The Sound of 2013

At the end of every year, pretty much every music critic, blogger, or enthusiast makes their list of top 10 songs or albums of the year. I usually don’t, but in 2013 I explored a lot more music than usual and decided to make a list too. There are a few differences between my top 10 list and most people’s though: (1) it is songs I discovered, rediscovered, or just listened to a lot in 2013; (2) it has 12 songs on it; and (3) it comes out in August instead of December.

In 2013, I made an effort to break out of my music habits of the last 20 years and listen to a lot of new music (thank you, KEXP, SoundHound, and Spotify). As I listened, I collected a mostly-unfiltered playlist of stuff I heard and tracked down. Toward the end of the year, I made two more lists: The Sound of 2013, the stuff I listened to and enjoyed enough that they define the sound of the year for me, and The Best of 2013, my absolute favorites.

Honestly, I probably could have just made Jagwar Ma’s “Howlin” the “Best of” list and it would be just as true. Howlin is easily my favorite album of the year and the best new thing I’ve heard in years. An old favorite, New Order’s “Movement”, makes an appearance as well, because I spent much of the year delving deeply into the sound of that album.

Anyway, for those without Spotify, here’s the “Best of” list:
– Jagwar Ma – Uncertainty
– Ana Tijoux – 1977
– The White Stripes – The Hardest Button to Button
– Wax Tailor – Say Yes (feat. ASM)
– Soft Metals – Tell Me
– Jagwar Ma – What Love
– New Order – The Him
– El Perro Del Mar – Hold off the Dawn
– Deltron 3030 – Pay the Price
– Weekend – Oubliette
– Phoenix – Everything is Everything
– Franz Ferdinand – Evil Eye

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