Worst music of 2012: Mumford & Sons, Lana Del Rey, Gotye and more - Reverb

Worst music of 2012: Mumford & Sons, Lana Del Rey, Gotye, “Glee,” Bob Dylan, fun. and more

Miller: I dug “Manners” for a brief spell in 2010, but with “Gossamer” it seemed like Passion Pit was trying too hard, you know, really looking to become that mass-appeal sort of band that sells out stadiums.

Baca: Agreed. And that’s a pitfall that often snags potentially great bands. Not sure if you’re a fan, but I’ve long lauded the Avett Brothers as one of my favorites. (Speaking of Gap commercials.) And their 2012 offering, “The Carpenter,” left much to be desired on my part. Again you’ve got the quiet folk of FJM. And you’ve got the Avetts’ familiarity around a hook. But this second Rick Rubin wash didn’t work for me. That single “Live and Die” was grating, I thought, and it felt like they were reaching so far for the arena stage that they ended up faltering with a sound that wasn’t as genuine as their past work.

Miller: I saw Avett Brothers at Monolith in 2008 (I think) and it was a genuine performance like you’re saying. While I haven’t listened to their catalogue as much as you, the loss of that honesty is pretty noticeable. That’s how I’ve always felt about Mumford & Sons, though. Absolutely nothing fresh or unique, just an attempt to sell, sell, sell.

Baca: I can see that. But I felt that Mumford debut was so fun and hooky and irresistible that I was willing to look past their unabashed pop desires. With 2012’s “Babel,” I was hoping to see progression, something new. Instead what we got sounded like “Sigh No More” B-sides. At least the Avetts were raised in North Carolina, ha.

Miller: Exactly, I kind of feel like “Babel” is to folk music as “Twilight” is to Dracula.

Baca: Ha. Yes. Marcus Mumford as Robert Pattinson.

Miller: Gross. Seriously. What about Lana Del Rey, though? Probably 2012’s most polarizing figure. She never recovered from that “SNL” snafu, personally.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=542118972 Frank Munafo

    How do I get a job here??? You want to talk about bad albums, how about Muse’s The 2nd Law, The Lumineers, Maroon friggin Five or that steaming pile of crap from Of Monsters and Men???

    • http://www.denvereverb.com Ricardo Baca

      Agreed on the Muse record, but I didn’t expect much from it in the first place. Same with Maroon 5 – no good, bum show, though I will admit I like Adam Levine on “The Voice.” But I love the Lumineers record. It’s one of my favorites of 2012, in fact. Of Monsters and Men, I’m torn. There are some really fun, even great songs on there. But after seeing them live, it confirmed for me that they’re a bit of a one-note act. It all sounds the same/runs together/horns/shouting/HEYs … Maybe their next record will be great?

    • http://heyreverb.com/ Matt Miller

      Ahhh I wish we had talked about Of Monsters and Men — EVERY song sounds the same. Nothing fresh there. As for Maroon 5, that’s so obviously a bad album why waste precious life writing about it?

  • Morgan

    Lana Del Rey’s album really surprised me. My daughter bought it for me and I put in the rotation in my car. Usually I get bored after I listen to a CD about three times. I just can’t take LDR’s off. Of course, the same thing is happening with Ke$ha’s new disc. It could be me :)

  • Lavinia

    Happy, so happy to see your evaluation of the Mumford machine, and also glad to see you did not push Dawes into the trash with them although they have toured together a lot this year. Dawes is a band worthy of your attention and esteem, btw.

  • Larry Martin

    Mumford and Sons is the equivalent of a bad Photoshop job.