Top Local Albums of 2012

Monday’s music critics pick the best tunes of the year

Monday Music writer chose Hank and Lily's Crank City as the best local album of 2012.

Monday Music writer chose Hank and Lily's Crank City as the best local album of 2012.

Music Writer Nick Lyons’ picks:

1.  Hank and Lily: Crank City

Victorian music veterans Hank and Lily’s newest release came as a surprise to even their most avid and loyal fan-base. An exercise in diversity, Crank City is a sprawling, multifaceted metropolis unto itself: a veritable concrete jungle made of dubstep, electro-pop, and the finest hip hop ever recorded in this town or any other.  Lily’s musical saw is still there, as is her sexy, breathy and mousy voice, but this time it’s found in the context of an immensely different musical landscape. Hank Pine astounds with his ability to morph, even in the space of a song; he raps with himself, and Lily of course, on “Caught In the Gears,” one of this album’s many highlights. Treat yourself: go pick it up at Ditch.  It comes with a free comic book, and a sticker, too.

2.  Slam Dunk:

Welcome to Miami

With Welcome to Miami, Slam Dunk has achieved the impossible: somehow, the band managed to top its own amazing debut full-length album, The Shivers.  Welcome to Miami is evidence of how quickly Slam Dunk has grown in an incredibly short amount of time.  The songs are longer, stronger, tighter, and thanks to producer Colin Stewart, brighter. If this album doesn’t make you wanna dance, you must be deceased.

3.  Eclipser: Transmissions from the Silver Pyramid

Eclipser’s first and, perhaps, final album (one of its members moved to an even smaller island) is a welcome addition to Victoria’s thriving musical climate.  These are songs designed for the end of a long night, week, or year: all who have grown weary, draw near to hear music so foreign and beautiful to a listening ear that even I, who writes about music every day, struggles to do justice to Eclipser’s ambient debut.

Arts Editor Mary Ellen Green’s picks:

1. Aidan Knight: Small Reveal

In my opinion, the biggest album to come off this fine Island this year. Its expansive, yet intensely intimate sound captured my imagination and my heart. The stand-out for me is “Margaret Downe,” a devastating, yet gorgeous song about love and loss. Vinyl now available at Ditch Records.

2. Steph MacPherson: Bells & Whistles

Raw, yet perfected, Bells & Whistles is an honest and infectious slice of country-folk-pop from this Kiwi-Canadian, Island raised singer-songwriter.

3. Jon and Roy: Let It Go

The Island folk-rock favourites’ fourth release is synonymous with summer. Funny, then, that it’s still in my CD player in January. Full of Spanish flare, ska horns and beautiful acoustic guitar.  M

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tomo Vranjes, a Greater Victoria musician and longtime fan of late rock guitar icon Eddie Van Halen, joins artist Paul Archer behind the latter’s Fort Street gallery. Archer, whose airbrushed paintings of rock greats have made him many connections in recent years, painted a likeness of Van Halen following the guitarist’s death last month from cancer. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Victoria artist’s king-sized tribute to Eddie Van Halen draws on personal connection

Paul Archer had an up close and personal day with the legendary guitarist in 1980

A sample of some of Lou-ann Neel’s jewelry.
Lou-ann Neel wins the Fulmer Award in First Nations Art

Originally from Alert Bay, Neel’s family is steeped in renowned Kwakwaka’wakw artists

I-Hos Gallery manager Ramona Johnson shows some of the paddles available at the retail outlet. Photo by Terry Farrell
I-Hos Gallery celebrates 25 years of promoting First Nation artwork

K’ómoks First Nation-based outlet has art from all over the country

Bard to Broadway Theatre Society may stage shows outdoors next summer. (PQB News photo file)
Qualicum Beach’s Bard to Broadway group may stage shows outdoors

Theatre society plans smaller productions due to ongoing pandemic

A new short film festival called MORVENFEST is encouraging B.C. secondary students to step into the world of film during their Christmas break. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
New film festival gives Victoria students exciting opportunity

MORVENFEST is open to all B.C. secondary students over Christmas break

Port Alberni author Diane Dobson has put together a collection of childhood memories, with proceeds going towards the Ty Watson House. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Port Alberni writer looks through the eyes of a child

Book raises funds for the Alberni Valley Hospice Society

The Old School House Arts Centre in Qualicum Beach has temporarily closed its doors to the public as of Nov.18. (Mandy Moraes photo)
COVID-19: The Old Schoolhouse Arts Centre in Qualicum Beach closes until 2021

TOSH takes proactive approach to ‘protect the well-being of the community’

Edie Daponte and Joey Smith share the stage Saturday at the Sid Williams Theatre. The show is also being livestreamed. Photo supplied
Edie Daponte brings show up-Island

Second World War tribute live and livestreamed in Courtenay and Campbell River

Most Read