Mirza de la Fuente/Contributing Writer
It is no doubt that 2013 was a solid year for music. It has been a year filled with lots of surprises and new sounds, from Daft Punk’s highly anticipated fourth studio album to Beyonce’s overnight self-titled gem dropped only a few weeks before the new year. Overall, 2013 was filled with some future classics. Here’s a list of my top five favorite albums of 2013:
#5: Flume: “Flume: Deluxe Edition”
It was a good year for upcoming Australian producer/DJ, Flume, who is slowly but surely getting his name out there. And many thought Flume’s self-titled debut album in 2012 was great, but then he dropped his deluxe edition, which changed the game. With the new trend of experimental electronic music circulating the Internet, many new artists with unique styles are upcoming and Flume is definitely high up there. The album consists of two CDs: one with his original tracks and the second loaded with insane remixes and tracks featuring similar artists such as Ta-Ku and Shlohmo. The sounds heard on his deluxe album would be best described as a muse of new style of electronic meets hip-hop. Top original tracks on the first CD include “Sleepless,” “Holdin On,” and “Left Alone.” On the second CD, the most popular remixes include Flume’s remix of Disclosure’s “You & Me,” Shlohmo’s remix of “Sleepless,” and L D R U’s remix of “Insane.”
#4: Lady Gaga: “ARTPOP”
How could I not include our very own pop queen, Lady Gaga? Every time Gaga releases an album, art comes to life; which is exactly what she does with “ARTPOP,” her third studio album. It is a fun, pop-y work of art filled with retro-glamorous beats behind Gaga’s flawless vocals and sassy lyrics. Big name collaborators have worked with the artist in the making of “ARTPOP,” such as Zedd, R. Kelly and T.I. With her popular singles such as “Do What U Want” and “Applause” playing on a daily basis on every radio station, or her more low-key tracks such as “ARTPOP” or “Fashion,” she makes the whole world become a “little monster.”
#3: Arctic Monkeys: “AM”
Your favorite upbeat English indie rock group made its comeback this late summer with its fifth studio album, “AM.” Listening to this album makes me want to put on a leather jacket and ride my (imaginary) motorcycle to a rock show. From the heavy guitar on “Arabella,” to the mesmerizing vocals on “Do I Wanna Know?” these tracks will bring out the true rock lover in even the biggest hip-hoppers. Each track is exactly what you expect in a typical rock song and so much more. The album is refreshing, impressive, and extremely fun; definitely worth a listen.
#2: Kanye West: “Yeezus”
Kanye West has become one of the biggest innovators of our decade. Always producing, creating and visualizing, he never fails to make a statement. With his sixth studio album released this summer, he made the biggest statement of all: “I Am a God.” This album brought a lot of controversy for Yeezy fans; half of them loved it, half of them hated it. With his egoistic claims of being a “God” and his touching of subjects such as slavery and racism, people think West went too far this time. But with so much variety of talents put into one album, it is hard to say it’s not amazing. Collaborators and producers such as Daft Punk, Chief Keef, Travis Scott, Gesaffelstein and Hudson Mohawke (just to name a few) are included in this work of art they call Yeezus.
#1: Disclosure: “Settle”
There was no doubt in my mind Disclosure’s “Settle” would be my number one favorite album of the year. Settle is the English duo’s first debut studio album, making them known worldwide. The album is a 75-minute dance party. Deep, funky-filled house beats are the base of a typical Disclosure song. “Latch” is probably the masterpiece of the whole album that keeps you moving and wanting more as soon as it ends. Then there is “When A Fire Starts To Burn” that hypnotizes you into a trance of deep house and groovy dark beats. Each track has its own unique style and melody, making them all so different from each other yet with that slight touch of similarity, making each one a Disclosure track. And there is nothing like a Disclosure track.