Here are my top albums of 2013

2013 Albums to get into in 2014

  • Janelle Monáe - The Electric Lady
    + Bought it but never got around to giving it a proper listen

  • Earl Sweatshirt - Doris
    + I’ve heard and read a lot of praise for his album. I reckon it deserves a sit down listen

  • Arcade Fire - Reflektor
    + Got it but haven’t listened to it A-Z yet

  • Queens of the Stone Age - …Like Clockwork
    + Heard two tracks from the album but didn’t give all 10 tracks a proper run through. Need to do that

Well that’s all for 2013 folks. Here’s to what was a wonderful 2013 and looking forward to a healthy and prosperous 2014, cheers!

The Neighbourhood - Say My Name/Cry Me A River

A lot of good music has been coming from artists making pit stops at BBC’s Radio 1 studios.  Here’s a wonderful, and stripped down, cover medley of two hits, one by Destiny’s Child and the other by Justin Timberlake.

Happy Cover Friday everyone!

Played 59 times.

Here are my top 10 albums of 2012:

  1. Frank Ocean - Channel Orange

    The most complete album of the year.  Frank writes and sings from the heart.

    Highlight: Pink Matter

  2. Santigold - Master of My Make-Believe

    She is unbelievably talented.  Writes and produces some of the most unique pop music (if you want to call it that) around.

    Highlight: This Isn’t Our Parade

  3. Nas - Life Is Good

    The best Hip Hop album of the year.  Enough said.

    Highlight: World’s An Addiction

  4. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis - The Heist

    Though the album can sound a bit repetitive at times, Macklemore’s lyrics are heartfelt and touch your soul.

    Highlight: Same Love

  5. Lana Del Rey - Born To Die

    She’s fairly new on the scene, but her voice is so distinctive that I’m predicting she will be a main stay in the music business for some time to come.

    Highlight: Radio

  6. Big Boi - Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors

    The best year end gift of 2012.  Big Boi’s album is a joy to listen to from start to finish.

    Highlight: Lines

  7. The xx - Coexist

    The best band of 2009 released their sophomore album.  More of the same, which is fabulous.

    Highlight: Angels

  8. Beach House - Bloom

    Best dream pop album of the year.  These guys are pros.

    Highlight: Wishes

  9. Jhameel

    I love how he sings; his style oozes passion.  Reminds me of Michael Jackson.

    Highlight: Are You Free

  10. Michael Kiwanuka - Home Again

    Next to Frank Ocean, he’s the 2nd best song writer of 2012.  I’m really looking forward to hearing more of his music in the years to come.

    Highlight: Home Again

Other notable musical notes from 2012:

  • Through his production, Diplo completely killed 2012 without dropping a full album.  Highlights: Get Free, Climax
  • Greats who passed away: Adam “MCA” Yauch, Dave Brubeck
  • Impressed but not enough to make the top 10: Metric - Synthetica, Alabama Shakes - Boys & Girls, Sharon Van Etten - Tramp, St. Lucia - St. Lucia, The Chromatics - Kill For Love, Twin Shadow - Confess, Hot Chip - In Our Heads

The Don (Produced by Salaam Remi, Da Internz & Heavy D) by Nas

A hungry-sounding Nas lays down ace back-to-back-to-back verses. And oh yeah, the production is bananas. I can hardly wait for his 10th studio album, Life Is Good, to be released on July 17th.

shared from exfm

Played 40 times.

Travis - Twenty (Live)

Great nostalgic b-side live track by Fran Healy & Co.  He wrote this when he went from 19 to 20 years old.  Love the lyrics.

Travis is the Artist of the Weekend on Patterns.

Played 99 times.
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Travis - Driftwood

Inspired by Kirk’s earlier post, New Amsterdam, I’m going with the Travis “theme” for the weekend too.  BTW, make sure to look up the lyrics to the song and sing along.  You get the best effects this way.

I had first heard of Travis in ‘98.  On a trip to Chicago with my sister and her husband we stopped into a Virgin Megastore, yeah remember those!?  I had heard the single Turn on the some international radio on the web and had loved it.  I started listening to the record in the store and loved it so much that I bought it on the spot.  I recall a review sticker on the album that read, “The best album Oasis never made.”  I naturally thought that was hilarious.  I love Oasis but I agree with Kirk that Travis is overlooked big time.  Anyway, that’s another conversation for another place.

Fran Healy’s voice is butter, his songwriting beautiful and all that is good with Britpop. 

Travis is the Artist of the Weekend on Patterns.

Played 3519 times.
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Whiskey In The Jar by Metallica

Traditional Irish song covered by one of my favorite childhood bands. Happy cover Friday everyone!

shared from exfm

Played 10 times.
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Fat Joe - Part Deux

Sick rhymes over Barry White’s “Love Serenade” sample.  You GOTTA flow Joe!

Played 41 times.
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Wake Up (Arcade Fire cover) by Macy Gray

Whoa! This is killer. A wonderful cover of arguably the best AF song out there. Thanks Fred. And Happy Cover Friday.


Wake Up (Arcade Fire cover) - Macy Gray

happy cover friday everyone


Children wake up, hold your mistake up before they turn the summer into dust

I’ve always loved Macy Gray’s voice and I really like her cover of this Arcade Fire classic. Happy cover Friday y’all!

Played 6403 times.

Masters of Persian Music - Zarbi Naghmeh

My dear friend LoLo gifted me this gem of an album plus five years ago and I continue to listen to it at least once or twice a year.  Mohammed Reza Shajarian, perhaps one of Iran’s most recognizable voices, has one of best voices you’ll ever hear.  He and his Masters of Persian Music ensemble have been twice nominated for a Grammy for both their albums.  The combination of Shajarian’s perfect pitch and vocal improvisation, Kayhan Kalhor’s spike fiddle and Hossein Alizadeh’s lute steal my heart away, every time.

Played 309 times.

Awesome uplifting song.  Happy Monday!

oh hello,
will you be mine?
i haven’t felt this alive in a long time
all the streets are warm and grey

i read the signs
I haven’t been this in love in a long time
the sun is up the sun will stay
all for the new day


Manchester by Kishi Bashi

shared from exfm

Played 49 times.
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Alison by Elvis Costello

You want a beautiful song. Here you go. Flawless.

Elvis Costello is My Artist of the Weekend.

shared from exfm

Played 1479 times.
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Work by Gang Starr

I put in work, and watch my status escalate

shared from exfm

Played 70 times.

Da Grind (feat. Apocalypse) by Masta Ace

Another outstanding track from Masta Ace’s outstanding A Long Hot Summer (2004).

No matter the day, stay on your grind kids.

For everybody trying to rise with their eyes on the prize
I’m with ‘cha, we all going through it
But yo, deep down inside I know we still gon’ do it

I had to hustle hard never give up

shared from exfm

Played 20 times.