The Best Labels of 2012

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We expanded to a Top 25 and still don't feel as though we've done justice.

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Impose Automaton | December 21, 2012

Best Labels of 2012

Cassette photo by Tyler White

Labels love music maybe more than you. Because beyond the vinyl, the 320kbps digital LP download, the poster on your wall, or the button on your vintage denim jacket, dedicated teams of true believers work 24/7, eight days a week to make sure those album/EP releases are ready to go. Labels see to it that PR reps have that jumble of artist statements, press pics, assorted info that is then stated in press releases to be blasted into inboxes/mail boxes, and tailoring pitches for the benefit of the artist/group. All of this activity runs in cycles, trends are either acknowledged, adhered to or done away with all together while the press, fans and listeners at large respond accordingly. In reflecting on 2012 we look at the labels that put in work, sweat, love, and excessive cups of black coffee to keep the supply chains and trains of musical distribution moving. The cassette reigned as the new LP and the mp3 went the way of 8-track, while music soared higher into the cloud allowing new accessibilities to new audiences' experience of sound. We raise a glass Colt 45 goblet to the following imprints that get it, got it, and did it for us in 2012.

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