The 50 best albums of 2012

Another year, another crop of great albums – make sure you don't miss them

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On the surface of it, 2012 didn't look like a classic year for albums. There weren't any sweeping successes of the magnitude of Arcade Fire's 'The Suburbs' or Kanye West's 'My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy' for example. But, having dug a little deeper, we found there were many gems. R&B had its best year since the ’90s, with Frank Ocean, Jessie Ware and Kindness all showing how funky tunes could also be soulful. Rap hit a new peak of aggression with Death Grips and woozy, reverb-drenched guitar sounds profilerated thanks to Diiv and Mac DeMarco. Some of the best music of 2012 was made in bedrooms. Why don't you pay homage to that fact by kicking off your shoes, climbing onto the bed and having a good listen to these guys – all 50 of them. You know you want to…


If we missed out your favourite album of 2012 let us know in the comments box below or tweet us at @TimeOutMusic.


  1. 1-10
  2. 11-30
  3. 31-50

Sam Lee – ‘Ground Of Its Own’

Death Grips – ‘No Love Deep Web’

St Vincent & David Byrne – ‘Love This Giant’

Tame Impala – ‘Lonerism’

Gregory Porter – ‘Be Good’

Julia Holter – ‘Ekstasis’

Spector – ‘Enjoy It While It Lasts’

The Invisible – ‘Rispah’

O Children – ‘Apnea’

Sharon Van Etten – ‘Tramp’

Grimes – 'Visions'

Efterklang – ‘Piramida’

Dan Deacon – ‘America’

JJ Doom – ‘Key To The Kuffs’

The 2 Bears – ‘Be Strong’

Jeremih – ‘Late Nights With Jeremih’

Stealing Sheep – ‘Into The Diamond Sun’

The Bad Plus – ‘Made Possible’

Actress – ‘R.I.P’

Mirrorring – ‘Foreign Body’


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Listen to our top 10 albums of 2012

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