Top 20 Albums Of 2012: 4-3
4. Bigbang - Alive
The K-Pop album to rule them all in 2012. There are so many iterations of this particular release, but when you take all eleven tracks from the various re-releases, you end up with an album that's impressive in its scope and sheer consistency. The number of genres these guys tackle--and master--is amazing. If executives are looking to forge a new pop group, this is exactly the template they should be following.
3. Mika - The Origin Of Love
A surprising return to form after I (and quite a few others) had written him off. This is his most cohesive and personal album, and it really feels like an artist maturing. There's nothing better than thoughtful, mature pop, but Mika doesn't forget to pile on the hooks and production flourishes, either. More than that, the album doesn't just feel like a collection of songs. The listening experience is like a story, each part integral to the whole.