Thursday, December 26, 2013

Top Albums of 2013 According To Math

From the Law Offices of Babip, Pecota, Vorp, Eckstein & Rice

I wanted to do something different for my albums list, seeing as how I haven't done one in 3 or 4 years, and also because I love stats and math. tracks most of what I listen to so I decided why not go with my top ten most listened albums of the year -- I know it'll reward stuff that came out earlier in the year, but to be honest most top album lists err on the other side, celebrating stuff that was dropped recently and bumping stuff that got overplayed over the summer down a few notches. So maybe I'm balancing things out this way. Namaste? Whatevs.

(Also, I love pop music. Does that need a disclaimer? Who knows. This is the internet.)

1. Lorde ~ Pure Heroine
This one wasn't even close, especially if you count The Love Club EP she released in the spring. I loved Lorde this year. Really minimalistic at times. Really poppy, too. A better songwriter than she ought to be at her age. And when I first heard Royals on the radio it was like this:

2. Widowspeak ~ Almanac
I really fell for Widowspeak hard in the first half of 2013. Female singer. Check. Dream pop melodies. Check. 90s guitars. Check+. Um, you know I worship Mazzy Star, too, right? This album was possibly made just for me.

3. Lord Huron ~ Lonesome Dreams
I tired of this album really quickly, but for three months in early 2013 it was the best thing on the planet. I hate it when I do that to records, because this one is still pretty good. They got tagged as sort of Fleet Foxes-ish, which is a shame because they're doing some great new wave / Paul Simon inspired stuff, too. And you know I'm a sucker for Graceland.

4. Jai Paul ~ S/T

I have Plett to thank for this. If I still followed Pfork I might have caught it earlier in the year, but these demos weren't on my radar until much later. The fact that they shot up to number four in a relatively short time should tell you something. Another artist with some throwback sounds that reminded me of the best of the 1980s. If Prince and Frank Ocean and James Blake make you weak in the knees, check it out.

5. Daft Punk ~ Random Access Memories

No excuse for this not ranking higher. Other than that of the 233 times I listened to Daft Punk over the past 12 months only half came from RAM. Priorities, dammit!

6. Kacey Musgraves ~ Same Trailer Different Park
2012-13 will go in the books as the years I rediscovered country music. Musgraves writes really simple songs with really catchy melodies and no more than three or four chords a piece. And she's like 12. Okay, 25. Whatever. She also wrote a song for Nashville, which boasts Buddy Miller and T-Bone Burnitt as music supervisors. There's some serious cred there is what I'm saying.

7. Neko Case ~ The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You

Neko lives in Vermont, so I like to pretend we're neighbors. She might be Canadian, I forget. Her voice kills me. With daggers. End of discussion.

8. Autre Ne Veut ~ Anxiety
Whoa! Now there's some Sharebarn love from Paco. Gotta give credit where credit is Drew. (Gotta love Drew.) Give 2013 a few more weeks and this one keeps rising. I keep talking about throwback tunes to the 80s or 90s, and Autre Ne Veut have that sort of old-school luster, but they're most definitely a product of the the modern age. This is an album that only could have come out in 2013. Catchy as hell and sort of a revelation.

9. Yo La Tengo ~ Fade

No really, it's a great album. I'm old, okay, I get it. Sometimes old people albums creep into my lists. But easily their strongest set of songs since Summer Sun. Remember how I like dreamy pop? You forgot already?! What are you, a goldfish? Oh, you are? How are you even on the internet?

10. Chance the Rapper ~ Acid Rap

Does this redeem me? So a 20-yr-old released my favorite hip-hop album of 2013, I guess. I didn't expect that. I do really love fun-time, party rap. So in a year where everyone else played the rap game super serious, it makes sense. The rise of Lil Wayne and then Drake really turned me off for a while. But the pendulum swung back alright. 2014 could be a really good year.


  1. You really need the lord in your life!

  2. just surprised you didn't make this joke while talking about lorde.

    I'm trying to make a list but the sound on my computer died which has me doing this hilarious time of looking through itunes and then listening to stuff on my phone.

    we'll see if it happens. some good gots on this list. gatters doo. Good to see Autre on thar. I gave plett that Jai Paul so I'm ultimately the progenitor of two of your choices! glorious praise to me!

  3. Are we praise trolling now?! Praise Trolls are BOGO at K-Mart, but only for the next three hours.


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