Starting today, I’m going to be looking back at my favorite music of 2013. I feel it’s important to note that this isn’t a ranking of any kind. I’m not here to tell you what to listen to, mainly just what I enjoyed throughout 2013. There’s been a ton of great music released so obviously it’ll be impossible to note all of it here. I’ll start today with the top EP’s of the year. Shorter than full length albums, these are all easily digested and can be listened to in under an hour. If I missed something hit the replies and let me know. Here we go!
American Authors – American Authors EP
I’ve wrote about American Authors on this website before so it’s only natural that their debut EP would be featured on this list. The band has had a huge year. Constant touring, music being featured in commercials and the release of this EP. It’s catchy pop music. “Best Day of My Life” is probably the most recognizable, while “Hit It” is an up tempo song that breakout into a sing-a-long at any moment. The band is poised for a huge 2014, with a debut album on the way. If the songs are as catchy as the ones on this EP, they may be a break out hit.
Albert Hammond Jr. – AHJ
As a member of The Strokes, Albert Hammond Jr’s solo work can go unnoticed, but with The Strokes taking a break, now is the perfect time to dive into Hammond’s solo material. The AHJ EP sounds very similar to Hammond’s previous solo material. Catchy, but simple, guitar riffs dominate this EP and that’s what makes Albert Hammond Jr. stand out. You could never accuse him of being an overly intricate guitar player, but that hardly matters. The lead riff of a song like “St. Justice” is all of six notes, but they get stuck in your head and stay there. Right in line with his previous work, AHJ is hopefully just a taste of new music from Albert Hammond Jr. heading into 2014.
Night Terrors of 1927 – Guilty Pleas EP
You may be familiar with Jarrod Gorbel, the lead singer of Night Terrors of 1927, either by his solo material or from his time in The Honorary Title. As Gorbel’s newest band, Night Terrors sound very much like his previous work, while at the same time offering something new, particularly more electronic elements to the music. I heard some tinges of Chvrches throughout the EP, so at the very least Gorbel is heading in a new direction. The lead track, “Dust and Bones,” feels like it could blow up in the coming months and be heard everywhere from the radio to car commercials. “Smoke Signals” gives off an Imagine Dragons vibe and “Young and Vicious” almost sounds like an Honorary Title b-side. Discovering Night Terrors, and rediscovering Gorbel, was one of the highlights of my musical year. The band has the potential to morph into the pop scene in 2014.
Cherub – 100 Bottles
Cherub was one of, if not my favorite, bands of 2013 and for good reason. The duo releases throwback pop music that is still relevant today. The 100 Bottles EP continues that trend following the group’s breakthrough album Mom and Dad. “Heartbreaker” is a laid back lead track that makes you tap your foot along with it. Following that is “Jazzercise ’95” which makes you want to get up and dance along with it. Equal parts pop and funk, Cherub makes music that you can have fun to, really the soundtrack to any party you’re throwing. As a follow up, the band also released another EP called Antipasto, 100 Bottles is longer so it got the nod, but be sure to check out both. The band should be ready for a big 2014.