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Our Top 10 tracks of 2012

Words by Scenewave Oz - Published on January 23, 2013

Put simply, 2012 was an amazing year of music. An abundance of debut artists feature heavily this year, with so many progressive tracks that have cemented a plethora of these bands on the world stage.  All in all, as many recap the year that has been, we have decided to give you an insight, on what we at Scenewave consider to be each of our top 10 songs of 2012. (In no particular order)

This is always a mountain of a job. A top 20 or even 30, is probably a more conclusive list of what we enjoyed throughout the year, however we’ve run with the masses and chosen 10 each.


Arctic Monkeys – ‘R U Mine?’

Giving us a taste of what feels like a move (for many) towards the Monkeys of the past, ‘R U Mine?’ makes the 10 for me quite easily. Lyrically, Alex Turner has crafted a story embedded track and in no time it was included in my high rotation playlist as a long stayer.

Miike Snow – ‘Paddling Out’

This track debuted on my stezza the day it was released in Australia, and I tell you my speakers have become accustomed to that key’s intro. ‘Paddling Out’ became a go to party song in 2012, with all major big nights featuring this track and conveniently Miike Snow featured at Splendour in the Grass, and Berlin Festival. Tonges and Anstey know all about this track, ‘Paddddlinnggg Outttt!’

Alt-J – ‘Breezeblocks’

Tracks like ‘Breezeblocks’ from a debut album band, are something that keeps music for me fresh and foolish. Medical references, simple chord progressions, stunning harmonies and gorgeous lyrics encapsulated this track throughout the entirety of 2012. To Alt-J’s credit they had one of the biggest years out of any band I liked in 2012, with not too many critics not taking fancy to their cross genre music style. To be honest, it could of been any of their tracks off An Awesome Wave, with ‘Something Good’ coming in very close behind.

The Black Keys – ‘Gold On The Ceiling’

Gaining significant popularity to the popular culture with Brothers, The Black Keys definitely capitalised on this success with the release of El Camino. To many of their fans, little did they know that the duet had released 5 albums before Brothers. This put aside, the track off El Camino that kept me on The Black Keys band wagon was ‘Gold On The Ceiling’ with Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney crafting a stupidly contagious, riff filled keyboard and guitar ridden track.

DZ Deathrays – ‘Dollar Chills’

As with Alt-J above, these Australian lads have definitely made their music known across the world, with an astonishing 2012. Did someone say ARIA? Just about every track could of had my vote, but one track off their debut album, Bloodstreams which got me frothing was ‘Dollar Chills’. Seeing them on numerous occasions  on a number of different stages, in different countries, ‘Dollar Chills’ gets better and better every time and even more so when it’s live.  It’s just brutal shit.

Hot Chip – ‘Motion Sickness’

The kings of modern day pop hits (on par with TDCC, and PP) Hot Chip, released In Our Heads in June 2012 and my lord have I given it a beating. Although I grew fond of a number of other tracks on the album, ‘Motion Sickness’ was one that was the go to, with the repetitive “motionlike” introduction followed by bobbing drumming section and typical hot chip synth. The track also coupled as a great running track…

Jack White – ‘Weep Themselves to Sleep’

On reading Jack White had released a solo album, I was stupidly excited to hear what it entailed. Like another Whites Stripes album, Blunderbuss was jam packed full of amazing tracks with a highlight being ‘Weep Themselves to Sleep’. Constructing a piano infused ballad, the track is brings great memories from SITG 2012 and seeing him at Alexandra Palace in London.

Passion Pit – ‘Carried Away’

From the instant we got hold of Gossamer, this track was labelled as the summer festival song of 2012, and why wouldn’t it be. Not much more to say about this track, other than it brings about a significant amount of happiness, vibe and it makes you want to jump around like a kid in a candy store. Thanks again Passion Pit!

Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs – ‘Tapes & Money’

I’d nearly have to say this track would be close to my top tracks of 2012. TEED with the release of his debut album, Trouble has blended together an electronic dance floor hit filled album, with my stand out being “Tapes & Money”. As we reported here, ‘Tapes & Money’ could, “easily be played on the set of swim up cocktail bar overlooking the beach with the sunset on the horizon or on the biggest dance floors across the world”. For me this track, hasn’t aged one bit since I first listened, and I can imagine I’ll be calling on it for years to come.

St Lucia – ‘September’

This cracking tune released funnily enough in September didn’t take long to take off around the globe. St Lucia out of Brooklyn wowed Australian audiences as apart of the Parklife tour of 2012 and this track brought the crowd to a dance floor orgasm. Yep I went there. It’s the intricate layers that got me going back for more.


Father John Misty – Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings 

The loose, jangly guitar effect works beautifully on FJM’s powerfully struck open chords, and J Tillman’s voice is just epic. He’s really come into his own on this track and on the entire record. I’m normally not much of a lyrics guy, but the repeated stanzas in this song really do somsing to me. It’s mental live, too.

Mystery Jets – Someone Purer

My favourite of the Mystery Jets’ third record. The song is so craftily structured and uses this understated drum beat which gives the tune so much momentum before erupting into a massive chorus. The lead singer’s vocal rhythms are so cool and unique in this song, each verse using the same melody but with such different rhythmic phrasing. Great track.

Jake Bugg – Two Fingers

So much angst! Great tune from such a talented young British lad. Such an awesome rebellion tune, and you’d think that such a catchy chorus could only have been written by Gallagher himself. Appeals to every guy who remembers hating on the world for the sake of it growing up.

Alt-J – Fitzpleasure

This song is so different to anything I’ve heard in such a long time. The Mercury Prize winners effortlessly fuse countless genres to create the most unique track on their debut, An Awesome Wave. Blissful harmonies run so delicately into an obscene, filthy, dubstep-ish drop and listening to it, you never feel completely comfortable with what’s about to come next.

Local Natives – Breakers

The first single from their upcoming record, Hummingbird. The vibrant harmonies and the epic, syncopated percussion interludes are all still there; but are now accompanied by warm, building guitar chords, and an amazing chorus. Can’t wait to hear the rest.

Two Door Cinema Club – Settle

You’ve always got to put your road trip song of the year in this list, I think – and this is most certainly it. It’ll always remind me of driving down south and through Tasmania, in the bright sun, with no worries in the world. I love songs which bang out instrumental choruses, and leave the vocal melodies until later in the track.

Django Django – WOR

My standout from their self-titled debut, and it’s just party party party from start to finish. Like Alt-J, they also experiment between genres, and their rhythmic, vocal harmonies are tight and succinct in the verse. Even better live, as well.

Tame Impala – Keep On Lying

Ever since Foals front-man Yannis tweeted his love for this song, it’s had me hooked. It’s in that amazing run of tracks from Lonerism which starts from “Music To Walk Home To” through to the abruptly concluded “Elephant”. Loosely structured in that way only psychedelic musicians know how, “Keep On Lying” sounds like it was recorded in a long, one take recording, where everything just went right that first time. Love the voices at the end of the song, reminds me of a Pink Floyd record.

Miike Snow – Paddling Out

Like Marco and Tongesy, this is a go to tune for pre’s. As soon as that synth line cranks up at the start of this song, it has you in the mood to party. The live version is incredible, and no matter how long since you’ve heard it you’ll always react the same way: Padd-a-linnngg OUUUUTTTT.

St Lucia – September

After supporting Two Door Cinema Club in their US shows, this guy’s name has been all buzz. Such a great track, awesome buildups, and sources sounds from an immense number of musical soundscapes. Expect even bigger things from St Lucia in 2013.

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