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The Best Electronic Music of 2013

Above all, 2013 was a year when electronic music's cream of the crop did what they do best and left no one wanting for more.

Music

Sub Focus: Torus

It’s not for the hardcore heads, but it might sound nice to have some of that underground sound showing up on daytime radio.

Music

Bomb the Bass: In the Sun

Trying to adopt a more consistent sound throughout the record is a double-edged sword. It means that you can concentrate on what you do best, but, at the end of the day, it also means that’s all you have to play with.

Music

Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs: Get Lost VI

Overall it’s a mildly paced mix but one of the more consistent and enjoyable to come out this year.

Music

Earl Sweatshirt: Doris

Beats that are so ridiculously slow that at times they feel like they might collapse under their own lethargy form a murky foundation for lines so deep and dense you’ll need a team of archaeologists to unearth their meaning.

SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Columbia / Tan Cressida

SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Tan Cressida

Music

Bass Drum of Death: Bass Drum of Death

The generous reverb endows every riff with a neon glow and the smell of cheeseburgers and fries served on an open car windowsill.

Music

The Skatalites: Walk with Me

What most people know today as reggae music is really just ska which, tired from the hot Jamaica sunshine, decided to chill out and take a breather.

Music

The Black Dhalia Murder: Into the Everblack

The remarkable quality of the sounds coming out of these disparate personalities is so cleanly divided that each song seems to benefit from the sonic quality of two entirely different lead singers as opposed to the reality of one, who is obviously possessed.

Music

Hervé: Art of Disappearing

I’ve come to know it as a grower -- a curiosity I wouldn’t dream of playing for a friend but a secret I might keep, locked within my music player.

Music

Nosaj Thing: Home

There’s no dance-floor friendly banger or loud snapping snares. It's all easy entrances and exits: guests stopping over unexpectedly to relate a sad story and then exiting quietly through the back while you're pouring the tea.

Music

Hercules and Love Affair: DJ Kicks

This record's vintage house goes on so intolerably long that you become nostalgic for the present.

SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Wrasse Records

Music

Wake Owl: Wild Country EP

A fantastic folk-pop record with its biggest fault being it’s only five songs.

Music

Major Lazer: Free the Universe

Each bar straddles rapid snares that pop and snap like firecrackers rippling on a waterbed mattress of liquid bass. Is this starting to sound like dirty talk? Then you're starting to get it.

Music

BVDub: All is Forgiven

His is a vision of a haunted chill out room where the only dancers are shadows with indiscernible sources.

Music

Sunny Day Metal from Torche, "Snakes Are Charmed"

When I talk about metal music I don't typically make reference to terms like "optimism", "hope" or "sunny afternoons". But just as other genres have their emotional orientations, metal too can offer a spectrum of perspectives -- even if not as often.

SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Cheap Thrills

Music

DJ Sun: One Hundred

This record relaxes on your sofa and instead of asking you to grab it a beer on your way to the fridge, it offers to share those that it brought. It’s all give. It’s easy. When the hour grows late you might even ask it to stay a little longer. And when it’s time to part, you'll already be planning to do it again.

Music

Hundred Waters: Hundred Waters

Track six is the song titled “... - - - …” which, if you've never been a Boy/Girl Scout, translates to “S.O.S.”, the universal call for help. By the time you arrive at “Wunderboom”, you’re going to need it.

Music

Move Aside and Let the Man Go Through

Former Soul Coughing front-man and solo artist Mike Doughty crowd-funds a re-imagining of his former band's material.

Darryl G. Wright
SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Soular Productions

Music

Modestep: Evolution Theory

Bass music is expected to go low but the truly low point on this record is “Feel Good”. It conjures images of music heard in rural plazas or elevators where musicians anonymously contribute their lesser works to easily digestible compilations of shopping mall-targeted mediocrity.


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