Top 10 Electronic Music Albums of 2012

Farewell, 2012. This year rippled with some fantastic releases; here’s a list of my top ten albums from the past twelve months:

  1. Pye Corner Audio – Sleep Games (Ghost Box)
    My favorite artist of 2012. The Head Technician outputs music worthy of a deliciously thick, foggy horror flick under the heavy influence of Warp Records’ early days.

  2. Christian Löffler – A Forest (Ki)
    A relatively new face to the ambient techno world, Löffler is coming soon to San Francisco with Andy Stott (January 18).

  3. Lumerians – Transmissions From the Telos Vol. IV (Hands In The Dark)
    These local psych gods put on an outstanding show. They make sweet friends too.

  4. Can – The Lost Tapes (Mute)
    This three disc set of master tapes contains rare material that was recorded, boxed and forgotten decades ago. So glad they were unearthed and released.

  5. Voices from the Lake feat. Donato Dozzy & Neel – Voices from the Lake (Prologue)
    “S.T. (VFL Rework)” became the most frequently played track when I printed on the Windmill this year; I guess VFTL and letterpress go well together! They performed a memorable live set at Monarch in July.

  6. Jan Jelinek – Music For Fragments / Music & Birds (Faitiche)
    I’ve followed Jan Jelinek over a dozen years with much devotion. His latest release is one of quiet sophistication, spare but crackling with texture and whimsy.

  7. Peaking Lights – Lucifer
    A great album for summertime at the beach. “Beautiful Son” is a highlight:

  8. Ólafur Arnalds & Nils Frahm – Stare (Erased Tapes)
    Nils Frahm’s last album, Felt, was a 2011 favorite, and his latest collaboration with Arnalds seems a happy and productive one. Together, the two modern classical composers create a cinematic EP that’s perfect for a late night drive.

  9. Andy Stott – Luxury Problems (Modern Love)
    Like Jelinek, Andy Stott is another producer I’ve watched with keen interest over the years. He’s come a long way from Merciless (2006), slowly growing his sonic palette into a dark fusion of lush IDM and driving percussive patterns, overlaid with heavenly vocals from Alison Skidmore.

  10. Monolake – Ghosts (Imbalance Computer Music)
    Robert Henke gave a great talk and dropped a solid set at Unsound Festival in New York. His latest album transports one straight into the pages of a Philip K. Dick or William Gibson novel.

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