When you first listen to an album, there are several things you think about when assessing the greatness of the record. The songwriting, the innovation, the strength of the vocals and instrumentation are all things which I look out for. In this list we have seen many albums which push the boundaries of all these categories; Grimes’ Visions changed the way I thought about dance music, Sharon Van Etten’s Tramp is a masterpiece in modern folk songwriting and Lana Del Rey’s Born to Die pushes pop music forward into something much more interesting These are all great records, records which will probably be remembered for years to come as high points of music in 2012. However, my number 1 record, Hannah Cohen’s Child Bride, makes this list for an entirely different reason.
This record doesn’t necessarily push boundaries, it’s not new or innovative, the songwriting is simple, as is the instrumentation. Looking at this record from the point of view of a ‘music critic’, this album doesn’t tick all the boxes. But I am not just a music critic, I am a person, and to people that read this blog that sometimes might be difficult to identify with. And as a person, this record strikes an emotion inside me like no other record this year has. This record still makes me cry, it’s beauty is astonishing, and from the very first note, something about it feels like home. I feel like a huge amount of my feelings and thoughts are being said through this record, I relate to every note, every lyric and every last yearning hum.
I don’t expect everyone to find what I have found in this record, but I hope that more people hear it, and even if out of 1000 people that hear it, only 1 person finds what I have found in it, then that power for that one person will make this a record with a great amount of love.
This record is my album of the year because I have fallen in love with it. And I think that really, the greatest records, are those which do something outside tick all the boxes.
Best tracks: Don’t Say, The Crying Game, California, Sorry, Sunrise.