12 OPM Songs of 2012

In 2012, we were under a gayuma by a sirena so we tried to move closer cause we had enough.

For an initial year of my planned yearly listing, here are 12 songs of OPM that I thought made really well in 2012. I’ll be honest, due to distance, I have limited resources of what has been playing around the local radio and music scene. But still, I am fortunate enough to come up of what I personally think is a compelling list of 12 OPM SONGS OF 2012.

I have narrowed down the list to 12 – not my usual 20 – and to the mainstream local music scene. If indie artist managed to penetrate pop mainstream music, then I also comsider them on my list.

Without further adieu, here is my list:

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Julie Anne San Jose – I’ll Be There; Rico Blanco – Amats

12. BA’T DI KO BA NASABI
Krizza Neri

– The protege winner has got the competition in the bag once she opened her mouth. With a voice so clear like water and soothingly beautiful tone, Krizza is a runaway winner. Her debut single, Ba’t di ko ba masabi highlights every bit of her gorgeous tone – From the fantastic restraint to a soaring chorus to a phrasing that is just breathtaking. With the right material like this, Krizza is a talent shouldn’t be put to waste and this track may be a clichè OPM formula but I digress. It worked!

11. XGF
Spongecola (ft. Chito Miranda & Los Magno)

– I admit, initially, I thought this combination will never work. But there is an LSS-induced quality in this track that is just undeniable. Sure, I have been waiting for another track from Spongecola that will take my breathaway once again like Jeepney and Gemini, but for this year, this is a solid showing. Probably thanks to some good assistance from Chito Miranda? XGF is a reminiscent of PNE’s The Yes Yes Show were the lyrics play seems like a dialogue style and putting such good harmony on Chito and Yael’s voices.

10. STEAL YOUR SOUL
Markki Stroem (ft. Zia Quizon)

– There’s an innate sexiness that is undeniabke in the way Markki phrased and sang his verses in Steal your soul. In addition, the tracks jazz themed tempo capped with an assistance from Zia Quizon proved to be a ball of gorgeousness. Steal your soul had a lot of dynamics with enough sophistication yet alluring some mass appeal. It was well crafted and well sang.

9. HULING SAYAW
Kamikazee (ft. Kyla)

– How could a rock band come up such sad, sweet symphony is beyond me. In addition, Kyla lending her gorgeous voice added an undeniable impact to an already solid track. Huling Sayaw is another clichè OPM tune but you will not be mad. It merges rock tunes to some sad story telling. The single isn’t fresh but it worked. It is radio friendly, lss induced and a classic case of mass appeal.

8. HARI
Frank Magalona

– If you will ask me, I thought the Frank Magalona is the one who managed to capture his father’s ability to rap well. And I am right. Hari is a testament of his genius work. Merging his father’s legacy to his own aesthetic, Frank created a tribute single to the King of Rap and still keeping his staple to it.

7. DEAR LONELY
Zia Quizon

– I would say this over and over again but Zia Quizon has completely destroyed Karylle’s singing career in my book! Sorry but Zia is a such a solid vocalist and had better enunciation! Dear Lonely is a good follow up to Ako Na Lang and its retro feel capped the jukebox track made me think that Zia is actually a force to be reckon with in the local music scene. She had the quirky tone and yet radio friendly quality that caters to diverse people.

6. MAKE IT DRIFT
Alessandra de Rossi

– Alessandra is such a talent. Not only she is a fantastic and underrated actress, but she is actually a good singer too. No she’s not the best belter or a one of a kind singer, but for her to play with her strengths and turn her vocal limitations to her side and come up with Make it drift? I am pleased. It was a simple, haunting and gorgeous single with lots of radio potential if it was given a chance. Haven’t Filipinos heard such talent like Lana Del Rey? There’s an ethereal quality filled with rhythm effervescence on the synth play of this track. Make it drift transcends that almost makes you like you are under its spell.

5. TURN IT WELL
Up Dharma Down

– Up Dharma Down is one of those lucky indie darlings that managed to cross over mainstream and still was able to keep their indie flavor. Turn it well is yet another gem in their belt. If Oo is a painful anthem of a loved took advantage of and Tadhana is like an ethereal journey of hopeful love, Turn it well is a lovely symphony of taking a chance on someone. The synth bizarre musical play isn’t an overwhelming feeling but a ethereal flow of merge between Armi’s gorgeous voice and the play on rhythm in its back track. Once the chorus was reached, it soared beautifully adding yet another texture to the track.

4. MOVING CLOSER
Never The Strangers

Moving Closer is all sorts of sweet, romanticism put in music and lovely. It is a simple tune with no sense of pretensions. Playing with a lovely melody and offering a vocalist with such appealing tone, you can’t help but take notice and the track had a winning formula of both radio and chart hit.

3. ENOUGH
Julie Anne San Jose

– Among her contemporaries, talent wise Julie Anne San Jose emerged as one on the top. And after years of making a name for herself, Julie Anne finally broke in the local music scene and probably delivered one of the best R&B tune in OPM. Enough explores her diverse talent from rhythm plays to on point high register to even mastering a slick rap verse. Not to mention, the song is appealing to a large audience and has a radio friendly vibe that just worked naturally.

2. GAYUMA
Abra (ft. Thyro & Jeriko Aguilar)

– Is Abra a threat to Gloc-9? With such solid debut, Abra is one of the breakout star of the local music scene. Gayuma is such a tune that everyone is left with the music and lyrics stuck in your head. His rap verses were slick and clean and that chorus is no doubt one of the most LSS-worthy of the modern local music.

1. SIRENA
Gloc – 9 (ft. Ebe Dancel)

– It is such an anthemic track put in the most unusual genre but it worked. Ebe providing that soaring chorus and Gloc once again delivering strong and clean rap verses. No doubt, Sirena is the biggest hit of 2012 and it even made impact even the local divas were belting it out with the rap verses included! In high spirits, Sirena delivers a solid message too that made it work in a broader perspective.

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20 Songs of 2012

After a year dominated by emotions and vocals from the stunning Adele, 2012 is a welcoming surprise of varieties. From the rise of a boyband to a country star transitioning to pop to new breed of artists making potentially more than one-hit wonders.

In 2012, we threw a wish in a well just to give our heart a break from the heartaches of somebody that we used to know. But we are young and what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and that makes us beautiful. Ha!

So here it is, a subjective list of 20 songs from mainstream music book that I personally thought dominated 2012’s radio, chart, video viewing and pop culture. Hence giving us a dynamic playlist for a 2012 ride.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Adele – Turning Tables; Maroon 5 (ft. Wiz Khalifa) – Payphone; The Civil Wars (ft. Taylor Swift) – Safe & Sound; One Direction – Live While We’re Young; The Wanted – Glad You Came; Nicki Minaj – Starships; Justin Bieber (ft. Big Sean) – As Long As You love Me; Frank Ocean – Thinking About You

20. 6 DEGREES OF SEPARATION
The Script

“The rousing chorus sees Danny O’Donoghue on good vocal form and he really does pack the track with plenty of a motion that just gives the song that little bit of something.” – Female First

19. LET ME LOVE YOU
Ne-Yo

“The song’s uplifting self-worth message (not to mention soul clap-heaven bridge, “for every heart that beats / for every heart that beats”) make this one of 2012’s standout dance-pop cuts in a year filled with far more innocuous entries.” – Billboard

18. ONE MORE NIGHT
Maroon 5

“… there’s a bit of a reggae style infused into the percussion, giving the song a more dancey feel. The song is erected on a thumped out (and looped) beat, in addition to Levine’s signature falsetto, where he tosses off lyrics about not getting along with (or being able to untangle himself from) his lady love.” – Pop Crush

17. GIVE YOUR HEART A BREAK
Demi Lovato

“… is full of poignant little moments like that, like the sadly affectionate way Demi exhales the term of endearment “My love” in the second verse, or the way the track drops out around her as she belts out the words, “Baby try to understand,” revealing only the crushing power of her vocal, or indeed, that little break in her voice as the song is winding down around 2:49.” – MTV

16. LOCKED OUT OF HEAVEN
Bruno Mars

“… The song is about unbridled passion, but as usual with Mars, the aesthetic is tidy and impeccable, pop songcraft polished to a high-gloss gleam: jittery Police-esque rock-reggae verses that erupt, amid thunder-boom synths, into a steamrolling four-on-the-floor chorus.” – Rolling Stone

15. TITANIUM
David Guetta (ft. Sia)

“… The impact flows over you like a wave crashing on the shore. It is still relatively simplistic in structure, but the sounds are quite beautiful.” – About Entertainment

14. WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN
Rihanna

“… begins humbly with Rihanna’s romantic singing and a few electronic pulses before Harris and fellow producers Dr. Luke and Cirkut use their defibrillator pads on the beat. Soon, Rihanna’s layered vocals are charging head-first into a slithering bass drop that becomes the song’s filthy, fantastic sticking point.” – Billboard

13. STRONGER (WHAT DOESN’T KILL YOU)
Kelly Clarkson

“… it’s a glittery disco-rock romp punctuated by another chill-inducing Clarkson message of empowerment, “Doesn’t mean I’m lonely when I’m alone.” Electric guitars and powerful synths make this an instant sing-along classic.” – Pop Crush

12. IT’S TIME
Imagine Dragons

“… features an infectious blend of clapping and mandolin—an instrument that’s seen an unlikely revival this year.” – Plugged In

11. WE ARE NEVER EVER GETTING BACK TOGETHER
Taylor Swift

“… Swift expands an already impressive songwriting range to incorporate a biting sarcasm within her deep-rooted confidence.” – Billboard

10. WHAT MAKES YOU BEAUTIFUL
One Direction

“… Easy to hear why this single has stuck. Like ‘N Sync’s most durable hits, with a cheeky electro-pop twist.” – Billboard

9. LIGHTS
Ellie Goulding

“… is a great introduction to a fresh sound coming from across the pond and a nice alternative to the synth-heavy hip-hop and club beats that saturate radio play today.” – Common Sense Media

8. HOME
Phillip Phillips

“… Built upon upbeat acoustic guitar chording that immediately brings to mind folk rockers from across the pond such as  Mumford & Sons and Glen Hansard, “Home” majors in a message of hang-in-there encouragement that’s every bit as positive as the song itself sounds.” – Plugged In

7. LEGO HOUSE
Ed Sheeran

“… riddled with earworm hooks – but it’s the sharpness of his lyrics that shine brightest.” – Digital Spy

6. SOMEBODY THAT I USED TO KNOW
Gotye (ft. Kimbra)

“… This haunting, spare tune (which melds a trippy combination of Jack White-approved acoustic bass and guitar, muffled drums and ’60s-esque xylophone fills) writes the obituary of a romantic relationship. And by the time Gotye gets to the chorus, it’s impossible not to recall two other famously emotive European singers: Sting and Peter Gabriel. Simultaneously, the song’s palpable bitterness echoes just a bit of the vibe that  Adele has been mining for pop gold as of late.” – Plugged In

5. CALL ME MAYBE
Carly Rae Jepsen

“… full of bushy-tailed strings and PG-rated guitar chugging; Jepsen’s hairbrush vocals are charmingly heartfelt, and easy enough for popular Hollister-clad girls in schools everywhere to emulate. The lyrics, full of wishing wells and ripped jeans, were almost certainly written with hearts dotting the “i”s. And herein lies its charm: the climactic rush towards the chorus isn’t fraught with sexuality, but merely the giddiness of tweenage infatuation. ” – The Guardian

4. A THOUSAND YEARS (Part 2)
Christina Perri (ft. Steve Kazee)

“… feature an instrument-rich arrangement filled with piano and strings, along with Perri’s pretty, plaintive vocals.” – Common Sense Media

3. WE ARE YOUNG
Fun. (ft. Janelle Monae)

“…takes its warm retro sound into soaring ballad territory. Careful arrangements layer sharp, bright piano melodies with big, booming drums and multiple vocal harmonies, but frontman Nathan Reuss’ vocal dexterity shines through as the track’s strongest component.” – Billboard

2. DIAMONDS
Rihanna

“.. steers the polar opposite from her recent clubbier efforts and adopts a rarely-seen softer and more prolific edge.” – Digital Spy

1. I WON’T GIVE UP
Jason Mraz

“.. majors in sweet dedication, as its title implies. No winking double entendres here. No self-centered narcissism. No vapid shout-outs to empty lifestyles. Just a promise to be there, no matter what. Period.” – Plugged In