Albums of the Year 2013
"We're pushing you down the rabbit hole..."
Speaking at the helm of our 2012 list, our Photography and Film Editor Tim Boddy issued the mission statement: "Long-term, the plan is for this to be the foundation of our future end of year lists, and that next year the dots will be connected even further (with a super-laconic intro so it really is only the music doing the talking)." In order to honour the wishes of the compère of 2012's Top Albums list, this introduction will be as short and sweet as humanly possible.
We don't just want to make a hollow statement with this list; this isn't just a traffic-magnet hellbent on fulfilling a bloated prophecy kept in motion via cold hard cash. This is us frantically trying to show all you lucky munchkins what we honestly believe in the pit of our hearts are the essential records of 2013. We're basically flapping our arms in the air and shouting at things with hoarse throats and sore elbows. Ever the altruists, us.
2013 has been the year of the clandestine PR campaign and the comeback, and though some offerings have been middling at best, some have been utterly wonderful. But it's not just been a year dominated by legends and reformers; we've seen, more than ever, fledgling acts get their time in the limelight, able to deliver tip-top goods to the masses thanks to sites like Kickstarter, Bandcamp and Soundcloud. This is good for us, as now we're able to glimpse sounds not forced through a commercial filter, on a grander scale than we're used to. R&B has also entered a new golden era, becoming the genre du jour, with countless up-and-comers showcasing a slick brand of soulful pop. Basically, what we're trying to say, is that this year's list is taking a considerably sleeker, fresher shape.
Though this may be in the guise of a list, really it's a nifty tool for your perusal. Waffling on about our favourite music, tracks and records is perhaps our greatest pastime here at the 405, and like the Edict and our Discovery service, this is, above all, a way for you to find new noises. Alongside the ranked albums, there'll be a few recommendations of LPs you'll probably enjoy if you like the same themes, styles or artists. We're pushing you down the rabbit hole, providing the first step for your new music needs as we as a species saunter into 2014.
So, in summary, while this is still a way for us to deliver the results of hours upon hours of banging-heads-against-the-wall and fisticuffs, we're also hoping you find a use for it as a kind of almanac for 2013 and brochure for 2014, providing the means to find sparkly songs, past, present and future. - Larry Day (Staff Writer)