Best of 2013

Words and Image: Jeremy Curry

best of 2013

These days the amount of music being churned out is at an all-time high. It’s easier to release songs through bandcamp or soundcloud, and more and more musicians are choosing to release tapes, which makes things a lot cheaper for the artist, label and listener. It’s pretty hard to keep up, although there is no way of discovering everything great that came out in this year, or in previous years. It’s almost exhausting trying to come up with a list of the BEST, but some notable releases would have to be Oneohtrix Point Never’s R Plus Seven, which sounds like being stuck inside an ’80s synthesizer with Enya’s vocals programmed into samples, and Eiko Ishibashi’s Imitation of Life, which was actually released in Japan in 2012, but now has a proper North American release this year. The latter was produced by Jim O’Rourke and has incredible orchestral arrangements, not to mention the fact that Ishibashi’s vocals are stunning.

The other cool things I experienced this year are as follows:

– Tubby Burgers.

– An impromptu dance-off with an older gentleman at a Ceephax Acid Crew Show.

– Seeing Jay Arner and the Ketamines play in someone’s living room during the flood in Calgary.

Law & Order: SVU marathons (Although this might be damaging my brain and giving me nightmares).

The other albums I enjoyed this year are as follows:

ÄÄNIPÄÄ – Through a Pre-Memory (Editions Mego)
About Group – Between the Walls (Domino)
AGF – Kuuntele (AGF Producktion)
Andy Kaufman – Andy & His Grandmother (Drag City)
Bill Callahan – Dream River (Drag City)
Bill Orcutt – A History of Every One (Editions Mego)
Boards of Canada – Tomorrow’s Harvest (Warp)
Body/Head – Coming Apart (Matador)
C. Spencer Yeh/Okkyung Lee/Lasse Marhaug – Wake Up Awesome (Software)
CFCF – Outside (Paper Bag)
Cindytalk – A Life Is Everywhere (Editions Mego)
Classixx – Hanging Gardens (Innovative Leisure)
Cornelius – A Ghost In The Shell Arise OST (Victor)
Dawn McCarthy & Bonnie “Prince” Billy – What The Brothers Sang (Drag City)
Dean Blunt – The Redeemer (Hippos In Tanks)
Death Grips – Government Plates (Self-Released)
DJ Rashad – Double Cup (Hyperdub)
Donato Dozzy – Plays Bee Mask (Spectrum Spools)
Dur-Dur Band – Volume 5 (Awesome Tapes From Africa)
Eiko Ishibashi – Imitation Of Life (Drag City)
Ensemble Pearl – Ensemble Pearl (Drag City)
Fire! Orchestra – Exit! (Rune Grammofon)
Jai Paul – Jai Paul (Self-Released?)
Jan St. Werner – Blaze Colour Burn (Thrill Jockey)
Jay Arner – Jay Arner (Mint)
Jessy Lanza – Pull My Hair Back (Hyperdub)
Julia Holter – Loud City Song (Domino)
Keiji Haino / Jim O’Rourke / Oren Ambarchi – Now While It’s Still Warm Let Us Pour In All The Mystery (Black Truffle)
The Knife – Shaking the Habitual (Rabid)
Laurel Halo – Chance Of Rain (Hyperdub)
Low – The Invisible Way (Sub Pop)
M.I.A. – Matangi (Interscope)
Magik Markers – Surrender To The Fantasy (Drag City)
Matmos – The Marriage Of True Minds (Thrill Jockey)
Merzbow & Oren Ambarchi – Cat’s Squirrel (Black Truffle)
Miguel Baptista Benedict – Super(b)-Child-Ran (Brainfeeder)
Mr. Muthafuckin’ eXquire – Kismet (Self-Released)
My Bloody Valentine – m b v (Self-Released)
Nate Young – Regression: Blinding Confusion (NNA Tapes)
Okkyung Lee – Ghil (Editions Mego)
Oneohtrix Point Never – R Plus Seven (Warp)
Perfume – LEVEL3 (Universal J)
Pusha T – My Name Is My Name (GOOD Music)
Quasimoto – Yessir Whatever (Stones Throw)
Ras G – Back On The Planet (Ninja Tune)
Rene Hell – Vanilla Call Option (Pan)
Run The Jewels – Run The Jewels (Self-Released)
Ryan Hemsworth – Guilt Trips (Last Gang)
Steve Arrington & Dâm-Funk – Higher (Stones Throw)
Viet Cong – Cassette (Self-Released)
Yo La Tengo – Fade (Matador)