Dec 31, 2013

My Favorite Albums of 2013

What this year lacked in good books for me more than made up for with amazing music finds.  There were a lot of comebacks this year to be excited about, but mostly there were some great newbs that got my attention.  In fact, I found that most of the comeback albums I was excited about were overshadowed by the amazing newcomers.  My favorite thing about this list is how diverse the sounds are.  Last year was a lot of indie-folk.  This year we have pop, rock, indie and even some hip-hop…what.
Without further ado…

My Favorite Comebacks

No surprise here.  I don't know if they will ever top High Violet for me, but this one comes pretty close.

Again, no surprise.  Well, the one major surprise was that this little side project of Justin Vernon's apparently escaped me.  I had no idea this was going on and this is their second album!  I adore it.  It's my chill music.  It sounds like a beautiful day outdoors.

What can I say?  Still as powerful, raw and gorgeous.  I'll never not love these guys.

She just doesn't get enough props.  Her radio hits are never as good as the other songs on the album.  Just fantastic.

Here's a no-contest band for me.  They blew me away with their debut Passive Me Aggressive You in 2010, and their sophomore album doesn't disappoint.  This is my workout music.  It gets under your skin.

My Favorite Discoveries

This was one of my favorite finds this year.  It's super mellow and a little morose.

The buzz band of the year, I'd say.  I was a fan from the first time I heard this sister trio.  Fresh and fun.  I CANNOT STOP LISTENING TO THIS ALBUM.
If you're on my side of the pond and wish to go see them in concert in Frankfurt on Feb 22, let me know!  I need a concert-going friend.

My absolute favorite find of the year.  I first heard this band on my Mumford station on iTunes Radio.  From that one song, I was clicking the buy button.  This is their debut album.  They're from Montreal and…hey, why don't you just read my article about them on Confront.

Surprising Favorites

I appreciate anything bold and original.  And what's more bold and original than a 17 year old Australian girl taking on hip-hop and totally owning it.

This is my running music so it's actually hard not to hate it a little bit.  No, I'm kidding.  I don't usually go for this poppy stuff, but this is just too fun not to love.


I hate to be a Debby-downer, but when an artist I've loved comes out with a bad album, I get a little angry.  Usually it's either because they've changed or because they've gotten full of themselves.

I won't say this album is bad, because honestly, I've only listened to it like twice.  It just felt over-the-top a bit.  The whole thing has this "let's spell reflector wrong and make it a two-disc album because we can" feeling.  Get over yourselves, guys.  They need to come back to earth and make another Suburbs.  I'll keep listening and hopefully I'll warm up to it eventually.  It just hasn't happened yet.  Apparently, I'm not the only one feeling defeated at the first listen.

Let's Be Still - The Head and the Heart
I hate/love this album.  Meaning I love a few of the songs, and hate all the rest.  They took a working formula from their debut album and entirely ditched it.  I hate to be mean, I really do, but I also hate when a great band goes bat-shit crazy.  Don't believe me?  Track 4.  Enough said.

Well, I won't end on a mean note.  Even the albums I disliked, I disliked because I love the bands so much.  There were plenty of train-wreck'ier albums put out in 2013.  And on the bright side, this has actually been a great year of pop, and that's saying a lot coming from me.

What were your music favorites of the year?


Maria Vicente said...

I haven't listened to so many of these albums! Thanks for sharing some (hopefully awesome) recs! Also, I love your description of Reflektor haha.

melissa said...

I'm so excited to listen to a bunch of these... JUSTIN VERNON SIDE PROJECT SAY WHAT??? I feel like we have some serious dropbox catching up to do, giiiirl.

I was also disappointed by Arcade Fire, and YAY Icona Pop! They made my list too. I'm sharing my top 10 a bit later this week :)

ohseems said...

I missed reading your music reviews! I shall check out the Franklin Electric and I'll be seeing Haim in May!

Amy Lee Scott said...

This is an awesome list! I find myself listening to the Civil Wars when it's moody/gloomy outside (like today). I was also totally surprised by Lorde's album (in a good way). I'm a new reader and love your blog!

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