Sunday, 22 December 2013

10 AWESOME ALBUMS OF 2013

Okay, so I have to start off by saying that, yes, I usually hate the shit out of end of year 'Best Of' lists. They're annoying as fuck and they're a cop out and opinions are fucking subjective and well, stupid opinions anger me... buuut I am going to contradict myself completely right now and give you a list of (IN MY STUPID OPINION) the most awesome albums of 2013. The reason I feel the need to do this is because HOLY SHIT THIS YEAR HAS BEEN SO GOOD FOR MUSIC!

Distilling all the awesome into just 10 albums (not including EPs) took me two whole weeks of tough, heart breaking decisions, but I got there eventually. I also feel the need to state that I'm no music critic, I don't really know, or care, about what technically makes a song "good", I just know what I like. Feel free to disagree with/be angered by and/or completely disregard my opinions. In fact, please do! FUCKYOUBYE.


#10 Dizraeli and the Small Gods - Moving In The Dark (18th March)

If you've ever been of the opinion that folk and hip hop are two genres that don't/won't/shouldn't go together, then you'd be wrong. If you've never had an opinion about folk/hip hop crossover, what's wrong with you? Dizraeli is a British rapper from Bristol and The Small Gods are his band. Their folk/hip hop infusion includes the use of instruments such as a meloldica, double bass, flute, piano, viola, a hammered dulcimer and, of course, turntables and also a beatboxer. Seriously, this album its brilliant.

Favourite songs: 'Was A Rapper', 'Nevermind', 'Million Miles'



#9 Laura Marling - Once I Was An Eagle (27th May)

Another folk album, sans the hip hop. Laura Marling is 23 years old and has already released four albums (and is apparently recording a fifth album before the end of this year). Not only that but they're all incredible and she gets better and better with each release. She has a beautiful voice, is wise far beyond her 23 years and never ceases to amaze me.

Favourite songs: 'I Was An Eagle', 'Master Hunter', 'Pray For Me'




#8 The Flatliners - Dead Language (16th September)

Time for some Canadian punk! I had never heard of this band when I spotted a free stream of their new album on Alternative Press. I'm a sucker for a free album stream because sometimes I discover some awesome shit. Like this album. I fell in love with it instantly and played it constantly for about a week. I picked up the band's back catalogue, but this is still my favourite album of theirs.

Favourite songs: 'Resuscitation of the Year', 'Sew My Mouth Shut', 'Tail Feathers'
 



#7 Daughter - If You Leave (18th March)

Wikipedia describes Daughter as indie rock but I'm not too sure that I fully agree with that. I'd say they're more folk-y/pop-y rock than indie but da fuck do I know? I genuinely got chills the first time I listened to this album. But that may or may not have been because I was a hungover emotional wreck on that particular day (Definitely was). Either way, it is a beautiful, beautiful album.

Favourite songs: 'Youth', 'Still', 'Human'

#6 Alkaline Trio - My Shame Is True (2nd April)

Although I have now missed the opportunity to see them live, not once but twice, Alkaline Trio are still one of my favourite bands of ever and I think that this album is their best since Crimson (2005). Matt Skiba describes the album as "a love letter to my ex-girlfriend, or an apology note set to music" which I feel is a pretty apt description of the album. I'm a sucker for a break up album and nobody writes depressing, morbid, heart break pop punk songs quite like Matt Skiba.

Favourite songs: 'Kiss You To Death', 'One Last Dance', 'Until Death Do Us Part' 

 
#5 Louise Distras - Dreams From The Factory Floor (30th September)

I have been a fan of Louise Distras ever since I first heard her raspy voice belting out acoustic punk with such passion and anger. I waited a long time for this album and it certainly didn't disappoint. Anyone that says that punk is dead just needs to look at Louise to know that not only is it alive but it will kick you in the teeth and make you feel dumb for ever doubting it. She raised the money to make this album, self released it and never stops touring; she exemplifies the DIY ethos of punk.

Favourite songs: 'Love Me The Way I Am', 'The Hand You Hold', 'Shades of Hate'

#4 Red City Radio - Titles (15th October)

I had never heard of this band until recently when I heard them on BBC Radio 1's Punk Show with Mike Davies. I found that their new album was up online for free streaming and I have been listening to it constantly ever since. I love it more every time I hear it and I don't know how this band are not more famous than they currently are. I hope I can catch them live if they ever tour over here.

Favourite songs: 'Show Me On The Doll Where The Music Touched You', 'Don't Be A Hero, Find A Friend', 'The Silence Between'

 


#3 Not Half Bad - Good People (2nd April)

I don't even remember how I first discovered this band but HOLY FUCK I love this album so much. To me, this is as near to perfect as folk punk can get. It reminded me a little of In Search Of A Former Clarity by Against Me! (which earned it instant awesome points as that is one of my favourite albums of ever). Not Half Bad are a little more light hearted than AM! but shit, I could seriously listen to this album forever.

Favourite songs: 'Punk Rock Is A Full Time Job', 'It Really Sucked, Actually', 'We Did A Lot Of Walking'

 

#2 Off With Their Heads - Home (11th March)

This is another band that I discovered by noticing they had their new album up for free stream (This time via Punk News. God bless you, internet!). This album is about coming home after being away for a long time and feeling out of place. I listened to this A LOT before deciding to move back to my home town after five years away and it really helped. A lot of the songs in OWTH's discography are about depression and discovering this band has made me feel a lot less weird. Or less alone. Or whatever. Those days when I just don't see any reason to get out of bed are made a lot easier by a blast of Ryan Young not giving a fuck.

Favourite songs: 'Nightlife', 'Come Find Me', 'Always Alone'

#1 Frank Turner - Tape Deck Heart (22nd April)

Of course Frank Turner was going to be number one! This is by far and away the album I have listened to the most this year and I don't seem to be getting bored of it yet. Like I said before; I love a breakup album, and this certainly fits the bill. The first time I heard this album it really kicked me in the stomach and made me reflect on things that I thought I was done reflecting on. Not in a bad, depressing way, but in a "actually, everything is going to be okay" kind of way. This isn't my favourite FT album but it's god damn beautiful none the less. I can't wait to see him live again in Febuary.

Favourite songs: 'Recovery', 'Plain Sailing Weather', 'Four Simple Words'   

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