Classic albums I belatedly “discovered” in 2012

I have, with some friends and acquaintances, cultivated the notion that I’m some kind of walking encyclopedia of music, especially that of the 1970s. But in reality there is so much music out there that I’ve never heard or just never really given a chance, even things by bands I really like. For instance, this year I finally heard Pink Floyd’s Obscured by Clouds for the first time. It was the album they recorded just prior to their legendary breakthrough Dark Side of the Moon, and it’s been on heavy rotation in the studio for the past few months.

That got me thinking: every year I compile my list of the top 5 new albums of the year, but I never reflect on the “new to me” music that I’ve only just gotten into this year. I’m not going to bother with a review of every album, but here’s a list of all of the new music I added to my library in 2012 that wasn’t released in 2012. Some of it is from the past couple of years; some of it is older than I am.

For extra fun, the list is presented in the order I added these albums to my iTunes library. I also bought a few greatest hits albums but I’m leaving them out, along with — of course — new remastered versions of albums I already owned.

  • Weather Report: Black Market (1976)
  • Antonio Carlos Jobim: Tide (1970)
  • Washed Out: Within and Without (2011)
  • Boards of Canada: Music Has the Right to Children (1998)
  • Washed Out: Life of Leisure (2010)
  • Hüsker Dü: Zen Arcade (1984)
  • Sufjan Stevens: Illinoise (2005)
  • Boards of Canada: Hi Scores (1996)
  • Boards of Canada: Trans Canada Highway (2006)
  • Billy Joel: 52nd Street (1978)
  • The Alan Parsons Project: I Robot (1977)
  • The Darcys: The Darcys (2011)
  • The Beach Boys: Concert (1964)
  • The Beach Boys: Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!) (1965)
  • The Beach Boys: Today (1965)
  • The Beach Boys: Live in London (1968)
  • Van Halen: Women and Children First (1980)
  • Bob Dylan: Nashville Skyline (1969)
  • Trombone Shorty: Backatown (2010)
  • Boz Scaggs: Silk Degrees (1976)
  • Def Leppard: Pyromania (1983)
  • Gong: Flying Teapot – Radio Gnome Invisible, Pt. 1 (1973)
  • The Sea and Cake: Car Alarm (2008)
  • The Mothers of Invention: Freak Out! (1966)
  • Frank Zappa: Hot Rats (1969)
  • Pink Floyd: Obscured by Clouds (1972)
  • Com Truise: Fairlight (2011)
  • Com Truise: Galactic Melt (2011)
  • Röyksopp: Senior (2010)
  • Röyksopp: Junior (2009)
  • Tame Impala: InnerSpeaker (2010)
  • Com Truise: Cyanide Sisters (2011)
  • Queen: The Game (1980)
  • Emerson Lake and Palmer: Live at the Mar y Sol Festival (1972)
  • Peter Gabriel: So (1986) [Seriously! OK, I did already own it on vinyl.]