Albums of the Year 2013

IN THE festive run-up to the end of the year, it’s a time for tradition – and it’s traditional for me, as a music fan and also a big fan of making lists of things, to sit down with some headphones and a pad of paper and beat myself up royally about which 10 albums from the year I like best.
This year is no different – I’ve been compiling potential contenders since January, the first ones in the running being Everything Everything, Dutch Uncles and Bay Blue.
And now I’ve whittled it down to my favourites. These are, in alphabetical order…
Bonobo – The North Borders
A masterclass in crafting an intelligent, emotive electronica LP which grows better each spin from one of my all-time favourites. Bonobo, real name Simon Green, just never disappoints.
Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
Channelling the spirit of disco, the mysterious French duo remided the world how to have fun on a dancefloor, and also put out this year’s most irresistible pop tracks in Get Lucky to boot. Believe the hype, this album’s release was the musical event of the year.
Elvis Costello & The Roots – Wise Up Ghost
This unlikely pairing produced for me the Album of the Year, a sparsely funky LP which mixes hip hop beats with old school ska cool.
Hookworms – Pearl Mystic
A droning, pulsating, invigorating album which envelops the listener in a blanket of fuzzy rock.
Intronaut – Habitual Levitations
In what was hardly a vintage year for metal music, Intronaut’s prog-metal album was head and shoulders above its peers.
Jamie Lenman – Muscle Memory
A surprise return from former Reuben frontman Lenman saw a double-disc hard-soft approach – one half was hardcore math-metal and throat-shredding vocals, the other mixes folk, country, swing, a capella and any other genre he fancied experimenting with.
Mark Lanegan & Duke Garwood – Black Pudding
Deliciously raw, low volume alt-country from the foprmer Screming Trees frontman and his finger-picking accomplice.
Melt Yourself Down – Melt Yourself Down
A thrilling melting pot of jazz, world music, pop, funk and avant guard from a supergroup made up of musicians from the likes of Acoustic Ladyland, The Heliocentrics, Transglobal Underground, Mulatu Atstake and more.
These New Puritans – Field Of Reeds
A band determined not to travel the obvious routes, eschewing guitars and song structures from meandering brass and piano, Field Of Reeds is a subtle work of brilliance.
White Denim – Corsicana Lemonade
Another fizzing selection of experimental jam rock laced with a twist of blues, punk, prog, soul, jazz and more from White Denim.
To hear a track from each selection on Spotify click here, and cast a vote for your favourite below.
Of course, if you don’t agree, leave a shout in the comments suggesting your top albums of 2013!

Which is the best Album of the Year 2013