I’m finally writing this post. Hooray!
There’s only eight albums on this list and I’m pretty sure that’s because I listened to more podcasts than albums in 2013. I don’t know if the data backs up that claim because I haven’t run any pivot tables on my Excel file, but it certainly feels right. As always, the albums are listed in the order in which I thought of them.
The Neighbourhood – I Love You.
Once upon a time (read: early 2013) I was going to write a long post about why I love this record. It really captured my attention the first time I listened to it (I was driving to my first temp job of last year the day this record came out). I know I just said the ordering of this list is inconsequential, but I think this really was my favorite record of last year. Hell, this is the only band I bought advance tickets to see last year.
Standout Track: “Sweater Weather”
Kevin Devine & the Goddamn Band – Bubblegum
As much as I love Kevin, I was a little apprehensive about backing his Kickstarter. What if I helped pay for these records and then didn’t like them? (Actually, that fear waited until after the Kickstarter was funded to pop into my head, but you get the idea.) It turns out that I had nothing to worry about. Bubblegum is my favorite of the two records (not just because Jesse Lacey produced it), but they’re both fantastic (see below). I’m so glad I saw Kevin and the GDB last year and I can’t wait to see them again.
Standout Track: “Fiscal Cliff”
Kevin Devine – Bulldozer
Bulldozer is a little more quiet and a little less angry and political than Bubblegum, but those aren’t bad things. Why make two records at more or less the same time if they aren’t different? I last listened to both records while flying to New York because they seemed like perfect flying-to-New-York albums and they were.
Standout Track: “Now: Navigate!”
American Authors – American Authors EP
I loved “Believer” from the first time I heard it on Alt Nation and became obsessed with “Best Day of My Life” when it was released as a single (as has been well-documented here). The other three songs on this EP are also very good. I’m really looking forward to their full-length record, which is supposed to come out this year. Maybe it’ll come out at that special time of year when I become obsessed with a brand new record (looking at you, Mona and The Neighbourhood).
Standout Track: “Best Day of My Life”
Frank Turner – Tape Deck Heart
I remember how excited I was a year ago when I found out Frank Turner had a new record coming out. This didn’t disappoint. In fact, my only Frank Turner-related disappointment of 2013 was that I didn’t see him at Next Big Thing. ‘Course, I didn’t see anybody at Next Big Thing ’cause I didn’t go, but Frank was the main reason I wanted to go.
Standout Track: “Four Simple Words”
City and Colour – The Hurry and The Harm
This is another record I was really excited for that did not disappoint. I find it interesting that I love City and Colour and own all of their records but I don’t really care for Alexisonfire (Dallas Green’s old band). The fact that they are completely different may have something to do with that. City and Colour is another band that I am going to see live someday, dammit!
Standout Track: “Take Care”
Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience
But only the first part; I haven’t listened to part 2 yet. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while (thanks!) you know how excited I was when this record was announced. This record was worth the interminable wait between FutureSex/LoveSounds and The 20/20 Experience. I can only hope that I will be able to say the same thing about the next Brand New record (whenever it’s released).
Standout Track: “Don’t Hold the Wall”
Andrew McMahon – The Pop Underground EP
It’s almost hard to believe that the guy from Something Corporate and Jack’s Mannequin put this EP out. I don’t mean that in any pejorative way, either; I’m simply stating a fact. This record isn’t all that much different from the last Jack’s record, but it is a radical departure from the first SoCo record. I think the fact that Andrew McMahon’s music evolves is a major reason why I still like him so much. I can only hope that I will be able to say the same thing about Brand New after their next record comes out 🙂
Standout Track: “Synesthesia”
Hey, all of these records came out in 2013; that’s a first. Other things I realized when looking over this list again: 1) six of the records are by artists I loved before 1/1/13 and the other two I discovered on the radio in 2013 and 2) I own five of these records on vinyl.
I considered putting Fall Out Boy’s new record on this list but ultimately decided against it. I can’t, for the life of me, remember why, though.