The Year in Review: Top Ten Songs and a few words

The Kills

The Kills

My Top Ten Songs 2012

  1. The KillsNight Train
    This was a “UK Download Bonus Track” from 2008’s “Midnight Boom,” so I never knew it existed until Spotify came along this year, where it quickly became my most listened-to song. As you may know I’m seriously in love with most Kills tracks, but for me, this one goes even beyond that, maybe even surpassing No Wow. (But let’s not say things we can’t take back.)
  2. Knife PartyBonfire
    As heard in Rian Johnson‘s excellent episode of “Breaking Bad” this summer, this was all the dubstep I needed this year. Try listening to this on your bike or in your car and not have fun.
  3. Lana Del ReyBlue Jeans
    Most of her songs took a while before I warmed to them (I’m still not sold on all), but I was mesmerized by “Blue Jeans” from the get-go. And I needed a new synthetic pop star to marvel at ever since Lady Gaga got stale a couple of years ago.
  4. The HeavyAnd When I Die
    A great discovery from one of my favorite curated Spotify playlist, “Best of KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic,” this song was apparently featured in season three of “True Blood,” which I haven’t seen, but the soundtrack is promising.
  5. RJD2Ghostwriter
    As utilized to perfection in this amazing video.
  6. Fiona Apple Every Single Night
    No explanation needed. So instead here’s a link to Apple in conversation with Marc Maron. Gotta love Fiona Apple.
  7. The Belle BrigadeI Didn’t Mean It
    Not sure how this song came to me (it’s on the pretty great soundtrack to “Twilight, Episode 4,” but I haven’t seen that, either). Awesome lyrics!
  8. John FullbrightSatan and St. Paul
    Fullbright and his excellent album “From the Ground Up” came to my attention when Ken Tucker reviewed it on Fresh Air in May. I’ll write more about it when I post my Top Ten Albums of 2012.
  9. Lianne La HavasFinal Form
    Another one where I’m not sure how I know it, but I’m glad I do!
  10. Beat TorrentBack Again
    I have a playlist called “Running music” and it’s just this song, over and over.

And, if you’re interested, a couple of words about my changing listening habits:

The last physical piece of music I bought was “The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me” on seriously limited edition vinyl. (And if you ever have to buy the last of anything, the best album ever recorded is a good choice.)

That was a 13 months ago. 2012 was the first year since I started acquiring music that I didn’t buy any LP, CD, cassette, or what have you. I did spend money on music. Some on concerts (Boy, Wallis Bird, die ärzte, Florence + the Machine, Dispatch, probably one more I’m forgetting right now), the rest on Spotify.

Yes, 2012 was the year I switched to streaming, and paid one, at that. Movies as well as music, but let’s focus on the music, for now.

I pay around 10 Euros ($13) per month for unlimited streaming, I get to keep up to 3,333 tracks (which I’m nowhere near of) offline on my phone and PCs, I don’t get any ads. Yes, not everything is on Spotify, but most new stuff is and I have already imported my Led Zeppelin CDs and Beatles records, so I’m pretty much all set. And it’s not like I’m not allowed to ever buy records ever again.

And as you can see in my Top 10 Spotify allowed me to discover a lot of music I wouldn’t have listened to without it. I’ve subscribed to a lot of great playlists (here‘s a pretty useful one) and even created a couple of popular ones myself.

And then there’s the radio feature (think Pandora), and the apps. (The apps!) Sorry if this turned into a commercial somehow, but, what can I say, I like Spotify.

More lists coming soon, including my revised Top Ten Movies of 2011, because I know you’re all on the edge of your seats about that.

Comments and your own recommendations welcome, of course!

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