Because Songs Matter


American Aquarium – Burn.Flicker.Die.

We’ll get around to posting our individual best of lists in the coming week or so but last week we all conversed over email and it quickly became evident that American Aquarium’s brand new album, Burn.Flicker.Die, was gonna win the vote for album of the year and it’s largely agreed that the title track is the best song of the year.

So do yourself a favor and pick up Burn, Flicker, Die on vinyl and CD from Lone Star Music and Last Chance Records; buy the digital from iTunes or Amazon on August 28; keep up with AA’s website and Facebook because you’d better see them live (and until you do, you can check out their incredible 2012 live album).

American Aquarium - Burn.Flicker.Die     

American Aquarium - Cape Fear River     

American Aquarium - Saint Mary's     


  1. Scott Fuchs Scott Fuchs
    December 28, 2012    

    Yes! Agreed!

  2. Lotek307 Lotek307
    December 28, 2012    

    I concur! listened to this album so much.

  3. Paul K Paul K
    December 29, 2012    

    Have no issue with this choice at all. It was AIV constant writing that made me finally take a listen on Spotify (I gave some their earlier releases a try before B.F.D was released and wasn’t that impressed). Cape Fear River is a stronger track in my opinion, but the title track is a close second.

  4. danny g in sc danny g in sc
    December 29, 2012    

    It’s that time of year,The time for “Top 10 Lists”. So in that spirit,here’s my Top 10 Music Releases for 2012….”Drum Roll,Please….” :
    1. “Burn Flicker Die” : American Aquarium
    2. “Heat Lightning Rumbles in the Distance” :Patterson Hood
    3. “Here We Rest” : Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit
    4. “Stronger For It” : Janiva Magness
    5. “Everybody’s Talkin’,Live” : Tedschi-Trucks Band
    6. “Royal Southern Brotherhood” : (Debut Release)
    7. “Let It Burn” : Ruthie Foster
    8. “Long Road Home” : Darrell Scott
    9. “Go Down Rockin’:The Last Recordings” : Waylon Jennings
    10. “Mystic Pinball” : John Hiatt
    Honorable Mention: “3 Skulls and the Truth” : David Hidalgo,Mato Nanji and Luther Dickinson & “Blues for Modern Daze” : Walter Trout.

  5. danny g in sc danny g in sc
    December 29, 2012    

    Of course at Nine Bullets you know that’s Patterson Hood & I have no idea where the smiley face came from,such are computers….

  6. Greg Greg
    December 30, 2012    

    No Doubt on this one. Here’s what round out my top 10.

    1. American Aquarium “Burn, Flicker and Die”
    2. Lucero “Women and Work”
    3. Converge “All We Love We Leave Behind”
    4. Frank Ocean “Channel Orange”
    5. Justin Townes Earle “Nothings Gonna Change The Way You Feel About Me Now”
    6. Kendrick Lamar “Good Kid, MAAD City”
    7. Franz Nicolay “Do The Struggle”
    8. Japandroids “Celebration Rock”
    9. Jack White “Blunderbuss”
    10.OFF !

  7. Denny Denny
    January 1, 2013    

    In the spirit of sharing, here are some of my thoughts on the Best Albums of 2012:

    Best Albums 2012
    1. Bible of the Devil, For the Love of Thugs & Fools
    The songs “Anytime,” “I Know What is Right (In the Night)” and “Yer Boy” would make Thin Lizzy green with envy. What a great, great album. America’s best Rock ‘n’ Roll band.
    2. Roger Alan Wade, Southbound Train
    RAW’s Deguello Motel (2010) is one of my all-time favorite albums. Southbound Train is arguably better. RAW is difficult to explain. Perhaps he does it best when he says “Singin’ old gospel songs/Stoned on Blue Ribbon beer/People don’t get me wrong/God knows I’m stoned sincere.” He is a sincere country singer. “Southbound Train,” “Still on the Run” and “Wine Dripping From Your Lips” stand out.
    3. Chris Knight, Little Victories
    Knight has been doing this for over ten years. Another fantastic album that will not age, best songs are “The Lonesome Way,” “Little Victories” and “Nothing on Me.” Includes a stellar new version of an older Knight song, “Hard Edges.” He is still gritty: “Caught a .22 bullet in my thigh one night/Trying to break up a barroom fight/Went home and dug it out with my old Case knife.”
    4. Leroy Powell and the Stone Jack Ballers, La Muerte del Amor-EP
    Powell always comes out with something fresh. This EP is so good I broke my own rules and added it to this “Best Albums” list. The song “Satan, Put it on My Tab” deserves to be on many, many, many playlists for years to come.
    5. Jamey Johnson, Living for a Song-A Tribute to Hank Cochran
    Johnson is as legit as it gets in big-label Nashville. This album has some real gems, like the title-track,” but the dizzying list of guest star contributors gets distracting. I would’ve preferred Johnson record this album alone with his band, a la Waylon and Honkytonk Heroes.
    6. Jason Eady, A.M. Country Heaven
    Sorry folks, but the Texas Country Scene can get redundant. Eady does not fall into that mold. Eleven Hundred Springs and Mike Stinson fans will enjoy this singer. Best tracks are “Paying My Dues” and “Wishful Thinking.”
    7. Houston Marchman, Econoliner
    This is a nice release from one of Texas’ best song-writers. Best songs are “Econoliner” and a great cover of the Javi Garcia song, “Lose Control.”
    8. White Buffalo, Once Upon a Time in the West
    This is a catchy, albeit strange, album. This is probably the closest to “hipster” I can get. Best songs are “The Bowery,” “The Pilot” and “Wish it Was True.”
    9. Corb Lund, Cabin Fever
    Ok, Corb Lund is Canadian and he sings country music. Get it? It is actually quite good. Not quite Chris Ledoux, but hey, he’s Canadian. “Gettin’ Down on the Mountain” is a fun song.
    10. The Sword, Apocryphon
    My 2012 Top 10 list started with a metal album and it will end with a metal album, dammit. I have liked The Sword for quite some time, this album is their best. Several great songs on it, but most enjoyable is this Texas band’s cover of ZZ Top’s “Cheap Sunglasses.”

    Very Honorable Mentions

    Charlie Shafter, Charlie Shafter
    “Dear Diana” and “Sea Wall” are two of the best songs of the year.

    Malcolm Holcombe, Down the River
    He is still grumpy, grrr…

    Andrew Combs, Worried Man
    Don’t let the hipster-vibes scare you off, this album is good.

    Justin Townes Earle, Nothing’s Gonna Change the Way You Feel About Me Now
    Actually a great album, JTE’s best.

    Eleven Hundred Springs, Midway
    Dallas’ best country band keeps it up.

    Stevie Tombstone, Greenwood
    Tombstone is a well-kept secret- check out the song “Lucky.”

    Jason Tyler Burton, The Mend
    I used to work with Jason’s wife in the BLM in Wyoming. He is a great musician. “To the Rise” is one of the better songs of the year.

    John Fullbright, From the Ground Up
    This album made some “noise” as they say, “Moving” is a fun track.

    Turnpike Troubadours, Goodbye Normal Street
    Not as good as their last release, but nice to see a Stillwater band still working it.

    Lucero, Women & Work
    Lucero still has it and this album is very good- don’t believe the haters. “When I Was Young” is very catchy.

    The Departed, Adventus
    Solid, but nothing spectacular like in their previous release This Is Indian Country.

    K Phillips, American Girls
    A few solid tracks on this release, including “To Dance With You.”

    Walt Wilkins, Plenty
    Wilkins has been writing great songs for years, my favorite on this one is “Soft September Night.”
    Kadavar, Kadavar
    Great Metal Album. Listen to “Creature of the Demon” next time you run to the grocery store at night.
    Leeroy Staager, Radiant Land
    “Dirty Windshields” is a great song.
    The Dirty River Boys, The Science of Flight
    Who likes banjo? “Riverbed Wildflowers” is a good track.
    Langhorne Slim and The Law, The Way We Move
    If you like Langhorne Slim, you’ll love this album. Make sense?
    American Aquarium, Burn.Flicker.Die.
    Some nice songs about southern cities, check out “Jacksonville” and “Savannah Almost Killed Me.”
    Wrinkle Neck Mules, Apprentice to Ghosts
    “Leaving Chattanooga” is class WNM, another great album from them.
    Tift Merritt, Traveling Alone
    It is too bad book stores and coffee shops ruin some artists by playing their music too much.
    Shooter Jennings, Family Man
    Ok, so Shooter was kinda cool then he went crazy. This album is a step in the right direction.

    Biggest Disappointment of the Year

    Ryan Bingham, Tomorrowland
    Bingham has made some of the best music of the 2000s. None of it is on this album. Yeah, it seemed like a good idea to leave Texas for Los Angeles and record a new album by yourself without your long-time road band and famed producer T-Bone Burnett. It seemed like a good idea for Germany to invade Russia too. Fail.

  8. Phineas Phineas
    January 2, 2013    

    Friggin Aye Right!!!! I love to see some fellow North Carolinians getting some credit!!! (I’m a 10th Generation NC’ian myself) They definitely deserve it if anybody does, the craziest part is how half the people around here have never even heard of them….I try to spread the word as much as possible but it makes me want to start a radio show of my own or something because that’s ridiculous in my opinion….By the way Happy New Year everybody, and Brian as well as all the other contributors (Charles Hale, Romeo Sidvicious, Rune, Etc) here for putting in all the time and effort that you do!!

    • Andy Andy
      January 2, 2013    

      Most people haven’t heard of Possum Jenkins either, another great NC band. I’m not totally against the Avetts like some, but in my humble opinion American Aquarium and Possum Jenkins are more deserving of accolades.

  9. Andy Andy
    January 2, 2013    

    Eh, I guess I’ll show mine too:

    1. Truckstop Darlin – hope and the heart it breaks
    2. Lucero – Women and Work
    3. Spirit Family Reunion – No separation
    4. Old Crow Medicine Show – Carry Me Back
    5. John Fullbright – From the Ground Up
    6. Joe Pug – Great Despiser
    7. Turnpike Troubadours – Goodbye Normal Street
    8. Otis Gibbs – Harder than Hammered Hell
    9. Father John Misty – Fear Fun
    10. Lee Bains III and the Glory Fires – There is a Bomb in Gilead

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