Here it is, folks!
10. The Damn Choir - You're My Secret Called Fire
We listen to music in search of an emotional connection. "Noah" (the fourth track on this album) seared through my heart a particularly apt moment. The rest of the album's soulful, gothic Americana is worth a listen, too.
9. Jonathan Segel - All Attractions
A wonderfully unique collection of psychedelic rock. As I wrote in my initial review, Segel jumps into space and lands on both feet. A true accomplishment.
8. Rosary Beard - Halfmoon Fever
Gorgeous and unpretentious instrumental guitar music.
7. The District Attorneys - Slowburner
Joyous jangle-pop from Athens, Georgia, The District Attorneys are following in a rich tradition while making their own definitive mark on college rock. Judging from their latest EP, we've got a lot to look forward to in 2013.
6. Lee Bains III and the Glory Fires - There Is a Bomb in Gilead
On this blog, it's pretty much a given that Lee Bains would end up on the list. Hurtling out of Alabama like a bat out of hell, it's impossible not to want to get up and dance to this album. Or drink. Or whatever your activity of choice is at a live concert. Because this album brings that energy to your eardrums.
5. Miss Shevaughn and Yuma Wray - We're From Here
A masterful debut album, We're From Here reflects the many subgenres of the new roots-rock movement. Miss Shevaughn and Yuma Wray are consummate musicians and songwriters -- it's hard to believe this is their debut album.
4. Cahalen and Eli - Our Lady of the Tall Trees
Also an obligatory addition to the list. Gorgeous, soulful, thoughtful, richly crafted. This is what folk music should be.
3. Sonia Tetlow - Own Way Home
If you're surprised to see Sonia Tetlow on this list, you haven't been paying attention. To be honest, Own Way Home almost didn't make the list. But the thing about Sonia's music is that you have to work a little for it. You need to listen to it five or six times before it hits you in your gut. I re-listened to Own Way Home while cooking dinner to decide if it would make the cut-off. The next day, I woke up with "Hook/Line" stuck in my head. If you let it, this album will enter your bloodstream.
2. Rachel Brooke - A Killer's Dream
When I grow up, I want to be as playful, spunky, seductive, and badass as Rachel Brooke.
1. The Sparklers - Crying at the Low Bar
This was just one of those discoveries that reminds you why you love music. What can I say? With their whip-smart lyrics, bar-band raggedness, and '90s-throwback guitar hooks, The Sparklers captured my heart.
Who was in your top 10 this year?