Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Top 10 for 2012- #6-10

When critics publish their annual Top 10 lists in November, it's usually against their will and all about deadlines rather than good criticism. Not only are there still more weeks in the year for music to still be released, but there's also a need for reflection. With that said, I finally present my Top 10 for 2012, starting with #6-10...

6. Richard Hawley- Standing At The Sky's Edge
A beautiful rock record. And at a time when I didn't think I'd have a chance to ever say that again, it is a real gem to be cherished. It's intimate and immense at the same time, and oozes sentiment without ever sounding obvious or cloying.

7. Dwight Yoakam- 3 Pears
It took Dwight Yoakam 7 years to get back to making records, but his talent is none the worse for wear. Typically quixotic for Yoakam, 3 Pears is an undeniably country record, but finds inspiration in George Harrison as much as The Flying Burrito Brothers. Also including collaborations with Beck and (gasp!) Kid Rock, this is a one of a kind country music record, and one only Dwight could create.

8. Low Cut Connie- Call Me Sylvia
I have been asking the music gods for a piano rocker in the vein of Jerry Lee Lewis for years now, and finally, Low Cut Connie has answered my prayers. A rollicking good time band with respect for original rock 'n roll as well as doo-wop, rockabilly, garage rock and boogie-woogie, Low Cut Connie will remind you why Jerry Lee was (arguably) the real king of rock n roll.

9. The Vaccines- Come Of Age
A fitting title for a band who previously had the songs, but none of the attitude. The sophomore release  seems to have taken to heart some of the criticism given to their debut and made plenty of adjustments. A bit edgier, a bit darker and a bit tighter, Come Of Age is a good reminder that good simple rock songs always win.

10. King Tuff- King Tuff
I am a sucker for garage rock. But even though I admit my soft spot for the entire genre, I also take more of an offense when it's executed poorly. And unfortunately, in the last few years, there have been so many bands with a fuzzbox that think that's all it takes. Not so for King Tuff. Juvenile in all the right ways, this record is a stomp monster with the all the right attitude and energy. And the hooks, oh yes, so many hooks.

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