With every ending, a new beginning…and so it goes with all these damned year-end lists.
Now that you know just about what everyone thought was the best thing in 2012, I’m gonna go ahead and shake things up and get a head start on next year’s “Best of” list by running off a partially speculative list of albums I personally am looking forward to listening to repeatedly in 2013.
Barring some other undiscovered Pre-Colombian apocalypse, if these albums do in fact get released as planned (and, in some cases, speculated) 2013 should be a very good year for full length records.
Autre Ne Veut – Anxiety (Mexican Summer)
Trafficking in a left-field R&B that skirts the edge of The Weeknd’s brand of left-field R&B, Brooklyn’s Autre Ne Veut has been making really solid, tense indie slow jams since his fantastic 2010 self-titled debut. His ability to approach pop tropes and reveal something new about them is not mere deconstruction or decontextualization, but rather expressing another truth. For example, although the stunning “Drama Cum Drama” has got Janet Jackson hooks, it seems less about sensuality or making sweet sweet love than it is about the frustration and discomfort and high stakes of desiring someone.
On his latest full length, he’s approaching the subject head-on by calling the album “Anxiety“. And it delivers on the promise of the previous efforts and the title. The opening cut “Play by Play” is an elaborately constructed pop puzzle that perpetually unfolds in crazy neon configurations until it cracks wide open and becomes the most anthemic 2013 track I’ve heard yet.
The Asphodells – Ruled By Passion, Destroyed By Lust (Rotters Golf Club)
I love Andrew Weatherall. All things Andrew Weatherall are of utmost importance and interest to me. Consequently, hearing the full length album from The Asphodells (this new project between Weatherall and Timothy J. Fairplay) is the thing I’m currently the most overtly, genuinely completely obsessed with.
Last year, Weatherall released his Masterpiece compilation for Ministry of Sound, which had a couple of juicy morsels…but, I’m actually ready for the whole thing now. Supposedly named after the bi-line on a 70s gay gladiator movie poster, it will no doubt encapsulate the experience. I. Can’t. Wait.
Classixx – Hanging Gardens (Innovative Leisure)
After a bunch of killer remixes, killer singles, and killer live DJ sets…LA’s Classixx are set to deliver a debut record on LA’s most exciting new label Innovative Leisure early in 2013. Last summer, Mike and Tyler put out a gorgeously woozy single and equally trippy video for a new original track called, “A Fax From The Beach“, which served as a perfect primer and hopefully a precursor of the exquisitely Classixx LA vibes to come.
Daniel Avery – FabricLive 66 (Fabric)
Although he’d been putting out tracks under the Stopmakingme moniker for a short while, one of 2012s greatest dance music revelations was London’s Daniel Avery. Under the tutelage of legends Andrew Weatherall and Erol Alkan, Avery has developed a sound and work ethic that has him on the fast track to legend status.
With a residency at the Fabric nightclub and 4 EPs in 2012, 2013 will be a veritable coup for him as we see Avery touring Stateside and releasing his own FabricLive compilation in February. It is a remarkably rare headphone & club ready mix which perfectly showcases his compositions and the shape of dance music’s future by forgoing the specificity of genre and creating music designed to be listened to, that also happens to be quite danceable.
Toro Y Moi – Anything In Return (Carpark)
Toro Y Moi‘s Chaz Bundick is a really sharp kid. In as many years as his moniker has been extremely bloggable, he’s released as many albums…each increasingly a departure from that initial thing that caught everyone’s attention while being definitively, undeniably “Toro y Moi.” This is a true feat, as even veterans of the industry have real difficulty navigating their artistic development. But, like I said, he’s sharp and the album listening party I went to proves that he’s on the right track, precisely because he’s doing it all just the way he wants.
Inc. – No World (4AD)
Local brotherly duo Inc., formerly known as Teen Inc., are a couple of prodigious music dudes who’ve made their way as hired guns on other folks albums…even though they were seemingly doing so as 17-18 year old kids…
Now, the brothers Aged have outgrown their teendom, spent a little time abroad, recorded an album, got signed to 4AD and will find themselves touring behind their first release in 2013. They stood out to me some 3 or so years ago, when I saw them play in a smoky after-hours club, as truly one of the best live bands I’ve seen in Los Angeles. Now, hopefully everyone else will too.
Surahn Sidhu – ? (DFA)
Details of the forthcoming full-length LP from Surahn Sidhu are minimal as of now, however…if his EP for DFA which came out at the end of this past year is any indication, this record is gonna be a pan-genre heater.
Phoenix – ? (?)
No details have emerged as to what or when. But, after a firestorm rumor-mill lit up the blogosphere at the end of the year, a lot of questions arose about a new album. Facts are as follows…they’d been posting pictures of themselves in studio recording. Then rumors spread. Then on December 7th they posted an old-timey (like Victorian era) painting of a dude raising a finger to his lips as if to say, “Shh.”
I have reason to believe that more news will be revealed in the next few months…and that a full length will arrive at some point in 2013. But that’s all I know. So until then…”Shh.”
Daft Punk – ? (?)
Very much along the lines of the Phoenix news…there isn’t much to report other than I have on good authority that recording sessions for a new album have been taking place in Los Angeles for a number of months. When “Discovery” was released, they’d been recording for a couple of years before the album was released. When “Human After All” was released, they’d recorded in the fall and released the album in March of the following year. All to say, it’s anyone’s guess…and a 2013 release could be wishful thinking, but I dare to dream.
My Bloody Valentine – ? (?)
On December 21, Kevin Shields stated on the MBV Facebook page that the new album is “finished mastering.” That’s a pretty huge deal considering that this is something people have been waiting for since 1992. A 20 year follow-up is epic on principle alone and I pray my stars we hear something from it SOON…that being said, if it doesn’t actually see the light of day in 2013, what’s another year or 5, REALLY?