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The Best Americana of 2012

Americana meant different things to different people this year, with revitalized legends and young traditionalists offering new visions of American music.

Jeff Strowe and Steve Leftridge
Music

The Best World Music of 2012

Deanne Sole, Matt Cibula, David Maine
Recent
Music

The Best Noise-Rock of 2012

To paraphrase Frank Zappa, rock isn’t dead. It just smells funny.

Zach Schonfeld
Music

The Best Jazz of 2012

Jazz today remains the music that stays alive through a remarkable alchemy. On this list, traditions that go back to the jazz roots co-exist with modern pop tunes, and the avant-garde edges of the music blend in fluid ease with tonal beauty.

Music

The Top 10 Overlooked Albums of 2012

With the long arm of the internet putting any and all music at our fingertips, it should make for a glut of bands getting their due attention. But what really happens is so many great acts get hidden in plain view.

Music

Indie Love for Taylor Swift’s Hipster-Baiting 'Red'

The indie community has long embraced the poppiest of popstars. So it’s hard to figure out why it took until 2012 for it to embrace Taylor Swift.

Music

The Best Electronic Music of 2012

2012 was another year of innovation and diversity in electronic music, but with the same artist as last year at the top of the heap after all was said and done.

Music

The 75 Best Albums of 2012

From forward looking hip-hop and R&B to deep explorations of traditional roots music... from psychedelic pop masterpieces to ruminations on the economy, family, aging and disfunction... from genre-busting electronic music and jazz to rockin' indie... 2012 was a great year for new music.

Music

The Best Country Music of 2012

In 2012, you could be forgiven for being dismissive of the country music genre entirely -- to a point. For as long as country exists as a genre, there will be songwriters who are devoted to embodying their own vision of what “country” means, which sometimes means pushing the genre around.

Dave Heaton, Jedd Beaudoin, Josh Langhoff, Steve Leftridge
Music

The Best Indie-Pop of 2012

Writing about the best indie-pop seems inherently an individualized, personal experience -- but that is fitting for a type of music that on one level seems more person-oriented than mass-movement-oriented.

Music

The Best Progressive Rock (and Metal) of 2012

The albums you see below are a testament to the chameleonic nature of prog: Coldplay-esque stadium ballads, sludge metal, sample-heavy concept records, and classic-style prog all stand side by side.

Brice Ezell, Jordan Blum, Craig Hayes
Music

The Best Canadian Albums of 2012

From extraordinary singer-songwriters to blistering punk, experimental electronica to shimmery pop, this list demonstrates something of the breadth of talent, and the range of possibilities being explored in Canadian music today.

Music

The 75 Best Songs of 2012

From the triumphant dream pop of Grimes and the boundary-pushing R&B of Frank Ocean to the tough, frantic British hip-hop of Plan B and the chart-topping country pop of Taylor Swift, PopMatters counts down 2012's 75 best songs.

Music

Introduction: The Year in Music, 2012

As our wide-ranging coverage of the year in music shows and the music itself proves, what the best and most compelling musical expressions of 2012 have in common is that they are the products of hard work and labors of love.

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