2013 in music was actually a pretty good year. Characterized by amazing comebacks and breakthrough acts. Outstanding records have been made in all genres including indie pop, alternative rock, urban music, soul, and even country.
As most of you have found out Rolling Stones, Entertainment Weekly, Pitchfork Media, Billboard have already compiled their “Best of..the Year” lists. In order to catch up with these big magazines The Gramophone Reporter have also ranked the ten best songs of the year.
BEST SONGS OF 2013
#10 Arcade Fire ─ “Afterlife”
“Afterlife, oh my God, what an awful word” that is how this goosebumping song begins. And the awful thing behind the ‘Afterlife’ is leaving this terrestrial plane holding grudges at our beloved ones. Which is what Win Butler depicts throughout this emotionally-charged arty rock tune. Its accompanying music video is somewhat confusing but still adds an unique imagery.
#09 Martin Garrix ─ “Animals”
If you call Lorde a wunderkind then you probably haven’t heard of Martin Garrix. Off course they both fall into different contexts. But this 17 year-old Dutch DJ produced one of the greatest EDM tracks of the year. Sampling the hook from Busta Rhymes’ 2002-hit “What It Is (Feat. Kelis)”. Garrix makes his own progressive house sound distinct from any Ibiza-DJ or faux skrillexes.
#08 Paula Cole ─ “Eloise”
Are you ready to remember the good Lilith Fair days? Then you must listen to “Eloise” -the leading single from Paula Cole’s latest and self-released album Raven-. This heartbreaking piano ballad traces you back to the now-distant sound of the 90s feminist singer-songwriters’. After all these years, Paula Cole can still hypnotize you with her gorgeous smooth voice.
#07 Neko Case ─ “Man”
Keeping up with female empowerment. American singer-songwriter, Neko Case is up with her grumpy indie rock song “Man”. Where Case goes as far as declaring herself as a man. Not because she’s in an identity crisis but because she claims to be an animal and want to yell it out loud as the song suggests. Pretty harsh on us guys, right?
#06 Phoenix ─ “Entertainment”
French band Phoenix was able to place K-pop, dance music, and alternative rock into a melting pot for this extraordinary song. Proving with this that catchy tunes can be made without going ridiculous. “Entertainment” also reflects upon how the media depicts Thomas Mars’ (the band’s front-man) marriage to popular filmmaker Sofia Coppola.
#05 Kurt Vile ─ “Never Run Away”
The constant “I know you’ll never run away” chorus can only be described as ironic and venomous. This chill-out yet edgy song is simply exceptional. An earth-starring aspect about this tune are the distorted guitars’ sounds that remind you to the glory days of the post-grunge era.
#04 Lorde ─ “Tennis Court”
Forget about overplayed “Royals”. “Tennis Court”, the first track from Lorde’s debut album Pure Heroine, is far more superior, darker, and mesmerizing. This song deals with the singer’s dilemma about becoming famous but still wanting to be a normal teenager. “I’ll see the veins of my city like they do in space” is one line that blows up your mind and consolidates the New Zealand prodigy as a thick songwriter.
#03 Twenty One Pilots ─ “Holding On to You”
Twenty One Pilots are showing us a new and original form to contemplate rap-rock music. “Holding On to You” is filled with mind-expanding imagery that, though some suggests is referring to God, I’d prefer is about another person. And not for being anti-religious. But if Tyler Joseph, the vocalist, is actually showing his feelings towards his significant other. Then he’s truly experienced the most humane feeling of love.
#02 Mac Miller ─ “Objects in the Mirror” (with The Internet)
This version of “Objects in the Mirror” taken from The Space Migration Sessions is one of the most amazing melodies you’ll ever hear in your life. Mac Miller, alongside the arrangements by the trip-hop band The Internet, ensures you to feel the music in the deepest zone of your body and soul. That is how out-of-this-world this song will make you feel.
#01 Vampire Weekend ─ “Diane Young”
New York-based Vampire Weekend crowned the best albums’ list and is striking again in the song’s ranking. “Diane Young” is definitely the best song of the year 2013. Not because of the “baby, baby, baby” catchphrase that everyone is crazy about. But the metaphor behind the live fast, die young thought. Also, not many songs with rather-obscure lyrics can easily engage with a cheerful sound. I also feel identified with it because I love the past (sadly) and the future freaks me out, specially the year 2020.
And once again, its marvelous music video is embed here:
Other songs that just missed the cut:
- Arctic Monkeys ─ “Do I Wanna Know?”
- Beach House ─ “Wishes”
- Black Sabbath ─ “God Is Dead?”
- James Blake ─ “Retrograde”
- Miley Cyrus ─ “We Can’t Stop”
- Disclosure ─ “When A Fire Stars to Burn”
- Eminem ─ “Berzerk”
- Empire of the Sun ─ “Alive”
- HAIM ─ “Feeling”
- Jay-Z ft. Justin Timberlake ─ “Holy Grail”
- Kings of Leon ─ “Supersoaker”
- Kendrick Lamar ft. Drake ─ “Poetic Justice”
- MR MS ─ “Hurricane”
- The National ─ “Don’t Swallow the Cap”
- Kanye West ─ “New Slaves”
- Top Ten Songs 2013 (meshmusic.wordpress.com)
- 2013 In Review: Some Of The Year’s Best Songs [Playlist] (wxrt.cbslocal.com)
- And The Winners Are…SiriusXM Listeners Identify the Best of 2013 (sys-con.com)