Ferns is a band from Malaysia. Their sound is ultra dreamy, warm, filled with Chan's whispered, relaxing vocals and an astonishing collection of beautiful melodies soaked in delicate reverbs.
Pure, pure, pure heartfelt and heartwarming indie pop.
In 2007 they released On Botany, the best album of that year. A few days ago, their second album - Fairweather Friends - was released. Pretty sure you'll see it on the best-of-2012 list of this blog and a few others.
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1 OJ LAW YESTERDAY IS A DISTANT DREAM (link)
It's hard to believe that a Malaysian one-man-band has been releasing such quality pop music in obscurity (and completely for free) as long as this guy has. But it looks like this is the year that Law breaks out with this killer collection. Imagine Dave Fridmann's ear for production intricacies melded with the songwriting and vocal chops of Prince, Buddy Holly, Brian Wilson & anyone else from your favourite record collection.
2 DUM DUM GIRLS ONLY IN DREAMS (link)
The year that "spectorgaze" finally outgrew it's lo-fi ghetto, thanks in large part to Dum Dum Girls' new effort. The songs are immediate and strikingly brain-adhesive. And free from the mush of previous releases, vocalist Dee Dee reveals voice that grips you. Hard.
3 MATES OF STATE MOUNTAINTOPS (link)
American indie pop's finest couple deserve a medal for being around as long as they have, raising a family AND still making quality tunes that put younger, trendier bands to bed early.
4 WILCO THE WHOLE LOVE (link)
A return to form for some, but in my opinion, Wilco are never off-form. This album, however finds them at the right balance of pop sophistication and passionate performances.
5 BRITISH SEA POWER VALHALLA DANCEHALL (link)
Overlooked because it was released early in the year, BSP's latest proves that they're always an interesting, crazy proposition even when making populist music. These songs could be simultaneously stadium anthems or stuff you go bonkers raving over in your undies.