Tuesday 20 December 2011, 15:55
Last Saturday night I played the above, some of my favourite tunes from this year representing some of the bands who've been the most prolific, impressive and exciting to watch. You can hear the countdown and the show in full here.
Sam Airey might be a new name for you and at number one, you might be wondering who he is, but from a track that came in to us via the Introducing Uploader, where all new bands send us their music, to playing live at the Swn festival, he was a wonder: a real treasure of a discovery, a genuine and heartbreaking voice, and an incredibly mature songwriter deserving of the top spot.
At number two is another young act. Houdini Dax are a joy to behold live, a pleasure to be in their company, and write some urgent, raw and exciting music. By Your Hand, from Los Campesinos!'s album Hello Sadness, is one of my favourite tracks from them period, the multitude of chorus, the melancholy of the song, and all the usual charm of the multilayered sounds of the band.
The rest of the bands have entertained, toured, released, and worked tirelessly throughout the year, and their names have cropped up time and time again - especially Manic Street Preachers, who finished off the year in style at the O2 last weekend, what a year they've had!
However, there are lots and lots of tracks missing - Gruff Rhys, winner of Welsh album of the year with Hotel Shampoo, Sweet Baboo, The Joy Formidable, The Gentle Good, Lleuwen, and indeed all the nominees of album of the year prize back in October.
There's the host of rock bands Kids, The Blackout, Cuba Cuba, Tiger Please and more, who have all released incredible albums this year. There's also a whole host of bands who came, recorded sessions, performed festival stages, and came through the BBC doors over the last 12 months.
Thankfully, some of these will be featured in the Best in Show programme, which airs this Christmas Eve at 6.30pm. The rest, I hope, will feature in Adam Walton's 50 track special best-of-the-year show on Christmas night. There will still be those we've missed out completely, but these lists aren't comprehensive - they are a snapshot of the year that's been, and what a joyful, wide ranging year it's been for Welsh music. Here's to 2012.
More of my Like Lists:
Albums of the year
Gigs of the year
Festivals of the year
The rugby world cup and Wales football team wins!
Tuesday 20 December 2011, 12:25
Tuesday 20 December 2011, 16:30