My Picks For Best Music Of 2012 (So Far)

The year is half over. It’s a good excuse to look back.

NPR’s “All Song’s Considered” is asking listeners to vote for the best music of the year (so far).

Like a good fan, I obliged.

Here are the 10 albums I selected in no particular order:

The new Walkmen album, “Heaven,” is a mature and majestic affair.

On another end of the spectrum, The Liars’ “WIXIW” is a dark and strange journey. I still don’t have a firm grasp on it.

I adore Grimes. You should, too.

I believe Beach House have perfected their sound on “Bloom.” Where do they go from here?

Dave Gahan is part of my DNA at this point in my life as the lead singer of Depeche Mode. Collaborating with Soulsavers, he has forged ahead into new territory with his voice and lyrics. “The Light the Dead See” is otherworldly.

Speaking of Depeche Mode members venturing out into new territory, main songwriter Martin Gore teamed up with founding member Vince Clarke (who left Depeche Mode after its initial album and went on to be a part of Yazoo and Erasure) to form VCMG. “Ssss” is a late night chill out album, and is also quite conducive to writing. It’s been on heavy rotation.

Porcelain Raft’s “Strange Weekend” is beautiful. It’s hard to believe it’s a debut album. Incredible.

Dry the River. Majestic and spiritual. (I guess I like majestic things.)

Listening to Now, Now’s “Threads,” I usually find myself digging it effortlessly, and before I know it, the album is over. It always leaves me wanting more.

It took a while for me to appreciate the charms of Cursive’s “I Am Gemini,” a tale of two competing twins. But with time I came to love its ferocity and storytelling. It’s an amazing accomplishment.

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