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Where Music Makes Friends

Top Albums of the Year

January 31, 2014

Wes’s Top 30 Albums of 2013


Now that the dust has settled on those failed diets, unused gym memberships, and your abandoned shit novel idea, we can finally reminisce with a clear head and nostalgic heart on the year of music that was 2013. For the first time since I’ve been doing this, I couldn’t carve out a definitive top 10, top 5, or even #1 album of the year. It was a combination of many great albums and no albums really rising above the rest. It’s a good problem to have.

While I couldn’t really rank my top 10 or so, I can’t stress enough how exciting and enriching this year’s crop of albums was. Some powerful songwriting (Jason Isbell, Kurt Vile, Daughter), surprising reinventions (Sigur Ros, Bryan Ferry), and some stirring new-comers (Hozier, London Grammar, HAIM, Daughter). But there were some absolute head-scratchers – albums I did not understand the appeal of; albums that sucked from bands that don’t (well, except Deafhaven sucks, and Musgraves is just a saccharine pop-country starlet) like Disclosure, Deafhaven, Kacey Musgraves, Disclosure, and The Knife. And there were oh so many I had to leave off, like Okkervil River, Neko Case, Deerhunter, Portugal. The Man, Bibio, Parquet Courts, San Fermin, Zola Jesus, and Cults. And there were the sentimental favorites that, for the purposes of a finite list, I had to try and be objective about, like Toad the Wet Sprocket, Travis, Jim James, Daft Punk, Mazzy Star, and The Strokes. But all said and done, were my list 50 albums long, there’d be no weak links. So if you’re not familiar with 2013 yet, then listen to some damn music already.

30. British Sea Power | From the Sea to the Land Beyond

British Sea Power

29. Low | The Invisible Way


28. Laura Marling | Once I Was An Eagle

Laura Marling

27. David Bowie | The Next Day

David Bowie

26. Foxygen | We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic


25. Valerie June | Pushin’ Against A Stone

Valerie June

24. The Bryan Ferry Orchestra | The Jazz Age

The Bryan Ferry Orchestra

23. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds | Push the Sky Away

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds

22. London Grammar | If You Want

London Grammar

21. Hozier | Take Me To Church


20. Foals | Holy Fire


19. White Denim | Corsicana Lemonade

White Denim

18. Daughter | If You Leave


17. Arcade Fire | Reflektor

Arcade Fire

16. Grizzly Bear | Shields – B-Sides

Grizzly Bear

15. Volcano Choir | Repave

Volcano Choir

14. The National | Trouble Will Find Me

The National

13. HAIM | Days Are Gone


12. Sigur Ros | Kveikur

Sigur Ros

11. Darkside | Psychic


10. Phosphorecent | Muchacho


9. Vampire Weekend | Modern Vampires of the City

Vampire Weekend

8. Local Natives | Hummingbird

Local Natives

7. CHVRCHES | Bones of What You Believe


6. James Blake | Overgrown

James Blake

5. Jason Isbell | Southeastern

Jason Isbell

4. Atoms for Peace | Amok

Atoms for Peace

3. Kurt Vile | Wakin On A Pretty Daze

Kurt Vile

2. Rhye | Woman


1. Midlake | Antiphon


About the Author

Wesley Warren