2012 in music

According to last.fm, this year doesn’t look all that different from last year in music. I finally jumped on the Spotify bandwagon sometime around February, and that has allowed me to binge on an assortment of New Wave playlists without having to identify, locate, and download whole albums in order to listen to that one track I really liked at Neo (or wherever) (but mostly Neo). I’ve also really liked using Shazam to identify tracks on the radio or at the grocery store or on the dance floor at Exit or in the middle of an Essential Mix.

Speaking of Essential Mixes, while he doesn’t appear anywhere on the below charts, honorable mention must be given to the Nicolas Jaar Essential Mix, which I listened to 29 times, or for a total of 58 hours, or 2.4 days. By comparison, I listened to my top track (New Order – Run) 89 times, or for a total of 6 hours and 40 minutes.

Top Artists of 2012
1. New Order
2. The Cars
3. Lana Del Ray
4. Talking Heads
5. LCD Soundsystem
6. Robyn
7. Pulp
8. The National
9. The Cure
10. Crooked Fingers

Top Albums of 2012
1. The Cars – Complete Greatest Hits
2. Robyn – Body Talk
3. Lana Del Ray – Born to Die – The Paradise Edition
4. Rihanna – Talk That Talk
5. LCD Soundsystem – This Is Happening
6. The Naked and Famous – Passive Me, Aggressive You
7. Gorillaz – Plastic Beach
8. The Cure – Greatest Hits
9. New Order – Power, Corruption & Lies
10. LCD Soundsystem – Sound of Silver

Top Tracks of 2012
1. New Order – Run
2. The Cars – Magic
3. Erasure – Love To Hate You
4. Lana Del Ray – National Anthem
5. Pulp – Like a Friend
6. Roxy Music – Over You
7. Lana Del Ray – Blue Jeans (Penguin Prison Remix)
8. Pulp – Disco 2000
8. LCD Soundsystem – I Can Change
10. Robyn – None of Dem

See also: 2011 in music (honestly)

2011 in Music (honestly)

I loved this post from The Awl, which so accurately describes my approach to music.

Now that we’ve finally cleared out all of those “best of” and “year end” music lists of 2011—and good riddance!—here’s something different: most played songs. The songs that show up on your most played list aren’t necessarily the songs that defined the year for you. They can be timeless—the comfort songs you return to over and over again. Or they can reflect periods of brief, intense obsession, such as, in my case, with “My Heart is a Drummer” by Allo Darlin’, which I first listened to on a recommendation from a friend, and proceeded to play 50 times in a span of three days.

I’m an inveterate music binger. I get absolutely, completely hooked on a song or an album and then have to force myself to move on by enforcing arbitrary rules concerning the contents of my iPod – i.e. can’t add any other music until I’ve listened to everything on it, can only have 5 Essential Mixes on deck at any one time, etc. This tunnel vision also means that I’m slow to discover new music, especially since nearly every time I decide I need new music, I end up downloading music that is new to me but generally dates to the decade of my birth. Oops.

So, with no apologies, I present my top 5 artists and albums from 2011 based on last.fm play counts:

Artists:

  1. Talking Heads
  2. LCD Soundsystem
  3. New Order
  4. Front 242
  5. Magnetic Fields

Albums:

  1. LCD Soundsystem – This Is Happening. It’s actually not worth listing my top tracks as they’re all from this album.
  2. New Order – Power, Corruption And Lies
  3. Talking Heads – Speaking in Tongues
  4. Magnetic Fields – 69 Love Songs
  5. Talking Heads – Little Creatures

Note: I have removed The Diane Rehm Show from both of these lists as while it contains interstitial music, it doesn’t meet the ‘music’ definition used for this post. It is, however, my 4th most played ‘artist’ and 2nd most played ‘album’.

Product Placement

A list of stuff I’m into these days:

  1. Dark chocolate.  Lots of dark chocolate.
  2. Staying out far too late, drinking and dancing like it’s the summer of 2005.
  3. Shiny red nails and backless gold dresses and fake eyelashes.
  4. I don’t know how The Dark Tower will possibly work on TV, and I’m not sure if I want to find out, but I’m reasonably confident I also won’t be able to stay away.
  5. Pumpkin beers.  Some are good.  Some are super terrible.  I will try any of them.
  6. My new planner, though I have to wait almost two months to use it.
  7. Person of Interest.  I’m not sure if it’s right to describe Jim Caviezel as sexy, but damn.
  8. This scrub smells amazing and is making my skin softer than is reasonable to expect this time of year.
  9. Downloading an obscene amount of questionably terrible music from my youth in anticipation of a dance party this coming weekend.  You should come!
  10. Power, Corruption & Lies. And this track from Substance that I’ve somehow glossed on for years.  And downloading a bunch of industrial music that I’d forgotten about.  And this Four Tet album.  And music music music music music music.

Nike Free Run+

Totally got these with my Christmas money and have put in two 2 mile treadmill runs.  A few things I’ve noticed already:

  1. My calves and shins are sore in ways they haven’t been since I started running.  This means something, right?
  2. I’m also feeling something in my knees – I’m not sore, but am definitely experiencing different kind of percussion.  I don’t know if that means I’m nailing a midfoot strike or that I’m just getting used to the shoes.
  3. My feet are clearly different sizes, and this is much more noticeable when my shoes are more articulated.  It’s not bad enough to necessitate buying two different pairs of shoes, and I’m sure I’ll barely notice once I’m back outside
  4. Hooray! I have new shoes! For the first time in almost three years!

Also exciting: Shane got me a Garmin GPS watch thingy!  I don’t have any exciting data to show you since I’ve only run inside since Christmas, but I’m pretty hyped about it.

Tumblr

So the LJ is all abuzz about Tumblr, which apparently makes posting all kinds of random web things incredibly easy. Having already fallen in love with delicious, embraced and abandoned Vox, and then jumped straight into Twitter, I think I already have enough places to post things, though the idea of a posting bookmarklet is pretty cool. Instead, my faithful readers, I’m going to be more steadfastly resolved to sharing ephemera here, rather than fattening your feed readers with another site to manage.

Speaking of which, how in the world did I ever manage my internetting before feed readers? The Google Reader feature set is my current best friend, especially the sharing options. Say what you will about Google – I’m happy to integrate my reading, my email, my document composition, and my calendar, and then also have the option to highlight text and send it to my phone.