Staff Picks – Top Albums / Songs / Shows of 2012

  Dec 20, 2012  

2012 was a great year for Astralwerks with some amazing releases from some of our marquee artists such as The Chemical Brothers, Swedish House Mafia, David Guetta, AIR, Kylie Minogue + Pet Shop Boys.

You might have also caught wind of some of the label’s newer acts like the glam-pop sounds of Diamond Rings, the kinetic energy of Gold Fields and Brit-rockers Morning Parade who toured America with The Smashing Pumpkins + Silversun Pickups. Also, on the dance front, Eric Prydz headlined this summer’s Identity Festival and wowed crowds with his amazing + diverse sets. NERVO continue to jet set around the globe and were named the latest faces of CoverGirl.

Finally, 2013 brings the 20th Anniversary of Astralwerks as a record label and we are heading into the year with 3 Grammy nominations. Nominated artists include The Chemical Brothers, Swedish House Mafia and Eric Prydz.

Also, the staff have come up with their individual picks of favorite albums, songs + concerts of 2012.  Thanks for all of your support and we can’t wait for 2013 and our 20th anniversary! Happy Holidays…..

Astralwerks HQ


Mark M

Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Macklemore and Ryan Lewis – The Heist
First Aid Kit – The Lion’s Roar
Bat for Lashes: The Haunted Man
Geographer – Myth
Opossom – Electric Hawaii
Patrick Watson – Adventures in Your Own Backyard
Wild Nothing – Nocturne
Diamond Rings – Free Dimensional
Satellites – 01
Sigur Ros – Valtari

Top 5 Songs:
Damien Jurado – Museum of Flight
Pale Seas – Bodies
First Aid Kit – Emmylou
Gold Fields – Treehouse
Diamond Rings – Runaway Love

Favorite Show of 2012:
The Afghan Whigs @ Bowery Ballroom

Lawrence L
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Lana Del Rey- ‘Born To Die (The Paradise Edition)’
Jimmy Cliff- ‘Rebirth’
Storm Corrosion- ‘S/T’
Killer Mike- ‘R.A.P. Music’
Bomba Estereo- ‘Elegancia Tropical’
Beachwood Sparks- ‘The Tarnished Gold’
Maya Jane Coles- ‘DJ-Kicks’
V/A- ‘Fire in My Bones: Raw, Rare & Otherworldly African-American Gospel, 1944-2007’
V/A- ‘Strange Passion’ Irish Post-Punk compilation

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Bruce Springsteen- ‘We Take Care Of Our Own’
Rudimental- ‘Feel The Love’
Scandal- ‘Just Let Me Dance (Maxxi Soundsystem remix)’
Line & Circle- ‘Roman Ruins’Major Lazer ‘Get Free’
Iconapop- ‘I Love It’
Ice Choir- ‘I Want You Now And Always’
Beach Boys- ‘Strange World’
Dillion Francis- ‘Falling Up’

Favorite Shows of 2012:
Kraftwerk – live at MOMA
Bruce Springsteen – Live at Madison Square Garden
Hot Chip – Live at Pitchfork Festival
Crime And The City Solution – Live at Music Hall Of Williamsburg
Nicoloas Jaar – Live at the Mondrian, Art Basel
Chromatics – Live at the New Museum
Goyte – Live at Coachella
John Talabot – Live at Le Poisson Rouge

Jeremy R
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Cloud Nothings – Attack on Memory
Chromatics – Kill for Love
Bat for Lashes – The Haunted Man
Jessie Ware – Devotion
Passion Pit – Gossamer
Dirty Projectors – Swing Lo Magellan
Lost in the Trees – A Church that Fits Our Needs
Frank Ocean – Channel Orange
Kendrick Lamar – good kid, m.A.A.d city
John Talabot – fIN Songs

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Grimes – Genesis
Gold Fields – Treehouse
Chairlift – I Belong in Your Arms
Killer Mike – Don’t Die
Donnie & Joe Emerson – Baby Event

Favorite Show of 2012:
Grizzly Bear – Radio City Music Hall

Matt K
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Grizzly Bear – Shields
Mac Demarco – 2
Hospitality – Hospitality
Tame Impala – Lonerism
Blouse – Blouse
Father John Misty – Fear Fun
Bear in Heaven – I Love You, It’s Cool
Bat for Lashes – The Haunted Man
Matthew Dear – Beams
Nite Jewel – One Second of Love

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Sharon Van Etten “Give Out”
Dirty Projectors – “About to Die”
Tycho – “Dive”
Chvrches – “Lies”
Bat For Lashes – “Laura”

Favorite Show of 2012:
Built to Spill Tuesday, March 13th 1.00am @ The Belmont Austin, TX

Erin G
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Japandroids – Celebration Rock
Tanlines – Mixed Emotions
Beach House – Bloom
Tame Impala – Lonerism
Diamond Rings – Free Dimensional
Frank Ocean – Channel Orange
Grimes – Visions
Cloud Nothings – Attack on Memory
Metz – Metz
Sharon Van Etten – Tramp SONGS

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Titus Andronicus – In A Big City
Japandroids – The House That Heaven Built
Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe
Diamond Rings – Runaway Love
Sky Ferreira – Everything is Embarrassing

Favorite Show of 2012:
Have a feeling it’ll be Coldplay/Jay-Z at the Barclay’s center for New Year’s Eve!

Katie D
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Beach House – Bloom
Alabama Shakes – Boys & Girls
The Chemical Brothers – Don’t Think
Bruce Springsteen – Wrecking Ball
Jack White – Blunderbuss
Diamond Rings – Free Dimensional
Nada Surf – The Stars Are Indifferent To Astronomy
The xx – Coexist
Massive Attack – Blue Lines (reissue)
Lana Del Rey – Born To Die

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Hot Chip – Night and Day
Jack White — Sixteen Saltines
Gary Clark Jr. – Ain’t Messin ‘Round
Gold Fields – Dark Again
Alabama Shakes – I Ain’t The Same

Favorite Show of 2012:
Gold Fields at Nether Bar 10.13.12

Alisann B
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Frank Ocean – Channel Orange
The xx- Coexist
Bat for Lashes – The Haunted Man
Mumford and Sons – Babel
Gary Clark Jr. – Black and Blu
Grizzly Bear – Shields
Kendrick Lamar – good kid, m.A.A.d city
Fun. – Some Nights
Passion Pit- Gossamer
Divine Fits- A Thing Called Divine Fits

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Alex Clare – Too Close
Fun. – Carry On
Clique – Kanye West, Jay Z and Big San
Swedish House Mafia – Don’t You Worry Child
Katy Perry – Wide Awake

Favorite Show of 2012:
Madonna at MSG – She’s still magical after thirty years!

Dave L
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Bad Veins- The Mess We’ve Made
Fun.- Some Nights
David Byrne & St. Vincent- Love This Giant
Tanlines- Mixed Emotions
Nada Surf- The Stars Are Indifferent To Astronomy
Ben Kweller- Go Fly A Kite
Hot Chip- In Our Heads
Passion Pit- Gossamer
Delta Spirit- Delta Spirit
Beachwood Sparks- The Tarnished Gold Stars- Hold On When You Get Love And Let Go When You Give It

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Alex Clare- Hands Are Clever
Hot Chip- Don’t Deny Your Heart
Gotye- Someone That I Used To Know
Morning Parade- Us And Ourselves
Robert DeLong- Global Concepts

Favorite Show of 2012:
M83 in Portland, ME

Nick C
Metric – Synthetica
Chairlift – Something
Bob Mould – Silver Age
Air – Le Voyage Dans La Lune
Diamond Rings – Free Dimensional
Pet Shop Boys – Elysium
David Byrne & St. Vincent – Love This Giant
Hot Chip – In Our Heads
Bat For Lashes – The Haunted Man
Beach House – Bloom

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
The Good Natured – Video Voyeur
Chairlift – Amanaemonesia
Gold Fields – Dark Again
Pleasurekraft – Skeleton Key feat. Green Velvet
Kylie Minogue – Timebomb

Favorite Show of 2012:
Gold Fields @ CMJ (multiple excellent sets)

David M
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Husky – Forever So
Animal Kingdom – The Looking Away
Frank Ocean – Channel ORANGE
Morning Parade – Morning Parade
Wild Belle – It’s Too Late EP
The Mavericks – Suited Up and Ready EP
Alt-J – An Awesome Wave
Emeli Sande – Our Version Of Events
Wild Nothing – Nocturne
Eric Prydz – Presents Pryda

Top 2 Music Documentaries of 2012:
Marley – A Film by Kevin Macdonald
LCD Soundsystem – Shut Up and Play The Hits

Davis M
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Swedish House Mafia – Until Now
David Guetta – Nothing But the Beat 2.0
Tristan Prettyman – Cedar and Gold
The Presets – Pacifica
The XX – Coexist
Frank Ocean – Color Orange
Azealia Banks – 1991
Justin Bieber- Believe
Calvin Harris – 18 Months
Emile Sande – Our Version of Events

Top 10 Songs of 2012:
Bridgit Mendler – Ready Or Not
Icona Pop – Top Rated
Rihanna – Diamonds
Calvin Harris – Sweet Nothing (feat Florence Welch)
Brandy – Put it Down
Azealia Banks – Esta Noche
Frank Ocean – Pyramids
Eric Prydz – Every Day
Christina Aguilera – Your Body
Emile Sande – Heaven

Favorite Show of 2012:
Tie between Eric Prydz at Roseland and Emile Sande at The Box.

Mauro D
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Emeli Sande- Our Version Of Events
Little Big Town- Tornado
Swedish House Mafia – Until Now
Eric Church- Chief
Rihanna – Talk That Talk
Madonna – MDNA
Watch The Throne – Jay-z & Kayne West
Coldplay- Mylo Xyloto
Muse- The 2nd Law
Lionel Richie- Tuskegee

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Titanium- David Guetta
Springsteen- Eric Church
Starships – Nicki Minaj
Don’t You Worry Child- Swedish House Mafia
Part Of Me – Katy Perry

Favorite Show of 2012:
Madonna – The MDNA Tour

Ashley W
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Bob Dylan- Tempest
Tame Impala- Lonerism
Bruce Springsteen- Wrecking Ball
Leonard Cohen- Old Ideas
Tamaryn- Tender New Signs
Gold Fields- Gold Fields EP
Here We Go Magic- A Different Ship
Allah-Las- Tell Me (What’s On Your Mind) EP
Donald Fagen- Sunken Condos
The Bryan Ferry Orchestra- The Jazz Age

Favorite Show of 2012:
Any Gold Fields show

Devin K
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Beach House- “Bloom”
Andrew Bird- “Break it Yourself”
Bat for Lashes- “The Haunted Man”
Sky Ferreira- “Ghosts EP”
Of Monsters and Men- “My Head is an Animal”
Sigur Ros- “Valtari”
Mumford & Sons- “Babel”
Japandroids- “Celebration Rock”
Spiritualized- “Sweet Heart Sweet Light”
Frank Ocean- “Channel Orange”

Honorable Mentions of 2012:
Deftones- “Koi No Yokan”
Morning Parade- “Morning Parade”
The Killers- “Battle Born”

Michael B
Top 10 Albums of 2012:
Bruce Springsteen- Wrecking Ball
Kendrick Lamar- good Kid, m.A.A.d city
Tame Impala- Lonerism
Lana Del Rey- Born To Die
Grimes- Visions
The Lumineers- The Lumineers
Robert Glasper Experiment- Black Radio
Emeli Sande- Our Version of Events
Swedish House Mafia- Until Now
Diamond Rings- Free Dimensional

Top 5 Songs of 2012:
Bruce Springsteen- The Land of Hope and Dreams
Icona Pop I Love It
Kendrick Lamar- Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe
Norah Jones- Happy Pill
Emeli Sande- Heaven

Favorite Show of 2012:
Gold Fields at The Delancey

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