As we are getting near the end of 2012 and the beginning of 2013, we look back on some of the best top songs and albums from the past year. In this article, I have decided to write a two-part alt/indie retrospective on the year and kick it off with my Top 10 Songs of 2012. It was not that easy since I have so many songs to pick from, and it took some effort to sift the list into ten. So without further ado, here’s the list.
#10 – “Treehouse” by Gold Fields (from Gold Fields)
Accompanied by a surreal music video shown on 120 Minutes on MTV2 in the summer, this indie pop song is catchy, upbeat, and bright.
#9 – “Youth Without Youth” by Metric (from Synthetica)
This bass-and-guitar song, washed with keyboards and set to a Gary Glitter-inspired beat, features clever usage of mixing childhood imagery with dark subject matter, owing to troubled youth.
#8 – “Anna Sun” by Walk the Moon (from Walk the Moon)
This song, personifying youth along with a catchy and memorable keyboard riff, gave the band considerable exposure; I can see what’s the buzz on this band.
#7 – “Bloody Mary (Nerve Endings)” by Silversun Pickups (from Neck of the Woods)
This song was inspired by childhood memories and possible childhood traumas. With its beautiful and sweet-sounding arrangement, it has “top list” potential.
#6 – “Suitcase” by Circa Survive (from Violent Waves)
This melancholy-sounding track includes backing vocals from Rachel Minton (of Zolof the Rock and Roll Destroyer), accompanied by guitars playing as if they are swimming in a sea of sound.
#5 – “Burn It Down” by Linkin Park (from Living Things)
As the lead single from their 2012 effort, this song reveals a sense of maturity with synth-driven rock mixed with electronic elements, while maintaining their guitar-driven edge.
#4 – “45” by The Gaslight Anthem (from Handwritten)
As both the opening track and lead single for Handwritten, this heartland punk rock song has a more mature sound while also being reminiscent of their previous song “The ’59 Sound,” and provides a memorable chorus (“Hey, turn the record over./Hey, I’ll see you on the flip side”).
#3 – “Strange Attractor” by Animal Kingdom (from The Looking Away)
When I first heard it, I felt like this could be one of the best tracks for 2012 as it’s a driving, upbeat, and uplifting song with a lush composition of guitars, bass, drums, and piano.
#2 – “Octopus” by Bloc Party (from Four)
After experimenting with synthesizers and keyboards, Bloc Party returns with their trademark post-punk sound, similar to their previous album Silent Alarm, yet also demonstrating a sense of change and maturity with their usual upbeat indie rock.
#1 – “Sixteen Saltines” by Jack White (from Blunderbuss)
As a throwback to his previous band The White Stripes, this song provides a hard blues-rock sound while alternating from mid-range to falsetto vocals from Jack himself; and it inspires me to listen to and review more alternative and indie music.
So there you have it, my Top 10 Songs of 2012. I know some people might disagree with me, but that’s my opinion. I’m pretty sure everyone has different tastes in music. Feel free to respond with the comments on this blog entry. Tune in next week for my Top Albums of 2012. For now though, courage.
Aerrow Shapiro is a KSSU.com DJ who hosts a weekly hour-long alt/indie show called Aerrow Shapiro’s Hour of Power, which (as of the date of publication) currently airs every Tuesday at 5 PM PT on KSSU.com. For more information you can check out the show on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/HourOfPowerKSSU) and on Twitter (@hourofpowerkssu).