Our Favorite Albums of 2013

January 5, 2014
2 mins read

Editor’s note: We asked our contributors to submit their favorite albums of 2013. We got a compilation, one record that came out in 2012, one dubious greatest-hits compilation and a metric ton of awesome suggestions for your Spotify playlist. (Our writers don’t always follow directions.) Also, it turns out one of them believes Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball” video was “immediately iconic.” So there’s that. 

“Bangerz” - Miley Cyrus

“Bangerz” – Miley Cyrus
In a year in which the album is more irrelevant than ever, Cyrus’ fourth outing served as a platform for self-promotion and so-called girl power the likes of which Bikini Kill and the Spice Girls could have only dreamed about. Like no one since Madonna’s “Erotica,” “Bangerz” provides meta-discourse on the nature of fame in 2013, the album serving less as a collection of songs and more as a pretext for making videos like the immediately iconic “Wrecking Ball.” Is there anyone more successfully subversive of extant paradigms right now than Miley? She is 2013 in capsule form; for better or worse, “Bangerz” is the soundtrack for our lives. – A.G. Gancarski


“Conversations With You, Pt. I & II” - Vida Killz

“Conversations With You, Pt. I & II” – Vida Killz 
At 24, Vida Killz – from the Bay Area, now living in Arizona – has already released more than 100 tracks over the past four years, but the 11 songs comprising these EP tributes to her departed grandmother serve as ideal introductions to one of the most dynamic MCs working today. Her style is free-verse, delivered with a machine-gun flow over beats drawn from across the sonic spectrum. “Viejita” would be proud, but she already was.Shelton Hull

“LSXX” - The Breeders

“LSXX” – The Breeders
Because originality is dead, we flashback to a simpler time in music, when expressing angst was as New Age as Skrillex and his haircut. The Breeders’ “Last Splash” is turning 20 and, to honor an iconic footnote on the grunge movement, they re-released the album with the addition of a live-from-Sweden EP. Though there were no “digitally remastered” effects, the album itself still remains timeless. While you listen to “Cannonball” and “No Aloha,” the euphoria of your high school days, like exploring unknown territories that your parents would still rather not know about, comes rushing back, all the while realizing how old you really are. If you’re looking for some new spin on an old favorite, this anniversary package might be better left on the FYE shelf (if they still exist). But for those diehard Deal twin fans, this album is a “will make your life” addition to your nostalgia playlist.Kim Collier


“Like a Rose” - Ashley Monroe

“Like a Rose” – Ashley Monroe
There’s a video that went viral a few weeks ago that demonstrates just how miserable contemporary country music is. It’s a mashup of sorts, showing male country star after male country star singing about pickup trucks and “the good stuff” and painted-on jeans and all the other overdone tropes that permeate this cesspool of mediocrity. Allow me to offer as a necessary antidote the lovely Ashley Monroe, one-third of the girl-country trio Pistol Annies, whose solo offering harks back to an age when country wasn’t quite so generic and awful. Recalling the Golden Age of Dolly and Loretta, and mixing clever turns of phrase with a trailer-park-girl ethos – hear “Weed Instead of Roses” and “Two Weeks Late” – Monroe has made a Nashville record that sounds like a Nashville record should. And that ain’t nothing.Jeffrey C. Billman

Folio is your guide to entertainment and culture around and near Jacksonville, Florida. We cover events, concerts, restaurants, theatre, sports, art, happenings, and all things about living and visiting Jax. Folio serves more than two million readers across Jacksonville and Northeast Florida, including St. Augustine, The Beaches, and Fernandina.

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