BEST OF 2013 – ALBUMS [10-1]
Yep. Here it is. Smack bang, ready for that little nostalgia comedown that is New Years Day.
As I alluded to in the 20-11 post on Monday, this year has been a fucking full on one. It compromised of a move interstate, and heading back to uni (although I’m not sure if you can really call doing a PhD going back to uni – prolly more like doing a full-time fucking job times about 3). Those weren’t the only things that happened of course, but they were probably the two things that impacted most on maamf for 2013.
It’s also been a year when the maamf sister site MISMATCH.TV started to come into it’s own. And although it’s definitely got a bit to go and I feel as though it’s not yet at the level I reckon it can get to, it’s taken up a bit of time as well. (However, a massive thanks to my good mates/mismatchians/Melbourne music loving fanatics Lauren and Sabi for making mismatch what it is, and making that time enjoyable).
Anyway, these are the 10. The ones that I kept on returning to this year. It’s much more of a personal list this year, with a few albums either reminding me of Melbourne, and others welcoming me into the city of Sydney.
It also comes complete with a mixtape featuring two tracks from each album. Fuckin’ BUMPER.
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10. Paul Macadam – Macadam II
I stumbled across this album whilst having a read of Polaroids of Androids. It’s a real Sydney person album. It’s a real south Sydney/near the Shire album. It’s also, sort of, a Newtown album. Catching the same train line as Paul sings about for the first half of this year, gave me a strange sense of hope about Sydney. It was comforting.
9. Scott & Charlene’s Wedding – Any Port In A Storm
Hard to fault these guys. I could write about the whole DIY slacker vibe, but really, for me, this disc was all about it’s builds. There are key songs on this album (moreso than their debut) that every other song seems to lead into and out of with a great sense of command. Whether that was intentional is beside the point. This is an album that tells that story through sound.
8. World’s End Press – World’s End Press
Previous years have seen my top 10 include far more electronic albums. World’s End Press are my ‘electronic’ inclusion this year, although they sound pretty much all live. The inclusion isn’t tokenistic though – for an album that was years in the making/waiting, it showcased such a progression for these guys.
7. King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – Float Along – Fill Your Lungs
Hard not to include a King Gizz album in a top 10 list. Just ask nearly every other music writer in this country. These guys churn it out like there’s no tomorrow, but still manage to be on top of their game. As I heard someone say recently, these guys ARE the go to guys for psychedelia in this country.
6. Seagull – Ocean From Above
This thing is so delicate and intricate, I actually found myself leaning into the speakers to make sure I got everything it has to offer. I had to drop everything when I gave this album a listen. It needs you to.
5. The Ocean Party – Split
These guys were a real soundtrack this year. They reminded me of home a bit, and although all 5 members share song writing duties, there still remains a common core right throughout. That’s somethin pretty rare.
4. Big Scary – Not Art
Easily one of the most hyped releases of the year, this album, simply put, did not disappoint. The thing I like the most about this release is that they use an idea, hip-hop, and make it not hip-hop. They make it sound like Big Scary, but don’t lose any of that groove.
3. Violent Soho – Hungry Ghost
Throwback of the year. This album, for me was about re-living a lot of the music I use to listen to. These dudes were hard, but freakin hyped (largely thanks to their excellent songwriting and their newly found label, I OH YOU). The lyrics are also fucking good. Sing-a-long, but with a depth you prolly wouldn’t get in some of the other shit around.
2. Camperdown & Out – Couldn’t Be Better
I know this isn’t an album that many people have included in their top 10. But, for me, these guys soundtracked the move to Sydney. Here were a Sydney band who wore their location on their sleeve. They made me feel like I knew the city before I actually did.
1. Dick Diver – Calendar Days
It really is hard to fault this album. It’s been the big one that has kept me company this year. It’s reminded me of Melbourne, but has also given me the best travel soundtrack for the year. It’s also given me “reassurance that music…can be smart, intelligent, but still really gentle and not taking itself too seriously.”