Top Ten Thursday: Best Albums of 2012….so far

It is a little over halfway through 2012 and a large breadth of music has been released in this time.  This of course means that it is time to list what, in our opinion, are the best albums so far this year.  We do this not to proselytize our readers into congratulating us on our superb music tastes, but instead to evaluate the current musical landscape.  Today’s list will also provide some loose guidelines for when we do make our end of the year list – although it is merely a predictor and not definitive on how we will feel at the end of the year.
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Andrew Bird Review

Andrew Bird

Break It Yourself

Break It Yourself album cover art

In many ways, Chicago born singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Andrew Bird is like an Olympic gymnast; they consistently perform so flawlessly and gracefully that you begin to take their unbelievable talent for granted. Thus, the virtuosic violinist and former Squirrel Nut Zipper has made his own unique magical blend of folk for a decade and a half making consistently good to great records with his hyper-literate songwriting, vivid vocals,  aggressive guitar play, pioneering violin style, and unrivaled whistling ability making a sound that can only be described as his own. On top of all this, the one man band loops it all together live to make for quite the sight, which has now been captured on screen in the concert documentary film, Andrew Bird: Fever Year debuting this spring around the country. If the film isn’t enough, Bird now releases Break It Yourself, his 12th solo album to date, which is a true triumph and ranks as his most sophisticated album to date.
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LxListening: Brand Spankin New

2012 New Singles

2012 is still fairly young, and there hasn’t been many great album releases yet, but there are a ton of great singles for upcoming albums coming out daily. The five songs below are from a mix of emerging artists and reliable mainstays, but all are worth your time.
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