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Thursday, January 9 2014

The Best Hopes to Break Out in 2014

This year is already looking like it'll be filled with great music releases and new artists destined to push the boundaries of their respective genres.


Friday, January 3 2014

The 75 Best Albums of 2013

From genre-busting electronic music to new highs for the polygot that is "Americana"... from R&B to metal... from hip-hop to rockin' and poppin' indie... 2013 was a great year for new music.


The 75 Best Songs of 2013

From the electro-dance of Daft Punk, Disclosure and Rudimental and the boundary-pushing R&B of Janelle Monae and John Newman to the warm sounds of Americana blossoming into the hippest sounds in American music and the always-compelling Kanye West, PopMatters counts down 2013's 75 best songs.


Thursday, January 2 2014

The Best Noise Rock of 2013

From unforeseen comebacks to heretofore unknown new acts, much of 2013's best noise-rock often came out of nowhere.


Wednesday, January 1 2014

The Artists Pick the Best of 2013, Part 3

PopMatters lets the artists become the critics, giving them a chance to offer their picks from music and pop culture in 2013. Part 3 features PopMatters favorites the Pastels, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, and Windhand.


Tuesday, December 31 2013

The Artists Pick the Best of 2013, Part 2

PopMatters lets the artists become the critics, giving them a chance to offer their picks from music and pop culture in 2013. Part 2 features PopMatters favorites Ha Ha Tonka, Medicine, and the Notwist.


Monday, December 30 2013

The Best Mixtapes of 2013

In the four years since mixtapes became anything but a mix on tape, rap listeners have grown accustomed to the idea that not only should they feel like a brand new album, but also that they should probably be better than the product you pay for.


The Artists Pick the Best of 2013, Part 1

PopMatters lets the artists become the critics, giving them a chance to offer their picks from music and pop culture in 2013. Part 1 features PopMatters favorites Zachary Cale, Dum Dum Girls, and Robbie Fulks.


Friday, December 27 2013

The Artists of the Year: 2013 Edition

It was a year of thrilling comebacks from legends like My Blooody Valentine and David Bowie as well the launch of major new talents like Lorde and Kacey Musgraves. These artists had the biggest impact on the shape of music in 2013.


The Best Metal Albums of 2013

Bands across metal's subgenres reached their full potential, be they acts coming into their own, making crowd-pleasing comebacks, or even bowing out at the top of their game.


Thursday, December 26 2013

The Best Dance Singles of 2013

Spanning genres from electro/synth-pop, indie-dance, nu-disco, to house music territories, what's on the list of 2013's best dance singles isn't just a popularity contest.


Wednesday, December 25 2013

The Best Bluegrass of 2013

In bluegrass circles, 2013 was a year that welcomed the rise of talented upstarts, the return to form of masters, and collaborations among the best in the business.


Tuesday, December 24 2013

Unhappy Holidays? Conflicts, Contradictions and the Ghosts of Christmas Music Past and Present

How do we reconcile the joyous holiday season with a nagging sensation that it might not be as jolly as it should be?


The Top 10 Pleasant Surprise Albums of 2013

To counterbalance the set of disappointing albums, there are those that you probably barely noticed at first, or ones that you thought nothing of upon release that slowly but surely knocked your socks off.


Monday, December 23 2013

The Most Disappointing Albums of 2013

This year's list of the most disappointing albums of 2013 reads like the "best of" list from four or five years ago. It shouldn't be surprising how these tides turn, but it always is.


Friday, December 20 2013

The Best Canadian Albums of 2013

There's a thrilling breadth of styles and approaches explored by the best albums hailing from Canada in 2013, ranging from good ol' garage rock to East-West "noh-wave", from traditionalist country to First Nations' EDM.


K-pop’s Generation

If 2013 has proved anything, it's that K-pop's worldwide appeal is much more than a passing fad like "Gangnam Style".


Thursday, December 19 2013

The Best Jazz of 2013

Jazz is all over the place, and that's the glorious point of it. When you add up all its little corners and areas of enjoyment in 2013, the music remains huge.


Wednesday, December 18 2013

The Best New / Emerging Artists of 2013

This was an incredibly fruitful year for new and emerging artists pointing their respective genre towards new directions and possibilities. From dance to R&B and country to indie, 2013 was a year for pushing boundaries.


Towards a (Redneck) Pleasure Principle: Or Why Luke Bryan Might Be This Year’s Best Artist

The idea of pleasure, of the loose swing and the obsessive grinding, becomes the central way that we talk about Luke Bryan, and often the central way that Bryan talks about himself, especially in 2013.


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