Our 12 Favourite Records of 2012… so far…

We’re at the halfway mark of the year, and for us at The AU Review, it usually means that we take time to reflect on all the releases that made an impact over the last six months. We asked our contributors to cough up and confess on what their favourite albums are, whether it was an LP or EP, and most importantly, why they chose the featured albums. You’re probably wondering if one of your preferred records made the cut. Well, the wait is over. I am proud to present: Our 12 Favourite Records (So Far) of 2012!

Starting with…

12. Missy Higgins – The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle

“Five years between albums and the down to earth Aussie musician has released The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle. As the title suggests, this third album is about a life of music and the relationship that Higgins has with her art form. Most memorably known for songs such as “Scar”, “Steer” and “The Special Two” it’s no surprise that fans are to new tracks as keys are to babies. In case my abstract metaphor didn’t quite tickle your fancy… it’s pretty damn exciting.” – Emmica Schlobohm

11. The Temper Trap – The Temper Trap

“Ultimately, fans of Conditions may find this album is not at all what they were expecting, but when approached with cautious optimism, it proves overall a rewarding listen, revealing how much the band has grown and ventured outside the falsetto vocal box their much loved debut album placed them.” – Alexandra Best

10. Of Monsters and Men – My Head is an Animal

“It’s safe to say there is quite the hype surrounding the band. Comparisons have been made to indie heavyweights Arcade Fire and the UK’s Mumford and Sons, though personally I can’t see the similarities between the band and the latter. In the case of My Head is An Animal the hype is justified. It’s one of the most confident and assured debut releases I have heard and is an album full of whimsical charm and warmth.” – Simon Clark

9. Bruce Springsteen – Wrecking Ball

“Springsteen’s latest is both different from everything he has done before, and very similar. The themes and imagery are all still there. Springsteen is still singing about the same issues and people he has been singing about for his whole career. But the production is different, there are electronic drum beats, old RnB samples, even a bit of rapping. Wrecking Ball sees an artist who is still unafraid to push past his comfort zone.” – Simon Clark

8. Lana Del Rey – Born To Die

“I first heard her album on radio and I admit I was hooked as soon as she sung. I thought she sounded passionate, unusual and had amazing strong vocals. I immediately researched her music and interviews and I must admit she didn’t look like what I pictured, but who cares! “Born To Die” is my favourite song and I bought the album straight away on iTunes and listened to it non-stop for weeks afterward. I am going to her live show soon and I hope she can create the same music live as to what I hear on the CD.” – Lyn Harder

7. Grimes – Visions

“One of the most eclectic and unique albums I’ve had the pleasure of listening to this year! Highly recommended if you have the time to give something new a chance. You won’t regret it.” – Kyle Bright

6. Silversun Pickups – Neck Of The Woods

“I’ve been waiting so long for this album and it’s ticked all the boxes. Sure, “Skin Graph” probably wasn’t the best track on the album to have as a lead single, but it’s catchy enough to have latched on to a massive audience, both SSPU newcomers and long time fans alike. The percussion and guitar riffs are classic SSPU and quite frankly, I’ve been waiting for a new dose of Brian Aubert to come across my desk for far too long!” – Sosefina Fuamoli

5. Fun. – Some Nights

“Some Nights has arguably cast Fun. as less indie and more pop, showcasing considerable growth from their debut Aim and Ignite.” – Nick Mason

4. Sigur Rós – Valtari

“Valtari has crept slowly upon me, like the slow and gentle anticipation that is created for anything that they release. This album transports me to another Universe where glowing aliens whisper gentle nothings into my ear at night. This album may not be as euphoric or uplifting as previous releases but it is still ever-calming and beautiful.” – Jasmine Giuliani

3. Kate Miller-Heidke – Nightflight

“Honestly, I didn’t see this coming. Expecting a light, pleasant listen, I was presented with an album that completely engrossed me and moved me to the point that I couldn’t go a day without listening to it, delving yet again into the dark layers and the emotional conviction presented within. It’s a challenging, often puzzling and ultimately rewarding record – unquestionably the best thing that KMH has ever put her name to. All it took was a little time.” – David Young

2. Deep Sea Arcade – Outlands

“Deep Sea Arcade have been under our noses for quite some time, but have made us wait quite a while for something substantial to grasp onto. They have proven once and for all that they can produce amazing music and create something that is truly an entity unto itself. This was well worth the wait.” – Bree Cohen

1. The Shins – Port Of Morrow

“It has been five long years since Wincing The Night Away, and the absence was justified and compensated by the presence of Port Of Morrow. James Mercer’s vocals will always have that resounding warmth of familiarity and the continuously ambiguous elements of sound keeps me coming back for more.” – Christine Khalil