Guest SMI contributor, musician and vinyl audiophile extraordinaire, John Roth, shares some of his favorite stax o’ wax of 2013.
More of some of our favorite music from 2013 coming next week…
There is nothing like listening to well crafted, well produced music by brilliant artists on 186 gram vinyl. God help me, I do love it so and I looove to do this – reflect back on the year and tag the music that I spent the most time with – by choice (time is a valuable commodity after all). This is not a “Best-Of” list. Honestly, I have no clue what is best or better than anything else – Well… OK, I sorta, kinda do, in a way, but I’m not tellin’ – at least not on this list anyway.
I’m also still in the process of combing through other people’s lists and will likely discover other, stronger 2013 releases in a different time and place. Blee, blah, blah, blee, blee… details, details.
Here’s what I did choose to put on my turntable (a lot) in 2013 (que up the drum roll…) in chunky order (top thirdish, middle thirdish, last thirdish – Whatev… it is ALL good):
Perhaps NC&TBS best record in years – classic NC writing with beatifully spare arrangemnts, performances and authentic production. My favorite for 2013.
Wow! Synths and soul. I woke and fell asleep to this record many mornings and nights. When you’re in that delicate space between sleep and wake your mind receives things in really odd and cool ways. Don’t be put off by “synths”. They are pure analog and this record is astonishingly warm, human and engaging.
They are on many 2013 lists and for good reason. This may be an all too obvious pick but totally spoke to my Talking Heads, Bowie and Sandinista sensibilities.
Somewhat of a guilty pleasure but don’t judge. This is pop, but with a brain and a heart. It hits me like Elvis Costello – Imperial Bedroom. What can I say? I just kept coming back to this one on those sunny summer days.
Garage rock Brooklyn style…a lot of things going on stylistically but mostly a New York rock vibe circa CBGB. Found this one late from someone elses list, which is why I love other lists (Matthew Lee Johnson)
Weird and a great hybrid of techno-americana. I know, sounds horrible but it’s not.
Love this record. A late and pleasant surprise – soul a la Muscle Shoals, jazz and country all rolled into a soulful and sinewy moonshine. You can pratcally smell, touch and taste the Tenessee.
Blood and guts blend of rock and americana. Lot’s of time on my turntable
Not my favorite by them but a standout in 2013 recorded and live. Always buy their records.
Indy rock paella. All over the place but holds together just fine and pairs nicely with Vodka.
Great blend of modern, heavy and melodic. Pitch perfect production for a hard indy rock record. Josh’s vocals are recorded (and performed) so well
Wayne is very sad but thank gawd for Steven Drodz and his sonic sensibilties. Not an easy listen listen but daring and dark.
Not on anyone’s list but mine. Should have been the third guitarist to sit between Jimmy and Jack in “It Might Get Loud”. Marrr is up to his old and new tricks minus the self immolation of Morrisey. Great british rock record
While were on the brits let’s mention this record. British garage rock a la The Clash, The Mysterians. Love.
Perhaps my expectations were too high. Perhaps I haven’t heard this record in the right mood. Perhaps I am just wrong. Look – a bad record by these guys is better than most others on their best day. I guess I just wanted them to sound like they hadn’t been cryogenically frozen for twenty years and thawed out to release another record that sounded 20 years old. Fire away..
A severely overrated record. I’m convinced all the critics were making up for missing fawning over their previous record which was much, much better and largely unnoticed
Records I want in 2014:
Records I don’t want in 2014:
Lumineers, Mumford and Sons, Of Monsters and Men, Decembersists or any other old timey whimey, faux “folk” band replete with some weirdly concocted turn of the century (18/1900’s) wardrobe …blech! Perhaps one day we’ll love them in the same way some people (not me) love the kitsch of ABBA or K.C. and the Sunshine Band…. nahh,,, probably not.