It's that time of year again folks. 2013 has been an incredible year for new music, the best in recent memory. Last year this was only a Top 5 but this year it was hard to cut it down to only 10.


#1 Kurt Vile - Wakin On A Pretty Daze
Have been obsessed with this record all year. Pure pop.
Key Tracks: Girl Called Alex, Too Hard, Air Bud


#2 Blondes - Swisher
I first heard this on youtube straight through, infact I only recently bought this, I've been listening to the youtube all year, and as that is how I first experienced it, I sort of prefer it that way and the visuals are great too.
Key Tracks: Elsie, Andrew, Poland
Full Album Stream:


#3 Machinedrum - Vapor City
I have to thank Chris Beak for helping me realize how great this album is. I liked two tracks on room(s) so wasn't expecting to like this, but it's an absolute corker.
Key Tracks: Eyesdontlie, Rise n Fall, Baby It's U

#4 Jon Hopkins - Immunity
Reminds me of Luke Abbott who is a favourite of mine. This is another album that demands to be listened to straight through.
Key Tracks: Open Eye Signal, Sun Harmonics, Collider

#5 Baths - Obsidian
I'm a sucker for electronics with vocals, what can I say.
Key Tracks: No Past Lives, Miasma Sky, No Eyes, Earth Death


#6 David Bowie - The Next Day
This album by all rights, should not have been this good.
Key Tracks: The Stars, Heat


#7 Tim Hecker - Virgins
This was a very late entry. Some of this list is music I like to listen to but this one is music I want to make (and listen to I guess). I found this record very inspiring. If it had come out earlier in the year (than October) and I had more time to digest it may have placed higher.
Key Tracks: Stigmata I, Virginal II, Live Room

#8 Holden - The Inheritors
This album and the Jon Hopkins album are connected for me somehow. A Circle Inside A Circle Inside is one of my favorite tracks of the year.
Key Tracks: ||: A Circle Inside A Circle Inside :||, Gone Feral, Blackpool Late Eighties

#9 Boards of Canada - Tomorrow's Harvest
Dark in places and has tracks that sound like they could have been made any time in the last 20 years, Telepath for example sounds straight off of Geogaddi, Cold Earth sounds like it's from the Beautiful Place EP. But when those old records are such classics this is a good thing rather than a dig.
Key Tracks: Jacquard Causeway, Reach for the Dead, New Seeds

#10 Forest Swords - Engravings
Another late entry into the top 10, there is something very unique about this guys sound. I could do without the sufi vocals though.
Key Tracks: Thors Stone, The Plumes, An Hour



Honorable Mentions: Mum, John Wizards, Haxan Cloak, Huerco S., Kibble, The Field, Egyptrixx, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Fuck Buttons, King Krule, Bibio

Now go make some music.

Andrew

Los Angeles' mummyshroud is back in action with a new sizzler called "SensiCare". If you've heard mummyshroud before, you know to expect some mutant dancehall with a heavy dose of hip-hop and IDM laced throughout. This one's got a sick, rubbery bassline, some ethereal organ stabs and a riddim that punches like Pacquiao. If you haven't heard mummyshroud before then...well...SMH. Get on it!
I've been promised more mummyshroud material in the near future, possibly even an EP, so stay tuned!

Been quiet for awhile, but haven't been completely inactive. Com-S is another one of my projects focused on spontaneous lo-fi, live, hardware-based techno of the old school variety - no computers involved except to normalize and upload the recordings. This track "Sunken City Acid" is a funky Detroit-influenced acid house track with a heavy underwater vibe (obviously you're thinking Drexciya and I'm thinking I like what you're thinking). The video is a live feed of the track's recording. Expect a full record of tracks like this one in the near future!

Here's something I've been working hard on. I'm trying to get that "ear hugging" mix sound to provide some contrast with my typical "sensory bombardment" - or possibly even combining the two. I'm very happy how it turned out! You know when you complete a project and besides having the finished result you also feel "I learned something"? That's where I'm at right now :)

Awkward is back with a new alias and a new album. The self titled album from Kibble was created entirely in February in a creative spurt for the RPM Challenge 2013. Stream or download it here: