First up: singles. Well, mostly singles - some non-singles pop up along the way - and one may or may not have actually been from 2011 but given a proper single release in 2012, so we're counting that too.
20.) Alphabeat - Vacation
The album was a bit of a dud, but this one sat on just the right side of being too sicky sweet. (Barely.)
19.) Will Young - I Just Want A Lover (Extended Mix)
So it's from 2011, really, but this version didn't appear until 2012 so we're counting it. Again, Richard X should be in charge of everything.
18.) Mirrors - Blood Diamond (Home Demo)
Things seem to have gone silent in Camp Mirrors, but this one shows that if they ever get a shot an album #2, they've got a good starting point.
17.) Little Boots - Headphones (Dimitri From Paris Remix)
The original is "For Tomorrow" goes to the club, but DJ Dimitri wraps that up in straight-up "Into The Groove 2012". Can we please have an album already?
16.) The Joy Formidable - Cholla
The wall of sound returns with album 2 ready to go just as the campaign for 1 is wrapping up. That's the way to do it. It's no "Whirring", but then again what is?
15.) Van She - Idea of Happiness
On the flip side, Van She sure took their time with album 2 but it was ultimately worth the wait - especially when the lead single comes with such a fantastic GusGus-esque video.
14.) Moonlight Matters - Come For Me (feat. Gustaph)
I just became aware of this one a few days back but it instantly shot up my list. Good to see someone continuing the early-90's house/pop revival that Alphabeat started with 'The Beat Is...'.
13.) The Ting Tings - Hit Me Down Sonny
'Sounds From Nowheresville' is the most fantastic career suicide attempt this side of Elastica's 'The Menace', and this is one of its many highlights.
12.) Pop Levi - Strawberry Shake
After sitting silent for a few years, Pop Levi returns out of nowhere with a single as funkily weird as anything in his discography. Huzzah!
11.) Pet Shop Boys - Leaving
"Being boring 2012"? Kindasortanotreally. The highlight of an uneven album? Absolutely.
10.) Imperial Teen - Runaway
We may only get new Imperial Teen every four or five years, but when they reconvene they do it in a big way.
09.) Sylver Tongue - Creatures
Charlotte Hatherley adopts a synth/art-pop loving persona and decides that indie-jungle is the way to go. And it works.
08.) Steve Mason - Fight Them Back
Another late entry, Mr. Mason gives us a preview of what he's been working on the past few years.
07.) Dragonette - Untouchable
I had my issues with 'Bodyparts' and ultimately I couldn't come around to it. That said, this is 100% classic Dragonette and sends chills up my spine every time. Also, lyric of the year in "your divinity only makes me feel dirty".
(Not available for streaming anywhere? Lame!)
05.) TIE: R. Ring - Fall Out & Fire / Kim Deal - Walking With A Killer
While I'd love a new Breeders album - we're getting the 'LSXX' tour next year so at least I'll get a live show - I'm equally excited about new projects from both of the Deal twins. Kelley paired up with Mike Montgomery to bring us a slightly less sloppy take on the incredibly messy guitar pop the Kelley Deal 6000 excelled at, and Kim remains impossibly genius with the fractured anti-pop of "Walking With A Killer". More, please!
04.) Robbie Williams - Candy
Robbie's biggest pop moment in ages.
03.) Ultrasound - Beautiful Sadness
The reunion that should not be continues, following up last year's as-good-as-they-ever-were "Welfare State" with something even better.
02.) Blur - The Puritan
Everything you ever loved about Blur in under 4 minutes. This should be getting wayyyyyy more attention than it is.
01.) Death Grips - I've Seen Footage
Duh. Too bad about everything else.