Artists of 2012

Here were the artists that I listened to the most times in 2012.

1.  Ghost Mice (856 listens)



2.  Paul Baribeau (795 listens)


3. Defiance, Ohio (770 listens)



4.  The Chinkees (604 listens)



5.  Toby Foster (475 listens)



6.   Johnny Hobo and the Freight Trains (448 listens)



7.  The Wild (446 listens)



8.  Eric Ayotte (437 listens)



9.   Folk the System (408 listens)



10.  Mixtapes (404 listens)


Updated All Time Favorite Record Labels

What a difference a year makes.  Last year after I posted my all time favorite record labels, I went out and bought a lot more albums from labels that ranked high but had few albums. I also continue to rank music resulting in some movement.

The updated list of all time favorite record labels is posted here.

Here are the changes…

New Additions

From out of the top 10 to the number 1 spot:  Plan It X Records


Out of the top 10 to the number 7 spot:  Bandcamp (not quite a traditional label, but close enough for this list)



Exits from the Top 10

Was Number 7.  Hush Records (9.410) –> Now 16 (9.070)

  • WAS:  I only have 6 artists, 8 full lengths, and 98 songs on Hush.  What gets Hush into the top ten is the high quality of the releases that I do own.  Of the 8 full lengths, 1 is a 5 star album and 3 are 4 star albums.   50%  of albums good/great is one of the best ratios for any label.  My favorite album is definitely a Kind of Like Spitting album (one of my favorite bands).   Current stats say In the Red.  The other important artist on their label is Super XX Man.  I have not bought a release from Hush since 2007.
  • NOW:  Added 1 artist, 3 full lengths, 80 new songs from Hush since last update (40 still unrated).  None of the albums were 4 or 5 star albums.   Dropping Hush down a few spots.

Was Number 8.  XL Records (9.318) –> Now 15 (9.075)


  • WAS:  I have 14 artists, 7 full lengths, and 94 songs from XL.  My favorite album is Vampire Weekend’s self titled.   My favorite artists are Vampire Weekend and Titus Andronicus.   I did not buy a single album from XL in 2011.
  • NOW:  Added 4 artists, 4 full lengths, and 48 songs.    Rating of new adds brought down the overall average.  Still only one 5-star album and one 4-star album.

The rest of the labels shuffled a bit, but all remained in top ten.   See the whole list here.

Favorite Record Label of 2010

Using my record label formula I analyzed my LPs, EPs, and Singles from 2010 to determine my favorite record labels of the year.

Here is the list:

1.  Bandcamp – 9.703 (10 artists, one 5-star LP, two 4-star LP)



2.  Death to False Hope – 9.175 (7 artists, one 5-star LP)



3.  Asian Man – 9.121 (4 artists, two 5-star LP)



4.  Mom and Pop Music – 8.261 (2 artists, two 4-star LP)


5.  Self Released – 7.713 (37 artists, two 4-star LP)

DIY-No Label

6.  Polyvinyl – 7.446 (9 artists, one 4-star LP)



7.  Arts & Crafts – 7.406 (4 artists, one 4-star LP)



8.  Barsuk – 7.324 (6 artists, one 4-star LP)



9.  XL – 7.307 (5 artists, one 4-star LP)



10.  Thrill Jockey – 7.010 (5 artists, one 4-star LP)


Granite & Tumble versus Others Top in 2010

Out of curiosity, I compared my top 22 albums of 2010 with some of the other popular lists to see how much overlap there was.   The answer is not much.  So, if nothing else my list could be some new music for you.

Favorite Albums of 2010

Here are my favorite albums of 2010.  I bought 133 albums in 2010 (most ever).

Also, I decided to list every album that had average song rating greater than 4, since they would all be worthy of mentioning and buying.   I have 22 albums that earned that distinction.

Using my album formula, here were my favorite 22 albums in 2010:

1.  Mixtapes’ Maps (Death to False Hope) – 9.772


2.  The Wild’s Set Ourselves Free (Asian Man) – 9.763


3.  Cloud Nothings’ Turning On (Speakertree) – 9.714


4.  Sundowner’s We Chase the Waves (Asian Man) – 9.697


5.  Toby Foster’s On Moving and Standing Still (Bandcamp) – 9.658


6.  Rooftops’ A Forest of Polarity (Clickpop) – 9.614


7.  Tokyo Police Club’s Champ (Mom and Pop) – 9.610


8.  Theo Hilton, Toby Foster, & Ryan Woods’ Self Titled (Word Wild) – 9.595


9.  Hoquiam’s self titled (St. Ives) – 9.591


10.  Nana Grizol’s Ruth (Orange Twin) – 9.521


11.  Everyone Everywhere’s self titled (Tiny Engines) – 9.463


12.  Listener’s Wooden Heart (Self Released) – 9.463


13.  Knight School’s Revenger (Make a Mess) -9.455


14.  Paul Baribeau’s Unbearable (Bandcamp) – 9.452


15.  Luke Roberts’ Big Bells & Dime Songs (Thrill Jockey) – 9.439

Luke Roberts - Big Bells and Dime Songs

16.  Defiance, Ohio’s Midwestern Minutes (No Idea) – 9.275


17.  You Blew It’s The Past in Present (Bandcamp) – 9.272


18.  Frightened Rabbit’s The Winter of Mixed Drinks (Fat Cat) – 9.249


19.  Dan Mangan’s Nice, Nice, Very Nice (Arts & Crafts) -9.107


20.  Coffee Project’s Moved On (Paper + Plastic) – 8.840


21.  Eric Ayotte’s Wavering (Plan It X) – 8.751

ayotte wavering

22.  The Taxpayers’ To Risk So Much for One Damn Meal (Plan It X) – 8.545


Favorite Songs of 2010

Here are my favorite songs of 2010 (top ten out of 2083 songs released in 2010)   The list of favorite songs is driven by two factors:  1) must be 5 stars and 2) highest play count.   The list is heavily influenced by songs that my wife or kids like.   I obviously had to still rate the song high, but if the family likes it the play count will be highest.   My top 8 songs were all on my kids favorites playlist.   With that said, I think all 10 of these songs are awesome.

1.  Finish With Starting by Hoquiam from self titled – 145 listens


2.  Cynicism by Nana Grizol from Ruth – 127 listens


3.  Edge of Living by RVIVR from self titled – 107 listens


4.  What to Say by Born Ruffians from Say It – 105 listens


5.  On and Ever Onward by Bjork & the Dirty Projectors from Mount Wittenberg Orca – 101 listens

Bjork + Dirty Projectors- Mount Wittenberg Orca V2

6.  Soups Whatever by Mixtapes from A Short Collection of Short Songs – 101 listens


7.  Music Work Paper Work by Everyone Everywhere from self titled – 99 listens


8.  Car Keys by Hoquiam from self titled – 93 listens


9.  Blue Cool by Paul Baribeau from Unbearable – 89 listens


10.  Galaxies by Nana Grizol from Ruth – 85 listens


Favorite EPs of 2010

I will update the site over the next few weeks with my favorite albums, songs, and labels.    I am going to start with my longstanding belief that favorite album compilations should lag by two years for two primary time constraining reasons:  to address the staying power of the album and to acquire a suitable number of fine albums.

So, let’s start with 2010.

I bought 48 EPs in 2010.   It seemed like a lot of EPs to me.  It turns out it is.  It is 7 more EPs that i have from any other single year.    Even more impressive is the fact that with the exception of 2009, every year is less than 27.    So, 48 is a lot of EPs for me.

Also, I decided to list every EP that had average song rating greater than 4, since they would all be worthy of mentioning and buying.   I have 13 EPs that earned that distinction.

Using my album formula, here were my favorite 13 EPs in 2010:

1.  Mixtapes’ A Short Collection of Short Songs (Animal Style) – 9.760


2.  Jazz Hands’ The Party EP (Death to False Hope) – 9.677


3.  Mixtapes/Direct Hit! Split EP (Kind of Like Records) – 9.674


4.  Annabel’s Here We Are Tomorrow (Tiny Engines) – 9.451


5.  Cloud Nothings’ Leave You Forever (True Panther Sounds) – 9.334


6.  For Hours and Ours’ On A Weekend EP (Ground Records) – 9.257


7.  Cattle Drums’ The Boy Kisser Sessions (Bandcamp) – 9.251


8.  Mixtapes’ Thought About Growing Up (Death to False Hope) – 9.187


9.  Sun Kil Moon’s I’ll Be There (Caldo Verde) – 9.143


10.  The Tallest Man on Earth’s Sometimes the Blues is Just a Passing Bird (Dead Oceans) – 9.058


11.  Wavelets’ Friends Followed by Actions (Self Released) – 9.049


12.  Gospel Music’s Duettes (Fierce Panda) – 8.822


13.  RVIVR’s Dirty Water (Yoyo) – 8.311