IRC Popular Playlists & Mixes*
* featuring hundreds of songs, artists and bands.
Stream or download the best songs of 2012 from a variety of popular and talented bands, both new and veteran, whose singles from 2012 album releases made it into the weekly Top 10 Songs playlists as determined by the number of times songs featured in a given week were played and downloaded by IRC listeners. Some song links may have expired and with some 500 songs on this page, the vast majority are active links. Also listen to the Top 10 Songs playlists for 2011 and 2010. To view Top 10 Songs for 2013, go to the main Top 10 Songs page, which is updated regularly with new weekly playlists.
Dec. 11th – Dec. 31st
Due to the holidays, and the fact that it is the end of the year, December is traditionally a thin month for new album releases. This past December was no different. Starting at the beginning of the second full week of the month until the last day of the year, there were not enough new albums dropped that would allow for a Top 10 Songs of the week playlist. One of the main reasons for this is that most people are so busy with the holidays, and other end of the year activities, that record companies can’t get much attention, and so they just delay (not always, but often) a release until after the holidays and the new year. Another reason is that music editors, publishers and bloggers are often focused on putting together end of the year and ‘year in review’ lists, articles and posts.
In fact, there were more DIY releases in the last few weeks of December than from signed artists on both small and large labels. But even at that the DIY releases were just a few dozens over that three-week time period, and at least half were not in the genres we cover or just didn’t conjure up enough interest to bother to waste people’s time with – which is why we rarely write about, or posts songs from, music we don’t like. Therefore, in addition to the DIY releases for December (see in Vol. II post playlists), we are also including 7 Overseas Bands You’ve Gotta Hear; but not including in this Top 10 the Doomsday ‘It’s The End of the World’ Playlist (but we’re still here) and the New Years playlist or songs that already appeared in a Top 10 playlist published in December.and
With that lengthy explanation out of the way (hopefully you got to check out some of those playlists because they have many excellent tracks that may not be in this Top 10 Songs special edition), there were some great DIY releases during the last three weeks of December, as many of you know (based on the stats). The No. 1 song during the last weeks of December was “Pandemonium,” the title track from the DIY band The Uncanny Valley, followed at No. 2 by “When The Sun Sets” from another unsigned band, The Mouth of Ghosts.
– The Uncanny Valley from Pandenonium
– The Mouth Of Ghosts from When The Sun Sets
– The Amsterdams from Sunology single
– Bearskin from A Light That Finally Shines
“Yeasayer” – Mojo Waves from Enjoy, Don’t Destroy EP
– Vague Fears from Stay Negative
– Ryan Stephens from Arrow
– The Uncanny Valley from demo
– Quixotism from Faustian Plea
“Sudafed” – Thieves from Thieves 2 EP
Dec. 4th – Dec. 10th
First, if you’re looking for Top 10 Songs playlists from the last few weeks of December, they essentially do not exist because there were not enough releases during the holiday season (which is typical) for there to be Top 10 playlists for those weeks. So, this is basically the last Top 10 of 2012.
December is the month when the rate of new releases starts to slow because of the holidays and because record labels know that music sites and blogs are primarily focused on putting together their ‘Best of the Year’ posts and playlists. As the month goes on, the quantity of new album releases thins out to just a trickle. That said, the No. 1 song for the week of Dec. 4th, according to the number of streams and downloads, was “Shelia” from the new album by Memory Tapes.
Grace/Confusion on Carpark Records– Memory Tapes from
– Team Ghost from Dead Film Star EP on Wsphere
– Split Screens from Split Screens EP (self-released)
A Wrenched Virile Lore on Sub Pop– Mogwai from
“Waiting” – High Tyde from Teal EP
Eclipsing on Cloud Recordings– Dream Boat from
– Formes, single
– Ryan Francesconi & Mirabai Peart from Road To Palios on Bella Union / Cooperative Music
“Vuja De” – Mimimic from Blender
– The Amsterdams from Sunology
Nov. 27th – Dec. 3rd
The No. 1 song for the last week of November by the band Sleeping Bag combines jangling guitar, whistling choruses, and a catchy rhythm on the single, “Walk Home.” The No. 2 song for the last week of November goes to the lead single from the Album of the Week by Winnipeg band The Departures. The new track, “Trojans” from Atlas Genius took the No. 3 spot for the week. The band’s new EP, Through The Glass, is worth checking out if you like this single. DIY band The Eastern Sea took the No. 4 song of the week with “This Is Christmas,” followed at No. 5 by DIY single from My Radio and at No. 6 by the band Challenger’s “I Am Switches.” Giant Giant Sand‘s latest single, “Detained,” took the No. 7, followed by the second Top 10 song from the Album of the Week by the Departures at No. 8, Teen Mom at No. 9, and Joan of Arc‘s single, “King Song” at No. 10th.
“Walk Home” – Sleeping Bag from on Joyful Noise Recordings
“Pillars” – Departures from
“Trojans” – Atlas Genius from EP on Warner Bros.
“This Is Christmas” – The Eastern Sea from (DIY release)
– My Radio from Starts In The East, Falls In The West (DIY release)
– Challenger from (DIY release)
“Winter Friend” – Departures from
– Joan of Arc from Joan Of Arc Limited Edition LP on Joyful Noise Recordings
Nov. 20th – Nov. 26th
Gospel Claws took the No. 1 song for the week of November 20th with the mellow track, “Pale Horse Dry Cleaning,” followed at No. 2 by Goldenboy. Gospel Claws’ second single, “Hambone,” the lead single from the Put Your Sunshine Away LP, was No. 3 song of the week.Thad Kopec, a former Artist of the Week, took the No. 4 spot for his single “The World Was Young,” followed at No. 5 by Goldenboy‘s (with vocals from Elliott Smith) “Summertime,” and the No. 6 song Sambassadeur‘s “Memories.” The No. 7 most popular song of the week was “What I’d Love To Hear You Say” from the new album by Faunts, followed at No. 8 by the newest single from Elbow, with the DIY band Midway in Wake taking the No. 9 spot with Kopec’s track “White Wolf” from his Album of the Week, Heart of Man. The band Naomi Punk‘s single, “Burned Body” tied for the No. 10 spot.
“Memories” – Sambassadeur from Memories/Hours Away 7″ on Labrador Records
“Buffalo Ghosts” – Elbow from on Fiction/Cooperative Music
Tied for No. 10:– Naomi Punk from
Nov. 13th – Nov. 19th
Crystal Castles easily captured the No. 1 spot for the top single for the week of Nov. 13th with the lead track, “Affection,” off their new album, simply titled, III.
New York indie rock duo School of Seven Bells, received nearly 52,000 plays and nearly 50 thumbs up comments on Soundcloud, and place at No. 6 for the week, followed at No. 7 from the San Francisco band Social Studies for their single, “Away for the Weekend,” from the album, Developer. Soundgarden‘s single, “Been Away For Too Long,” captured the No. 8 slot, followed by No. 9‘s “The Zone” from musician Abel Tesfaye, aka The Weeknd, featuring Drake, and No. 10 from “For The Season” by Clinic.
– El Perro Del Mar from Pale Fire on The Control Group
“Away For The Weekend” – Social Studies from on Antenna Farm Records
“The Zone (ft. Drake)” – The Weeknd from on Republic Records/XO
Nov. 6th – Nov. 12th
The Dirty Projectors “About to Die,” was the top single for the first week of November’s Best New Releases (Week of Nov. 6th). Melody’s Echo Chamber pair of singles from her new EP were popular with IRC listeners, producing the No. 2 as well as the No. 4 song of the week, followed at No. 3 by Desert Noises and No. 5 by Teen Daze. The No. 6 most listened to and downloaded song of the week, “Obvious Signs” from Grape Soda‘s debut LP, Form A Sign, followed at No. 7 “Weigh You Down” from lo-fi garage rockers Crushed Out‘s new album, Want to Give.
– Desert Noises from EP
“Spirit” – Teen Daze from
Form A Sign on Kindercore Records– Grape Soda from
–Team Genius (via MOKB) from
– Team Genius from New York Songs
Oct. 30th – Nov. 5th
Oct. 23rd – Oct. 29th
The new single from Paul Banks, “The Base,” beat out Bat For Lashes‘ latest single, “A Wall” for the No. 1 spot of the week, with Bat For Washes coming in fairly close at No. 2. A relatively unknown band to watch, People Get Ready, were not far from Bat For Lashes to take the No. 3 spot of the week. Steffaloo‘s new single “Can’t You See” registered as the fourth most popular song of the week, followed at No. 5 by of Montreal‘s “Sails, Hermaphroditic.” As it was with Paul Banks beating out Bat For Lashes, it’s also a surprise that two other bands with less significant name recognition ran past of Montreal to take the No. 2 and No. 3 spots. The second half of the Top 10 Songs for the week feature singles from, in order of rank, Black Moth Super Rainbow, Other Lives, Rah Rah, And You Will Know Us By The Trail of the Dead, and The Amazing.
– Paul Banks from Banks
“A Wall” – Bat For Lashes from The Haunted Man
– People Get Ready from People Get Ready
– Steffaloo from Would You Stay
“Sails, Hermaphroditic” – of Montreal from Daughter of a Cloud
– Black Moth Super Rainbow from Cobra Juicy
“Take Us Alive” – Other Lives from Mind The Gap
– Rah Rah from The Poet’s Dead
“Up To Infinity” – …And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead from Lost Songs
“Flashlight” – The Amazing from Gentle Stream
Oct. 16th – Oct. 22nd
Death Cab For Cutie‘s frontman Ben Gibbard scored the No. 1 song of the week with the single, “A Hard One To Know” from his debut solo album, Former Lives from the weekly Best New Music Releases (for the week of Oct. 16th), as well as the No. 2 single of the week, “Teardrop Windows,” from the Album of the Week post. Obviously IRC listeners helped make it a Ben Gibbard week in the Top 10 Songs playlist. The Maldives’ latest single, “Blood on the Highway,” came in at No. 3. The relatively unknown UK band, Little Comets, scored the No. 4 spot with their single, “Bayonee,” followed at No. 5 by the new single from Earlimart to round out the top five. The second half of the Top 10 include yet another song from Earlimart (No. 6), plus Shiny Toy Guns, Young Dreams, The Philistines, and Peace.
Note: The advance single from Golden Bloom, which we featured in a separate post, would have been the No. 3 of the week, but since it’s from an album that won’t be released until January, it doesn’t qualify for this week’s Top 10 Songs.
“A Hard One To Know” – Ben Gibbard from
– Ben Gibbard from
– The Maldives from Muscle for the Wing
“Bayonee” – Little Comets – Life Is Elsewhere
“Woo-hoo-hoo” – The Philistines from Therewolves!
Oct. 9th – Oct. 15th
IRC listeners have always had good taste in the songs they pick for the Top 10 Songs weekly playlists. This week was a good example of that, with the latest single from Lord Huron‘s new album placing at No. 1. The new song from A.C. Newman, with help from his New Pornographers’ bandmate, Neko Case, shot up to the No. 2 position of the week, followed at No. 3 by Hardly Art band Black Marble. A.C. Newman’s second single, “I’m Not Talking,” placed at No. 4, followed at No. 5 by Mark Mallman‘s “Double Silhouette.”
San Francisco band Ty Segall‘s new single, “The Hill,” came in at No. 6, followed at No. 7 by DIY band Turn Off Your Television, while Dana Falconberry‘s “Crooked River” only came in at No. 8. The Top 10 closes out with the new single from a band to watch, PAWS, at No. 9, who’s new album, Cokefloat! is loaded with energetic indie pop, followed at No. 10 by the latest single from Tamarin‘s new album, Shake The Ghost. View and listen to more tracks from the original posts that made up this playlist – Best New Music Releases, Week of Oct. 9th and More Best New Album Releases, Week of Oct. 9th.
– Black Marble from A Different Arrangement
– A.C Newman from Shut Down The Streets
– Mark Mallman from Double Silhouette
“Crooked River” – Dana Falconberry from
“Headache” – METZ from METZ
“Miss American Bookworm” – PAWS from
“Seems a Laugh” – Tamarin from
Oct. 2th – Oct. 8th
The new track, “Cry for Judas,” from The Mountain Goats‘ new album, Transcendental Youth, was the No. 1 song of the week followed at No. 2 by the new single from the Freelance Whales latest album, which was our Album of the Week. The No. 3 song of the week was the new track from Matt & Kim, followed at No. 4 by Mark Eitzel. At No. 5, the new song from Why?, “Jonathan’s Hope,” topped off the first half of the Top 10 Songs. The second half of the Top 10 feature new singles from Beth Orton, Goodnight Texas, Tilly and the Wall, Sun Airway and Ken Stringfellow. Check out the original posts that created this Top 10 list (in addition to the post linked above), Best New Music Releases for the Week of Oct. 2th and the supplemental, More Best & DIY Releases of the week.
– Matt and Kim from
“Jesse Got Trapped In A Coal Mine” – Goodnight, Texas from A Long Life of Living
“Close” – Sun Airway from
“Doesn’t It Remind You of Something (feat. Charity Rose Thielen)” – Ken Stringfellow from Danzig In The Moonlight
Sept. 25th – Oct. 1st
Singer/songwriter Sera Cahoone charted to beat out Mumford and Sons for the No. 1 song of the week with her fresh single, “Deer Creek Canyon,” edging out Mumford’s “I Will Wait” at No. 2. Efterklang‘s “Apples” skidded in at No. 3 by a few ‘votes’ over Frightened Rabbit‘s title track off their new EP, State Hospital, at No. 4, and at No. 5, a band most music lovers have probably not heard of before, Machine Birds‘ single, “If.” The second half of the Top 10 Songs for the week go to new singles from Django Django, Jason Collett, The Soft Pack, Murder By Death, Eight Belles and Crime and The City Solution.
“Tallboy” – The Soft Pack from
– Eight Belles from Girls Underground (self-released)
“I Have The Gun” – Crime and The City Solution from An Introduction To….Crime & The City Solution A History Of Crime – Berlin 1987-1991
Sept. 18th – Sept. 24th
This was a great week for new singles and album releases, with some of the biggest names in indie and alternative rock fighting for the top positions on the charts according to IRC listeners votes. Not surprisingly, Band of Horses took the No. 1 spot of the week with their new single “Knock Knock” off their fourth album Mirage Rock. After roaring back with a hugely successful reunion a few years ago, 90’s alternative rock legends Dinosaur Jr. have dropped yet another one of their best albums, I Bet On Sky. As with Band of Horses, one of the best American indie rock bands to break out in recent years, Brooklyn band Grizzly Bear, also dropped a new album this week, but their newest single “Yet Again” only reached the No. 3 spot of the week; still a good place to be, but not as good as being No. 1.
There could be, and likely are, a number of mitigating reasons for this, but in the end, we go through the web statistics and count which songs from the week’s singles received the most number of plays and downloads to determine the Top 10 Songs. In fact, all three of the bands in the top three, will likely be on many Top Albums of the Year lists for their 2012 album releases, as well as Top Songs of 2012 lists as well. Ranking as the No. 4 single of the week was the lead track, “Hippie Girl” off the new album from Mike Coykendal, featuring backup vocals from Ben Gibbard and Zooey Deschanel, followed at No. 5 by Menomena’s “Pique” from their latest album, Moms. The second half of this week’s Top 10 feature, in order, fresh tracks from Allah-Las, Alt-J, The Whigs, Corin Tucker Band, and Lymbyc Systym.
“Watch The Corners” – Dinosaur Jr. from
–Mike Coykendall from
– Menomena from
– Allah-Las from
“Fitzpleasure” – Alt-J from An Awesome Wave
“Waiting” – The Whigs from
– Lymbyc Systym from Symbolyst
Sept. 11th – Sept. 17th
The second week of September No. 1 single went to The Raveonettes‘ new song, “She Owns The Streets,” by a huge margin, nearly 1 to 3 over the other top singles of the week. The song was also the No. 1 song of the month on IRC among the
– The Raveonettes from Observator on Vice Records
“Live And Die” – The Avett Brothers from
“Digging Shelters” – Neil Halstead from
“I Am Not Waiting Anymore” – from Field Report
– Hello Echo from (self-released)
Sept. 4th – Sept. 10th
Indie pop band Stars took the No. 1 spot for the first full week of September with their latest single, “Backlines.” It’s a bit surprising that neither the new single from Animal Collective nor from Cat Power were picked by listeners as the top song of the week. For those of you not familiar with how we determine the Top 10 Songs for any given week, it’s a time consuming task to comb through our web statistics to see which singles from that week’s Best New Music Releases, as well as other posts, of the week, had the most plays and downloads. Still, Cat Power‘s new single, “Ruin,” from her first album of new material in four years, only trailed “Backlines” by five ‘votes.’ Leaping into the No. 3 position was Two Door Cinema Club‘s lead single, “Sleep Alone” from the band’s much anticipated sophomore album, Beacon, which went straight to the top of the charts in their homeland of Ireland; No. 2 in the UK, and No. 17 on the U.S. charts. The fourth most popular song of the week was “Descent” by Bob Mould, and rounding out the top five of the week was the single, “Broken Eyes,” from Two Gallants. The second half of the Top 10 for the week of September 3rd , were, in order, new singles from The Fresh and Onlys, Animal Collective, Jens Lekman, Azure Ray and Deerhoof.
“Backlines” – Stars from on ATO
Silver Age on Merge Records– Bob Mould from
– Two Gallants from on ATO
“Presence Of Mind” – The Fresh and Onlys from on Mexican Summer
“I Know What Love Isn’t” – Jens Lekman from (with digital booklet) on Secretly Canadian
As Above So Below on Saddle Creek– Azure Ray from
August 28th – Sept. 3th
But it was the spectacular new single from Divine Fits, “Would That Not Be Nice,” that beat out all of the competition for the No. 1 most streamed and downloaded song of the week. The new power pop single from The Raveonettes, “She Owns The Streets,” captured the No. 2 spot, followed by Cat Power‘s “Cherokee” at No. 3, and Wild Nothing‘s new track, “Paradise,” took the No. 4 slot. To round out the top five was Poor Moon‘s “Holiday.” Now that’s an impressive first half for any Top Ten Songs mix. The second half featured fresh album tracks from Matthew Dear, Teen, DIY artist Dalton, Richard Hawley and Dan Deacon, respectively. We were surprised to see Deacon’s off-the-wall techno dance trip out single, “Lots,” (No. 10) wasn’t higher up in the charts, but in the last four positions, there were often only one or two ‘votes.’
There are many other ‘keeper’ tracks from the three post playlist links above, so you might want to click through to each one individually. We try to make as many songs ‘keepers’ as possible – can’t satisfy all the people all the time, but if we can satisfy most of the people most of the time, that’s golden. Think of us as your new music filter because you don’t have time to go through hundreds of songs a month to pick out the best.
– The Raveonettes from – Sept. 11th
“Paradise” – Wild Nothing from on Captured Tracks
“Headcage” – Matthew Dear from on Ghostly International
– Dalton from Dalton EP
“Leave Your Body Behind You” – Richard Hawley from on Mute
Ghost Notes on Planetary Fro Records– Mad Planet from
August 21st – August 27th
The last week of August, which often signifies the wind-down of summer for students and vacationers, for IRC included two main posts that were competing for the top singles of the week – a new Fresh Tracks playlist and the weekly Best New Music Releases. In the past, we would only count singles for the Top Ten Songs if there were part of the best new releases playlists. However, with efforts underway to include more Fresh Tracks and other such MP3 playlist posts, it only makes sense to also include those as well.
The last No. 1 single of the week, by only four ‘votes,’ was Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti‘s lead single, “Only In My Dreams,” followed closely at No. 2 by Yeasayer‘s new single, “Henrietta” from the new album, Fragrant World. Bloc Party’s new lead track, “So He Begins to Lie,” from their new album, Four, trailed Yeasayer by more than a dozen votes to grab the No. 3 spot. Three huge bands battled it out all week for the No. 1 spot, and APHG won. The No. 4 track for the week of August 21st, “No Sense,” is from a band we’ve never heard of before, Bailterspace. A buzz band of the past couple of years, Teengirl Fantasy, rounded out the top half of the playlist with their new single, “End.” The lower half of the Top 10 features new singles from Six Organs of Admittance, Grizzly Bear, Happy New Year,
Mature Themes on 4AD– Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti from
“Henrietta” – Yeasayer from on Secretly Canadian
– Bailterspace from Machine on Fire Records
“End” – Teengirl Fantasy from on True Panther Sounds/R&S
– Six Organs of Admittance from Ascent on Drag City
“Twins” – Happy New Year from on Brooklyn’s Crikey! Records
“Another Stitch” – Gregory Pepper and His Problems from Escape From Crystal Skull Mountain on Fake Four, Inc.
August 14th – August 20th
Our main focus for this week was the three-day outdoor music festival, Outside Lands, which celebrated it’s fifth anniversary with one of the best lineups in its five years. Headliners on two main stages in San Francisco‘s Golden Gate Park included Neil Young, Metallica, Stevie Wonder, Jack White, Beck, The Kills, Franz Ferdinand, Andrew Bird, Passion Pit, Silversun Pickups, and many others. See our pre-fest post, plus our coverage of Day Two and Day Three.
The indie rock band, Black Pistol Fire, released their new album this week from which the lead single, “Crows’ Feet” topped all others to take the No. 1 song of the week. Due to a thin week of releases, this is the first time we are a couple of songs short of a full Top Ten list, but they’re still great songs.
“Opium” – Dead Can Dance from Anatasia
– Wild Cub from Youth
“I Can’t Stand to Be Refused” – Height with Friends from Rock and Roll on Friends/Cold Rhymes Records
– Simon Joyner from Ghosts on Ba Da Bing
– Asteroid Shop from Distance Luxury
“#1 in Heaven” – MNDR from Feed Me Diamonds on Ultra Music
August 7th – August 13th
The first August No. 1 of 2012 goes to the new title track off the new album by Redd Kross, Researching The Blues. The band Niki and the Dove came in with the No. 2 song of the week – voted by all of you by your streams and downloads – with the single, “DJ, Ease My Mind.” The indie folk rock band Bear Mountain secured the No. 3 position of the week, followed at No. 4 by an artist to watch, Erik Blood. The catchy, memorable track, “Mallrats (La La La)” from the indie band The Orwells rounded out the Top Five with the No. 5 song of the week. The lower half of this week’s Top Ten Songs playlist features, in order, Permanent Collection, Kid Smpl, Ormonde, Birds and Batteries and Koko Beware.
– Bear Mountain from xo (self-released)
– Erik Blood from Touch Screens (self-released)
– Kid Smpl from Escape Pod EP on Hush Hush Records
“Cherry Blossom” – Ormonde from Machine on Hometapes
Something About the Summer (self-released)– Koko Beware from
July 31st – August 6th
The first No. 1 song of August 2012 went to Blonde Summer‘s new single, “Slow Days Fast Company.” The track is an uptempo indie pop anthem with jangling guitar riffs, echoey, reverb vocals, a catchy rhythm and a hook and infusion of airy synth layers that accompany the song’s climaxes- one of the finest ‘summery’ singles of the season. The relatively new band, Wildlife Control, released their self-titled, debut album, from which the lead single, “Analog or Digital,” took the No. 2 song of the week. Another fairly new band, Buttonhead, has the No. 3 track of the week with the single, “Champion Bread.” At No. 4 for the week is the new single, “Growing Pains,” from the band Junk Culture. Rising singer/songwriter Allen Stone’s lead single, “Sleep” from his self-titled, debut album, rounded out the Top Five at the No. 5 position. The lower half of the Top 10 features songs from NIKU, Shovels and Rope, The Black Swans, Sacred Caves and Jason Haywood, respectively.
– Blonde Summer from Slow Daze EP
“Analog or Digital” – Wildlife Control from
“Champion Bread” – Buttonhead from
“Sleep” – Allen Stone from on ATO Records
– NIKU from In the Tidelands
– Shovels & Rope from O’ Be Joyful on Dualtone Records
– The Black Swans from on Misra Records
“On The Outside” – Sacred Caves from Sanctuarium EP on hausKat Records
– Jason Haywood from A Thousand Miles Since Yesterday
July 24th – July 30th
It was good to see that the majority of listeners – through your streams and downloads and such – picked Fang Island‘s new single, “Sisterly,” as the top single from a new album of the week. Fang Island outpaced Passion Pit‘s new single, “Love is Greed” (No. 2) by only two votes. Plus, in order, The Gaslight Anthem, Lawrence of Arabia and Eternal Summers topped of the first half of the Top Ten this week. See the original post for more goodies. That does it for the Top 10 playlists for July; scroll down to listen to as many Top 10 playlist weeks as you want or just leave the player running – makes it sort of like Spotify, but without commercials.
– Eternal Summers from Correct Behavior on Kanine Records
Shrines on 4AD– Purity Ring from
Never on Rough Trade– Micachu and the Shapes from
“Look Homeward, Heathen” – Grassfight from Icon EP2 (self-released)
July 17th – July 23rd
A bit of a surprise, but not a huge surprise, the band Matisyahu landed the No. 1 spot with the new single, “Sunshine.” The History of Panic shot into the No. 2 position with the single, “The Chase” from the album, Fight! Fight! Fight!, followed at No. 3 by the relatively new band, Conveyor. The indie rock band Jeff The Brotherhood, secured the No. 4 single of the week with their song, “Sixpack,” from JTB’s latest album, Hypnotic Nights. The No. 5 song of the week was another track titled, “Sunshine,” by Cosmo Jarvis. The posts that determined this Top 10 list are Vol. I and Vol. II of Best New Music Releases for the week of July 10th (new albums are released on Tuesdays, so that’s the day the Top 10 week starts).
– Matisyahu from Spark Seeker on Fallen Sparks Records
– The History of Panic from on Le Grand Magistery
“Mukraker” – Conveyor from
“Sunshine” – Cosmo Jarvis from on 25th Frame/ The End Records
All The Unknown on Borstal Beat Records– The Drowning Men from
Perfect Vision on Saddle Creek– Icky Blossoms from
“Mississippi Saturday Night” – Old Crow Medicine Show from on ATO Records
A Collection of Rarities and Previously Unreleased Material on Ribbon Music– John Maus from
“Never the Same Way Twice” – Shout Out Out Out Out from on Normals Welcome Records
July 10th – July 16th
The newest single, “Gun Has No Trigger,” from the latest album by The Dirty Projectors just outpaced Videoing‘s lead single, “Nightwatch” for the top single of the week. At No. 3 was Twin Shadow with the lead single, “Five Seconds,” from his sophomore album, Confess. Mission of Burma and Husky took the No. 4 and No. 5 slots for the week, according to the number of times listeners played and downloaded tracks from the week’s Best New Music Releases. See the full post here. The bottom five of the Top 10 feature, in order, The Young Evils, Communist Daughter, Deleted Scenes, Holograms and Digitalism.
Swing Lo Magellan on Domino
Reader LP on Slack Electric– Videoing from
Unsound on Fire– Mission of Burma from
– Communist Daughter from EP on Grain Belt Records
– Deleted Scenes from on Park The Van
– Holograms from on Captured Tracks
July 3rd – July 9th
Not surprisingly, because of the Fourth of July holiday, this week was the thinnest week of the year for new releases. Labels will rarely drop an album during the Fourth of July week (people’s attention is elsewhere), but thankfully, a few did. But just to show how scarce the pickings were, there were only six singles for this week’s Best New Music Releases. Thankfully, there was also 7 Bands You Gotta Hear, Vol. III post, from which many of the songs in this week’s Top 10 originated.
That aside, Sunglasses’ new single, “Swim,” scored the No. 1 single of the week, according to how many times IRC listeners streamed and downloaded. Following Sunglasses, in order, Gold Motel, Easter Island, Mothlight, Ester, Tiger Waves and Cherokee Red. Sunglasses and Mothlight placed two singles in the Top 10.
– Sunglasses from Namesake/Swim EP on Lefse Records
– Gold Motel from Gold Motel on Good As Gold/Thirty Tigers
– Easter Island from Frightened (self-released)
– Mothlight from American Spirit EP
– Sunglasses from Namesake/Swim EP on Lefse Records
“Measure of a Man” – Johnny Hickman from Tilting on Campstove Records
– Mothlight from American Spirit EP
“To Let Go” – Esther from TBA
– Tiger Waves from Don’t Be Yourself
– Cherokee Red from Anomolie EP
June 26th – July 2nd
The last week of June and the first couple of days of July intertwine in this week’s Best New Music Releases (Vol. I and Vol. II) with a band hardly anyone has heard of – Seventeen Evergreen – grabbing the No. 1 spot based on what listeners streamed and downloaded the most from the week’s top singles from new albums. Seventeen Evergreen is a San Francisco electronic/psychedelic rock duo that has garnered a following throughout Europe, and based on the fact that they have the No. 1 song of the week, it looks like they are starting to attract a bigger following now in the U.S. as well. The latest single from The Henry Clay People took the No. 2 spot, followed at No. 3 by Beachwood Sparks return, and Infantree and Ty Seagall at No. 4 and No. 5, respectively, to round out the Top 5. We’re not clear on why more songs from Vol. II didn’t make it onto the Top 10 – the only guess we have is that more people were listening to Vol. I.
Ownerless on ATO/Vapor Records– Everest from
– Arc in Round from Arc in Round
June 19th – June 25th
The No. 1 single for the week of June 19th is “We Should Be Swimming” by Zulu Winter‘s debut album, Language. Zulu Winter – who’ve been compared to bands like Coldplay, Morning Parade and Temper Trap – is an indie rock quintet from London that formed in 2011, and an IRC Band to Watch. Language contains a number of other standout tracks, such as “Silver Tongue” and “Key To My Heart.”
The No. 2 song of the week, according to IRC listeners’ picks of the best new releases, was “Ocean Ghost,” by Orca Team, who only lost out to “We Should Be Swimming” by a few votes. Orca Team is yet another relatively unknown band, even among people who closely follow indie rock. Interesting that the top two songs are thematically simliar. Fiona Apple’s newest single, “Every Single Night” had the third most listens/downloads of the week, followed by Glen Hansard
– Zulu Winter from on Arts & Crafts
Restraint on HHBTM– Orca Team from
“Every Single Night” – Fiona Apple from The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do on Epic Records
“Get Gone” – White Arrows from EP on Votiv Music
– Can from on Mute
Party Foreverer on The Storyboard Label– Hard Drugs from
Early Times on Drag City– Silver Jews from
Ku-Thar’-Tik on Buddy Cat Music– Sam Densmore from
“Lo Hi” – Peaking Lights from on Weird World / Mexican Summer
June 12th – June 18th
According to listeners, Metric‘s new single, “Youth Without Youth,” easily secured the No. 1 spot for the week, between Vol. One and Vol. Two of the best new singles of the week. The latest song, “Night and Day” from Hot Chip‘s new album, In Our Heads, was the No. 2 song of the week. The No. 3 song of the week went to the rarely-known band, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, surprisingly beating out new singles from The Tallest Man on Earth and Guided by Voices, who took No. 4 and No. 5, respectively, to tap out the Top 5, trailed by These United States, Stepdad, Sea of Bees, Capitol 6 and Fallon Crush at the lower half of the Top 10.
In Our Heads on Domino (via BestIndieTracks)– Hot Chip from
– Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs from Trouble on Casablanca Records
– The Tallest Man on Earth from on Dead Oceans
These United States on United Interests– These United States from
Wildlife Pop on Black Bell Records– Stepdad from
– Sea of Bees from Orangefarben on Team Love
– Fallon Cush from April (self-released)
June 5th – June 11th
Vancouver garage rock duo, Japandroids, scored twice in this week’s Top Ten with two singles from their new album, Celebration Rock, the first of which topped the countdown (as determined by listeners) at No. 1 – “The House That Heaven Built.” The popular Canadian rockers also took the No. 4 with their second featured single, “Evil’s Sway.” It was a bit of a surprise to see Japandroids outpace The Hives‘ newest single, “Go Right Ahead,” (at No. 2) considering The Hives have been a hugely popular band for many years compared to Japandroids, who only hit the buzz blogs and mainstream music press in the past few years. Plus, Lex Hives, the band’s first album in five years. Singer and songwriter Elliott Brood secured the No. 3 spot with his new single, the aptly titled, “Northern Air,” and to top out the Top 5 was the Crocodiles newest single. The lower half of this week’s Top Ten includes Pomegrantes, Teen Daze, Michael The Blind, Pujol and Curumin, respectively.
Endless Flowers on Frenchkiss– Crocodiles from
Celebration Rock on Polyvinyl– Japandroids from
– Teen Daze from on Lefse Records
Are’s & Els on Alder Street Records– Michael The Blind from
Arrocha on Six Degrees Records– Curumin from
May 29th – June 4th
The No. 1 song for the first week of June was a bit of a surprise – Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros beat out The Walkmen for the top new single of the week. That is not to be taken as a comment that we don’t think Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros are not worthy of a No. 1 – they certainly are, and “Man On Fire” is one of the best songs of 2012. Moreover, Regina Spektor’s new single, “All The Rowboats,” which came in at No. 2, also helped pushed The Walkmen’s new single, “Heaven” to the No. 3 spot for the week.
Considering it was the top featured album and single, and The Walkmen have been such a popular indie rock band for years, the only thing that makes sense for why “Heaven” ranked only at No. 3 was that not as many people liked it as much as they did the No. 1 and No. 2 tracks. More likely, though, is the fact that the album single had already been out on the web for a couple of months before the album’s official drop date of May 29th. Iceland‘s titantic talent, Sigur Ros, released the band’s sixth studio album, Vitari, this week as well, and the lead single, “Varuo,” came in at No. 4. To top of the Top 5 is the single, “Drown,” from the new-to-us band, Broken Water, who we will definitely be keeping an ear out for. The new single from King Tuff, “Keep On Movin,'” moved right up to No. 6. Positions 7 through 10 went to, respectively, Lemonade, The Doc Marshalls, and The Toxic Avenger.
Tempest on Hardly Art– Broken Water from
– Lemonade from Diver on True Panther/Matador
– The Doc Marshalls from Look Out, Compadre (self-released)
– The Toxic Avenger from ANGST on Little Owl Recordings
May 22nd – May 28th
This is a great week for lesser known bands with new albums as the Top 10 results clearly show; there are plenty of great songs in this playlist. A band that we named a band to watch a couple of years ago, Hallelujah The Hills, rocketed to the No. 1 spot this week with their lastest single, “Get Me in a Room,” whatever that means. The band’s newest album, No One Knows What Happens Next, received a five-star rating on Amazon. At No. 2 is the newest single, “Passage,” from the band Exitmusic, followed by an IRC 2010 Band to Watch, The Danks at No. 3; Shrouded Strangers at No. 4 and JBM to round out the top five.
“Passage” – Exitmusic from on Secretly Canadian
Are You Afraid of the Danks on Hidden Pony Records– The Danks from
– Shrouded Strangers from on Trade Root / Izniz
– Joey Ramone from …Ya Know? on BMG
“Introduction” – Witch from Introduction and In The Past on Now Again Records
May 15th – May 21st
The third week of May delivered a number of anticipated new releases, especially from Beach House and Best Coast, whose singles, not surprisingly, took the No. 1 and No. 2 spots of the week, respectively, according to IRC listeners. Brooklyn’s synth pop trio Plushgun ranked at No. 3 for the week of May 15th, followed by Duquette Johnston and The Rebel Kings and Parlovr, at No. 4 and No. 5. The lower half of the Top 10 Songs for the week include, in order, new singles from fresh album drops by Apollo Ghosts, Carousel, Black Tambourine, Concubines and Violens.
“Myth” – Beach House from
– Plushgun from
– Duquette Johnston and The Rebel Kings, new single for the season finale of Private Practice
– Apollo Ghosts from
“Darkness” – Concubines from Darkness 7″
May 8th – May 14th
Here We Go Magic has built a loyal following over the past few years with their unique style of infectious indie pop. Their new single, “How Do I Know?,” is rhythmically upbeat and infectious pop – in fact, a friend has already added it to a summer 2012 playlist she’s making, which will likely be posted on IRC, to kick-off the first summer playlist since the past couple of years successful Summer Mixtape Series.
The No. 2 spot was almost a tie between Here We Go Magic’s second single, “At Right Time” and Silveruns Pickups’ newest single from their new release, Neck of the Woods. A second single from Here We Go Magic took the No. 3 spot, followed by Dana Boy and The Cribs to round out the Top 5.
– Here We Go Magic from
“Bloody Mary” – Silversun Pickups from on Dangerbird Records
– Here We Go Magic from
Summer Bodies on Lefse Records– Dana Buoy from
In The Belly Of The Brazen Bull (Bonus Edition) on Witchita Recordings– The Cribs from
– Saints of Valory from Kids
“John Johnny” – Heavy Cream from Super Treatment on Infinity Cat
“Call My Name” – Drift Wood Miracle from Cuidadé
May 1st – May 7th
The first week of May was another great week for great singles from new album releases. Interestingly, of the Vol. I and Vol. II post playlists for the week, Ane Brun came out with the No. 2 spot of the week. That wouldn’t have been our choice for top track of the week, but hey, the Top 10 is determined by listeners. At No. 2, a more likely No. 1 song for the week, Reptar offer the standout track, “Sebastian.” To round out the Top 5 of the week are new singles from Mystery Jets, The Mowgils and Ramona Falls, respectively.
It All Starts With One on America– Ane Brun from
Body Faucet on Vagrant Records– Reptar from
– The Mowglis from
“Spore” – Ramona Falls from on Barsuk Records
“Brains” – Lower Dens from Nootropics on Ribbon Music
“(David Bowie I Love You) Since I Was Six” – The Brian Jonestown Massacre from
April 24th – April 30th
This was Jack White‘s week in the eyes of Best New Releases, and opinions of IRC listeners. As such, the No. 1 song of the week went to White’s “Freedom of 21,” off his debut solo album, Blunderbuss. Because of the popularity of the release, and the fact that we featured a number of available singles (including two embedded songs), Jack got to stack the top of the charts this week – at least according to the number of streams and downloads of his singles from the Blunderbuss profile published on IRC. And to that point, “Sixteen Saltines,” easily took the No. 2 song of the week.
But there is a inherit flaw in this week’s Top Ten – that is, the embedded songs – we cannot track how many times they were played on IRC, and why embeds are avoided most of the time, since the Top Ten pages are so popular with listeners around the world. Unfortunately, labels are using more Soundcloud embeds than .mp3 links of songs in the past year, which screws things up for us. We wish they would all provide .mp3 links like many other record labels do – most notably Subpop (thank you), Matador (thank you), and Saddle Creek (thank you), among others.
That said, the embedded songs from Blunderbuss that were featured in the post, “Love Interruption” and “Trash Tongue Talker,” can’t be included in the Top 10 because we have no statistics available. Moving on, at No. 3 for the week was “Country Mile” from Diamond Rugs, a band consisting of John McCauley (Deer Tick), Robbie Crowell (Deer Tick), Ian Saint Pé (The Black Lips), Steve Berlin (Los Lobos), Hardy Morris (Dead Confederate) and Bryan Dufresne (Six Finger Satellite). Interestingly, Diamond Rugs just barely beat out the first new lead single from The Raveonettes, “Into The Night.” To round out the Top 5 was “Once And For All,” by Clock Opera.
The lower half of the Top 10 kicks off with The Raveonettes second feature single, “Night Comes Out,” at No. 6, followed by fresh tracks from new albums by popular indie artists like Bad Veins, Ty Seagull with White Fence, Toro Y Moi and Suckers. Pretty solid Top 10, and yet again, evidence that IRC listeners have great taste in music.
– Diamond Rugs – from on Partisan Records
– Clock Opera from Ways To Forget
– Bad Veins from on Modern Outsider Records
Hair (or vinyl) via Drag City Records– Ty Segall & White Fence from
April 17th – April 23rd
Because of our Record Store Day coverage (which contains dozens of awesome free MP3s), it was a bit tricker to extrapolate from the web state data which were the top singles of the week from the Best New Releases for the week of April 17th, but we got it figured out eventually.
This week’s No. 1 track, according to listeners’ streams and downloads, goes to Absolute Monarchs‘ new single, “Attack.” Interestingly, the new single “Winters” from Maps & Atlases followed far behind at No. 2. Dry The River‘s first single, “New Ceremony” scored the No. 3 track followed by Horse Feathers‘ “Fit Against The Country” at No. 4. To round out the top five was JD McPherson‘s “North County Gal.”
“New Ceremony” – Dry The River from
Cynic’s New Year via Kill Rock Stars– Horse Feathers from
Signs and Signifiers (+ digital booklet) via Rounder Records– JD McPherson from
Gothdammit EP via Hardly Art– Grave Babies from
– Dry The River from
On Mars (CD version)– Mean Jeans from
– King Of Prussia from (self-released)
April 10th – April 16th
They were a huge hit at South By Southwest a couple of weeks earlier, so it’s not a huge surprise that the new single, “Hold On,” from Alabama Shakes debut album was the No. 1 track for the second release week of April. Dinosaur Feathers took the No. 2 spot with the track “Surprise!” – which is full of hooklicious guitar riffs, pop-oriented beats, and grand choruses.
California stoner rock band Sleepy Sun took the No. 3 slot with the new single, “Stivey Pond,” followed by Young Hines, a new relatively unknown artist who opened for The Raconteurs last year, landed the No. 4 position with “Rainy Day.” To round out the top five, Dinosaur Feathers scored their second Top 10 with the track, “Betcha” – so there definitely is strong interest in the relatively unknown band that we think will become more well-known as time goes on.
Starting out the bottom half of the Top 10 is the No. 6 track of the week, “For Years and Years” by It’s A Musical, followed at No. 7 by The Sugarettes‘ awesome “Love In Stereo.” Hoots and Hellmouth, who we added to our radar, caught the No. 8 single of the week, followed by the band Trampled by Turtles’ new single, “Alone,” and No. 9. To close out the Top 10 Songs of the week is the single “Sunshine Blood” by Jennie Gellespie. Also view afor this week – it’s all explained .
Spine Hits on The End Records– Sleepy Sun from
– The Sugarettes from Destroyer of Worlds
– Hoots and Hellmouth from on sonaBLAST! Records
Belita EP– Jenny Gillespie from
April 3rd – April 9th
April 2012 was a pretty good month for new releases, maybe not as much as previous month’s, but still plenty to take notice of. Interestingly enough, the first No. 1 track of the month goes to the relatively new and unknown band, The Lumineers, who’s new single, “Ho Hey” beat out No. 2 single, “Little Talks,” from Of Monsters and Men by one vote. The No. 3 track of the week, according to listeners’ streams/downloads, was “New Wild Everywhere,” the title track of the latest album from the folk rockers Great Lake Swimmers. Another title track, “Destroyer of Worlds,” from The Sugarettes new LP, came in at No. 4. To round out the Top 5 is the new single, “Night,” from the relatively unknown band Ravens & Chimes.
The lower half of the Top Ten Songs for the week of April 3rd to April 9th starts of with the No. 6 song, and second entry, by Of Monsters and Men, with the track “Lakehouse.” Next, another IRC DIY Band to Watch in 2012, Max and the Moon, took the No. 7 spot with their single, “Light House,” which is kind of interesting that it followed right behind “Lakehouse” – a bit of coincidental theme going on there. As with Monsters and Men, new indie band, The Lumineers, also made the Top 10 twice, at No. 7, with the track, “Slow It Down.” Somewhat surprisingly, Bear in Heaven‘s new single only ranked in at No. 8.
Rocky Votolato’s new single, “Little Spring” came in at No. 9 and to close out this Top 10 is the fresh single, “Solid Gold,” from the band AU. These songs came from Best New Releases Vol. One and Two.
My Head Is an Animal via Record Records– Of Monsters and Men from
New Wild Everywhere on Nettwerk Records
“Destroyer of Worlds” – The Sugarettes from Destroyer of Worlds
March 28th – April 2nd
To close out the month of March, and beginning of April’s, Top 10 Songs playlists, the No. 1 track of the week of March 27th to April 2nd went to the supergroup Poor Moon‘s new single, “People In Her Mind.” The band features members of Fleet Foxes, Crystal Skulls and The Christmas Cards. Some would say Poor Moon is not really a supergroup in terms of what people think of as supergroups like Monsters of Folk and the more recently formed Diamond Rugs.
From Athens, Ohio, the electro shoegaze band, Brothertiger, the moniker of musician John Jagos, sent in his new album, Golden Years, and we were in total agreement with listeners that the lead single, “Lovers,” was worthy of being the No. 2 track of the week. The popular band, La Sera, founded by Katy Goodman, the bassist for the Vivian Girls, had the No. 3 most listened to song, “Please Be My Their Eye,” of the week, followed at No. 4 by the Brooklyn band Oberhofer’s single “Away Frm U,” which we actually featured as a demo back in 2009, when we featured the then relatively unknown one-man band of Brad Oberhofer. The band also took the No. 5 spot with their song, “oOoO” (there has been various versions of the spelling of this track).
The Toronto band, Zeus, one of our favorite new discoveries of 2012, scored the No. 6 spot for the single, “Anything You Want Dear.” One of the best debut albums of 2012 so far is Coco Beware from the band Caveman from which the single, “Old Friend” was the No. 7 song of the week. There were so many great singles for this week that artists that would normally chart higher in a Top 10 Songs playlist were further down the list, including Alcoholic Faith Mission (No. 8 for “Into Pieces”), Young Prisms (No. 9 for “Floating in Blue”) and finally The Retribution Gospel Choir at No. 10 with their single, “The Stone (Revolution).”
“People in Her Mind” – Poor Moon from on Sub Pop
Golden Years on Mush Records– Brothertiger from
– Oberhofer from Time Capsule II
– Zeus from
“Into Pieces” – Alcoholic Faith Mission from Ask Me This
“Floating In Blue” – Young Prisms from
March 21st – March 27th
This was definitely the week of The Shins, and it shows in the results for the Top 10 Songs of the week. We featured three songs from the new album, Port of Morrow, and they easily swept the Top 10. But we were a little surprised that the lead single, “Simple Song,” wasn’t the No. 1 track or the No. 2 song. Rather, IRC listeners chose “It’s Only Life,” as the top track of the week, followed at No. 2 by “September,” and finally, at No. 3, “Simple Song.”
We haven’t seen a featured band sweep the top three in a long time, which goes to show that The Shins are bigger than ever. The No. 4 song of the week, “All of Me,” from the duo Tanlines is an enjoyable dance pop track, so it’s not a surprise it came in the Top 5. The track that completed the Top 5 was the newest single, “Golden Eyelids,” from the new album from Lost in the Trees. The bottom half of the Top 10 include great songs (in order) from Yukon Blonde, Morningbell, The Wedding Present, Daniel Rossen, and Cousins. Listen to all the songs from the Best New Releases for the week of March 20th.
– Tanlines from (Amazon Exclusive Version) via True Panther Sounds
Tiger Talk on Dine Alone Records– Yukon Blonde from
Basso Profundo (self-released)– Morningbell from
“You Jane” – The Wedding Present from Valentina on Scopitones
Silent Hour/Golden Mile EP on Warp– Daniel Rossen from
– Cousins from The Palm at the End of the Mind on Saved by Vinyl
March 14th – March 20th
This week was the 25th anniversary of the world-famous South by Southwest music festival, marathon and convention in Austin. Therefore, much of the music world was pretty much focused on SXSW. Nevertheless, there were a number of notable new releases for SXSW week. In fact, some of the same artists that were at SXSW released new albums the same week. The latest single from The Ting Tings, “Soul Killing,” topped the list at No. 1, followed closely behind at No. 2 by the CD release single from Delta Spirit, “California.”
The No. 3 track of the week, “Sappho,” was the lead single by the enthralling band Tribes’ anticipated debut, Baby. The band, Tiger! Tiger!, sent in their new album, Cut Them Where They Bleed, from which the lead single, “Perfume of Despair,” took the No. 4 slot. To round out of the Top 5 was the single “Sometimes,” by the band Lucero.
The bottom half of the Top 10 featured, in order, singles from Drowner, Freshkills, Spoek Mathambo, Tacocat, and Say Anything.
Delta Spirit on Rounder Records (track via )– Delta Spirit from
“Sappho” – Tribes from via Fairfax Recordings (song via )
– Lucero from via ATO Records
– Drowner from
“Positive Vibes” – Freshkills from via Bat Rabies Alert/The End Records
Take Me To Your Dealer via Hardly Art– Tacocat from
View and listen to all the songs from the Best New Releases playlist post for the second week of March.
March 7th – March 13th
Andrew Bird easily took the No. 1 spot for first full week of March (in album release terms; since most albums are released on Tuesdays) with his fantastic new single, “Eyeoneye,” from the widely acclaimed new album Break it Yourself. In Part Two of this week’s Best New Releases, the band Ceremony‘s new single, “Hysteria,” captured the No. 2 spot.
At No. 3 for the week is the new track from a band we like a lot, Good Old War, off their new release Come Back As Rain. The Bowerbirds‘ return with a new album that produced the No. 4 song of the week – “Tuck The Darkness In.” To round out the Top 5 songs, White Rabbits‘ “Temporary” came in at No. 5. The lower half of the Top 10 included songs, in order, by Miniature Tigers, The Magnetic Fields, Said The Whale, Bensh and Yellow Ostrich.
– Ceremony from via Matador Records
Come Back As Rain via Sargent House– Good Old War from
“Tuck the Darkness In” – Bowerbirds from (+Digital Booklet) via Dead Oceans
Milk Famous via TBD Records– White Rabbits from
Little Mountain via Hidden Pony– Said the Whale from
Clues on Odd One In Records– Bensh from
“Marathon Runner” – Yellow Ostrich from via Barsuk
Feb. 28th – March 4th
IRC listeners and visitors agreed with our pick of a lead single for the first week of March. The song, “The Way That You Are,” from PT Walkley‘s latest album, Thriller – even though we strongly disagree with the choice of any another artist in the world giving their album title ‘Thriller.’ Love or hate MJ’s music, that’s just a line you don’t cross. It really makes us wish we could have been there when the discussion over giving Walkley’s album that title was made. That aside, the track is terrific, and no wonder that it was the No. 1 song of the week.
The lead single, “The Kids Were Wrong,” of the debut album from Toronto‘s dream pop duo, Memoryhouse, took the No. 2 spot followed at No. 3 by the lead single, “Northern Air” off Elliott Brood‘s album, Days Into Years. Checking in at No. 4 is a terrific single from Geographer‘s well received album, Myth, trailed by “Lightshow” at No. 5 by Plants and Animals.
“Every Little Thing” – Soft Swells from
– Mind Spiders from Meltdown
Feb. 21st – Feb. 27th
No surprise that the infectious song, “We Are Young,” by the band Fun, with Janelle Monae on vocals – from the February LP, Some Nights – ended up as the No. 1 song of the week. It’s a song that started out months ago as an advanced single, and quickly spread on indie blogs and music sites, and then blew up after it was featured in a car commercial, going on to top the Billboard Top 100 charts. There is a doubtful, non-sourced, claim on the band’s Wikipedia profile, that includes the assertion that the single was “the first rock/alternative song to top the Billboard Hot 100 chart since Coldplay’s “Viva la Vida” in 2008.”
For starters, Fun is more of an indie rock band (but perhaps not as much now with the success of “We Are Young”) than a “rock/alternative” band (that syntax is odd). The same Wikipedia page for Fun doesn’t even list them as an alternative rock band, but instead an indie pop and indie rock band. Secondly, Fun cannot possibly be compared to Coldplay, a band which has been one of the most internationally famous and commercially successful bands of the past 15 years.
To label Coldplay as an alternative rock band is simply a flawed assumption. Many people think of The White Stripes, The Strokes, Cage The Elephant, Band of Skulls, and so on, as alternative rock bands, but Coldplay? Not really; we’d say they are more Britpop, and perhaps too commercial to be seriously called alternative rock. In addition to the fact that this quote from Wikipedia has no reference makes it all the more dubious.
Read about, and listen to/download, all of the Top Ten Songs, and the artists that released them, for the last week of February. Or stream the stripped-down version below.
“Museum of Flight” – Damien Jurado from
“Nowhere” – Wild Nothing from
“Remembrance of Things to Come” – Princeton from
– Princeton from
“Shout It In” – Dirty Ghosts from
“Gone Tomorrow” – Lambchop from
Feb. 14th – Feb. 20th
The new releases for the love week of Feb 14th that garnered the most interest from IRC regulars and visitors were not a big surprise – the No.1 song of the week easily went to newest single, “You As You Were,” from Shearwater‘s highly acclaimed new animal, Animal Joy. It was the most streamed, and downloaded, song in the days following the publishing of the post Best New Releases – Week of Feb. 14th (In the U.S., Tuesdays are the music industry’s official day to release new albums).
Band of Skull‘s new single, “Sweet & Sour” was fairly far behind Shearwater to take the No. 2 spot, which indicates IRC listeners – at least for this Top 10 Songs list – picked one of folk rock’s biggest bands over one of alternative rock’s top bands in recent years. Ranking at No. 3 is the latest single from an IRC Band to Watch (thanks mostly to their new sophomore album, Failure, from which the single was taken) Unicycle Loves You. Shearwater charts twice this week with a No. 4 song and the second official single from Animal Joy, “Breaking The Yearlings.”
To close out the Top 5, another band to watch, Oy Vey, scored with the infectious lead single, “When I Was Young,” off of their new album, Recession Girls, which has garnered considerable critical praise from media sites and blogs across the web. Even though their debut album was released in 2008, it still seems that the band have not broken out to the degree we think their music dictates they should.
Therefore, it just seems and feels appropriate to bend the rules a little (that is that, the rule that bands to watch are usually named before or after their first album) and keep Ov Vey on the band watch list. In fact, we might just feature them in an upcoming installment.
The title of the Oy Vey single, as well as the recent Top 40 and web viral track, “We Are The Young,” by the now-less-indie band, fun. both contain the word young. But, it goes even further, especially in the band names department, including many bands we dig like Young The Giant (even though they’ve been together since ’04, they hit the bigger stage, if you will, during 2010-11), Youth Lagoon, Young Magic, Young Man, Young Knives, The Young Veins, Youth Group.
Just as Shearwater did, Band of Skulls scored in the Top 5 twice, the other time, the second single, “The Devil Takes Care of His Own,” made the No. 5.
According to the web statistics, the seventh most popular song for the Valentines week of 2012 went to the lead track, “Origins” from Tennis’ widely acclaimed album Young and Old. The well-respected All Music Guide wrote: “Tennis are making some of the best pop music around in 2012” and Prefix Magazine praised “it’s a record that’s hard to turn off once you put it on.” At No. 8 was the new single, “Song of a City,” by the duo Isidore, from Life Somewhere Else, an album that was eight years in the making. If you want an album to “take a chance” with this week, this would be a good pick. And to wrap up the Top 10, a band we like a lot, Young Magic, took No. 9 with their new single, and at No. 10, The Phenomenal Handclap Band.
Note: Whenever you want to buy an album, you know that you can come to IRC, and whether in a post or on this page, you can click the album title and make a purchase directly from Amazon, where the prices are almost always lower than iTunes, they are not protected and you can import them into iTunes and any other MP3 player you have, including smart phones and tablets. People say they like the fact that we include a link to buy the album because it’s convenient and easy way to buy all the albums they want each week in one place.
“Origins” – Tennis from
Feb. 7th – Feb. 13th
Look who took the cake for the second week of February. Indeed it was Philly alternative/indie rock band, Dr. Dog, which listeners voted (through streams and downloads) so enthusiastically that the two tracks we featured from their new album, Be The Void, took both the No. 1 and No. 2 spots in the Top 10 Songs of the Week. The No. 3 track from the indie band Capybara grabbed the No.3 spot with the lead single, “Late Night Bikes” from their new album.
The song that took the No. 4 spot was a head-scratcher. It was a track buried at the end of Part Two (here’s Part One) of the week’s Best New Releases, by the alt. country band Drunkard Prayer. It’s not a particularly good song, and compared with all of the other tracks for the week, we just could not figure out what listeners heard in the song that we didn’t. Anyone who wants to help us understand, please use the Comments section (no, seriously).
To round out the Top 5, the new single, “Mean to Me,” from Go Fly A Kite, singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Ben Kweller‘s new album, almost tied with Drunkard Prayer by one stream/download. But what’s almost as head-scratching as Drunkard Prayer is the No. 6 to No. 10 tracks of the week. Just by looking at the list, you might see why we are puzzled those songs didn’t rank up higher – but still, of the dozens of tracks to choose from that week, they still all made it into the Top 10, including tracks from Blondes, of Montreal, Liz Green, Pretty Good Dance Moves and tying for No. 10 were A Place to Bury Strangers and Sharon Van Etten. You can click on the album title to download the albums from Amazon – we get a tiny bit, not even 5%, for each album sold, but over time, if enough buy, it can add up to a few extra dollars so we can buy more bandwidth because – throughout the entire website – we are hosting hundreds, probably thousands by now, free and legal MP3s.
“Late Night Bikes” – Capybara from
“Always Sad” – Drunken Prayer from Into the Missionfield
– Liz Green from O, Devotion!
– Pretty Good Dance Moves from Limo
Feb. 1st – Feb 6th
The top singles from the new album releases officially dropped during the first week of February made up a good mix of tracks from a variety of artists. Not totally surprisingly, Imperial Teen‘s much-played track, “Runaway,” was by far the No. 1 track over a distant No. 2 – the newest single, “Darkness,” from Leonard Cohen‘s new album, Old Ideas.
Interestingly, the track, “Festejo” from a band we’d never heard of before, Novalima, ranked in at No. 3 for the week. Not only is it interesting compared to all of the other tracks, but it’s positioned near the bottom of the playlist, not intentionally – usually the first have of the playlist in the Best New Releases posts are positioned according to our favorites, which are usually the favorites of others.
The lead track from the long awaited self-titled, debut album from Hospitality took the No. 4 slot, followed by the groovy track, “Funny Girl” by psych pop band Pacific UV at No. 5 to round out the top five tracks. The other half of the top ten were singles from the following artists – Imperial Teen (2nd single), The Library is On Fire, The Jealous Sound, Hospitality (2nd single), and The Big Sleep.
– Novalima from Karimba
– The Library Is On Fire from (self-released)
– The Jealous Sound from A Gentle Reminder
– The Big Sleep from Nature Experiments
Jan. 23rd – Jan. 30th
Now that highly anticipated new releases of 2012 are really starting to roll out as February draws nearer to a close, the stacks of new, fantastic singles, EPs and albums are piling up. But this particular week was a huge one, especially for fans of electro psych pop. See the original Best New Releases for full profiles, photos, and more songs from new albums released this week, as well as some flashback tracks, which we don’t include in the Top 10 because they are not new songs. As affirmation to our top picks of the week, regular listeners and new visitors made the new single, “No Future/No Past,” from Cloud Nothings‘ Attack on Memory, as the No. 1 song of the week.
Further affirmation came with the new single from Brooklyn‘s rising Porcelain Raft (Mauro Remiddi). Listeners pushed “Put Me To Sleep” from PR’s debut album to the No. 2 spot. The debut, Strange Weekend, is one of our favorite albums of 2012, so far, and Porcelain Raft a Band to Watch. To round out the top five, Nada Surf took No. 3, and The Big Pink came in at No. 4, with another track, “Stay Useless” from Attack on Memory, rounding out the Top 5. The bottom half of the Top Ten where another track from Cloud Nothings, Big Deal, Laura Gibson, Dana Falconberry, Cheyenne Marie Mize, and Chairlift. Lots of good music; enjoy.
“Put Me to Sleep” – Porcelain Raft from
“When I Was Young” – Nada Surf from The Stars Are Indifferent to Astronomy
– Big Deal from Lights Out
“La Grande” – Laura Gibson from La Grande
– Dana Falconberry from Though I Didn’t Call It Came EP
– Cheyenne Marie Mize from We Don’t Need EP
– Chairlift from Something
Jan. 16th – Jan. 22nd
By the third week of January, the new music releases start to really flow out, in addition to announcements of other album release dates in the coming months, and on top of that, tour dates and festival news. This week there were new releases from Guided by Voices, Howlers, Paul Brill, Frankie Rose, Old Monk, Buried Beds, Ani DiFranco and more. Despite the stiff competition, the new single, “The Unsinkable Fats Domino,” off of the first album to feature the original line-up of Guided By Voices in 18 years, Let’s Go Eat the Factory, easily grasped the position as the No. 1 song of the week. New songs from the bands to watch Howler and Louden Swain came in No. 2 and No. 3, respectively, followed by Paul Brill and The Duke Spirit to round out the top half of the top ten singles from new albums out this week.
Note: You can buy MP3 downloads of any album from Amazon by clicking on any album title link.
America Give Up (Bonus Track version)
– Louden Swain from
– Louden Swain from
– Frankie Rose from Intersellar
Jan. 9th – Jan. 15th
This first Top 10 Songs playlist of 2012 is a bit different than the ordinary top tens of 2011. Because of the holidays, bands and labels did not release very many new albums in the first couple of weeks, and so we ended up having to search our email box for band submissions that were not showing up on any other music sites. And what we found were some DIY gems that started the year with a good kick. The band that rose to the top in our minds, and subsequently with listeners, was a random submission that we received from The Sanctuaries, whose raw lo-fi rock single, “She Got Bit,” from the band’s new album, Anette, shot to the top of the IRC charts to become our first No. 1 track of 2012.
Many of the songs for this Top 10, as is the case for most other Top 10 lists, originate predominantly from the Best New Releases posts, in which we look at which tracks were played and downloaded the most for the week in question to determine the order of the Top 10. In some cases, not so much with this particular Top 10, the songs that come out on top have sometimes been out for weeks as early advance singles. Still, we feel comfortable with that fact, because there are thousands of people who get their favorite new ‘indie’ music from this page, and have been doing so since its inception in 2010 (also check out the 500 MP3s of Top 10 songs for 2011).
Other tracks that make it onto the Top 10 originate from a variety of other posts published during the corresponding week, as long as they are new songs – older songs that appear in a playlist or post for that week are not considered for the Top 10 since the focus is only on new music. Read more and listen to other tracks published this past week in the Best New Releases for early January 2012, and also access the best singles from 2011here.
“She Got Bit” – The Sanctuaries from Annette – Jan. 7th
– Gary Go from Now Was Once The Future
– Grand and Noble from Grand and Noble – Jan. 10th
– Songs For The Sleepwalkers from Our Rehearsed Spontaneous Reactions
– Paper Lights from Paper Lights
“Mommy’s Dreaming” – Graham Repulski from My Color Is Red 7″
– The Set from Loretta
– The Set from Loretta
– Tito Ramsey from Hi Lo EP – Jan. 10th
“Guernica” – Mythologies from Mud Bay – Jan. 12th, 2012
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