Below is my (Will Guerin) selection for song of the year, where I ramble endlessly on the merits of Chairlift’s “I Belong In Your Arms.” Picking one song is so difficult and it easily could have been any of the other songs listed after the writing, where I list 20 other favorites from the year 2012, in no particular order.

How do you escape the shadow of “Bruises” and iPod commercials? Write a better love song, write the score for a cheesy montage of lovers running through a verdant meadow, write the unbridled ecstasy and crazy in love declaration that is “I Belong In Your Arms.” Take the love-sick teenager heart of “Bruises” and depersonalize it to into an anthemic cry that could be sung in Japanese and still relate the bliss (and it WAS, complete with a cheesy 80’s inspired music video)

The song clambers on top of the shaky foundation set by the bowing reverb of the cello, an 80’s tribute fit to be an alternate opening to “Come On Eileen” (Dexy would be proud). From there, Caroline Polachek’s serene vocals steadily gain their footing as each verse falls from her lips so effortlessly and melts away into another. And just thirty seconds into her stream-of-consciousness lyrics stumble out the line “why waste time,” cueing a blurring acceleration down a rainbow road surrounded by pillowy, lush synths that blanket so evenly and the distant fireworks of sparkling, twinkling bells, finally arriving and climaxing with the overwhelming halo of “I belong in your arms.” The whole thing is dancing around your living room with arms pinwheeling, the first jump of the summer off the diving board into a glistening pool, ice cream and eskimo kisses. It’s love when you can still feel that first kiss and when you get butterflies when you see her across the room. It ignores the cerebral completely but it’s not completely carnal either, you just need to soak in their presence and be immersed in their every smile.

Throughout the song, Polachek is swimming furiously away from a whirlpool determined to pull her down. Her even-keel vocals a poor disguise of detachment, making her explosive breakdown leading into the second chorus all the more satisfying, as a guttural shriek slips through her armor and strips away the gloss, plunging her into the water. And before you know it, the tribal chants that follow the third chorus are carrying you away into the red-glow of the outro as it slowly disintegrates and slows into the calm, reserved “Take It Out On Me.” – Will Guerin

Twenty Other Favorites from 2012

Beach House- Wild

The Antlers- Endless Ladder

Black Moth Super Rainbow- Psychic Love Damage

Chromatics- Kill For Love

Cloud Nothings- Wasted Days

Dirty Projectors- Just From Chevron

Friends- Mind Control

Japanrdroids- The House That Heaven Built

Mac Demarco- Ode To Viceroy

The Men- Oscillation

Miike Snow- Enter The Joker’s Liar

Purity Ring- Lofticries

Sharon Van Etten- Kevin’s

Zammuto- F-U 3CPO

Twin Shadow- Golden Light

Dirty Projectors- Unto Caesar

Hot Chip – These Chains

WHY?- Strawberries

Purity Ring- Ungirthed

-Will Guerin