2012 Top 100 LPs #48-45: The Shins, Public Enemy, Simian Mobile Disco, North Atlantic Oscillation
Published on December 14th, 2012 | Jonny Abrams
Yes, it’s…Rocksucker’s Top 100 Albums of 2012!
Rocksucker has listened to a lot of albums this year, so just for fun we decided to slog back through them and confer varying degrees of merit upon them based on our own spurious criteria, so as to count you from 100 right down to number 1. By dint of mathematics (specifically 4 x 25), top spot shall be revealed on Christmas day. Now, let’s get crackling, and then cracking…
48. North Atlantic Oscillation – Fog Electric
Crashing, swooning, psych-tinged waves of tempestuous rapture that pack enough surprises to offset the uniformity of mood, which to be fair can just as easily be be looked upon as a strength. This Edinburgh three-piece do a splendid line in atonal melodies, sharp chord progressions and huge, washy synths, making Fog Electric feel like an apt title insomuch as it feels like being aboard a ship that’s just stumbled into the Bermuda Triangle. Too intense to suit every mood, but by gum it’s transportative in it element.
47. Public Enemy – Most of My Heroes Still Don’t Appear on No Stamp
Righteous indignation, rallying beats, funky samples and bad-ass scratching: yep, it’s a Public Enemy album alright, and they’re still every bit as relevant as they’ve always been no matter how much their audience may have dwindled. Frankly, the fact that this passed by relatively unnoticed is a damning indictment on mankind as a whole. Let them eat Maroon 5, eh?
46. Simian Mobile Disco – Unpatterns
It’s not quite clear whether Unpatterns is fit for any kind of purpose – too weird for the dance floor, too jarring for a comedown, too consistent of beat to be exploratory brain food – but that’s all the more reason to see SMD as having carved out their own niche, and if you’re in the mood to engage with it it’s a flipping marvellous one. Rocksucker still misses the original Simian, but in their continued absence this will certainly do.
45. The Shins – Port of Morrow
For a second Shins LP running, Rocksucker was initially underwhelmed; not unimpressed, just viewing them in the shadow of James Mercer and co’s utterly wonderful second album Chutes Too Narrow. As with its predecessor Wincing the Night Away, this one scrubs up really rather well when returned to a few months later, so we’ve got to respect The Shins for making it four splendid albums out of four, and of course for hailing from Albuquerque (if only for this treasured – if obscurely retained – childhood memory).