ANBAD is running through the best new bands of the year. For explanation of why and how, click here.
Yesterday, I began the slightly ludicrous task of ranking this year’s best bands from, apropos of very little, the number fifteen. There are some really good, inventive and outré bands that didn’t make the Top 10, so it’s really worth a look, even if I say so myself.
Do bear in mind, of course, when scrolling through those and these, that the fifteen bands are the best of the approximately 250+ that get featured on ANBAD in various forms over the year.
So these are the ones that really stood out; or are trying something new; or are simply surprising.
And while ANBAD only features bands that are original, different, or just plain complicated, the single thing to remember is that they are all good, and so these following 10 are the best of the best.
ANBAD’S BEST NEW BANDS OF 2012: NUMBERS 10 – 6
10 – Blank Banshee – ANBAD said then: “one spin reveals that W∆VESTEP could not be anything other than a blissful pop song played at 80% speed. Taut, white-bright and pristine… Gorgeous.”
ANBAD says now: A lovely song that transcends any preconceptions you may have of the label Chillwave. Blank Banshee may be hobbled in some cynical eyes by simply being very now, but in fact, he is here on his strengths as a producer of songs that are simply very comforting and good.
9 – BitBasic – ANBAD said then: “Brain Plague is a delight, from start to finish. Gentle, careful, sweet and bombastic all at once – and when, half-way through, it cools down, then – glory be! – builds and rebuilds, then takes off once more, your heart will soar.”
ANBAD says now: Brain Plague is still a song of nuance, smart construction, and everything else – but what time reveals is that it’s a bloody lovely, even slightly touching pop song. Excellent. Keep a close eye on BitBasic.
8 – Osian Rhys – ANBAD said then: “There are times when guitar-based music re-affirms itself. For this listener, these moments become increasingly infrequent. But Osian has produced one of them. Lovely.”
ANBAD says now: Writing beautiful folk songs is not easy, regardless of what Mumford and Sons will lead you to believe.
Welsh lends itself to folk music insanely well. I don’t understand Welsh (despite, ahem, living in Wales for nearly five years) – but you don’t need to to be able to figure out what the gorgeous A Oes ‘Na Le (I Oeri Gwres Fy Nghalon) is about: the feeling is in us all, lingering, waiting.
7- Kiran Leonard – ANBAD said then: “By romping through the brilliant, endlessly enjoyable Dear Lincoln with panache, gusto and nuance, Kiran has rekindled all those lingering feelings of inadequacy us mere humans felt at that age.”
ANBAD says now: ANBAD got totally wrapped up in the fact that Kiran was 14 when he wrote this song that crackles with brilliance and excitement.
He’s about 17 now. That’s still ridiculously young for a song as smart, sharp and confident as this. He also has a lot more where this came from. With a gentle guiding hand, he can rush onwards and upwards.
6 – Black Seas – ANBAD said then: “Frankly, Black Seas (the song), is the kind of song that broadsides me occasionally, because, at some point (around 1998) I assumed that melodramatic, overblown and theatrical rock would no longer be made. I thought Suede’s Dog Man Star nixed all that.”
ANBAD says now: I wondered, honestly, whether this song and this band would hold my attention after I wrote about them. I wondered if their style would grow tiresome quickly. I worried that it was novelty that was getting me excited.
I was wrong, as always – this song is overblown and ludicrous, yes, but that’s exactly what sets it miles apart, and what makes it so delicious and all-encompassing, like chocolate soup.