Top U.S. Tracks of 2012


Wednesday 2nd January 2013

2012 was another banner year for new American music. The tracks below represent Stateside’s top picks by bands based in the U.S.A.

Liars - “No. 1 Against the Rush”: Moody and minimalist synth-pop inspired by American football; great tune and NYC’s Liars certainly win points for originality.

King Tuff - “Bad Thing”: Bubblegum garage pop from Detroit up-and-comers and another solid single for the venerable Sub Pop label.

Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti - “Only in My Dreams” may just be the most accessible track on the 2012 release Mature Themes, as it harkens back to the poppier sounds of the Elephant 6 collective and their forbearers R.E.M, The Beach Boys and The Everly Brothers.

Sharon Van Etten - “Serpents”: Standout track from the New Jersey singer’s winning record Tramp; sexy, dark and, yes, quite serpentine.

Grizzly Bear - “Sleeping Ute”: Beautiful, fractured pop from Ed Droste-fronted outfit and the opening track from the band’s latest opus, Shields.

Danny Brown - “Grown Up” A stab at relative maturity for the notoriously gonzo Detroit MC; this recalls the old school flow of 80’s/90’s heroes Slick Rick, A Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul.

Frank Ocean - “Bad Religion”: This track harkens back to Purple Rain-era Prince and you can hear the torch being passed from the original R&B innovator to his young disciple.

Grimes - “Genesis”: Okay, technically Grimes is Canadian but I am claiming her for the U.S.A., as we need more beautifully deranged dream pop.

Chairlift - “I Belong in Your Arms”: Dead cool new wave from a dead cool Brooklyn duo.

Lightning Love - "Wake Up and Find Myself" is spare and bit haunting; simple piano, flute and vocals that sound as if they were recorded inside the witch's oven just as she was preparing for lunch with Hansel and Gretel.

Loading bag contents...