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The musical gods were kind to fans of dream pop in 2012, there were big blessings for reverb drenched indie lovers and spaced out psych pop enthusiasts! In a crowded genre of talented musicians, this is a shortlist to spark your ears. Here’s the Best Dream Pop Albums Of 2012 according to Sounds Better With Reverb. Note there are bound to be some great records that are missed, so click through and leave a comment at the bottom of the page… or some harshly worded abuse. Stand by for the Shoegaze list, coming shortly.

 

Best Dream Pop Albums Of 2012…

 
1. DIIV – ‘Oshin’ (Captured Tracks) (more)

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DIIV’s debut sits at the top of many end of year lists, so this is little surprise. The New Yorkers came together after Beach Fossils guitarist Zachary Cole Smith decided to start a side project. Now its one of Captured Tracks most lauded acts.’Oshin’ managed to cross the genre divide and connect with a broad audience. Its simple, understated and yet it stays with you. Best digested as a whole, this is a record you need to sit down with.

2. Echo Lake – ‘Wild Peace’ (No Pain In Pop/Slumberland) (more)

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Echo Lake released an incredibly mature debut in ‘Wild Peace’. From start to finish there’s pure pop melodies performed in an otherworldly light, if only mainstream chart acts could write this well. The South Londoners crafted a special album during an uncertain time, due to the illness and passing of drummer Pete Hayes.

3. Tamaryn – ‘Tender New Signs’ (Mexican Summer) (more)

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Another much loved record of 2012. Tamaryn’s brand of sedated dream pop is easily digestible and slowly infectious. The only misstep on ‘Tender New Signs’ is that it doesn’t change gears enough. If there were a few dramatic spikes in energy or instrumentation this would’ve claimed the top spot.

4. Wild Nothing – ‘Nocturne’ (Bella Union/Captured Tracks) (more)

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Wild Nothing’s ‘Gemini’ LP was universally praised, a brilliant debut. Since making those solo recordings in 2010, Jack Tatum assembled a touring band that would record the follow up EP ‘Golden Haze’ and this year’s ‘Nocturne’. Wild Nothing’s sound has changed over the past few years but the songwriting remains strong. Tatum successfully avoided the dreaded second album flop. ‘Nocturne’ is exceptional.

5. Death And Vanilla – ‘Death And Vanilla’ (Hands In The Dark/Kalligrammofon) (more)

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One of the most underrated releases of the year. On first listen ‘Death And Vanilla’ paints a vivid picture that’s cinematic in scope, like a classic soundtrack waiting to happen. A perfect concoction of dreamy psych pop with vintage sounds and sharply composed songs. A must for any fan of the genre.

6. Frankie Rose – ‘Interstellar’ (Memphis Industries/Slumberland) (more)

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Brooklyn’s Frankie Rose (formerly Frankie Rose and the Outs) won over fans again on ‘Interstellar’. The girl pop veteran (Vivian Girls, Dum Dum Girls) relied less on reverb this time around, instead producing a new wave leaning record. Its full of haunting, melodramatic pop gold – her best work to date.

7. Beach House – ‘Bloom’ (Sub Pop) (more)

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Beach House received so many accolades for their 2010 LP ‘Teen Dream’ that any follow up was destined to fall short. And sure, it’s not ‘Teen Dream’ but ‘Bloom’ is a great listen nonetheless. The Baltimore dream pop duo were criticized for a lack of edge but with stunners like ‘Myth’, ‘The Hours’ and ‘Lazuli’ its too good to ignore.

8. Melody’s Echo Chamber – ‘Melody’s Echo Chamber’ (Fat Possum) (more)

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A suprising debut from solo artist Melody Prochet, a collection of songs where psych meets dream pop. No doubt influenced by the guiding hand of producer Kevin Parker (best known for his work with Tame Impala). The Parisian’s vocals are the perfect match for vintage sounds and trippy instrumentation.

9. Observer Drift – ‘Corridors’ (Forged Artifacts) (more)

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Recorded in a Minneapolis bedroom, ‘Corridors’ is an honest lo-fi release that’s worthy of praise. In some ways ‘Corridors’ is reminiscent of Wild Nothing’s ‘Gemini’. Observer Drift (artist Collin Ward) produced a very personal debut and each song feels well lived in. The rough edges only add to the charm.

10. Violens – ‘True’ (Slumberland) (more)

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New York’s Violens released their super catchy single ‘Totally True’ in April and expectations were set high for the album release. Perhaps too high. ‘True’ is at times too pretty for its own good but there are moments of brilliance. It’ll either strike you or not, that simple.

Dream Pop Albums Of 2012 (notable mentions): Astronauts Etc, Craft Spells, Memoryhouse, Letting Up Despite Great Faults, Fight Bite, Shoreline Is.

Is there a gross over sight here? Click through to the Best Dream Pop Albums Of 2012 and get typing.