50 Best Albums of 2012

Frank Ocean reimagined R&B; Dylan drenched us in blood; pop-punk vets, disco orchestras and Scottish oddballs made an election year bearable.

43

fun., 'Some Nights'

"Some nights I wish that my lips could build a castle," Nate Ruess sings on fun.'s second record. And that's pretty much what happened: The New York trio leverage world-beating pop success on Ruess' Broadway-big pipes, bubblegum-Queen grandeur and an Eltonian sense that no sound is offlimits – from Kanye ("All Alright") to synth punk ("It Gets Better") to Modest Mouse ("Why Am I the One"). But this isn't just a whiz-kid talent flex; Ruess' emo sweetness and self-doubting humor make Some Nights a castle you could feel at home in.

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