Here is my list of 13 bands that I ‘discovered’ and absolutely loved in 2012; and that I hope will reach out to wider audiences in 2013. Admittedly this years list is a lot more skewed towards US bands and garage/punk rock than last years list but I guess that’s how the cookie crumbled for me musically speaking in 2012.
This garage pop quintet of 17 year olds from the suburbs of Chicago not only has butt loads of talent but also displays maturity in terms of their sound, lyrics and attitude that belies their age.
When I first wrote about them in July 2012 I had mentioned that ‘The Orwells’ charm isn’t that what they do or how they sound is novel – their influences are pretty obvious and they don’t shy away from them – it’s that they manage to infuse their music with just enough of themselves and their teenage angst to make it distinct.’
The band released Remember When (I believe their third album) in August 2012 and it was one of my favourite albums of the year gone by. Look to hear from new stuff from them in 2013
HAIM is the band on this list that’s closest to making it big in 2013 (whatever that means) given their status as the recent winners of BBC Sound of 2013.
The three HAIM sisters along with drummer Dash Hutton (yes people do tend to forget him) combine elements of R&B with pop & alt rock to create an infectious, upbeat sound that is fresh and radio friendly.
This Bristol post punk quintet’s debut EP Welcome was my favourite EP of 2012. Welcome has remarkably slick and crisp production for a debut effort, the band sound incredibly tight with each song a showcase of dark, intense, delicious post punk.
Seriously go BUY Idles’ debut EP.
These guys were one of my favourite finds of 2012 and I said earlier that ‘Natural Child is an exciting, buzzworthy trio from Nashville, Tennessee. Their music is a heady cocktail of classic psychedelic, garage and blues rock – all genres that I’m a big fan of. Sure, they may not bring anything new in terms of a sound to the table but Natural Child imbues their songs with a youthful energy and passion that makes them standout.’
They were prolific in 2012 releasing two full length albums and I hope that level of prolificness continues in 2013 as well.
On their self titled debut EP (one of my favourite EPs of 2012 btw), the trio behind Heavy Beach create ‘Indie rock with shoegazey/post punk hues and come across as a groovier, more melodic, less abrasive even tamer (and I don’t mean that in a negative sense at all) avatar of Sonic Youth.’
All three band members are part of other bands as well; I just pray they put most of their energies behind Heavy Beach because they do have something special going on here.
Singer/producer Mike Milosh finally revealed to Pitchfork in Nov’12 that Rhye is a collaboration between him and Robin Hannibal who is a member of Danish electro soul band Quadron.
Rhye’s debut EP Open wowed us with its sensual soul pop reminding me of Sade at her best (back when like most people I thought that Rhye’s vocalist was a female). The duo plans to tour extensively from March onwards so do keep an eye out for them.
The first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the fuzzy, shoegazey dream pop of Tashaki Miyaki is MAZZY STAR and in my book that’s a very good place to start.
The mysterious duo of Lucy and Rocky has expanded into a trio (bringing on a bass player, Dora) since I last covered them in August 2012 when their exquisite single Best Friend came out. Since then Tashaki Miyaki have released an album of cover songs titled Undercover (some of them are quite brilliant) but there’s no news so far on their debut full length.