience. I am so excited about every one of these artists/groups. I can’t wait for them to come through LA and play!
Here’s part 3 of my mix:
9. “All Those Pretty Lights” – Andrew Belle
This is a beautiful song. I wish I could have seen Andrew Belle while we were both in Texas, but sadly it did not happen. If you’re on the east coast, Andrew will be out your way soon so check out his tour schedule. In the meantime, his full length album, The Ladder, is definitely worth investigating.
10. “1+2” – Rams Pocket Radio
Another discovery from bandcamp’s handy dandy SXSW playlist. I had never heard of Rams Pocket Radio before. Apparently, Rams Pocket Radio is Peter McCauley from Northern Ireland. I absolutely love “1+2” and can’t wait to explore more from this artist.
11. “Free” – Twin Atlantic
One of my favorite discoveries from SXSW, Scotland’s Twin Atlantic was one of the few “new” bands I rearranged my schedule to see. They played several tunes from their new album Free which was finally made available at the beginning of this month. This is their most recent single from that album.
12. “Aye Julian” – Meriwether
Another favorite from the ATN Showcase, turns out these gents are from my former home of Philadelphia!
not done yet…
Them Crooked Vultures are doing a mini set for Jimmy Kimmel Tuesday April 13th. Tickets are FREE but limited. I don’t think I need to tell you what an amazing opportunity this is. Don’t miss out!! Go here to reserve yourself a space!