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As 2012 Winds Down

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blogs/curmudgeon/attachments/3253-2012-winds-down-dscn1084_600x450.jpg In keeping with family (who else would care?) tradition, I am working up a list of my favorite artists/albums of 2012. Of course, I haven't heard it all and could never claim any of this to be the "best". Here is the list so far, in order of when they came to mind (for whatever that implies):


Me'Shell N'Degeocello: Pour Une Ame Souveraine - A Dedication to Nina Simone
Leonard Cohen: Old Ideas
Chrysta Bell: This Train (see note*)
Cecelia Bartoli: Mission
Fiona Apple: The Idler Wheel
From The Mouth of The Sun: Woven Tide
Muddy Waters and The Rolling Stones: Live at the Checkerboard Lounge (1981)
Emilia Amper: Trollfageln (The Magic Bird)
Anne Akiko Meyers: Air - The Bach Album
Kimiko Ishizaka: Bach - Goldberg Variations (Open Goldberg Project)
Cold Specks: I Predict a Graceful Expulsion
Esperanza Spalding: Radio Music Society
Calexico: Algiers
Neneh Cherry: The Cherry Thing
Brooklyn Rider: Seven Steps

More close contenders ...

Mumford and Sons: Babel
Neil Young: Psychedelic Pill
Regina Spektor: What We Saw From The Cheap Seats
Rachael Yamagata: Heavyweight (EP)
Cat Power: Sun
Beirut: Rip Tide
Bob Dylan: Tempest
Loudon Wainwright III: Older Than My Old Man Now
Laura Gibson: La Grande
Jack White: Blunderbuss
Melody Gardot: The Absence
The Shins: Port of Morrow
David Byrne & St. Vincent: Love This Giant
Daniel Barenboim/West-Eastern Divan Orchestra: Beethoven for All - Symphonies 1-9


* I am told that this album actually released in 2011, but I couldn't get it until 2012, so it gets counted in.

SQ varied among my picks, particularly with respect to the plague of compressed dynamic range, but the music/performance of any victims/miscreants above kept me listening in spite of that disappointment.

Oh, yes. There were a number of other albums that came highly recommended by friends and acquaintances and are worth a listen, but they just didn't stick for some reason or another, such as:

Frank Ocean: channel ORANGE
Godspeed You! Black Emperor: Alelujah! Don't Bend! Ascend!
Gary Clark, Jr: Blak and Blu
Grizzly Bear: Shields
Beach House: Bloom
Swans: The Seer
and more ...

My biggest list is the one of stuff still to be heard. Not to mention what will happen as I continue to listen to my 2012 list into 2013 and beyond.
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