I love December, because bloggers make their end-of-year lists of the best songs and albums of the previous 12 months, and I inevitably discover some music I'd missed.
My best discovery this year is the album HLLLYH by L.A. rock outfit The Mae Shi. "Run to Your Grave" is the song that stands out, with its catchy hook and walls of vocalists singing together, but the entire album is a solid collection of pop songs with a punk edge.
The lyrics are Christian in nature, which is not normally my bag, but the music is so good it doesn't matter. Pitchfork aptly described the sound as a "caffeinated anxiousness."
The Mae Shi has an insanely high turnover ratio among its membership. I'm not sure what's up with that, but hopefully the lineup remains intact to produce another record as good as HLLLYH.
MP3: The Mae Shi - Pwnd (from HLLLYH)
Video: The Mae Shi - Run to Your Grave