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Quietus Albums Of The Year 2013 (In Association With Norman Records)
John Doran , December 30th, 2013 04:51

Here is the Quietus' main albums of the year list for 2013, in association with Norman Records for all your record buying needs. Thanks to Sophie Coletta for assistance in building the behemoth

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Click here for epic 120 track, 11 hour long Spotify playlist or scroll down for player

As the writer John Gray argued so eloquently in his book Straw Dogs, we are animals who suffer under the delusion that we are in control of our own destiny. In reality however the more we try and sculpt the direction of our species through various “big” political schemes, religions and other utopian projects, the more inhumane we tend to become. Human beings are no more in charge of their destiny than puffins are in charge of theirs. However, there clearly are a few things that do genuinely separate us from the rest of the animal kingdom. In order to do my bit for future research, I have carried out a raft of double blind, rigorously scientific experiments, had the whole lot peer reviewed and devised this checklist of what genuinely makes humankind stand apart from the rest of the fauna.

One. Chairs. Animals can’t make furniture. Some argue that animals do not need chairs but this is mere pedantry.

Two. The written word. Animals can’t record language. Look at them with their rubbish hooves. They’re not even close to getting this right.

Three. Recorded music. Animals make music but it takes a full grown human to put out a limited edition, critical theory-compliant harsh wall noise cassette or set up a bandcamp page for an ecologically conscious, one man transcendental black metal project.

Four. Shoes. You never see any animal - not even our closest relatives such as the chimpanzee or highly evolved social creatures such as dolphins, ants or elephants - wearing trainers that they have made themselves. Think about it.

So, my advice to you is this: put your plans for world domination and the foundation of a new religion on ice. Plump up the cushions on your favourite ottoman or chaise longue, fire up The Quietus on your laptop or tablet, lace up your brogues up extra tight and put Shitfucker’s Sucks Cocks In Hell on the home stereo. It’s time to stop being so beastly, get comfortable and enjoy our Top 100 albums of the year feature.

This year’s list - bright eyed, proud in aspect and red in tooth and claw - was voted for by four people. Luke Turner, Rory Gibb, Laurie Tuffrey and myself. We’ve always try to keep the voting group as small as possible just because we believe that the fewer people included, the less likelihood there will be of bland consensus. This way smaller, less obvious artists are more likely to feature. That said, this is the most people we’ve had involved and the countdown is pretty damned strong for it. And even though I literally always say this: I genuinely do think this is the strongest, widest ranging list we've run to date. So I’d like to say thanks to Laurie Tuffrey, our newest member of staff, valued news editor and enthusiastic master brew maker, for opening up the scope of tQ even further. These AOTY features would sound something like the house iPod in certain dour ‘specialist’ Berlin basement clubs or cargo containers at the other end of an extraordinary rendition if it were left solely up to Luke and I and we didn’t have the highly valued input of Laurie and our new music editor Rory Gibb.

The albums are chosen on very strict but simple criteria: these are the records we’ve listened to the most for pleasure over the course of the year and they are not a reflection of what we consider to be ‘most important’ or ‘most deserving’ - we’re not trying to second guess what would make a good list here, just trying to give you a snapshot of what we’re into ourselves.

It wouldn’t be the Quietus if we hadn’t included an album from completely the wrong year (the Frisk Frugt album originally came out on a very short run in Denmark in 2010 and even then Exotic Pylon’s reissue for the UK came out last year but we feel very strongly that as many people as possible should hear it). Some of our choices may seem incongruous. While we try and listen to literally everything we can, the sheer amount of new music we get sent, and all the rest that we track down on the internet and buy from shops/gigs is overwhelming. Great records slip between the cracks. In retrospect I wish we’d picked up on Fire! and Oren Ambarchi’s amazing album on Rune Grammofon In The Mouth - A Hand last year when it came out. However, there’s no point in crying over spilled milk - especially when Fire! have released two world class albums this year as well. I could have voted for Without Noticing quite easily but felt that Exit! by Fire! Orchestra just pips it. The main point for me to reinforce here, is that I’m not really that interested in ranking these albums like some kind of Nick Hornby loser. Generally speaking I just want people to listen to this music and (hopefully) get the same visceral pleasure out of it that I do.

We celebrated our fifth birthday this year. And if you’ve been with us regularly for all or some of that time I’d like to thank you for reading. Your continued support means a great deal to us. If you have been reading for five years you’ve probably noticed the site changing slowly over that time, I think this is natural. But on top of understandable shifts in taste, the factor of age comes into play - or at least it does for me. I’m 42 now and being a dad - and a bipolar dad with mad tinnitus problems at that - I don’t listen to as much extreme metal on headphones as I used to and I guess that shows in the chart - even though we’ve still probably got more really heavy music than most other general music sites. But for those who want to dig a little deeper than the choices on offer here (and personally I think that anyone who’s got the albums by Carcass, Shitfucker, Wolfbait, Oranssi Pazuzu, The Body, (Ensemble Pearl), Botanist, Arabrot, Dethscalator, Pale Horse, Comanechi, Hey Colossus, oVo, Cathedral and Uncle Acid And The Deadbeats isn’t doing too badly) we will be having several genre specific round ups for types of music such as heavy metal, R&B, jazz and hip hop throughout December. My main point here is that I'd sooner publish separate features by partisan, expert writers in certain genres rather than feel I have to make tokenistic gestures myself in this chart.

We understand that these lists are taken very seriously by a lot of music fans and we expect to receive a reasonable amount of flak for not including LPs that mean the world to other people. Please leave your own lists in the comment feature below but be aware that if you have a genuinely missionary zeal for an artist and want us to listen to them with a view to featuring them on the site in future, we’re much more likely to respond favourably to a post where we don’t get referred to as a bunch of gibbering halfwits or what have you. The two main complaints about this chart can usually be summed up like this: one, you lot are so obvious, I could have predicted this chart exactly and two, you lot are so pretentious, I haven't heard of any of these artists. To which I say: one, well please educate us by leaving a list of albums you feel should have been included below and two, well, yes obviously; Luke and I went to have our photograph taken by an antique foghorn at the weekend. Of course we're pretentious. That doesn't mean we're wrong though...

Essentially what I want to say mainly is that I hope you find one or more albums from this list which bring you great pleasure now and in the future. And finally, as you probably know, The Quietus likes to spend most of the money that we don't use on rent and tea on great round slabs of vinyl. We know that you, our dear readers, also like to do the same. Therefore, as our entirely subjective and totally reductive albums of the year list is essentially a buyers guide to the best records that you might not have heard of elsewhere, we've always wanted to make it easy for you to part with hard currency in order to support artists and record labels. Last year for the first time The Quietus albums of the year featured an affiliate link for digital music via eMusic. This year we're doing the same, but excitingly also partnering up with our friends (of whom we are frequent customers ourselves) up at Norman Records for vinyl and CD purchases. Just follow the link after each entry to be taken to their online store.

And now for the countdown.

John Doran

100. Shitfucker - Sucks Cocks In Hell (Hells Headbangers)

"One of quite specialist tastes, I'll grant you, but beneath all the bullet belts, demonic vocals and divebomb solos toils an uncomplex 1000mph rock & roll band. You can whoop it up to Venom, likewise to Tank, OBVIOUSLY to Mötorhead, no doubt to Destruction and The Accüsed and Broken Bones if you surround yourself with sympathetic simpletons – and by jove, you can 'bang to this until your spinal column is gelatine. What I'm saying is that Shitfucker are very much a black metal band, just 'black metal' as it was deemed in the 1980s: roughly-produced Satanic ugliness made by horribly grinning beer monsters who pride themselves on being more badly behaved than the squatter punx and definitely don't support the video nasty ban." Noel Gardner



99. The Ex And Brass Unbound - Enormous Door (Ex)

"Dutch punks The Ex continue to flourish and amaze in ways that most groups that have been hard at it for 33 years simply don’t. They have several excitement strategies including an ever fluid line-up, a willingness to swap roles, an openness to foreign musical cultures that constantly throw them outside of their comfort zone and a knack for collaborating with exactly the right people. More than anything though their road hardened yet loose jointed grooves and insistent riffs are always a joy and this bone rattling collection of Congolese Konono and Ethiopian jazz influenced live favourites is a fine addition to their back catalogue." John Doran



98. ÄÄNIPÄÄ - Through A Pre-Memory (Editions Mego)

"Surely there must have been some risk in bringing together Mika Vainio, formerly one half of post-techno destructo-craftsmen Pansonic, and the lord of thunderous, ear-splitting doom riffs Stephen O'Malley, of SUNN O)))! I mean, wasn't there a chance that two such intense, brooding wagers of sonic warfare would set off some sort of alchemical cataclysm if brought together? On the evidence of Through A Pre-Memory, the apocalypse was not unleashed when they combined as Äänipäa, but with Khanate's Alan Dubin joining on vocals, they didn't half come fucking close." Joseph Burnett



97. Omar Souleyman - Wenu Wenu (Domino)

"It's certainly Omar Souleyman's most user-friendly listening experience. Hebden's democratic production style and mixing board economy, valuing every instrument equally, makes it less relentless than its ancestors. The keyboard rhythms and trancey samples that bed the majority of these songs were previously warped and muted, deadening that potentially fatal association with low grade dance music, but somehow Wenu Wenu manages to keep any such preconceptions at bay. If anything, the club-ready low end finally packs a much-needed punch that was arguably previously lacking." Tristan Bath



96. Chrome Hoof - Chrome Black Gold (Cuneiform)

"A disco inferno! A dense clashing explosion of gorgeous simplistic melodies, electronic doodles and complex layered instrumentation. It all lies here with little room for space or breath. Not a bad thing, in this instance. Having only just recovered from the summer over-exposure of Daft Punk – overrated beyond belief, getting away with it mainly because we all love Nile Rodgers – one welcomes this contrast. For this is ocean deep, mountain high and all kinds of vegetation in-between." Mick Middles



95. White Hills - So You Are So You’ll Be (Thrill Jockey)

"New York space rock trio White Hills are the opposite of a comet on collision course with our home planet. They suck up an explosion of energy on the surface of the Earth - from the history of amplified rock music, from the weather, from spirituality, from adrenaline, from the history of synthesised electronic music, from substance use, from philosophy, from friends and enemies alike, from motherfucking electricity - and they focus it into a blinding beam of energy which they reflect back out into the void. And this beam is a message. It is a statement which reads: ‘Fuck you. We are here. We rock, therefore we are.'" John Doran



94. Cathedral - The Last Spire (Rise Above)

"I have to confess something: with the double disc prog-gasm that was previous LP The Guessing Game and the globe-trotting and comfortably testudineous winding down of operations – that, as well as cementing their legend and reminding us all why Cathedral were so important in the first place, perhaps added an unrealistic pressure and expectation – I was as sceptical as I'd dare be that The Last Spire would turn out to be any good. And then they went and made a doom album, an out and out, claw clinching, horn raising doom album, and arguably their strongest record in over a decade." Toby Cook



93. Comanechi - You Owe Me Nothing But Love (Tiger Trap)

"The garage pop shimmer of 'Major Move' and 'Dream of Love' are proof that Comanechi are one of the best singles bands of recent times. Their direct, groove-laden attitude is as refreshing as it is seductive, with addictive choruses that deserve to be roared in stadiums. 

The subterranean quake of 'Death Threat' brings matters to a brilliantly doomy conclusion – their adoration of the legendary Electric Wizard happily hasn't quite worn off yet." Kevin Mccaighy



92. Uncle Acid And The Deadbeats - Mind Control (Rise Above)

"Mind Control seems to have been written with ensemble live shows in mind, as opposed to the solitary bedroom-based vision ploughed by just one man. As such it loses some of the trashy anything-goes experimentalism while growing a tougher, harder exterior shell. Criticisms aside, Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats remain just as intriguing as ever, wearing their influences on their highly-stylised sleeves with as much campy posturing as it takes without ever falling into the trap of derivative retro-clichés or becoming stoner rock's answers to the Darkness or Yuck, as some may fear. Although Blood Lust remains their crowning achievement to date, Mind Control's highlights shine just as true." Charlie Frame



91. Palehorse - Harm Starts Here (Candlelight)

"If you're expecting something along the lines of its predecessor Soft As Butter; Hard As Ice [...] don't. Sure, that same clawing sense of utter anguish hangs heavy throughout, but when the group added Mark Dicker on power electronics in the album's wake, a whole other, more frightening texture invaded their sound, and it's here, finally, that they've managed to capture and perfectly harness it – somehow permeating the brutally sludgy, doom-tempered dual bass riffs rather than competing with them, and channeling that sense of impotent frustration with life that we all feel from time to time to create something that, whilst relentlessly bleak, is tempered with an even bleaker sense of humour – like they get the joke, but know things are still fucked anyway. Imagine if Swans were from Peckham and Michael Gira spent his evenings listening to Iron Monkey and forcing pigs to smoke; funny yet deeply, deeply upsetting." Toby Cook



90. Grouper - The Man Who Died In His Boat (Kranky)

"Just as the poignancy of the image of a riderless boat filled with ownerless relics is born from lack and mystery, so these compositions are haunting because Grouper gives them space to breathe, filling that absence left by the unidentified lost man with her own hushed emotional response. If you're still unmoved by the time you reach the final song, well, you're probably as dead as he is." Maya Kalev



89. Laura Mvula - Sing To The Moon (RCA)

"Trading in the GarageBand strings and brass on these compositions (written while she was the receptionist for the City Of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra) for the real deal, Laura Mvula's debut album arrives garlanded with praise. What's refreshing is that, by its close, not only do you find yourself backing these tips for greatness, but the album - an immaculately drawn piece of jazz-inflected pop - is loaded with such originality that Mvula's carved out a niche of her own in 2013's musical landscape." Laurie Tuffrey



88. Lescop - Lescop (Pop Noire)

"Lescop's eponymous debut is teeming with life, undulating grooves, deft electronic ambience and has hefty hooks aplenty. No fat goon in a Teardrop Explodes t-shirt is going to spoil that by telling me he's heard it all before. It marches with the confidence of a man about town, a noirish beast prowling the Parisian underground scene; it's slick, seductive and stalks from club to club, and from capital city to capital city, while the rest of us sleep or do quotidian chores like working. Lescop paints a picture of himself as some elegantly wasted nightfly, although if that sounds shallow, there's plenty of existential angst and dark emotion to sink your teeth into." Jeremy Allen



87. Carcass - Surgical Steel (Nuclear Blast)

"Surgical Steel opener ‘1985’ - though it references the year of the band’s formation − couldn’t be sonically further removed from that time. Its bombastic harmonies and cinematic sweep is actually strangely incongruous even with their later, more commercial work. But the album that follows is clinical and unremitting, virtuosic as much as it is vitriolic. It completes the circle, as its throwback cover imagery of their "tools of the trade" suggests." Dan Franklin



86. oVo - Abisso (Supernatural Cat)

"In which every record you have ever used the word 'heavy' about is revealed to be about as 'heavy' as a fine china model of a shepherdess. Actually that's probably the wrong word, OvO go out the other side of 'heavy' and end up somewhere closer to 'harrowing'. Stefania Pedretti's soured shriek of a vocal style is the aural equivalent of having a one of the Cenobites from Hellraiser pull itself out of your mouth, while her guitar playing has the ability to uncannily replicate the sound of a naked body being dragged across wet rubber. Of course, all this unpleasantness would amount to nothing if the tracks weren't also shit hot, but thankfully OvO have nothing to fret about. Held together by the ludicrously funky drumming of Bruno Dorella - a dude who can make your neck snap back and forth like a hangman - every track on Abisso is razor sharp, focussed and dedicated to causing maximum distress." Mat Colegate



85. Hey Colossus - Cuckoo Live Life Like Cuckoo (MIE)

"Hey Colossus haven't just been a band for a decade, they've been a consistently good one. But with the release of Cuckoo Live Life Like Cuckoo – their eighth album since their 2003 formation – they've suddenly arrived at a place where they're not just a good, but an excellent band. Something in their sound has clicked, but it's no subtle flicking of a switch; this feels like a dislocated shoulder being forced back in to place." Tom Hannan



84. Barn Owl - V (Thrill Jockey)

“It was Evan Caminiti and Jon Porras’ stated aim to create doom dub when they founded the duo Barn Owl. Five albums in and they have easily achieved this and much more. Rather than taking Om’s very literal route into the same roughly uncharted territory they have used elements of both genres (and musique concrete, Krautrock, minimal techno and drone) to create a new celestial fusion fashioned on desert rock guitars and masses of modular synthesizer gear. Beautiful and quite unlike anything else being made at the moment.” John Doran



83. Wölfbait - Wölfbait (Art For The Blind)

"Given that this is Wölfbait's first release, they aren't alumni of any well known bands unless you're embedded in the Dublin hardcore scene, and they have struck a massively noise-ridden end-of-days soundtrack they call "Kraut violence" (as in, Krautrock meets powerviolence), the lack of immediate big push is understandable. However, I'd be surprised if Wölfbait doesn't get a vinyl release one day, because it absolutely rips, and no-one who's heard it seems to disagree." Noel Gardner

82. *AR - Succession (Corbel Stone Press)

Autumn Richardson and Richard Skelton release more collaborative material from their bolthole on the moorland between Cumbria and Yorkshire. As is always the case with their work, this is music grounded in landscape (accompanied by beautifully printed texts on the etymology of tree names or records of deforestation) but never sentimental about it - no whimsical tribute to an idealised Arcadia here. Instead, these four tracks are dense, powerful pieces of music, built from drones, knife-edge violin and Richardson's simple vocal sighs. As fits the wild surroundings of its birth, this is not always a terribly easy listen - at times you're buffeted by a headwind of noise, while the higher crags of violin revel in their bleak discord. Perhaps then it works as a document not only of the unforgiving menace of the wild lands, but also of Skelton and Richardson's own relationship, an awareness that love too should not be mythologised and turned twee, but treated as an elemental force that ebbs and flows with wild unpredictably. Luke Turner

Click here to listen to Succession

81. DJ Rashad - Double Cup (Hyperdub)

The two major footwork albums released in 2013 offer contrasting visions; on the one hand the intensely focused, personal and idiosyncratic sound of RP Boo's Legacy, on the other DJ Rashad's Double Cup, a community-led affair (most tracks are collaborations with crew members and contemporaries) which explores the points at which the genre intersects with the wider bass music world. It's Rashad's broadest and most ambitious album to date, touching on jungle, trap beats, G-funk and hard-edged acid, while equally finding time for thrillingly raw nods to the competitive dance circle foundations of the sound with former single 'I Don't Give A Fuck', possibly the most grittily exciting 'floor tune of the year. Pairing Double Cup with this year's precursor single Rollin' offers powerful evidence as to footwork's current vitality as a genre, and its ability to chew up almost any sample source material in its rhythmic centrifuge; it'll be exciting to see where these key protagonists head next. Rory Gibb



80. Pusha T - My Name Is My Name (Good/Def Jam)

A long time in the coming, and preceded earlier in the year by the sterling Wrath Of Caine mixtape which augered well, Pusha T’s solo debut takes the fearsome lyrical energy displayed there but maps it onto piledriver minimalism production work from his long-standing champion Kanye West. While the broad-ranging styles the album encompasses produce a few errant moments, any inconsistency is more than overpowered by tracks like ‘Numbers On The Board’ and ‘Nosetalgia’, with the latter, which drafts in Kendrick Lamar for a supremely fine guest spot, seeing Pusha’s storytelling in his favoured lyrical one-two of drug-pushing and big-time boasting reach an apex over a boiled-down earworm of a beat, making for a record that deals in a stark, addictive brilliance. Laurie Tuffrey

79. James Holden - The Inheritors (Border Community)

"Clocking in at over 75 minutes, The Inheritors is an exhausting, complex and disorientating listen, but one that will stay with you. Once upon a time, Holden used to bridge the gap between bedroom and club, but now the most suitable location to take in his music would be in the middle of the woods, a windswept moor or a stone circle. It's the boldest of sonic statements. The title is borrowed from William Golding's 1963 novel about Neanderthal man, but I have my own theory - "The Inheritors" are Holden, Kieran 'Four Tet' Hebden, Nathan Fake, Luke Abbott and their peers. They have inherited Detroit techno's legacy and are fucking with it until it is barely recognisable from the source - the scorched, decayed title track in particular is potent fuel for this theory. The lineage may be getting harder to trace, but it's definitely there." Joe Clay



78. The Body - Christs, Redeemers (Thrill Jockey)

"No one element is ever allowed to dominate but, rather than spreading their ideas too thin this serves to fill the album with variety while ensuring it never wavers from its nihilistic mission. I've been listening to it for two whole days now and I'm still discovering new features, like a man up to his arms in tar pulling out body parts and splinters of bone. In a year that's been dominated by the spectacle of former noise musicians funnelling their abrasiveness into more conventional arenas, Christs, Redeemers is a welcome fetid volley from the keep-noise-hideous brigade and an album that will keep you horribly transfixed for a long time to come." Mat Colegate



77. Dethscalator - Racial Golf Course No Bitches (Riot Season)

"Much like the record's cover (a hentai nightmare of dick-plants and Burgess Shale teratoids), this accomplished LP is absurdly unsettling and indicates the need for a long course of cognitive behavioural therapy. Yet, I hope these sumbitches never receive such help, as their output truly is an intensely refreshing cup of cholera-tainted shitwater." Nancy Bennie



76. Earl Sweatshirt - Doris (Columbia)

"It's all pretty much the same to Earl; his flow rarely switches up or makes any strong demand to be listened to, but the words keep on coming until it's time for a feature or song break. It's to Earl's credit that he's managed to make the music he wants to, even if it's more of a rapper's rap record than one of any major crossover appeal. But then, what else did we expect? At just 19 years old, Earl has a whole career ahead of him to expand his palette – but it's more likely he'll still be chasing the next simile; still lurking in the background of unglamorous, hook-free beats – impressing the hell out of us."Kyle Ellison

75. TVO/Covered In Sand - Red Night Variations (Broken20)

"It might just be the best thing [Ruaridh] Law has been involved in to date, with his tracks occupying a sweet spot between the sludgy murk of his original Red Night album, the percussive drive of his club music, and a newfound urgency that touches on the dread bass pressure of Shackleton and Raime, Kassem Mosse's gradually unspooling house grooves and, on highlight 'Super 8 In Glasgow Tenement', the drizzle-soaked moorland electronics of The Haxan Cloak." Rory Gibb

74. Body/Head - Coming Apart (Matador)

"While it would be reaching to call this a "feminist" noise album, gender and sexuality are definite pre-occupations. These are expressed and explored within a maelstrom of distortion, and with neither guitar taking prominence over the other, dichotomies of who is the body and who the head, traditionally assigned female/male notions, become blurred on this challenging but beautiful album." Melissa Steiner



73. Endless Boogie - Long Island (No Quarter)

"This is fine American blue collar slackness, a paean to the continuing vibe of real boogie, in thrall to the body moving joy formidable - and no retro exercise either. Rather, it's living musical authenticity that hasn't stopped to look in the mirror too many times and dances like no one gives a shit, the good times rolling on down the years. Why stop?" Harry Sword



72. Årabrot - Årabrot (Fysisk Format)

"Self-titled albums can often be a sign of creative impasse and point to a band going through the motions to fulfil a record contract or to pay off a tax bill. In the case of Årabrot’s eponymous long player however, it feels like a distilled blast of all their many high points from the last 12 years. Kjetil Nernes has drafted in some fearsome names in the likes of Emil Nikolaisen from Serena-Maneesh on bass, noise titan Lasse Marhaug and Nils-Petter Molvaer drummer, Erland Dahlen, to help him realise his sonic alchemy of churning noise rock and surrealist subject matter.” John Doran



71. Dawn Richard - GoldenHeart (Altavoz)

"Crucially, the album has the kind of depth that rules out single-track highlights, and a collective grace that improves with every listen, frequently stemming from buried sonic earworms: the handclaps and submerged drum loop at the start of 'Gleaux' give way to an earth-shaking half-time tremor and distant chamber strings, showing off the care and attention given to GoldenHeart's arrangement and composition." Laurie Tuffrey



70. Jenny Hval - Innocence Is Kinky (Rune Grammofon)

"It's no coincidence that Hval chooses to quote David Lynch's Twin Peaks midway through the record, intoning "Fire, walk with me!" at the surging climax of centrepiece 'I Got No Strings'. Certainly, the suggestive world inhabited by Innocence Is Kinky could well be labelled with that most liberally applied of aesthetic descriptors: Lynchian. In the same way that the American director exposed the seedy and nightmarish underbelly of that sleepy town on the Canadian border, Hval has created a work that tears down our neatly demarcated distinctions – between good and bad, pleasure and horror, innocence and kink. Innocence Is Kinky is a remarkable album, one which delves beneath the surface and returns with something both seductive and strange" Thomas May



69. Young Echo - Nexus (Ramp)

"It would be easy to draw parallels between the introspective and bass-heavy spaces of Bristol collective Young Echo's debut group transmission and the city's cult-worshipped trinity of Portishead, Tricky and Massive Attack. Nexus, however, is far more than a post-millennial take on 90s trip-hop. It's more like a lateral study of Bristol's musical heritage, drawing on trip-hop, yes, but also the city's rich sound system culture and its unique contribution to the dubstep scene." Maya Kalev



68. Tal National - Kaani (Fat Cat)

Over the last decade Tal National have established themselves as the band to see in Niger, blurring the boundaries between musicians and audience as they dance together long into the night. The large ensemble numbers up to thirteen members and, during five-hour plus sets, five nights a week in their homeland, the group are known to swap instruments mid-song and create a wild party atmosphere until the sun sets. The music is a rush of complex guitar lines laid over propulsive and hypnotic percussion - Afro-rock with a Battles-like intensity, as relentless riffs batter away into your subconscious. - Richie Troughton



67. Janelle Monáe - The Electric Lady (Atlantic)

Janelle Monáe’s follow-up to The ArchAndroid is, in many ways, exactly what you’d have expected: an even more sprawling vision of her retro-futurist utopia, where her “droid rebel alliance” dance to precision-honed pop. But this inflated ambition isn’t a criticism; very much the opposite: Monáe has a seeming mastery of any genre she puts her hand to, with chamber quartet segues giving way to deft funk on ‘Ghetto Woman’, the title track’s mainstream R&B and ‘Look Into My Eyes’, with its magnificent 60s-vintage orchestral pop stylings, producing an album that, fine-tuned with her trademark perfectionism, exists in its own immersive, singular, ever-glowing world. Laurie Tuffrey



66. Botanist - IV: Mandragora (Flenser)

"Botanist is a character channelled (and psychically inhabited) by anonymous San Franciscan musician Otrebor. The former is an eco-terrorist, living in the deserts of California, dwelling on how much better off the ecosystem would be without the rapacious ape known as mankind and is given voice in art by the latter via songs dedicated to flora played (almost entirely) on drums and hammered dulcimer and shrieked in the blood chilling necrotic howls of black metal. Like John Gray’s The Silence Of Animals or James Lovelock’s Gaia Hypothesis being brought to sonic life by music that lies, improbably, somewhere between Lightning Bolt, the Penguin Cafe Orchestra and Leviathan." John Doran



65. My Bloody Valentine - m b v (Pickpocket Records)

"Thing is, even after eight million Twitter jokes, meme GIFs, Facebook posts and more within the space of a few hours, even when I finally had completed an order and the download was arriving, some part of me still wasn't quite believing it. A couple of people had thought that maybe it was a hack and a joke, and while I'd said "They can't have done that to both the Facebook site and the actual webpage," I half thought. 'Well... maybe they could.'" Ned Raggett



64. Kerridge - A Fallen Empire (Downwards)

"A Fallen Empire revels in sheer sonic excess, to a level of near ludicrous power and portent: Kerridge as debauched medieval king, sitting astride a mighty stack flinging rotten pies to hordes of hungry peasants below, and then chuckling to himself as they're knocked to the ground by his earth quaking subs before they can reach them. The album celebrates the chewy, fibrous physicality of sound. And while the palette Kerridge works with doesn't change much throughout – great walls of bass, evil Reese hum, war drum bongos, kicks the size of Ecuador - this is assuredly not about eclecticism, no more so than witnessing Regis lay waste to some steaming back room, or having all rational thought swept aside by a fully becloaked Sunn O))). No, this is music to move psychic mountains, a debut of highly confident aural destruction." Harry Sword



63. Derek Piotr - Raj (self-released)

Derek Piotr is a young Polish-born sound artist, who now lives in New England in the US. He may well be an accomplished electroacoustic musician who focuses primarily on vocal manipulation, has interned under Meredith Monk and has been nominated for the by the jury for Prix Ars Electronica in Digital Musics, but this doesn't actually stop his third solo record from being, well, banging. [...] Experimental electronic 'dance' music is very rarely this simultaneously exciting, unpredictable and enjoyable. John Doran



62. English Heretic - “Anti-Heroes” (self-released)

"English Heretic are a self-styled ‘creative occult organisation’ who are ten years into a project to deep map the British Isles with reference to pre-Christian myth, horror films, local custom, all but forgotten news stories of the late 20th Century, psychogeographical literature, conspiracy theory, Fortean research and the like, channelling it all into a series of self-released albums, site specific performances, books and talks. This immensely enjoyable album is a rarity not in its subject matter but its ability to be deeply psychedelic, inventive, thought provoking and (at times) good fun. Less fun than downright disturbing however is the centrepiece of the album, ‘The Mall Timeslip’ (itself an edited down version of a longer track released on 12”), which is a stunning meditation on the nature of clinical paranoia based on Ian Ball's attempt to kidnap Princess Anne." John Doran

61. Miracle - Mercury (Planet Mu)

After eight tracks of attempting to reign in their exploratory excess, 'Organon' feels like a release of sorts, all those textural ideas and sound palettes that were discarded in favour of immediacy now patched together in a brilliantly immersive piece that settles around a constant, crisp rhythmic pattern. Human and mechanical murmurs are brought in and out of focus, before the whole piece gradually fades away. It brings to a close, on a deliciously refined note, an album that's at times overtly brash but always intelligent when being so. Simon Catling



60. Matana Roberts - Coin Coin Chapter Two: Mississippi Moonchile (Constellation)

"Mississippi Moonchile appears to be striving towards a meaning, a significance, that lies perpetually out of reach: just like her grandmother, Roberts has so much that she can't quite articulate, opting instead to conjure only ambiguity, to speak only in impressions. With Mississippi Moonchile, Mantana Roberts' Coin Coin project continues to resonate with the complexity, multiplicity and, occasionally, the horror of the contemporary world, whilst remaining steadfast in its belief in the ability of individual voices to rise – albeit momentarily – above the noise.Thomas May



59. Sons Of Kemet - Burn (Naim)

Unlike some of their peers, Sons Of Kemet can move from melodic maelstroms to moving meditations in a moment. Driven by Marshall's droning tuba riffs, the drivingly hypnotic 'Going Home' gives way to probably one of the most beautiful and haunting ballads in any genre this year, 'Adiona's Lullaby.' Jamie Skey



58. The Stranger - Watching Dead Empires In Decay (Modern Love)

"The Stranger's identity, as a musical concept, is as vague as the output Kirby weaves. The Stranger could be a ghost, or a Third Man-like figure of mystery and darkness. Maybe he's intended to be some sort of fusion of man and machine, one of Gary Numan's replicas. But with Kirby at the helm, the project becomes so much more than a sum of musical parts and obtuse intrigue, crystallising into a very real expression of humanity, albeit one that is blurred and confused. I'm not sure if it was intended or not, but on Watching Dead Empires In Decay, James Kirby succeeds in reminding us of who he is, stranger or not." Joseph Burnett



57. Heterotic - Love & Devotion (Planet Mu)

"Though it plays like a loving, if fraught, homage to the music of the 80s and 90s, Love & Devotion always errs on the side of familiarity rather than retro-reverence. Those aesthetic and lyrical allusions to the past are also vehicles for a moral, subtly delivered: that in order for relationships to succeed, life has to be lived in the present. Coupled with very contemporary and spacious production, it throws up more vexing questions about the interplay between past and present than it can possibly answer. It's a powerful conceit that in the hands of lesser musicians might have come off as clumsy or retrograde. Here, though, it's exquisitely realised." Maya Kalev



56. Gary Numan - Splinter (Cooking Vinyl/Mortal)

"[T]he songs on Splinter are built to show off the man's strengths. In a way it's the album we've all been waiting for since Sacrifice turned him around - while his last few tended to repeat certain things from song to song, there's some real variety here. The loud guitars and skittering industrial beats are still there for the most part, but this time he knows when to let things breathe a bit." Nick Reed



55. Emptyset - Recur (Raster Noton)

"Between the technical bravura of their sonic sculpting and the intentionally confounding rhythmic shifting, the music on Recur invites comparison to some of the more violent developments in breakcore or a few of metal’s most musically adept and electronically-oriented bands. To some extent, the parallels are deliberate; based on the odd time signatures employed on the previous EP, Emptyset are clearly embracing technical musicianship. However, compared to that and all of their previous efforts, they’ve honed every sound and gesture on Recur to a razor’s edge, and it makes for a thrilling if difficult ride, as well as their weightiest and most complete statement of intent yet." Albert Freeman



54. Prurient - Through The Window (Blackest Ever Black)

"Through The Window's bookend tracks are substantially lengthy, and profoundly fearsome. Compositionally, they mimic the flows of codified data: these epics stream along for a time, change inconsequentially on the surface; but closer audition reveals how their features repeat and differ in subtle and unfolding ways. Fernow frames cinemascope panoramas that apparently fill the sonic field until, abruptly, another window opens." Ryan Alexander Diduck



53. Oranssi Pazuzu - Valonielu (SVART)

"This record makes me want to pull a face like I've just stepped on a piece of Lego in bare feet and beckon towards invisible mind castles on the edge of man's comprehension. It makes me want to sail a skull-prowed longboat into the dreams of sleeping children. It simultaneously sounds like a voyage down the laser Nile and a holiday in a burned-out tree house. Psyched out? You betcha. There's elements of Floyd at their most chillingly numbed, as well as a host of krautrock influences in the marriage of monolithic riffery and paint-peeling electronics, and in vocalist Jun His Oranssi Pazuzu, they have a devastating weapon, his wounded roar ensuring that despite its many stylistic leaps and contortions the album stays focussed and third-eye blindingly powerful." Mat Colegate



52. Wolf Eyes - No Answer: Lower Floors (De Stijl)

"If you thought Human Animal took too long to jolt out of the speakers to pulverise your brain, this might not be the Wolf Eyes record for you. There are no song-titles like 'Urine Burn', 'Leper War' or 'Mangled Rusty Dog Rot'. We're never fully or persistently stabbed in the face (or ears). Outright aggression has been superseded by the manipulation of tension and suspense. Don't get me wrong, No Answer: Lower Floors isn't exactly Tubular Bells, yet Wolf Eyes are making it abundantly clear that they are growing older and wiser and, yes, even mellowing. Wolf Eyes were never one-dimensional, but they're adding an increasing number of strings to their duct-taped noise bow, and more moods, techniques, textures and subtleties to their bile-splattered palette." JR Moores



51. Tamikrest - Chatma (Glitterbeat)

"A spiritual journey into the darkest corners of what life can present, Chatma is an album played by a group with a lot at stake and there is no room for complacency. [...] The group's skills have been learned by playing hour after hour in desert tents, or late at night under starlight by campfire, electric guitars powered by generators, and the recordings capture these exotic textures. Despite everything that is going on their lives Tamikrest never resort to anger – theirs is a message of peace and hope." Richie Troughton



50. Katie Gately - Katie Gately (Public Information)

"One obvious comparison that'll be made both here and elsewhere is with Holly Herndon, another academic composer who attacks her own breath and voice with heavy digital processing and whose Movement album was a favourite from last year. And while there are certainly parallels between their work, where Movement (save one track, 'Fade') eschewed song structure, Gately's music is very different, turning kindred techniques towards frostbitten but playful forms of pop. " Rory Gibb



49. Matt Berry - Kill The Wolf (Acid Jazz)

"It's a delight to find an album that, while obviously in love with its influences, is confident enough to poke fun at them as well. For such an album be Kill The Wolf, my lords. And I would beseech thee to listen most carefully. For it be far from a hey-nonny-no. Rather, it is a resounding hey-nonny-yes." Mat Colegate



48. NYPC - NYPC (The Numbers)

"NYPC have always been good at capturing the enthusiasm of that 80s New Pop attitude and combining it with the indie-dance underground. Apart from a couple of straightforward radio-friendly tracks and some atmospheric grooves in search of a song, this album – with its adventurous production, abrupt endings and Bulmer's sweet hard vocals – is NYPC's most complete, and most beguiling record yet." Lucy O'Brien



47. John Foxx And The Maths - Evidence (Metamatic)

"Evidence is an assemblage of sorts, a collection of tracks that Foxx and Benge recorded piecemeal over the last couple of years, some previously released, others not. It's to the pair's credit that the album hangs together as well as it does. It also contains some of John Foxx and the Maths' most adventurous work to date, alongside some of their most accessible." Ben Graham



46. Moonface - Julia With Blue Jeans On (Jagjaguwar)

"...the album further proves Krug to be a fine songwriter in the fullest sense of the word. It’s the product of a chronic overthinker refining his teeming thoughts into crystalline song, forming an album that doesn't shy away from the gravitas of grand gestures, and, more importantly, the emptiness that follows when they prove to be futile." Laurie Tuffrey



45. Rabih Beaini - Albidaya (Annihaya)

"Lebanon-born, Berlin-based musician Rabih Beaini is more commonly known for his club music aliases Ra.H and Morphosis, under which he whips up storms of improvisational techno inspired by noise, electroacoustic music and free jazz. Albidaya is a reflection on his childhood in Lebanon and the country's traditional folk music forms, so there's plenty of acoustic instrumentation here, including plucked strings, saxophone and drums. There's an audible sense of delight, however, in the way that Beaini hacks and scrapes away at them with static, dust and grit, while the frazzled tones of an Eko Tiger Duo organ (one of Sun Ra's favourites) seep like oil through the music's core. It's an intense, noisy and turbulent listen, and by its end you feel chewed up and spat out, but thoroughly cleansed." Rory Gibb



44. Satelliti - Transister (Cuckundoo)

"The noise Satelliti make is a fabulous and aggressive one, somewhere between early 70s jazz-fusion and mid 90s full-throttle techno for the most part. Andrea Polato's drums are part motorik, part dance beats, but light on their feet, malleable and expressive, while Marco Dalle Luche provides both a humming, distorted analogue rhythmic pulse that loops through most tracks, and an exploratory, sometimes anarchic improvisation over the top of everything else, part pseudo-303 squelch, part dappled electric piano, part synthesiser chaos. Neither one of the pair seems like a leader, tracks instead feeling like the culmination of a symbiotic relationship, the result of three years of improvisation and experimentation. It stamps on your chest as much as it transports your headspace, a brilliant, high-impact meld of the physiological and the psychedelic." Nick Southall



43. Charles Cohen - The Middle Distance (Morphine)

"Charles Cohen has been quietly working away under the radar in Philadelphia for decades, as an improvisor fluent in one of Don Buchla's rare Music Easel synthesisers. The Middle Distance is the first in a three-LP-with-sleevenotes retrospective of his work released via Rabih Beaini's Morphine Records - Beaini was introduced to Cohen through labelmates and fellow Philadelphia-dwellers Metasplice - and gathers a series of older recordings made during the 70s and 80s. They are, in a word, stunning. Cohen's intrinsic connection to his instrument is such that these extended collections of melancholic, penetrating bleeps, meandering melodies and complex rhythmic interplays feel less like compositions per se than extensions of Cohen's personality and emotions, writ large across two sides of vinyl. Their release in 2013, and through Morphine, is also timely; arriving at a time when the electronic world feels preoccupied with all things tactile, Cohen's music here proves itself a secret predecessor to similarly adventurous 2013 excursions in mind-to-sound fusion from the likes of Rashad Becker, Rene Hell, Bass Clef, Laurel Halo, and any number of others. Essential." Rory Gibb



42. Suede - Bloodsports (Warner)

"The joy of Bloodsports is in what its title suggests, an embracing of convoluted, dark, twisted narrative between now and then, both in terms of the relationship of the lyricism and Suede's own journey. They've arrived at a romantic, odd, ambitious pop record that eschews musical theatricality for a punchy, 40-something's take on the complexity of love from the view - and this is why it works - of one who is still, at heart, an incurable and incorrigible teenage romantic." Luke Turner



41. WANDA GROUP - Piss Fell Out Like Sunlight (Opal Tapes)

"Throwing [references] to see what sticks seems a little at odds with the nourishing aspect at the heart of Wanda Group, a certain verisimilitude that sidesteps overt abstraction towards something more beautiful. Over the two sides of Piss Fell Out Like Sunlight, a delightful network of small forms are laid out in a sequence not dissimilar from that of a mixtape. The softest, most porous of his work to date, it sounds chiseled from rock as crumbled and aerated as that found on the artwork." Matthew Kent



40. L.Pierre - The Island Come True (Melodic)

"[L.Pierre's] album speaks to me of the eternal holiday of the alcoholic. Once you create as much distance from your everyday life as you naturally have from orange tinted Polaroids of childhood caravan trips or stays in seaside hotels and Super 8 film reels of school sports days, then you start to experience your quotidian life like it's the sun bleached memory of a happy event. You feel nostalgia and warmth for boring events that are unfolding right in front of you. You feel wistful about experiences that most people would find barbaric or gauche or unremarkable. You experience the epic, the heart-warming and the hilarious in post office and supermarket queues. You develop permanently rose-tinted glasses." John Doran



39. Don Christian - The Wayfarer (Camp & Street/Greedhead)

An insanely assured debut from the Brooklyn-based visual artist and rapper. Taking as its leaping-off point the hazy, psychotropically-tinged club-friendliness of Le1f, one of DC’s friends and a guest on the album, it pares them down into primed cloud-rap pieces. But that’s only half of it, with the album’s arc moving into densely-collated electronica-tinged cuts, namely standouts ‘MY CREW’ and ‘HARIKARI’, before the beats are fully disassembled for the expansive closing sketch, ‘ANGEL’. All the while, DonChristian’s voice hovers between compelling narrator, dexterously drawing on reference points and quotations, and a vital part of the sonic landscape, a half-heard baritone burr that melds with the music. Laurie Tuffrey

38. A Hawk And A Hacksaw - You Have Already Gone To The Other World (LM Dupli-Cation)

“A Hawk And A Hacksaw’s album You Have Already Gone To The Other Side is one unassuming masterpiece inspired by another: Sergei Parajanov's 1965 film Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors. This surrealist and magical love story is much loved by Jeremy Barnes and Heather Trost of AHAAH and they scored the film for a live performance with that music eventually inspiring this amazing album of Eastern European (Ukrainian, Romanian, Hungarian) folk music either drawn from the film or inspired by it.” John Doran



37. Le1f - Fly Zone (self released)

"Oh wuuuutt, NYC rapper Le1f has been making cameos in all the recent editions of Hoody Who. You might well remember him from his sassy videos 'Wut' and 'Soda', and he just keeps on coming back with tighter material. Looking up more about Le1f, I kept coming across the term 'banjee', which is an 80s moniker for a Latino or black gay dude who dresses thuggish. He notes that banjee is 'my gay swag, my code word. It makes me feel tall, like a prince'." Jodi Burian

36. (Ensemble Pearl) - (Ensemble Pearl) (Drag City)

"(Ensemble Pearl) is Stephen O'Malley and Michio Kurihara on guitars, Atsuo from Boris on drums and Bill Herzog from Jesse Sykes' band The Sweet Hereafter on bass. All of them bar Kurihara played together on the successful Sunn O))) and Boris collaborative album Altar in 2006, but this isn't a sequel and, more to the point, doesn't really sound anything like it. Instead the link is a social one: experimental drone rock played this well depends on an intimacy and shared vision between people who can 'read' each other with a frightening degree of insight." John Doran



35. Dean Blunt - The Redeemer (Hippos In Tanks/World Music)

"The Redeemer is a singular achievement. It's as much a mosaic as it is a mixtape, and as much a novel as it is a daytime soap. While the partial abandonment of sample-led chaos and the demystification of the music's origins will most likely raise the eyebrows of many fans, it's foolish to feel that something's been lost. The stuttering electric guitars and drums on instrumental outsider trip 'All Dogs Go To Heaven' may sound like a late night Amon Düul outtake, but it keeps alive the roaming 'play first, think later' compositional aesthetic of Hype Williams." Tristan Bath



34. Wire - Change Becomes Us (Pink Flag)

"For their next trick, Wire attempt time travel – either that or they're looking to pip Kevin Shields and co to the record for the slowest realisation of an album, with a near 35-year gap between initial violent creation and the finished product on this, the band's 12th release. Taken from unfinished sketches that were kicked about on the circuit in 1979-80, Wire aficionados will recognise many of these from the 1981 live album Document & Eyewitness. But more than a remake, it's an exercise in artistic frugality as a means of renewal. As Wire explained to the Quietus, the type of 'creative recycling' employed here has long been a method they've used to make something new. As bassist Graham Lewis puts it, 'It started off as a project that was a good idea, and then suddenly we realised we had a new album. It feels so natural to us, but it's not a common thing.'" Tim Burrows



33. British Sea Power - Machineries Of Joy (Rough Trade)

"A mature record, in the best possible sense, Machineries Of Joy reins in the whimsicality and tendency towards wackiness, while still retaining a smart sense of humour alongside the philosophical pondering and strident rock shapes. There are less of the in-jokes for students of existential literature and applied geology, and more of the genuine emotional engagement that should play as well in the Tesco's of Basildon as the smarter salons of Brighton and Cumbria. Not that BSP have foregone their customary originality and wit; far from it. But Machineries Of Joy has a depth and directness that could easily see it becoming their defining album. Oh, BSP, I still love you! Hitch up the caravan and air out the sheets; a second honeymoon could well be on the cards." Ben Graham



32. Heatsick - Re-Engineering (PAN)

"Steven Warwick's Heatsick project has broadened significantly in the past year via his sensory-surround Extended Play shows where his dancefloor persona - all hazy and psychoactive, ripple-and-surge Casio keyboard grooves - expanded to fill hours, rooms and sometimes entire venues. Re-Engineering is something different again. Inspired by urban ecology and our interactions with our environment, in sound and atmosphere it evokes a drive through a humid cityscape during the hours from dusk til dawn. The sounds of the environment drift in through the window, mingling with the buzz of radio stations as you flick across the dial: slow, glossy dance music packed with detail, arpeggios bicycle-chaining around one another in lopsided synchrony, Warwick's half-sung-half-spoken narrations, cheeseball saxophone and ukelele, wry puns ("Modern life is still rubbish, you say / Modern rubbish is still life"). While the album's scattered nature can occasionally be confounding, it's a pleasure to hear Warwick bringing the Heatsick project into significantly wider, more idea-led and ambitious territory." Rory Gibb



31. A$AP Ferg - Trap Lord (Columbia)

"Originally conceived as a mixtape, Trap Lord rightfully exists as a proper album, with thirteen tracks totalling fifty-one marvelous and misanthropic minutes. Judging by his verses, Ferg’s a hedonist, a lunatic, a streetwise savant whose hip-hop atavism rises above impersonation into something idiosyncratic and novel. Where Rocky found his muse down South, Ferg's amalgamous approach exudes preeminence. He’s both Mr. Loverman (‘4:02’) and gun-strapped gangster (‘Didn’t Wanna Do That’), with added personality quirks such as a preoccupation with gospel artist / Christian minister Donnie McClurkin." Gary Suarez



30. A$AP Rocky - Long.Live.A$AP (Columbia)

"An absorbing, immersive listening experience, Long.Live.A$AP outshines the recent full-lengths of technically more proficient rappers as well as those of strikingly safer hip-hop hitmakers. Though the absence of former ally Spaceghostpurrp is certainly felt, Rocky has amassed such an impressive collection of beats that the temptation to skip a song never arises. Such ingenuity is befitting an apparent aesthete like Rocky who, like the stylish Kanye before him, fully if perhaps cynically knows that the devil is in the detailing." Gary Suarez



29. Matmos - The Marriage Of True Minds (Thrill Jockey)

"Human communication defines Matmos' new album, provides its conceptual basis and ultimately proves to be its most enduring aspect. Over the few months I've been listening to The Marriage of True Minds I've come to adore it - I'm not sure if there's anything else released yet this year that even comes close to its captivating brew of psychedelic noise-pop and musique concrete - and a live show in London last week featuring mock psychic projection, Drew Daniel in death metal studs 'n' leather, an audience making birdcalls and M.C. Schmidt massaging a pair of huge balloons, served as further confirmation of its crackpot brilliance." Rory Gibb



28. Vatican Shadow - Remember Your Black Day (Hospital)

"There's an insidious passivity to Vatican Shadow's music - it sidesteps macho, overtly muscular directness in favour of corroded sound, hollow, nocturnal hints of melody and distant fragments of singing. This becomes a background music that sits there, quietly disturbing, a malevolent presence in your ear. As such, it seems abundantly clear exactly what comment Fernow might be using Vatican Shadow to make. It's fairly obvious that this deeply un-American music is not remotely aggrandising. Instead, the sense of empty froideur points not at any explicit declaration of despair or glory, more an opening of hands to say 'this is what it is, make of it what you will'." Luke Turner



27. Floorplan - Paradise (M-Plant)

"Detroit native Robert Hood is generally known for his work as a master of minimal techno, stripping away all extraneous material to leave pure, unfettered machine funk, all that's needed to send the body into a rapture of motion. His side project Floorplan practices the same economy of form but leans closer towards house, setting samples from gospel, soul and disco into lovely, looped motion above eyes-down four-to-the-floor. The results are little short of astonishing, especially on gorgeous, moving highlight 'Never Grow Old', where a disco diva works herself up to ever greater heights of spiritual fervour until the track finally explodes in ecstatic release." Rory Gibb



26. Pet Shop Boys - Electric (x2)

"Like the other singers he references, Tennant still sounds "lonely and strange", even after all these many, many years. But "the feeling of the warmth around us" he talks about, the context it provides… it's also hard to deny its power here. Around him, bolts of Euro-trance keys take the listener higher and higher, again and again, and truly this is music "expressing passion, explaining pain," music in which "aspirations for a better life are ordained". This is feeling expressed with meaning in music that makes me fill notebooks with scrawl, that makes me ponce about like a tit, that makes me move and smile and think and speak and be… as it tells me how sublime, and simple, the Pet Shop Boys music can be." Jude Rogers



25. Teeth Of The Sea - Master (Rocket)

"If Fuck Buttons hadn't gone stadium-sized, and instead expanded on the brittle edges of their superlative debut Street Horrrsing, they might have ended up sounding as weird, majestic and abrasive as Teeth of the Sea do on Master. One thing's for sure: these tracks probably won't end up soundtracking a major sports event." Joseph Burnett



24. Fire! Orchestra - Exit! (Rune Grammofon)

“Mats Gustafsson (sax, electronics), Johan Berthling of Tape (bass) and Andreas Werliin of Wildbirds And Peacedrums (drums) were put together as a bar trio to destroy all other bar trios by Conny Lindstrom of the Crazy Wisdom label. Fire!’s first gig in Stockholm went so well that they took it to the studio to see what happened and that’s when the heavy psych grooves were born. Then they set themselves the impossible task of expanding the line-up to include 30 members including an 11 piece brass/woodwind section and four drummers. What by rights should be unwieldy and murky is dynamic and endlessly enjoyable coming across like at times like a radical free jazz big band playing Sun Ra and then at other times an O.G. big band playing krautrock, psych and various other cosmic freak outs.” John Doran



23. Kelela - Cut 4 Me (Fade To Mind)

"The London-to-LA label axis of Night Slugs and Fade To Mind has, for several years, drawn the gloss, booming bass and bodily flex of post-Timbaland R&B into dazzlingly futuristic club music. On Cut 4 Me Kelela articulates that long-running connection beautifully, turning frosty funk and icepick post-grime from the likes of Nguzunguzu, Bok Bok, Girl Unit and Jam City into irresistible pop tracks: the defiant, bristling blast of 'Enemy', synth-soaked slow jam 'Floor Show', Jam City's eski-flecked 'Keep It Cool'. The collective's sonic group aesthetic proves a neat foil for Kelela's songs, spacious enough to put her persona and voice centre stage yet confrontational enough to dramatise even the most contemplative moments. If this mixtape is anything to go by, we can expect to be hearing far more from Kelela in future and, equally excitingly, further forays from the Night Slugs crew into the world of vocal pop." Rory Gibb



22. The Knife - Shaking The Habitual (Rabid Records)

"Shaking The Habitual isn't a perfect record, nor is it something that everyone will find particularly enjoyable: it's very long and stylistically divergent, flitting busily from idea to idea throughout in a way that can make it tough to digest in one sitting. But it's deeply gratifying to hear a band like The Knife following up an accessible and universally applauded album like Silent Shout with a huge, sprawling statement focused on a process of reinvention, exploration and discovery. The approach they've taken with the creation of Shaking The Habitual makes as punchy a statement about the issues the album purports to address as its track titles, accompanying artwork and lyrics. That the music it contains is largely excellent serves to further reinforce its message. "There are other ways to do things." Indeed there are." Rory Gibb



21. Laurel Halo - Chance Of Rain (Hyperdub)

"Chance Of Rain is one of the first albums I've heard that fully acknowledges, let alone addresses, the contradictions [of the experience of online time] and compositionally works across all three modes of perception. All the tracks on Chance Of Rain are instrumental, anonymised and therefore more universal. Halo combines the time-sliced gloss of the digital eternal present - the short-phase loops of sound, the textural stamps decoupled from their eras of vogue declaring the infinite, brutal flatness of everything ever imagined available all at once - with the kinds of jazz piano chord progressions last seriously heard in the early 80s." Emily Bick



20. Logos - Cold Mission (Keysound)

"Negative space is so noticeable throughout Cold Mission because the moments when that calm is broken are shattered with such force: by fat fists of monochrome synth texture and sub-bass that knock the wind from your chest, by breaking glass, by vaporous melodies that dissolve into fine mist and drift in the air long after everything else has slunk back into the shadows again. You could still bust moves to much of the album in the mix, and Logos' 12" releases (including this year's towering 'In Reverse' with Mumdance) operate more clearly in a club music idiom, but as a standalone entity Cold Mission is a refreshingly daring prospect - a debut album from a dance producer containing comparatively little actual 'dance' music." Rory Gibb



19. Pinkunoizu - The Drop (Full Time Hobby)

"Do you remember when you were young, lying on the grass during summer time, listening to how different things sound on a hot, still day? This has probably got something to do with heat affecting the vibration of air molecules, making it a better transmitting substance for sound waves, but whatever the reason, stuff just sounds magic on a hot summer's day. Can you remember someone watering their lawn a few houses down the street? Can you remember someone opening a can of lemonade, the hiss of carbonated bubbles going through a delicious phase effect as more liquid pours from the can, creating a longer echo chamber? Can you remember pouring space dust candy into your mouth and listening to the crackling and popping sound it made on your tongue; and how this phased up and down as you widened and contracted your mouth through various O-shapes?

Now, lie down on the couch, turn your phone off, close your eyes and play the glorious 'In The Liverpool Stream' and listen to the fizzing drinks, the hissing fauna, the mouth candy, the lawns being watered and instead of thinking, 'Fuck this, those dishes won't do themselves', just leave them for 40 minutes - you have my permission. Who knows, maybe this time they'll do themselves." John Doran



18. Oneohtrix Point Never - R Plus Seven (Warp)

"Over a relatively short time span, the internet has opened a whole can of new channels for the circulation and reception of music and, more than most, Lopatin's work has been at the centre of endless online discussion, speculation, and criticism. Ironically, a rather niche project like Oneohtrix Point Never arguably couldn't have found the audience it did prior to those new channels. An obvious talking point is that Lopatin makes easy work that relies heavily upon the facility afforded through technology – ultimately, and unlike the beatific, reflexive drift of his earlier work, R Plus Seven is music that's more programmed than performed. But behind that programming is a very human kind of agency, pushing the right buttons. Amidst an excess of prosumers, Lopatin proves here to be an actual pro." Ryan Alexander Diduck



17. Jon Hopkins - Immunity (Domino)

"Hopkins nearly chucked in making his own music after becoming disillusioned when his initial solo albums on Just Music were pretty much ignored. Thank Eno he didn't. Hopkins is one of the gifted few who can imbue his machines with tangible warmth and genuine emotion, whether they are tempting you onto the dancefloor or offering you a moment of sedentary reflection. Up to this point, Hopkins is best known for the work he does with others, as an arranger for Coldplay, an in-demand producer and a talented collaborator, but Immunity is the record that defines him. You'll be blessed if you hear a better album of electronic music this year." Joe Clay



16. Blixa Bargeld & Teho Teardo - Still Smiling (Spècula)

"It is, of course, rather tempting to put two and two together and start thinking that, perhaps, this is the most confessional we've heard Blixa Bargeld to date. But the album's artwork - featuring the singer and Teardo pointing at each other, facing in opposite directions while wearing huge pointy hats that are half Dada artist Hugo Ball and half Pet Shop Boys - suggests that the truth is rather more complex. Still Smiling is a playful, intelligent album, a series of personal and observational sketches of a disquieting world." Luke Turner



15. Rashad Becker - Traditional Music Of Notional Species Vol. 1 (PAN)

"Becker's is among the most fleshy and organic-sounding electronic music I've come across. Its rhythms don't so much beat as pump and lurch in weird time, rippling like soft tissues as blood pulses through them, while its lead melodic motifs - slippery, spaghetti-like squiggling tones - might be synthesised but blur the lines, sounding played from horns and pipes carved from bone, sinew and skin. But whatever they are, these are decidedly other forms of life - in its skin-prickling heat, humidity and and unsettling unfamiliarity, listening to Becker's sound worlds here feels akin to being dropped into the middle of an alien hive on a distant planet somewhere, where everything is slimy, moving and alive. " Rory Gibb



14. The Haxan Cloak - Excavation (Tri Angle)

"Bobby Krlic's first album as The Haxan Cloak scared the wits out of us back in 2011 when it dragged itself, croaking uneasily, from its mouldering grave. Excavation turns up the knob marked 'fear and unease', abandoning the acoustic instrumentation of his debut and plunging into a chasm of sub-bass rumble and growl and terse sewer pipe ambience. In both sound and physical effect, it feels like being dragged kicking and screaming downward through a manhole by slimy, rotting hands - but in a manner that's creepily pleasurable rather than genuinely life threatening." Rory Gibb



13. Kanye West - Yeezus (Virgin Records)

"Sure to be the most dissected and overanalyzed record of 2013, Yeezus opens with a disruptive robotic skronk and closes with coy snippets of patter, two indicators that maybe dwelling too much might prove maddening. As with West's Jay-Z infused Watch The Throne, this sixth solo outing once again evokes the erratic artist's notorious sexually charged narcissism. But Yeezus sports far too many clues, coincidences, nods, and references to simply file it away with such succinct dismissiveness." Gary Suarez



12. Stara Rzeka - Cień Chmury Nad Ukrytym Polem (Instant Classic)

"This extraordinary album was written on an acoustic guitar but has obviously moved on significantly between conception and execution. While the album opens with the chiming of a 12 string, it slowly morphs into elektronische musik before sliding blissfully under layers of super heated sludge guitar and noise. By the time the ecstatic synths are met by necrotic black metal vocals, nothing about this album will surprise you, which is good thing, given that it shifts through sparse BM moves that remind one of Norwegian second wavers Thorns and through the arboreal drones of early Growing, before ending on a celestial cover of Nico's 'My Only Child' with speaker destroying drone metal. Stara Rzeka (Polish for 'Old River') is a side project of Kuba Ziolek of Ed Wood and Innercity Ensemble, and this album has me hitting repeat more than any other released this year so far." John Doran

11. Savages - Silence Yourself (Matador)

"I'd take Savages, with their furious, high-velocity update of Joy Division, Simple Minds, British Sea Power, Smashing Pumpkins, Einsturzende Neubauten, Bauhaus, The Birthday Party, Suede and so on over a thousand pallid boys who've managed, somehow, to divine an 'original' sound at the end of post-modernism. Why? Because Silence Yourself is the manifestation of a formidable spirit, a sense that everything they do is done with great purity of intent, and a brilliant sex, life and death album of a kind rarely seen these days." Luke Turner



10. RP Boo - Legacy (Planet Mu)

"RP Boo's tracks on those Bangs & Works compilations gripped harder than the rest by creating an illusion of stasis, the sense of being suspended in the centre of a maelstrom. The bass had so much room to breathe that, whatever was in orbit around it, you couldn't help but feel the track. And that's where Legacy, his decade-spanning debut, picks up. [...] It should be chaos but you can't help but get caught up. You'd be a fool to miss out on the other footwork artists Planet Mu's been promoting, but for sheer, lingering, soulful insanity Boo can't be beat." Lee Arizuno



9. Foals - Holy Fire (Transgressive)

"Whether it comes with age, experience, or both, there's a point at which we can detect our torment shifting to tolerance, our fast-calcifying angst beginning to make room for something approaching understanding. With Holy Fire, Yannis Philippakis and his band – Jack Bevan, Walter Gervers, Edwin Congreave and Jimmy Smith – have gone some way towards capturing the sound of that transition. From the glissandos and vertigo of 'Milk & Black Spiders' to the jounce and yawn of 'Providence', in every note and noteless space you can feel it: the physical unburdening, the personal reckoning, the fatigue and reprieve of letting go." Lauren Strain



8. Frisk Frugt - Dansktoppen Møder Burkina Faso I Det Himmelblå Rum Hvor Solen Bor, Suite (Exotic Pylon)

"Weirdly, almost from the get go (well, from the get go of the second track at least) the weird thing about this weirdly brilliant album is not how weird it is but how weird it is that you don't notice much of the weirdness, just an intricately woven tapestry of tunefulness and sunny riffs. The fact that African finger pianos are back to back with electric guitars and vintage synths with programmed beats and squalling Fisher Price saxophone with kora doesn't seem weird at all." John Doran



7. Daniel Avery - Drone Logic (Phantasy)

"Drone Logic isn't just a straightforward club record. It stands alongside Holden's The Inheritors as one of the finest techno albums of the year, but where Holden wasn't so much deconstructing the form as grinding it into dust, Avery isn't fucking with the programme too much. It's still a head trip – a deep record that works brilliantly at home as well as in the club – but it's a more orthodox affair, albeit with a healthy smattering of sonic surprises. [...] Andrew Weatherall, the absolute antithesis of the original superstar DJ dinosaurs, is a big fan, tipping Avery as "One to Watch" in Time Out last year. And while no one is suggesting Lord Sabre's powers are waning, Avery is shaping up nicely as the great man's heir apparent." Joe Clay



6. Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds - Push The Sky Away (Bad Seed Ltd.)

"Both Grinderman and last Bad Seeds album Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! showed sides to Nick Cave that had previously been obscure, among them a sense of humour often directed at himself that the cliché of the vampiric goth crow never allowed. Perhaps caught up in perceptions of what this group and singer ought to be about, some have baulked at the idea of a Wikipedia-inspired album of more reflective songs. To do so is a mistake, for Push The Sky Away is another silver bullet through the heart of that old caricature. Cave is always the first to give fulsome credit to his band, and they aim true here in the most explorative, coherent and well-realised Bad Seeds album in years. It's not often you get to say this about a group on their 15th record, but it'll be fascinating to see where they go next." Luke Turner



5. Fat White Family - Champagne Holocaust (Trash Mouth)

"This is sordid music, unpleasant music, an irritant, and definitely not for everyone's tastes, or lack of it. But British indie music has been a sterile, un-confrontational, polite and clean-shaven place for years now, devoid of sex and funk (scent, as well as the more obvious musical sort). I suppose there's the similarly libidinous Wild Beasts, of whom Fat White Family are feral and degenerate cousins, but that's about it. [...] These grim disordered times where society is becoming ever-more skewed, the public ever more complacent, require a foul, belligerent, unpleasant reaction. After all, last night I walked past a brand new drinking establishment just behind the RBS building in the City Of London, packed with the braying that goes under the name of Champagne Cult. Fat White Family are, then, a breath of fresh air. Feet and all." Luke Turner



4. Factory Floor - Factory Floor (DFA)

"If some of the sonic elements of Factory Floor might attract accusations from some quarters of seeming a bit retro - its arsenal of vintage-sounding drum machine clunks and chirps, a certain sonic kinship with earlier incarnations of DFA - the context surrounding it reveals it to be anything but. Rather than being definitive and fixed in stone, these recorded versions present only one single possible endpoint for each song. With reactive and semi-improvised performance so central to what Factory Floor do, each composition comes loaded with the potential to completely change shape in the live arena - to be extended or shortened, to be strafed with lashings of feedback or reined in to little but a delirious, strobing dialogue between sequencer and synth. In a broader sense, this links them into the growing trend of hardware-based live performance in club music that's become prevalent in recent years. In the same way that many house and techno artists dabbling in live improvisation on the dancefloor might not strictly be breaking new genre ground, what's more important is that the approach itself fosters an exciting feeling of freedom." Rory Gibb



3. David Bowie - The Next Day (EMI)

"Fortunately, it's great. I mean: it's not just good, it's great. It's not Diamond Dogs or Young Americans or Low – get real, this isn't the 70s and you and I are not twelve – but it's great in that it's not Heathen or Reality but better. No wild pioneering sonic experiments here: it's primarily a "rock" album with plentiful twists, with the closest sibling being Scary Monsters. The gorgeous melancholy of 'Where Are We Now?' is unrepresentative." Chris Roberts



2. These New Puritans - Field Of Reeds (Infectious)

"The estuarine landscape of Field Of Reeds is best seen in two ways: in grand panorama from an aircraft banking over London, when sun glints off the water of the Thames widening toward the North Sea. Or, on the other hand, oozy intimacy along the rough shoreline, traditionally a site for dumping the waste of London. Here, alongside creeks where air bubbles rattle from the mud with the ebbing tide, a rutted horizon offers up gifts of ancient marmalade pots, broken clay pipes, fused and rusted metal. It's a landscape that refuses, like memory or dreams, to be defined or contained, that forever shifts and opens itself up to new narratives and fresh explorations. These are the images foremost in my mind whenever I listen to Field Of Reeds, a rich, complex album that, similarly, rewards both the grand overview and close attention, and offers up fresh details, insights and emotions with each listen. It succeeds in exploring a British topography in a way that's both timeless and visionary, delving into the natural, magical, and squidgy unreliability of human memory as they eddy and swirl like the water that surrounds us, and of which we are largely made." Luke Turner



1. Grumbling Fur - Glynnaestra (Thrill Jockey)

"Grumbling Fur make me want to take drugs. And I don't mean drugs like a few puffs on a spliff before bedtime or on a lazy Saturday afternoon, or a cheeky dabble at a rave to keep the energy flowing - I mean proper, don't-eat-for-18-hours-beforehand, make-sure-you've-got-a-couple-of-good-people-around-you, psychically prepared voyaging, preferably on a warm and sunny but slightly overcast afternoon in a field somewhere in the West Country, or in a friend's house cluttered to the rafters with fascinating and peculiar objects. On their second album Glynnaestra, the duo of Alexander Tucker and Daniel O'Sullivan conjure up a wonderfully evocative and distinctly British kitchen sink psychedelia, an intimate shared space where the whistle of a kettle and the clatter of pots and pans can sit seamlessly alongside heavily reverbed 80s pop synths, expansive rural landscapes, delectably ludicrous choruses and invocations to imaginary deities." Rory Gibb



The Quietus LPs Of The Year 2013:

  1. Grumbling Fur - Glynnaestra (Thrill Jockey)

  2. These New Puritans - Field Of Reeds (Infectious)

  3. David Bowie - The Next Day (EMI)

  4. Factory Floor - Factory Floor (DFA)

  5. Fat White Family - Champagne Holocaust (Trash Mouth)

  6. Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds - Push The Sky Away (Bad Seed Ltd.)

  7. Daniel Avery - Drone Logic (Phantasy)

  8. Frisk Frugt - Dansktoppen Møder Burkina Faso I Det Himmelblå Rum Hvor Solen Bor, Suite (Exotic Pylon)

  9. Foals - Holy Fire (Transgressive)

  10. RP Boo - Legacy (Planet Mu)

  11. Savages - Silence Yourself (Matador)

  12. Stara Rzeka - Cień Chmury Nad Ukrytym Polem (Instant Classic)

  13. Kanye West - Yeezus (Virgin Records)

  14. The Haxan Cloak - Excavation (Tri Angle)

  15. Rashad Becker - Traditional Music Of Notional Species Vol. 1 (PAN)

  16. Blixa Bargeld & Teho Teardo - Still Smiling (Spècula)

  17. Jon Hopkins - Immunity (Domino)

  18. Oneohtrix Point Never - R Plus Seven (Warp)

  19. Pinkunoizu - The Drop (Full Time Hobby)

  20. Logos - Cold Mission (Keysound)

  21. Laurel Halo - Chance Of Rain (Hyperdub)

  22. The Knife - Shaking The Habitual (Rabid Records)

  23. Kelela - Cut 4 Me (Fade To Mind)

  24. Fire! Orchestra - Exit! (Rune Grammofon)

  25. Teeth Of The Sea - Master (Rocket)

  26. Pet Shop Boys - Electric (x2)

  27. Floorplan - Paradise (M-Plant)

  28. Vatican Shadow - Remember Your Black Day (Hospital)

  29. Matmos - The Marriage Of True Minds (Thrill Jockey)

  30. A$AP Rocky - Long.Live.A$AP (RCA)

  31. A$AP Ferg - Trap Lord (Columbia)

  32. Heatsick - Re-Engineering (PAN)

  33. British Sea Power - Machineries Of Joy (Rough Trade)

  34. Wire - Change Becomes Us (Pink Flag)

  35. Dean Blunt - The Redeemer (Hippos In Tanks/World Music)

  36. (Ensemble Pearl) - (Ensemble Pearl) (Drag City)

  37. Le1f - Fly Zone (self released)

  38. A Hawk And A Hacksaw - You Have Already Gone To The Other World (LM Dupli-Cation)

  39. Don Christian - The Wayfarer (self-released)

  40. L.Pierre - The Island Come True (Melodic)

  41. WANDA GROUP - Piss Fell Out Like Sunlight (Opal Tapes)

  42. Suede - Bloodsports (Warner)

  43. Charles Cohen - The Middle Distance (Morphine)

  44. Satelliti - Transister (Cuckundoo)

  45. Rabih Beaini - Albidaya (Annihaya)

  46. Moonface - Julia With Blue Jeans On (Jagjaguwar)

  47. John Foxx And The Maths - Evidence (Metamatic)

  48. NYPC - NYPC (The Numbers)

  49. Matt Berry - Kill The Wolf (Acid Jazz)

  50. Katie Gately - Katie Gately (Public Information)

  51. Tamikrest - Chatma (Glitterbeat)

  52. Wolf Eyes - No Answer: Lower Floors (De Stijl)

  53. Oranssi Pazuzu - Valonielu (SVART)

  54. Prurient - Through The Window (Blackest Ever Black)

  55. Emptyset - Recur (Raster Noton)

  56. Gary Numan - Splinter (Cooking Vinyl/Mortal)

  57. Heterotic - Love & Devotion (Planet Mu)

  58. The Stranger - Watching Dead Empires In Decay (Modern Love)

  59. Sons Of Kemet - Burn (Naim)

  60. Matana Roberts - Coin Coin Chapter Two: Mississippi Moonchile (Constellation)

  61. Miracle - Mercury (Planet Mu)

  62. English Heretic - “Anti-Heroes” (self-released)

  63. Derek Piotr - Raj (self-released)

  64. Kerridge - A Fallen Empire (Downwards)

  65. My Bloody Valentine - m b v (Pickpocket Records)

  66. The Botanist - IV: Mandragora (Flenser)

  67. Janelle Monáe - The Electric Lady (Atlantic)

  68. Tal National - Kaani (Fat Cat)

  69. Young Echo - Nexus (Ramp)

  70. Jenny Hval - Innocence Is Kinky (Rune Grammofon)

  71. Dawn Richard - GoldenHeart (Altavoz)

  72. Årabrot - Årabrot (Fysisk Format)

  73. Endless Boogie - Long Island (Drag City)

  74. Body/Head - Coming Apart (Matador)

  75. TVO/Covered In Sand - Red Night Variations (Broken20)

  76. Earl Sweatshirt - Doris (Columbia)

  77. Dethscalator - Racial Golf Course No Bitches (Riot Season)

  78. The Body - Christs, Redeemers (Thrill Jockey)

  79. James Holden - The Inheritors (Border Community)

  80. Pusha T - My Name Is My Name (Good/Def Jam)

  81. DJ Rashad - Double Cup (Hyperdub)

  82. *AR - Fragments (Sustain Release)

  83. Wölfbait - Wölfbait (Art For The Blind)

  84. Barn Owl - V (Thrill Jockey)

  85. Hey Colossus - Cuckoo Live Life Like Cuckoo (MIE)

  86. oVo - Abisso (Supernatural Cat)

  87. Carcass - Surgical Steel (Nuclear Blast)

  88. Lescop - Lescop (Pop Noire)

  89. Laura Mvula - Sing To The Moon (RCA)

  90. Grouper - The Man Who Died In His Boat (Kranky)

  91. Palehorse - Harm Starts Here (Candlelight)

  92. Uncle Acid And The Deadbeats - Mind Control (Rise Above)

  93. Comanechi - You Owe Me Nothing But Love (Tiger Trap)

  94. Cathedral - The Final Spire (Rise Above)

  95. White Hills - So You Are So You’ll Be (Thrill Jockey)

  96. Chrome Hoof - Chrome Black Gold (Cuneiform)

  97. Omar Souleyman - Wenu Wenu (Domino)

  98. ÄÄNIPÄÄ - Through A Pre-Memory (Editions Mego)

  99. The Ex And Brass Unbound - Enormous Door (Ex)

  100. Shitfucker - Sucks Cocks In Hell (Hells Headbangers)

Cat Vincent
Dec 3, 2013 10:28am

I've actually heard five of those albums and seen three of the artists play this year!

I'd add the haunting/haunted 'A Blessed Unrest' by The Parlour Trick, Lustmord's triumphant 'The Word As Power' and The Indelicates' brutal, poignant and very British 'Diseases Of England'.

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Lauphex
Dec 3, 2013 11:13am

Tim Hecker.

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danmac
Dec 3, 2013 11:16am

I have 25 of those, have heard about 10 others, have heard of maybe another 6 or 7 and no idea about any of the others. This is probably the reason I come to this site though I know I'll be in for a painful (not necessarily unpleasant) ride once I check those others out....

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Colin Comments
Dec 3, 2013 11:18am

one, you lot are so obvious, I could have predicted this chart exactly and two, you lot are so pretentious, I haven't heard of any of these artists.

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Colin Comments
Dec 3, 2013 11:18am

one, you lot are so obvious, I could have predicted this chart exactly and two, you lot are so pretentious, I haven't heard of any of these artists.

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Tenbenson
Dec 3, 2013 11:21am

Loads of the Emusic links for these records aren't available in the UK. Not your fault, obviously, but most annoying...

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angstinmypants
Dec 3, 2013 11:26am

I hate to be one of those people who berate a list that's been thoughtfully put together with time and effort by firing the old 'why isn't __________ in this list?' chestnut, but.... why isn't the Boards of Canada album in this list? I'm not saying you have to have it on there, I'm just surprised it's not on there. Surprised and appalled. :)

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Tenbenson
Dec 3, 2013 11:29am

Great stuff. I would add...

Mark Ernestus - 800% Ndagga/Ndagga Versions
Akkord - Akkord
Aoki Takamasa - RV8
Four Tet - Beautiful Rewind
Donato Dozzy - Plays Bee Mask
Nine Inch Nails - Hesitation Marks
Queens of the Stone Age - Like Clockwork
RIchard Thompson - Electric
Shining - OneOneOne
Special Request - Soul Music
William Tyler - Impossible Truth

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misterlaurie
Dec 3, 2013 11:31am

Enjoyed this. Good, bad and ugly music and now I'm prompted to listen to a handful of these. Which is the point innit.

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misterlaurie
Dec 3, 2013 11:31am

Enjoyed this. Good, bad and ugly music and now I'm prompted to listen to a handful of these. Which is the point innit.

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Rob
Dec 3, 2013 11:50am

Good list. Some surprising/disappointing omissions though: Tim Hecker, Forest Swords, Boards of Canada - all strong, well rounded records that would feature highly on my personal list. Glad to see These New Puritans get a big thumbs up.

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Dan
Dec 3, 2013 11:54am

What about The National maaan? Trouble Will Find Me is a beaut

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aaron.
Dec 3, 2013 11:57am

Nothing speaks for how overdrawn the whole 'omg Berlin' thing is like the Rashad Becker album dutifully charting so high on people's end-of-year lists. Either it's a really, really good album and everyone is trying exceedingly hard to get into something really, really impenetrable (which would make a nice change); or, the cynic in me suspects...

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J M
Dec 3, 2013 11:59am

Fantastic stuff as ever chaps. I concur with much of the positioning of the records here, and there's plenty to check out, as always! Some other releases for your consideration, if you haven't heard them already:
Nils Frahm- Spaces
Roly Porter- Life Cycle of a Massive Star
Watain- The Wild Hunt

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Jordan
Dec 3, 2013 12:11pm

Some great hip-hop records in there, but unfortunate not to see Danny Brown's effort featured, as it stood head and shoulders above most this year.

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Austy
Dec 3, 2013 12:13pm

Medicine's To The Happy Few is better than the excellent mbv...
Factory Floor's presence is laughablde for how boring the album really is... ditto for Savages..
MIA Matangi is what the Knife's album should have been

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Austy
Dec 3, 2013 12:13pm

Medicine's To The Happy Few is better than the excellent mbv...
Factory Floor's presence is laughable for how boring the album really is... ditto for Savages..
MIA Matangi is what the Knife's album should have been

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aaron.
Dec 3, 2013 12:30pm

& My 'Voices from the Lake' style can't-believe-you-missed this release for 2013 has to be Felix K's 'Flowers of Destruction'. Another great full-length ambient excursion - what to drum & bass the VftL was to techno.

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Parlor Snake
Dec 3, 2013 12:45pm

Interesting list. I would have included the likes of Forest Swords, Mount Kimbie, Miles, Dirty Beaches, Death Grips, Acteurs, Colin Stetson, Prostitutes and Lustmord.

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flipflop fred
Dec 3, 2013 12:52pm

Look we all know Factory Floor are your mates, but are you seriously suggesting that you could only find 3 albums better than that dross this year??

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Dec 3, 2013 12:55pm

this list is great but I would also like a Top 100 comments list too

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Dec 3, 2013 12:55pm

this list is great but I would also like a Top 100 comments list too

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bb
Dec 3, 2013 12:55pm

this list is great but I would also like a Top 100 comments list too

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Finnegans Wake
Dec 3, 2013 1:05pm

Too bad you didn't like Pharmakon that much, I think it'd been a worthy contender for this year list.
(Mountains and Julia Holter could have been there too)

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Sting's friend
Dec 3, 2013 1:09pm

Shout out to Dr. Lucian Sanchez, straight in at number 49! I'm a one track lover, down a two way lane..

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G
Dec 3, 2013 1:39pm

Exceedingly pleased to see Jon Hopkins and Matt Berry in there. Teeth of The Sea are a good shout too but no Boards of Canada? Easily their best.

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Dr Up
Dec 3, 2013 1:42pm

Moderat II towers over everything else this year for me - disappointed there's no room for it on here. And I agree about the Factory Floor album - I bought it and really WANT to like it, but it's all just a bit dull....

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Michael E.
Dec 3, 2013 1:44pm

1) Bill Callahan: Dream River
2) Dysnomia: Dawn of Midi
3) Ryuichi Sakamoto and Taylor Deupree: Disappearance
5) Sleaford Mods: Austerity Dogs
6) Jan Bang: Narrative from the Subtropics
7) L. Pierre: The Island Come True
8) The Necks: Open
9) These New Puritans: Field of Reeds
10) Äänipää: Through A Pre-Memory
11) Satelliti: Transister
12) Boards of Canada: Tomorrow's Harvest
13) Philadelphia International Classics: The Tom Moulton Remixes (old stuff)
14) Simon Fisher Turner: Epic of The Everest
15) Doug Paisley: Strong Feelings (2014 stuff)
16) Marsen Jules Trio: Presence Acousmatique
17) Carla Bley: Trios
18) Pat Metheny /Tap: John Zorn’s Book of Angels Vol. 20
19) Fire! Orchestra: Exit!
20) Laughing Hands: Tape-Works 1981-82 (old stuff)

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Synthboy
Dec 3, 2013 1:50pm

I rather preferred the songs on this list: http://www.coldwarnightlife.com/?p=845

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kenny murdock
Dec 3, 2013 1:59pm

Great list. Not into pop or R & B so there's a few on there that I'd jettison immediately. Also a few I'm not familiar with and that will be rectified over the next few weeks. I find it hard to believe that the Gary Numan, Suede or Kanye albums were better than the Black Pus, Fuzz, Lilacs & Champagne or Vista Chino albums but there's nowt as queer as folk, eh ? And the Nick Cave is a horror, up there with Nocturama in the "big dull dud" stakes.

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nick
Dec 3, 2013 2:06pm

A pedant notes: you've got a picture of the wrong Charles Cohen album, cos that's Group Motion that you're showing there

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aaron.
Dec 3, 2013 2:30pm

In reply to G:

No, easily not their best. How can anyone argue that Tomorrow's Harvest is the 'best' BoC album?

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Cian
Dec 3, 2013 2:33pm

Tim Hecker. I think you'll look back and wonder why he wasn't on this list...

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Chris
Dec 3, 2013 2:45pm

When that Savages album floats in at no. 11 you know something is amiss.

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wardreekus
Dec 3, 2013 2:58pm

Crime + the City Solution's American Twilight.
The album Nick didn't have in him apparently.

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Dec 3, 2013 2:59pm

Deafheaven....no?

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Dec 3, 2013 3:05pm

Well it's certainly a list of stuff I haven't heard....I would say 5 from your countdown made my top 30. Tbf I don't come to The Quietus for the music reviews as I find alot of the albums you like a little too austere; however I did first hear about Rodion GA from your site, so it's not all bad.

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Sciflyer
Dec 3, 2013 3:16pm

I'd also like to add to the cries of "where's BOC?" Also, Forest Swords and Bibio should be honorable mentions as well.

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Sciflyer
Dec 3, 2013 3:17pm

I'd also like to add to the cries of "where's BOC?" Also, Forest Swords and Bibio should be honorable mentions as well.

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Dec 3, 2013 3:17pm

Funny seeing Carcass there when they didn't even record the best Carcass album of the year, Exhumed took what made Heartwork so good and created an album better than their elders ever did.

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Jon
Dec 3, 2013 3:56pm

Surprised to see a few things not showing here despite overwhelming positive reviews (i.e. Haim) but there is something to be said for featuring obscurity, even though I personally don't have much interest or patience for the hip hop and electronica side of the house. That being said, I do always appreciate the opportunities to find things I would never have found elsewhere and I think the partnership with Norman Records was a fantastic idea - more sites should do that.

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Daveid P
Dec 3, 2013 3:59pm

another really interesting looking list, my personal top ten are not that far removed being,
1. Floorplan - Paradise
2. The Knife - Shaking The Habitual
3. Stara Rzeka - Cień Chmury Nad Ukrytym Polem
4. Zed Bias - Boss
5. Tim Hecker – Virgins
6. Autechre – Exai
7. Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds - Push The Sky Away
8. White Denim - Corsicana Lemonade
9. Frisk Frugt - Dansktoppen Møder Burkina Faso I Det Himmelblå Rum Hvor Solen Bor, Suite
10. Wolf Eyes - No Answer Lower Floors

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auteur55
Dec 3, 2013 4:03pm

Why is The Quietus the only website that get's how consistently awesome British Sea Power are?
And I'm excited to hear Grumbling Fur because there's no way a better album then Field of Reeds was released this year.

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Dec 3, 2013 4:10pm

I've been quite underwhelmed by many of these over-hyped albums, some of my faves have been growers though:
I agree Medicine's album is better than the MBV album, I'd say No Joy's Wait To Pleasure is too, definitely one of the best this year. The Black Dog's Tranklements trumps many of these electronic releases too. Also loved Lightning Dust's Fantasy but took a while to warm to its surface-level cheesiness. The Daniel Avery album is really over-rated, BOC's new one too.

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Bibble
Dec 3, 2013 4:42pm

Ah maaaaaaaaaan! Don't we get a spotify playlist? I loved the half year one you did. Cheers.

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WolfmansRazor
Dec 3, 2013 4:46pm

Did the Sleaford Mods record come out too late to make this list? Because that very quickly -- like, over the past weekend -- became my #2 album of the year (just below Frisk Frugt).

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Runyon
Dec 3, 2013 4:49pm

What about the Everything Everything album? I remember you published an interview with them then never got around to reviewing the album itself, which was a shame, I think it would slide nicely into the middle of this list.

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bIBBLE
Dec 3, 2013 5:01pm

In reply to Bibble:

Ha - I refreshed and it was there! Thanks for answering my call.
:-)

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Microfilm
Dec 3, 2013 6:23pm

What a list; some familiar, some strange.

We'd love for your readers to consider 'AggroPastels', our 3rd album, that came out this year. 1/2 Broken-beat house and 1/2 melancholy downtempo.

http://microfilm.bandcamp.com/album/aggropastels

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mitchell w feldstein
Dec 3, 2013 6:28pm

what????
no califone "stitches"

no forest swords "engravings"

no future of the left-

please

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mitchell w feldstein
Dec 3, 2013 6:29pm

what????
no califone "stitches"

no forest swords "engravings"

no future of the left-

please

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schlep
Dec 3, 2013 7:10pm

Why does everybody do these in November now? Because of bloody Christmas shopping? There's still an entire month left in 2013.

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Luke Turner
Dec 3, 2013 7:34pm

In reply to schlep:

As we always have to point out, Christmas means that hardly any LPs get released in December, and those that are out we are (99% of the time) sent at least a month in advance. What do you think we might have missed though? Always keen to hear of things that might have slipped through the net

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Carlos
Dec 3, 2013 7:37pm

Lotsa goodies this year.

Mine are this:
1 Dean Blunt - The Redeemer
2 DJ Rashad - Double Cup
3 Vatican Shadow - It Stands to Conceal
4 Family Fodder - Variety
5 Sky Fereira - Night Time, My Time
6 Julian Cope - Revolutionary Suicide
7 of Montreal - Lousy with Sylvianbriar
8 Andre Nickatina - Andre Nickatina
9 Jerimiah Jae & Oliver the 2nd - Rawhyde
10 The Body - Christs, Redeemers

Nice list, Quietus!

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Gazebo
Dec 3, 2013 8:04pm

As a music fan and someone who reads and follows new music was devastated to find that I have only heard of about 10% of these artists, let alone their albums!

Is this a wilfully obscure list or am I just listening to the wrong stuff?

Off to Spotify to find out what I have been missing out on.

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nowIknow
Dec 3, 2013 8:23pm

What, no mention of The Devil? Even though it made album of the week at Norman Records?? Wah. :( Also no Boards of Canada??? Double wah.

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Mike
Dec 3, 2013 8:45pm

In reply to nowIknow:

Yeah, agree with others about lack of BoC....especially when it came no less than ELEVENTH in the Quietus half-year list.....

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Mike
Dec 3, 2013 8:45pm

In reply to nowIknow:

Yeah, agree with others about lack of BoC....especially when it came no less than ELEVENTH in the Quietus half-year list.....

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Curtis
Dec 3, 2013 8:45pm

Nice list, for me Yeezus, Innocence is Kinky, Shaking the Habitual, The Terror and My Name is My Name are the best of 2013. Justin Timberlake, Anna Calvi, Death Grips and the Melvins deserve mention.

I always look forward to these playlists as well, will keep me busy for days

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Paul
Dec 3, 2013 9:05pm

Why no Rock And Roll Animals by Luke Haines? Has the internet gone broken?

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G
Dec 3, 2013 10:25pm

In reply to aaron.:

Cause it just is, I don't know what to tell ya. I think it's their best, maybe not my favourite piece (that honour would go to In a Beautiful Place Out in the Country) but it's their first album that felt like it was heading in some sort of direction rather than trying to to solely capture a feeling or a mood.

I'm a fan those weird sci-fi soundtracks of the 70s/80s so I'm possibly a bit biased. That being said, I think it's a step up from the previous two full length lps.

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Luke
Dec 3, 2013 10:37pm

Interesting list. Too experimental/noisy/rockist for my tastes but it traverses a nice range of music. Nice to see R Plus Seven on there as that stands head and shoulders above all other albums I've heard this year. Lopatin's label Software also put out many great releases this year (Slava, Huerco S, Autre Ne Veut). And while Logos' album is good, I find it to be a less interesting version of Classical Curves. Some other albums not mentioned in the list that I liked are:
Tim Hecker - Virgins
Pharaohs - Replicant Moods
Octo Octa - Between Two Selves
The Range - Nonfiction
Egyptrixx - A/B Till Infinity
CFCF - Outside
Machinedrum - Vapor City
Dustin Wong - Mediation of Ecstatic Energy
Jessy Lanza - Pull My Hair Back
Ikonika - Aerotropolis
John Wizards - S/T
E.M.M.A - Blue Gardens
LX Sweat - City of Sweat
Steven Tang - Disconnect to Connect
Lil Jabba - Scales
Yosi Horikawa - Vapor
Classixx - Hanging Gardens
Stellar Om Source - Joy One Mile
Outboxx - S/T
Rainbow Arabia - FM Sushi
Cyclops - A Blink of an Eye
Space Dimension Controller - Welcome to Microsector 50
Maxmillion Dunbar - House of Woo
Dan Friel - Total Folklore
Ultrademon - Seapunk
Lawrence - Films and Windows
Blank Banshee - 1

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Taun Aengus
Dec 3, 2013 10:58pm

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy, oh boy---I've been waiting for this.
Thanks for all your listening and thoughts. Now, I have to get down in it and decide for myself. I see some old friends and some newbies. Surprises too. Thanks again.

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S.
Dec 3, 2013 11:14pm

Nitpick: Very, very, very surprised to see that Holden record so low and to not see Forest Swords AT ALL! And considering the year end list from two years ago was what introduced Roly Porter to me, his omission is another big surprise.

SURPRISE!

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Ted G
Dec 4, 2013 12:09am

I like The Quietus because it offers an alternative and I really didn't want to quibble at all but for Cliff's sake how can you overlook Bill Callahan again?? Absolutely beggars belief. I like Nick Cave, to pluck a randomish contemporary out of the air, but he gets too way much arse fingering from yous lot compared to Bill.

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Moonpie
Dec 4, 2013 3:10am

Forest Swords. Tim Hecker. Dirty Beaches. Darkside. Majical Cloudz. Colin Stetson. Esmerine. Blood Orange. Baths. Kurt Vile. By no means a top ten, but some who deserve to be in top 100

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Sean
Dec 4, 2013 5:20am

The Quietus end of the year lists have always felt more like some freaky music nerd's blog posts than thoughtfully systematic lists made by professional music critics. It's exactly what I love about them.

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Luc Verhaegh
Dec 4, 2013 10:29am

Sorry to be pedantic myself, but it's 'transcendent', not 'transcendental'. Transcendentality is something very different. Ask Immanuel Kant.

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aaron.
Dec 4, 2013 10:42am

In reply to Moonpie:

Pretty hard to rate Tim Hecker's 'Virgins' when it wasn't even the best thing put out by Tim Hecker this year (cough, if you count the fact that Mirages has now seen a vinyl release).

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BB
Dec 4, 2013 11:41am

Good god that grumbling fur album isn't as special as you tout it to be.*

*I RECKON

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Deb
Dec 4, 2013 12:42pm

One good thing about 2013 being almost over is that I won't have to listen to yet another music critic fawn over David Bowie's over-rated album, which is decidedly average. The only critics who've been honest about that are outside the UK. The Next Day is a good but not great album. Tiresome hype.

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Dec 4, 2013 12:44pm

No John Grant ,Shameful

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Tenbenson
Dec 4, 2013 1:17pm

In reply to :

This again... "no John Grant - shameful", and elsewhere: "no John Grant - ridiculous", "no John Grant - LOL"... Isn't it possible that the 3 guys who put this list together aren't into confessional indie-pop?

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Dec 4, 2013 1:53pm

CYCLOPEAN - 12"
DAVID BOWIE - The Next Day
WIRE - Change Becomes Us
AMON TOBIN - Isam Live DVD
PALMS - s.t.
MOGWAI - Les Revenants
PRIMAL SCREAM - More Light
ADRIAN UTLEY'S GUITAR ORCHESTRA - In C
IT HUGS BACK - Recommended Record

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Barry
Dec 4, 2013 3:02pm

There are a lot of fine choices, but how Slow Focus by Fuck Buttons isn't even the top 100 compared to some of the dross on here is beyond me.

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joeshing
Dec 4, 2013 6:27pm

I think the most unbelievable, unlikely thing about this list is Yeezus at 13, especially with everything John Doran has said about the guy before now.

Cracking list as per usual, plenty to check out from this.

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badgerfodder
Dec 4, 2013 11:06pm

Machinedrum - Vapor City

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Ian Tully
Dec 4, 2013 11:40pm

Great list - but very surprised to find no love for Dalhous - Ambassador for Laing, either above or below the line.

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John Doran
Dec 5, 2013 12:35am

In reply to joeshing:

I've said it once and I'll say it again, Yeezus is a great album. Life's too short to be hating on music that's genuinely ace. Fair play to him. I still think he's a nob rash though.

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Tommy
Dec 5, 2013 12:30pm

In reply to Barry :

I really hope this is Barry ATP, aka Fuck Buttons' label boss.

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CT3
Dec 5, 2013 5:14pm

Some other records to consider:

Esben And The Witch-Wash The Sins Not Only The Face
Vuvuvultures-Push/Pull
Chelsea Wolfe-Pain Is Beauty
Palms-S/T
Bosnian Rainbows-S/T
Mercan Dede-Dunya
Tomahawk-Oddfellows
Ocean-Peligial
Melt Banana-Fetch
Kayo Dot-Hubardo
Marnie-Crystal World
Grails-Black Tar Prophecies Vol 4,5,6
Gorguts-Coloured Sands
Boards Of Canada-Tomorrow's Harvest
Cocorosie-Tales Of A Grass Widw

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Gottfrid Jansson
Dec 5, 2013 6:36pm

This is amazing! Sure, there are of course records here that I don't like, as well as some that I really think deserve a place. But, that only adds to the charm. By far the best end of the year list the Internet has t offer. Plus, a few records that I've entirely missed out on!
Cheers

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Murkey
Dec 5, 2013 11:23pm

I've not heard any of these! Oh well, lots to explore... I have heard these great albums released this year:

Alphabetically...

Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita - Clychau Dibon
Lo Griyo - Mogador
Phillip Henry and Hannah Martin - Mynd
Lisa Knapp - Hidden Seam
Jackie Oates - Lullabies
Adam Sutherland - Squall
Linda Thompson - Won't Be Long Now
Various artists - Into the Light: Music of Korea V

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John R
Dec 6, 2013 10:52am

Is it because I'm 54 and have become a cynical twat, I have a few of these and have heard a lot of the others on you tube, they all sound like tweaked versions of what's been done before

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Daveid P
Dec 6, 2013 12:13pm

I forgot one.
re write everything and include,
Akron/Family - Sub Verses
cheers..

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Dec 6, 2013 3:25pm

I have heard some of these, but the vast majority not. Listening to them will keep me very busy over the xmas period, so thank you the Quietus! I have so far checked out that Grumbling Fur album after never having heard about it before seeing this list - and its pretty darn good! I have a couple of Alexander Tucker albums already, and was familiar with O'Sullivan through his work with Ulver, but had no idea they were collaborating. Some albums I enjoyed this year that were not on the list included:

Cult of Luna - Vertikal
Kvelertak - Meir
Manic Street Preachers - Rewind the Film
Dillinger Escape Plan - One of us is the Killer
Biffy Clyro - Opposites

(I suspect most of those five will be hated by the Quietus writers and most of its clientele, but I'm genuinely suprised no one has mentioned Rewind the Film)

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Levi
Dec 7, 2013 10:44am

Fantastic list guys! I have already tracked down a couple of these releases after first reading about them here although the Palehorse album is proving to be difficult to obtain in my corner of the globe.

Wanted to also mention what has come to be my Album of the Year,
Nic TVG's Then I Disappear.

Drawing on the 170/85bpm minimalistic drum and bass template that has been championed by Instru:mental and dbridge, he layers complex drumfunk on top of more ambient soundscapes to create free-jazz style compositions and some of the most exciting electronic music I have heard this year.

You can check out some of the tracks here:
https://soundcloud.com/subtleaudiorecordings/nic_tvg-friday-nights-with-heather

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Dec 9, 2013 3:47pm

In reply to Chris:

Both Savages and Foals so way up, no Tim Hecker in sight.

And I thought Melt Yourself Down was guaranteed to be mentioned somewhere...

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Churl
Dec 10, 2013 2:19am

Desperate to see my post appear as quickly as possible so will click 'leave comment' again just in case the first click doesn't work.

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Churl
Dec 10, 2013 2:19am

Desperate to see my post appear as quickly as possible so will click 'leave comment' again just in case the first click doesn't work.

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Dec 10, 2013 4:48am

wolf people - fain

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Dec 10, 2013 4:51am

danny brown - old
purling hiss - water on mars/paisley montage
birds of maya - celebration
ka - the night's gambit
7 days of funk - s/t
dam funk + steve arrington - higher
thundercat - apocalypse
cass mccombs - big wheel and others

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Dec 10, 2013 4:51am

danny brown - old
purling hiss - water on mars/paisley montage
birds of maya - celebration
ka - the night's gambit
7 days of funk - s/t
dam funk + steve arrington - higher
thundercat - apocalypse
cass mccombs - big wheel and others

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eustaki
Dec 10, 2013 12:04pm

colin stetson? nils frham?

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carcash
Dec 11, 2013 4:37pm

I love this end of year lists for the opportunity to complain, so here ya go: Carcass Surgical Steel ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME? 1993 called, they want their Heartwork B-Sides back.

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Spacious
Dec 11, 2013 6:12pm

I just wanted to say that it would be ever so precious if your end-of-year lists contained exactly the same albums as everyone else's end-of-year lists. Also: More albums I've already heard please. I don't come to this site to discover music I've never heard, I come here to have my personal taste validated by strangers.

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Dec 11, 2013 10:42pm

In reply to Michael E. :

Agree. Dream river.

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schlep
Dec 13, 2013 6:33pm

You missed Kayo Dot's shining achievement - "Hubardo" but you were not alone in this. Still plenty of time left in the year to check it out!

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Zonney
Dec 15, 2013 12:35pm

Your number 1 was also my number one in terms of tracks listened to. So you guys just confirmed my taste :-)
Just missing Buke & Gase here.

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Shadowy Von Shadow
Dec 15, 2013 6:02pm

I keep coming back to Rashad Becker's Traditional Music For A Notional Species Vol 1, again and again. It has to be my favorite of the year, hands down. Next is Interpretations On FC Judd. And I loved Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement's The Plant With Many Faces/Folklore Venom, which I'm treating as a double album. Simon Fisher Turner's Epic of Everest deserves mention, as does Rene Hells' Vanilla Call Option. I love the Wanda Group's releases, and Mika Vainio's Kilo ought to be somewhere in the top 100. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds were great, and I still don't understand the appeal of Factory Floor, its seems like such a dud to me.

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hal_inc
Dec 15, 2013 9:14pm

Tim Hecker?

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Andy Young
Dec 16, 2013 9:39pm

2013 saw albums released from two of the greatest music talents in this here universe, neither of which got a mention in any end of year list that I have seen , so I will give them a mention .

1. The Bitter Springs returned with " everyone's cup of tea " a double released in January , great stuff from a fine London band consistently flying under the radar , Simon Rivers is England's finest lyricist and I will stand on Morrisseys coffee table and tell him so !... standout track Harry Hippie, which is ironic as it is a cover version of a Bobby Womack song .

2. Terry Allen " Bottom of the World " first album in 14 years from this Texas Maverick who has been concentrating on his Painting over the last few years , standout track.... emergency blood courier.

I just could not let this year go by without acknowledging these two fine records

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Bobby Munko
Dec 17, 2013 2:53pm

Can you make a spotify/youtube playlist of the top 100? I'd quite like to check out some of the artists here but y'know it could take a while.

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Louis
Dec 19, 2013 5:34pm

Stuart Warwick put out a great album at the start of the year. I won't bother trying to describe it.

http://stuartwarwick.bandcamp.com/album/the-butchers-voice

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des fitzgerald
Dec 20, 2013 3:02pm

Jesus Christ...got bored shitless going through your best of...100 best of? gimme me a break...anybody going through a best of would hit dross after maybe 20 even in good year...most of the list looks like it had one vote from the lead singer's granny...

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Shane
Dec 21, 2013 3:59am

Wish the list had links to bandcamps and youtube so I could listen.

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public school whitey
Dec 21, 2013 11:35pm

my 2 cents:
1. Kanye West | Yeezus
2. Bill Callahan | River Dream
3. John Wizards | John Wizards
4. Kurt Vile | Waking on a Pretty Daze
5. Foxygen | We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic
6. Daft Punk | Random Access Memories
7. Danny Brown | Old
8. Parquet Courts | Light Up Gold
9. A$AP Rocky | LongLiveA$AP

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public school whitey
Dec 21, 2013 11:35pm

my 2 cents:
1. Kanye West | Yeezus
2. Bill Callahan | River Dream
3. John Wizards | John Wizards
4. Kurt Vile | Waking on a Pretty Daze
5. Foxygen | We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic
6. Daft Punk | Random Access Memories
7. Danny Brown | Old
8. Parquet Courts | Light Up Gold
9. A$AP Rocky | LongLiveA$AP

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Julian Bond
Dec 23, 2013 10:47am

Interesting to compare this with the half year list http://thequietus.com/articles/12672-quietus-albums-of-the-year-so-far-2013
I wonder what you thought was good then but on repeated listens just ended up irritating you. A quick skim suggests there were quite a few highly rated entries in July that have now disappeared completely from the list.

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John Doran
Dec 23, 2013 11:44am

In reply to Julian Bond:

Isn't that how music works though? I like pretty much everything I liked at the start of the year but I went off Boards of Canada quite a lot. Other albums such as Fat White Family went up in my estimation. I think expecting people to feel the same about all albums as they did when they first heard them is unrealistic. Some music you're just going to like for a very short time, other bits are keepers. I'm failing to see what's so "interesting" about your observation.

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burskii
Dec 24, 2013 9:08pm

huge kudos for resisting the urge to put too many records by bands that've been around for ages. even if The National/Vamp Weekend/Deerhunter/Boards of Canada/Bill Callahan put out quality stuff, there's something so boring about P4k inter alia putting those as their top records year-in, year-out.

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Rosalandmine
Dec 30, 2013 5:35pm

1. OPN, OPN, OPN
2. MBV, MBV, MBV
3. Stranger
4. LaurelHalo
5. OmarSouleyman
6. FF, FF, FF
7. Grouper
8. Haxan
9. TimHecker
10.Pinkunoizu

Acts TQ featured that didn't get big proper '13 releases enough so that I could buy these local and not resort to Spotify lowquality, that would be on the list had I bought then what I stream now: RealLies, KVB, HouseofBlondes, Machinedrum, DinosChapman, Asphodells, FatWhiteFamily, Trans.

Cheers for forgetting AtomsDullYorke, VampireBellend, ArcadeEddie&TheCruisers. Bowie had the single but that's all folks.

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Charlie Cartwright
Jan 1, 2014 6:40pm

Great list, much to catch up with over the next dark months. So thanks for that.... But given your site featured by far the best review of The Neck's extraordinary album this autumn it seems amiss for "Open" not to feature here. But that's a small gripe (also Esmerine, and Max Lodebauer released great work).

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Ian Blanchett
Jan 3, 2014 5:51am

Trawled through your 100 top albums and now have 98 new albums to listen to!! God, I'm out of touch. Looks like I will be spending much of 2014 trying to catch up with what I missed from 2013.

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Lucas
Jan 6, 2014 5:26am

This list tries to hard to be different, and it definitely is, but it's in no way proof of the best of the year. Electric but no Bankrupt? NO.

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baggieboy
Mar 6, 2014 5:17pm

Thank the Lord that bloody Bowie album didnt make no 1. Where were Marillion?

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