Look: Most of the time, we here at Napster are like all-knowing, all-seeing, never-sleeping queens of the music-verse. We never miss a killer album, never forget to tell you about the great new artist we just heard about. And we never, ever miss the mark on something the first time around, then kick ourselves once we realize how great it is and how much you guys would seriously love it. Right? You know this about us, yes?
But every once in a great while, an album slips through the cracks. And more often than not, the albums that our meticulous ears don’t quite catch are from the nebulous, ambiguous “world music” genre.
Now, to be fair, that's a pretty broad term – it encompasses the whole world, in fact -- and we’re often talking about tiny indie labels and artists from far-flung areas of the globe who don’t always have the staggering PR oomph major-label artists do. But still, that’s no excuse for neglecting these artists and their fantastic albums a second time around, right?
Of course not.
So here we present 10 albums we wish we would've shone more light on in 2012. The list includes big names that we just didn’t quite get around to telling you about (Marisa Monte! Hugh Masekela!), up-and-comers who weren’t quite on our radar in time (Mokoomba! Flavia Coelho!) and at least a couple albums that we are, yes, kicking ourselves for not including in our roundups of the year’s best (our apologies to the lovely Toumani Diabaté collaboration A Curva Da Cintura and the exhilarating debut from time-tripping Bollywood psychedelic outfit The Bombay Royale). Catch up on all 10 here, plus four more honorable mentions that made the playlist. We’re not behind, we’re just fashionably late. Right?