I looked ahead at the remainder of the year and nothing seems to tickle my fancy, so I am giving you my top 10 of 2013:
10) Depeche Mode – Delta Machine
No new ground is broken here. They keep their unmistakable sound. However, after a few listens, I find it seeping into my skin. They hook you in with the opening track “Welcome To My World” and they never seem to let go. “Secret To The End” and “Soothe My Soul” are as good as anything this band has ever done. Great comeback.
9) Iggy & The Stooges – Ready To Die
Iggy is back. Screaming and yelling like he has something to prove. This is a return to what made him the legend that he deserves to be. That raw Stooges sound is here. To make it even better, it’s hilarious. Sense of humor in tact, Iggy proves he is old but it doesn’t matter.
8) Willie Nile – American Ride
I don’t know why Willy Nile is continuously ignored. He is the gutter version of Bruce Springsteen without the yelling and phony working man persona. This guy should be filling arenas, but can barely fill a local pub. Unjustified. This is an album filled with the stuff that makes American rock n roll great. GET IT
7) The Black Angels – Indigo Meadow
Garage rock is back and it feels so good. This album is infectious and addicting. I find myself thinking about the Troggs and the Count Five and the Nuggets collection I so admired. Good old fashioned motorcycle rock that made bands like Steppenwolf so fun.
6) Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
I am sure this will be on everybody’s list this year, and rightly so. It’s insanely infectious and although it sounds like old disco with that Nile Rogers riff, it works. Quite a brilliant record. I can hear these songs daily and never grow tired of them. Damn you Daft Punk…Damn you..
5) Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Push The Sky Away
Like Depeche Mode, no new ground broken. Just a continuation of the low key depressed loveliness that is Nick Cave. This may only appeal to fans, but this is a great return.
4) Franz Ferdinand – Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action
These guys have hit their peak on this one. I have always thought of them as a new Talking Heads. This time, they escape that moniker in my book and score some pretty solid pop/new wave. Solid effort for a band that should be around a while.
3) Adam Ant – The Blueback Hussar Marrying the Gunners Daughter
Talk about your comeback albums. This one blew me away. Best work he has ever done by a mile. I guess he learned some things in the loony bin. Welcome Back Mr. Ant. I bow to thee. Fantastic album. Creative, weird and wonderful. Bravo
2) Elvis Costello & The Roots – Wise Up Ghost
EC does it again. This time he goes all out funk with The Roots. He doesn’t over do it, like he sometimes can. He keeps them mostly understated but this album cooks like an early Curtis Mayfield record. Lyrically, Elvis is revisiting some of his earlier works, but it all works. It’s politically charged, urban, hip and oh so cool. Almost my favorite of the year.
1) Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires Of The City
The third album by the rising stars of hipster indy pop. whatever you label them, they are magnificent. This album is some of the best hyper pop music I have heard in years. Melodic, catchy, perfectly produced and borderline genius. By far, my favorite album of the year. I can’t seem to stop listening to it.
So, there you go. Lots of good stuff to check out this year, old and new.
Honorable mentions (but not quite top 10) – New Order, Jim James, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Arcade Fire, Foxygen and Ron Sexsmith.
Disappointments were many. David Bowie, Elton John, Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark, Dido, Black Sabbath, Lady Gaga. All sub-par or cop out albums.
HAPPY NEW YEAR !!!