There was so much great music released in 2013, and it’s impossible to keep up with everything. In no particular order, here are fifteen of the year’s best tracks that may have passed you by!
1. Chance The Rapper – ‘Favourite Song’
Okay, let’s face it, it’s not like Chance The Rapper is unheard of any more. He’s been growing in popularity over the year and even did a track with Justin Bieber – it’s hard to get any more mainstream than that. But, just on the off-chance that you’ve still not listened to his Acid Rap mixtape, here’s ‘Favourite Song’ featuring Childish Gambino.
2. Sleigh Bells – ‘Young Legends’
This track from Sleigh Bells’ 2013 album Bitter Rivals has some fantastic tracks, but ‘Young Legends’ is a brilliant blend of pounding drums and catchy melodies that’ll be stuck in your head long after you’ve finished the album.
3. Jean Deaux – ‘Grape Soda’
Beautifully soulful and atmospheric, this track (produced by Tim Suby) falls just shy of three minutes and leaves those that listen desperate to hear more from Jean Deaux. For now, we’ll just have to stick the few tracks she has on repeat.
4. BROODS – ‘Bridges’
The debut single from this Auckland duo sounds like a collaboration between Ellie Goulding and London Grammar with fantastic results. With their second track ‘Never Gonna Change’ coming out in the final days of 2013, we can hopefully look forward to a lot more from these guys in the coming months.
5. Little Boots – ‘Crescendo’
You can’t beat a great pop song, and that’s exactly what this is. Sitting comfortably in the middle of Little Boots’ sophomore album Nocturnes, ‘Crescendo’ delivers what it promises with escalating verses and a soaring chorus.
6. Frightened Rabbit & Manchester Orchestra – ‘Architect’
This Record Store Day release sees indie-rock giants Scott Hutchison of Frightened Rabbit and Andy Hull of Manchester Orchestra team up for a beautiful acoustic track, with their voices complimenting each other perfectly.
7. SVĒ – ‘Talking To The Walls’
As if we hadn’t mentioned SVĒ enough since she released her single ‘Talking To The Walls’, her first (and only) track simply couldn’t be left out of this list!
8. Iggy Azalea – ‘Work’
While Iggy Azalea is definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, we can’t help but love this song. A true guilty pleasure from this Australian singer/rapper with a trap drop that fits perfectly, just make sure nobody’s in when you’re blasting it at home.
9. Sia (feat. The Weeknd & Diplo) – ‘Elastic Heart’
Well, you might’ve heard this one… But since it was only released on the soundtrack to The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and was surrounded by the likes of Christina Aguilera and Coldplay (no disrespect to them), it may have passed you by. However, that doesn’t stop it from being a sensational pop song featuring two of the biggest names in electronic music right now!
10. The Front Bottoms – ‘Twin Size Mattress’
This release from acoustic-punk duo The Front Bottoms has everything that a Front Bottoms track should: honest lyrics, raw emotion and a huge singalong. If you haven’t heard them, now’s your chance, and there are few better place to start than with ‘Twin Size Mattress’.
11. Elli Ingram – ‘Canna Butter Kisses’
This cover sees Elli Ingram rework Chance The Rapper’s ‘Cocoa Butter Kisses’ with ‘I’m Hi’ by T-Pain in a brilliantly smooth jazz style. Elli featured on the Chase & Status track ‘Heaven Knows’ from their 2013 album Brand New Machine, and we hope to hear a lot more from her this year.
12. Clean Bandit – ‘Dust Clears’
If you’re yet to hear of Clean Bandit, you will by the end of this year. Their string-infused dance-pop has been slowly generating momentum since the release of their first EP in 2012, and we expect them to blow up in 2014 when they release their long-awaited debut album.
13. Laura Mvula – ‘Sing To The Moon’
The title track from Laura Mvula’s debut album is, quite simply, a thing of beauty. Though the album was robbed of the Mercury Prize by James Blake’s Overgrown, Mvula deserves every bit of recognition she gets, and more!
14. Dads – ‘Boat Rich’
Reminiscent of the now disbanded Scottish ‘fight pop’ group Dananananaykroyd, this indie-punk tune is sure to go down brilliantly at future gigs and festivals. Definitely a band to watch out for, and to check out if they’re ever in town.
15. Jai Paul – ‘Str8 Outta Mumbai’
Everyone thought they had been presented with Jai Paul’s much anticipated debut when a mysterious album appeared on Bandcamp last year with 16 unnamed tracks. The internet blew up, but it turned out that these tracks were in fact unfinished demos that had been stolen from Jai Paul’s laptop. Still, that didn’t stop it from being a great release, and a brilliant sign of things to come from Jai.