Best Albums of 2013
Since human beings are now only capable of absorbing information on the internet in numbered list form, here’s my top ten records of 2013 list. Though, to be less completely arbitrary, my list isn’t numbered because I don’t feel like pretending I’ve thought that much about what order they should be in. So, sorry to any Pitchfork fans, but there will be no albums separated by two tenths of a point.
My rating system goes like this; I’m taking out all the notions of objectivity/influence/cultural impact that would have had me writing a twenty thousand word essay talking about fifty records (I’ll still do it if someone pays me), and simply focusing on what I enjoy the most. If I’m confident I’ll still be listening to the album 10 years from now, it’s on the list. Which means there’s plenty of music that’s come out that I still enjoy, just not the way I enjoy these records. The order is pretty much based on the order that I remember them, so read into that what you will. (All titles are Spotify links).
LUCIUS - WILDEWOMAN - If I had to choose, this would be #1 just because god damn it’s a perfect record.
RHYE - WOMAN - Sexy grooves were laid. Falsetto was sang. Babies were made.
FRIGHTENED RABBIT - PEDESTRIAN VERSE - A fantastic rock record that I’ve only seen on one end of year list so far. Clearly everyone is stupid but me.
THE NATIONAL - TROUBLE WILL FIND ME - Proof that great songwriting and a unique sound is all you need to succeed basically doing the same thing for over a decade.
VOLCANO CHOIR - REPAVE - Proof that Justin Vernon and his neck beard are unstoppable geniuses. Just accept it and deal with it.
JASON ISBELL - SOUTHEASTERN - A masterclass in writing sad songs that punch you in the gut without being all whiny and emo.
TEDESCHI TRUCKS BAND - Made Up Mind - Listen to this record and for the love of whatever god you believe in go see this band live. You have no idea.
PORTUGAL. THE MAN - EVIL FRIENDS - These guys know their way around a melody better than most other indie rock acts.
SAVAGES - SILENCE YOURSELF - It’s rare for me to not think a hard rock record is totally dumb, let alone thoroughly enjoy it, so these four ladies get tons of props from me.
DAVID BOWIE - THE NEXT DAY - A fantastic breath of fresh air now that everyone assumes (usually correctly) any record by our classic rock heroes will be mediocre at best.