18 December 2012

Best of 2012 Mix

Here it is! My best of 2012 mix. It includes Auzzies doing revival Indian, Goth-pop Canadians, a French-Chilean MC, a Seattle DJ who mixes tasty Brazilian tunes and a Scandanavian Stevie Nicks. Put that in your pipe and smoke it!

This year I've tried to embed each tune in the post so you can preview it without having to leave the site. That said, if you're reading this in an email you may need to click through to themadhapa.com for the embedded tracks to work.

Also, if you like the music posted here, please consider purchasing it using one of the links provided. You'll support the artist, and (full disclosure) I'll get a shiny nickel!

Best New Band* of 2012

Bombay Royale - a Melbourne band "dedicated to honoring and reviving the funky, bizarre and mysterious music of vintage Indian cinema."  Fans of the movie Ghost World will recognize their cover of Jaan Pehechan Ho.

* new to me

My favorite Bombay Royale track is Dum Maroo Dum. There should be a link to listen to it above, but if not you can preview / buy at Amazon.com. There's a lot to love about Bombay Royale - listen to song samples.

Another new band I like is Deep Sea Diver, and not just because of the name! These guys are former Beck bandmates and their catchy tune You Go Running was an upbeat motivator during my long bike rides this past summer.

Download - Buy

Time to Dance by Shoes was another much-loved track for long, hot days on the bike. As it turns out, the official video for this tune features Jake Gyllenhaal as a serial killer. If you click on the video below, please be advised the actual song doesn't start until about 2 min in.

Could Niki and The Dove be any more Scandinavian? I effing love it. My favorite track, The Gentle Roar, is not representative of the entire album which is StevieNicksesque.

Download - Buy

2012 Artist of the Year - Ana Tijoux

If I had to pick a favorite artist this year, it would be a tough decision... but I'd have to go with Ana Tijoux. Her album La Bala will make you want to dance, drink, fight, and sing-along even if you don't speak Spanish. It's a bold and passionate album - her second, no less.

It was tough to choose one song off this album, but I went with Shock. It's immediately catchy and the sing-song mocking tone totally gets the message of the song across. If you dig this track, check out the rest of La Bala.

Maga Bo - No Balanço da Canoa is the aforementioned Brazilian track mixed by a Seattle DJ. Give it a listen, but be aware of your surroundings - you won't be able to stop your booty from shakin.
Download - Buy

The Xx put out a new album this year, but what did it for me in the gloomy electronic realm this year was Gold and Youth's track Time To Kill.
Listen - Buy

Best Cover Tune of 2012

I really liked The Chromatics' cover of Into the Black (aka Neil Young's Hey, Hey My, My) but it's part of their as-yet-unreleased album.  Give it a listen here.

So it came down to the Fleetwood Mac tribute album
and Jimmy Fallon's Blow Your Pants Off where, among other things, Fallon does a cover of the PBS 80's kids show Reading Rainbow theme in the style of The Doors. The Fleetwood Mac album has this adorable cover of Gypsy (sung by a guy) with this little synth piano intro that reminds me of a Japanese tea house. Soooo I couldn't decide and picked two favorite cover songs this year.

The Bamboos Medicine Man (Buy)
I'm going to steal the BBC's term and describe The Bamboos as a Musical Conglomerate. You can preview their album here - which includes a really satisfying variety of songs. I really liked "Where Does the Time Go?" Your mom will too...

Thrift Shop - Macklemore
This isn't Macklemore's first appearance on a year-end top list. Back in 2009 he put out a track about the Seattle hip hop scene that literally made me weep. It wasn't because of a strong connection to Seattle per se, it was a longing for that local scene and the way things were.Anyway, Thrift Shop is a celebration, a fucking anthem for those of us who spent high school and college digging in "the bins." Much love to Mary Miller at Rats Off for cluing me into this video back in August so it could be my end of summer jam.

Seriously, watch this effing video. If you like it, buy the tune here.

I love Stars new album, but I can appreciate that their sweet, depressing songs aren't for everyone. That said, give a listen to Hold On When You Get Love and Let Go When You Get It. I can't get enough of this song. It's my Call Me Maybe.

Buy it.

It's not a best of mix from me without a song that will rattle your car doors with its bass. Trust's Bulbform is that song. I believe the official genre for this band is Witch House. How f*cking rad is that?

Buy it

Best Coast - The Only Place (Buy)
Adorable song, adorable video with mild acts of vandalism.

Birmingham by Shovels and Rope is the oddball in this mix. I just like the story it tells. By the way, she says "Nickajack" in the first line. It's a disputed area of land in Tennessee.


Gossip - Melody Emergency (Buy)
This song just grooves. Beth Ditto belts it out like usual but I like that the song isn't distinctly retro nor dance nor blues. It just....grooves.

In other news: did you know Beth Ditto wrote an autobiography?

Icona Pop - I Love It

This is some unabashed ridiculous pop right here. Just try to resist. Just try. This song is total nonsense (see lyrics below) that I suspect is poking fun at something but I'm not sure. It's Swedish sythpop, just go with it.

I got this feeling on the summer day when you were gone. I crashed my car into the bridge. I watched, I let it burn. I threw your sh*t into a bag and pushed it down the stairs. I crashed my car into the bridge. 

I don't care... I love it! I don't care.
Preview / Buy

Metric - Breathe Underwater
This is the last song, but please don't skip it. It's a great last song. Just imagine skinny, blonde Emily Haines on stage at some outdoor festival. The sun is going down. She's been prowling the stage all afternoon and is taking a moment to catch her breath and belt out theses sweet verses.

Listen - Buy