Year in Review: Top 40 Lubbock Songs of 2012: 30-21

picstitchOur rundown of music in the year 2012 starts off this week and continues through the rest of the year. We’re kicking things off this week with our Top 40 Songs of 2012 by Lubbock Associated Artists. Here’s the schedule for the remainder of the week.

Monday: 40-31
Tuesday: 30-21
Wednesday: 20-11
Thursday: 10-6
Friday: 5-1

Coqulicot30. “Petit Fre Cre” Coquelicot 
“Radicaaaaaal 4/20” Middle Child Records Compilation

“Petit Fre Cre,” a single released by Coquelicot on Middle Child Records’ 2012 “Radicaaaaaal” Compilation, begins in a dream, or so it feels. The song intros with a synthesizer floating above what sounds like a conversation at a party or small gathering, with the listener separated from others by a wall of water, or a washy membrane. There is a distinct feeling of loneliness until Kayaki’s slow vocal melody creeps into the room backed by driving waves of rhythm guitar, drums, and bass. Surrounded by cascading lights of harmony and sound, the listener is given the distinct feeling of occupying a special place in time that he or she is temporarily aware of, only to later be carried away at the end of the song by a diminishing wind of sparkling melody. Nestled deep in Radicaaaal, this single takes a snapshot of a band always evolving relative to instrumentation, phrasing, and arrangement. Coquelicot’s new music remains dynamic, and always representative of when and where it was created by this tight knit group of musicians.–TYLER HARDY of Above the Empire

Prairie Scholars

29. “Flatland Farmers” The Prairie Scholars
“The Wasteland Ramble”

Andy and Jessica Eppler may have moved off from Lubbock years ago, but that Texas grit is still there in his voice. Often people say that art intimates life. Nothing fits the bill better than “Flatland Farmers” from their latest album efforts, “The Wasteland Ramble.” It’s a Terry Allen-esque (It’d have fit seamlessly amongst Allen’s “Lubbock (On Everything)”) song about a family slowly, but surely becoming owned by the bank. It’s something that many people are relating to in modern America–though their farm may be something else entirely that ends up owning them. Though in this case, the flatland farmers decide to become modern-day Bonnie & Clyde’s–well, except with the murdering. Eppler’s guitar strumming and the rhythm of the song is upbeat–very Jakob Dylan/Wallflowers–for a song that’s depressing in more ways than one.–THOMAS D. MOONEY

Ronnie Eaton28. “Wildflower” Ronnie Eaton
“There’s No Way To Tell” EP

Ronnie Eaton’s “Wildflower,” starts off with a single piano before his dark, deep vocals come in along with his simple guitar strums. The melody feels like he handpicked it from an early ’70s Elton John studio session. Eaton’s voice isn’t exactly the largest the room with the most range, but it does more than enough to capture the atmosphere he’s trying to create. Eaton’s a simplistic alternative folk (or is it alternative country? OK both), artist armed with just with his voice and guitar, or in this case, piano. “There’s No Way to Tell,” the EP Eaton released this year, in general has a Bruce Springsteen “Nebraska” feel to it. It’s not as rough around the edges, but it feels like we’re not necessarily supposed to be invited to the party. They feel like Eaton’s been singing them to himself for years and has finally decided to let us get a peek at what’s on the inside.–THOMAS D. MOONEY


Daniel Markham27. “The Astronaut” Daniel Markham
“Hexagons” EP

In late January of this year, Daniel Markham released a short EP worth of songs titled “Hexagons.” as Markham puts it, the EP was heavily influenced by Middle Child Records founder, the late Marcus Chapa. As many of you know, Chapa using primarily the moniker, Kitten Glitter, was an 8-bit genius. It’s obvious Chapa’s work had a huge impact on “Hexagons,” a dark venture into the future, one John Carpenter would thoroughly approve. This isn’t more apparent than on the final track, “The Astronaut.” The song starts off very much like Led Zeppelin’s “When the Levee Breaks” before the “Inception”-esque walls of sound come in with Markham’s fuzzed up vocals soon following. For as dark and gloomy the world Markham has taken you to, there’s still a glimmer of optimism as he slowly sings the chorus with the line that he promises he’ll “see you in the future.”–THOMAS D. MOONEY

Hogg Maulies26. “Good Heart” Hogg Maulies
“August Rain”

“Good Heart” was the second single off the Hogg Maulies’ second studio record, “August Rain,” which was released just a few months back. Where their first single, “Whatever You Throw,” was them in control and polite, “Good Heart,” is them with a little more rowdy and wild. The guitars are louder, the beat is up, and vocalist/guitarist Rode Morrow’s voice carries the ear worm chorus perfectly. I don’t think the Hogg Maulies are covering any new territory with “Good Heart.” It’s a song about a relationship turned sour over time, but sometimes you just need a damn good break-up song. Hopefully, it’s also their breakout song.–THOMAS D. MOONEY

Phlip Coggins25. “Russian Parade” Phlip Coggins
“Soljourn” EP

“Russian Parade” has one of the most beautiful and soothing melodies I’ve ever heard. Phlip Coggins is known for his genre jumping style, never stopping in one moment too long and going on to the next. “Russian Parade” has an organic, almost Balkan/European feel where Coggins’ vocals elongate each and every word of the song in a whispery, feathery croon. The two elements–the comforting melody and airy vocals–would almost certainly never work without the support of the other. With some songs, artists find a moment that’s magical and just perfect. Coggins certainly found that on “Russian Parade.” What he does that’s different and refreshing though, is that rather than trying to extend the moment pass its worth leaving it redundant and stale, is that he moves on from it. Though the melody begs to be a longer piece, it passes–like all parades should. It leaves you wanting to find that feeling again.–THOMAS D. MOONEY

Charles Moon Planet Sunset24. “Planet Sunset” Charles Moon
“Planet Sunset” Single

You’re just waiting for Kid Cudi to come in. At any moment now, he’s supposed to start… That’s what a number of Charles Moon instrumentals feel like. He’s been branching out to an extent lately, creating things more eye-catching than last year’s “Meditation Music For Astronauts,” which was exactly what it sounds like, a collection of chill, hip-hop instrumentals you’d want to listen to while writing a term paper. Moon’s still deep in space with some of his latest pieces, like “Planet Sunset.” More anything, “Planet Sunset” seems like a stepping stone to bigger projects in Moon’s 2013–dare I say, collaborations with rappers? While we love Moon’s chill instrumentals, we’d certainly say yes to that as well.–THOMAS D. MOONEY

Warren Jackson Hearne23. “Death You’re So Cold” Warren Jackson Hearne & Le Leek Electrique

From the opening blare of horns, your first thought of this track is being at a New Orleans death march full of excitement, with a definite somber undertone. Much like the devil dressed in an angel’s attire, Warren Jackson Hearne and Le Leek Electrique’s new album “Eleutheros!” is chock full of upbeat jazzy numbers paired with lyrics so dark it is hard to get past the light. “Death You’re So Cold” relays the tale of the spirit of a deplorable man speaking, almost pleading to Death for retribution as his now lifeless body is lowered into the ground. Warren’s tone is perfectly six feet under as he describes the man who had lived his life lawless has now met his fate on the receiving end of a barrel. The contrast between the upbeat, spirited music and Warren’s gloom makes this track, as well as the album as a whole, one not to miss.–DANIEL FLUITT of Thrift Store Cowboys

The Northern Runaways22. “Finale” The Northern Runaways
“Stripped Apart” EP

The Northern Runaways sounds like music from a mid 80s futuristic fantasy movie with symmetrical design, flashing lights, and a dark shadowy tone. The Northern Runaways’ “Finale” comes from the minds of Texas Tech Architectural students, Chris Arth and Cooper Schilder. The song starts off with a dramatic line of with a combination of synthesizers and piano and gradually picks up the pace with a disco midi drum pattern that makes you want to bob your head while you ride your fancy customized fixed gear bicycle at night (no brakes, obviously). The rest of it continues on with that haunting synthesizer line by Arth and Schilder. It sounds mysterious along with Arth’s gothic choirboy voice. It makes you feel like something is slowly creeping up behind you and you may or may not be prepared to confront it. “Finale” is an enigmatic song and is listenable if you’re in the mood. It’s like ear candy…for the soul.–PETER LONGNO of The Sun & The Shadows

Charlie Shafter

21. “Lost in a Crowd” Charlie Shafter
“Charlie Shafter”

“[I’ve] written letters to a poet who died broke and depraved. Now he makes all his money while he lies in his grave.” That’s just about how it goes, huh? It may be my favorite line from this year. When I talked with Charlie Shafter before the record came out, he said that, in a way, this record was a collection of B-sides. He was right in a way; It’s not filled with songs that just beg for radio play-except for “Lost in a Crowd.” Songs are so well written, it’s difficult to declare one is unanimously better than another. “Charlie Shafter” is a much different record than Shafter’s “17th & Chicago (A good record itself).” Everything is more relaxed and calm–except “Lost in a Crowd”–which is one of the few things that directly connect the two records in sound. The guitar riff is just something you can’t turn away from. It has a carnival lights feel. It’s hypnotizing in a way very similar to a Ray Wylie Hubbard song (who produced the record).–THOMAS D. MOONEY


10 responses to “Year in Review: Top 40 Lubbock Songs of 2012: 30-21

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