We struggled, it killed us a little inside, but we three editors (Rochelle, Jess & Gemma) whittled down all the great releases of 2013 to our five favourite albums and tracks.
We’ll begin with albums…
Foals – Holy Fire
Holy Fire! What an album. Probably the best, most varied release from Foals yet.
The John Steel Singers – Everything’s A Thread
An incredible comeback album from the Brisbane lads. Well worth the wait.
The 1975 – The 1975
Groovy, funakalicious, whatever the hell you want to brand it. It’s a solid rethinking of the hybrid type of genre.
The Growl – What Would Christ Do??
Cam Avery, your voice. Let me stroke it.
Peace – In Love
Everything just comes together so damn perfectly on this album. Indie rock from the Brit’s at it’s best.
Arctic Monkeys – AM
I really like that album artwork. And ‘Knee Socks’. ‘Knee Socks’ is good *shudders*
Phoenix – Bankrupt!
Phoenix came back with a bang and even if this album only consisted of ‘Chloroform’ and ‘Trying To Be Cool’, I’d still be swooning for weeks over it.
Arctic Monkeys – AM
The album that actually made me listen to Arctic Monkeys. I know. Big fan now. Needn’t fear.
Kanye West – Yeezus
Yeezus is basically an album about my life and I’m constantly grateful Kanye released its beauty onto the world.
The Neighbourhood – I Love You
I waited for over a year for this album and listened to their EPs a ludicrous amount of times in anticipation and it didn’t let me down. Angels from the skiez.
Violent Soho – Hungry Ghost
I’d be a wingnut to not have this on my list.
Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires Of The City
Big Scary – Not Art
Lorde – Pure Heroine
The Chemist – Ballet In The Badlands
Everyone would be well aware how I adore this (now defunct) band. Their debut album this year was just 13 tracks of pure genius. Ranging from ballads like ‘Tonight, Tomorrow Is Sold’ to flawless blues-rock tracks like ‘Long Road Back’, this record is just all kinds of right.
Cloud Control – Dream Cave
This is an album that I just didn’t understand the hype over on the first few listens. But after being patient it developed a new aura. ‘Happy Birthday’ proves a highlight, showcasing insane songwriting and production. Needless to say, I now understand the hype.
Cold War Kids – Dear Miss Lonelyhearts
This album proved Cold War Kids’ ability to create two excellent albums in a row (making up for the disappointing Loyalty To Loyalty). They managed to pull the best parts of Robbers & Cowards and Mine Is Yours, while still exploring some new sounds too. ‘Miracle Mile’ was the anthem for many sporting montages, and their appearance at Splendour In The Grass went down a treat.
Josh Pyke – The Beginning & The End Of Everything
I couldn’t skip this one. I spent a few evenings walking around the city listening to this album and Josh Pyke hit every emotional note. Pyke is, no question, one of Australia’s premier songwriters, and seems to have matured somewhat with this year’s release.
The Trouble With Templeton – Rookie
Thomas Calder’s expansion to a full band for The Trouble With Templeton’s second record only improved on a good thing. The tracks “come from an honest place” and have interesting and slightly unsettling dark undertones that keep you on your toes. ‘Soldiers’ and ‘Flowers’ provide an unexpected perspective on seemingly everyday events, and I can only hope Calder and his band have a whole lot more to give.
Boy & Bear – Harlequin Dream
Jinja Safari – Jinja Safari
Hungry Kids Of Hungary – You’re A Shadow
The Strokes – Comedown Machine
Now it’s time to talk about the best tracks of the year…
Oscar Key Sung – All I Could Do
One hella awesome dance track from the Melboune local. It’s got that potential to go into mainstream territory, without selling its soul to the banger.
Saskwatch – Hands
More Melbourne goodness – there’s something in the water. Funky.
White Denim – A Night In Dreams
The new edition of old school rock and roll.
Davey Lane – You’re The Cops, I’m The Crime
A big song, in every sense of the word.
Panama – Always
The hype is justified. Feel good, dance, love.
Dan Croll – Compliment Your Soul
Too lovely for words. One of my best discoveries this year.
Little Scout – Are You Life
Outrageously thankful I caught these guys and saw this song live. Incredible people with incredible music.
Jeremy Neale – Swing Left
Such a Jeremy thing to do, to release a kickass #spyrock song out of nowhere and to show everyone up. It doesn’t even say ‘baby’ in it.
Northeast Party House – Youth Allowance
If you don’t dance to this song even a little bit with every listen then I’m highly concerned for your ability to jam.
Vance Joy – Riptide
Closest thing to Michelle Pfeiffer that you’ve ever seen.
The Creases – I Won’t Wait
Came out of nowhere and tore at the heartstrings with a great song with a greater video. So deep. So true.
The Delta Riggs – America
Gang of Youths – Evangelists
Flume & Chet Faker – Drop The Game
Chiefs – Stay
Josh Pyke – Warm In Winter
I still can’t get over how great this track is. Put this on while you’re driving, or going for a walk and everything will feel much more significant.
Louis Spoils – Sleep At Night
Ahh, I don’t care that Gotye was the drummer in this recording, or that Kane Mazlin (Hungry Kids Of Hungary) was involved in the production- all of that is well and good, but Jake Rush (Louis Spoils) absolutely knocks it out of the park with his songwriting and guitar lines. From the moment I heard this I wanted more from this utterly unique act.
Arctic Monkeys – Do I Wanna Know?
This one had to make it in here. Getting up early in the winter and getting into my freezing car was the worst… until I put this on and I was immediately awake and hating life a little less. The evolution from Arctic Monkeys here is pure brilliance and this song will never become tired.
The Jungle Giants – Devil’s In The Detail
I love this track for the sole reason that is shows depth in The Jungle Giants’ (well, Sam Hales’) songwriting abilities. It’s not all bright indie-pop, pals! Someone said to me upon the release of Learn To Exist that it wasn’t their songwriting that made it great, but the production. Well, this track was produced very simply in Hales’ own bedroom setup so, credit where credit’s due.
The Trotskies – Home
A band that people will be all over in 2014. My favourite track from their debut, self-titled EP and is a post-punk lover’s dream. The chorus will get stuck in your head and you’ll be wishing you had singer Jack’s voice as your own.
Lime Cordiale – Bullshit Aside
Bears With Guns – Taken For A Fool
Jake Bugg – Slumville Sunrise
We’ll have our top gigs of 2013, and our Breakthrough Acts!