This year saw the release of some brilliant albums from the likes of Alt-J, Django Django, The Maccabees, Bloc Party, Spector, Ellie Goulding, Kyla la Grange, Jake Bugg, Two Door Cinema Club, Mumford & Sons and many many more. Here at Mojo20 we thought we’d tell you what our favourites were. We also asked some of our famous friends what they thought! Let us know if you agree or disagree and tell us who we should have been listening to during the year.
Robert Smith (Mojo20) – For me, the album of the year would have to be The Maccabees, ‘Given to the Wild‘ which came out in January. My year already started well when this was everything I expected it to be and more. Having already released two faultless albums, I was worried that this one wouldn’t quite reach the same heights. I knew I was wrong with the release of ‘Pelican’ which not only pleased fans like myself but also gained them a whole new following and were finally being recognised for their talents after being just below the radar for so long. From the haunting introduction with title track ‘Given To The Wild’ to the chilling end track, ‘Grew Up At Midnight’. Their new found success was highlighted even more so when they were announced as headline act for the NME tent at this years Leeds & Reading Festivals. The set was absolutely brilliant and I gladly left The Cure on the main stage to go and see my favourite band. My appetite is now well and truly wet for album number 4. Oh, I also met the band when I saw them live in January. Just thought I’d end on a little brag.
Stuart Green (Mojo20) – My favourite album of the past year has been, Spector’s debut album ‘Enjoy it while it lasts’. The album took only one listen to know how great it was, as it’s one of those rare LP’s, where every track on it could be a potential hit single. Each song on the record is as catchy, fun & fresh as the last, and the impact is only greater when you consider it’s the band’s debut. This year Spector re-introduced us to big, classic indie/pop songs that can be played in clubs and on tv shows, and carry the same importance and weight as Razorlight did, or the Kooks, or Mr.Bloody Brightside, or any of that 2005/2006 garage indie rock band scene did. That’s never been replicated, and still hasn’t, but Spector are a step in the right direction. Especially with a frontman with the character of Fred Macpherson, who’s cocky, witty attitude, and unique look, make him stand out unlike any other frontman around at the minute. As a live act Spector are at the top of their game, and the album translates to a live performance perfectly, while Macpherson exhibits traits of previous greats throughout his performance such as Joey Ramone, Elvis Costello and Julian Casablancas, it’s obvious that Spector have the experience, the ability and definitely the songs, to see them reach new heights in 2013.
Este Haim (Haim) – “Kendrick Lamar; good kid, m.A.A.d city. It’s West Coast rap at its finest and the collaborations are pretty sick.”
Connor Schofield (Jaws) – “I’m stuck between ‘Wild Nothing – Nocturne‘ and ‘Tame Impala – Lonerism’ and that’s because both records are just massive vibes.”
Adam Everington (Mojo20) – I’m going to say my fave album of 2012 is Alt-J: An awesome wave. There has been nothing else like it this year and nothing else as progressive, in my eyes, since Radiohead (shut it!) did Amnesiac. Every song adds their own progressive style to a different genre of music, whilst bands seem to change their sound over albums, Alt-J seem to do it track-by-track and I absolutely love that.
Released 25th May, Buy it here https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/an-awesome-wave/id520968891
Alex Howell (Mojo20) – Mumford and Sons; Babel. An all round brilliant album, stepping up the bands game just enough to show some real musical talent without ruining that Mumford and Sons sound that we all know and love. 9/10
Released 21st September, Buy it here https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/babel/id545635782
Jim ‘Sonic’ Penistan (Mojo20, Back to Mono Record Shop owner) – Jake Bugg was my favourite album of this year. I think this is the album of 2012 not just because of his age which is no mean feat at 18/19 to write songs as crafted as they are on this debut album but also the different styles he blends into the songs. While you can hear his influences everywhere on this album, The Coral, Donovan, The La’s etc they are still undeniably his. Songs like Note to Self, Ballad of Mr Jones, Lightning Bolt show a maturity far beyond his years and I think he’ll be around for a long time, on a musical journey many will follow with interest I hope.
Andrew Stone (Little Night Terrors) – There’s been some awesome albums this year, I’ve loved frank ocean, Kendrick Lamar, but the winner for me this year was Tame Impala – Lonerism. I was shown it quite late in the game but it blew me away instantly. It’s retro but sounds modern and current and I fucking love kicking back in my little studio with it playing in the background. It’s the guitar sound on Elephant, the instrumental Endors Toi, and the chilled grooves of Keep on Lying, any track that starts with a fade in is worth a look. Kevin Parkers voice is total Lennon as well. That’s the one.