Hello, and Meeeeery Christmas! Got a few minutes on my hands here so I figured I'd type up a quick blog. 2013 had a ton of good music in it personally these days I tend to swing to the Pop/Hip-Hop end of the spectrum. And there was a ton of good music in both.
5. Taylor Swift - RED
Taylor is considered by a lot of people to be one of the best lyricists in pop music these days. And it shows she had a number of amazing singles on the radio this year from "We are never getting back together" to "22" and "I knew you were trouble" one of the songs that I was depressed that didn't make it on air was the track the album was named after "Red" she really shows off her chops here using multiple clever similes to express her joy and sorrow of her relationship with whoever the song was written about. She is also consistently the most goddamn adorable girl ever.
4. Kanye West - Yeezus
While not as good as MBDTF the good thing about this album is we get way more tracks with just Kanye. MBDTF was great but it was also extremely feature heavy. Which, I don't really have a problem with that because I do enjoy that album more but I also just enjoy hearing JUST Kanye. Kanye also seems way more aggressive on this album than in previous one. In Black Skinhead he proclaims "They see a black man with a white woman at the top floor they gone come to kill King Kong" if this album taught me anything is I like aggressive and angry Kanye. The best track of the entire album however is "I Am a God" Its obviously the most arrogant thing he's ever produced but over a dull thud he talks about existentialism and stacking millions. In the end its a strangely beautiful track if for no other reason for the stupidly blind ambition that he pumps into the track. Someone bring this man his damn croissants.
3. Justin Timberlake - 20/20 Experience
If there was ever a doubt that JT lost his groove this erased the final remaining critics. I almost get physically sick at how talented this man is. The thing I like most about the album is how it really goes places. At the beginning he is laying down lyrics about charming women out of their clothes with his suit & tie to one to a very genuine and heartfelt ode to his grandparents with "Mirrors" the gaps in between are filled with mostly solid efforts my favorite of the entire album being "Strawberry Bubblegum" the full song is a full 8 minutes. After about 4 1/2 minutes a musical interlude plays and the song transitions into what could be cut out and billed as and entirely different version of the same song. I know quite a few critics and fans alike gave JT shit for allowing the large majority of his tracks to meander well over the 5 minutes. Hell the shortest song IS 4:48. I however really enjoyed what in most tracks seemed like two concepts for the same song into one long musical journey.
2. Miley Cyrus - Bangerz
This, was by far my biggest surprise of the year. I knew I was going to listen to every album I listed on here. And then Miley caught my attention. Sure her VMA performance was criticized by many but what it did for her was pretty significant. It caught a lot of people's attention including mine. Her initial single and party anthem "We Can't stop" got peoples attention and then her follow up "Wrecking Ball" inspired numerous parodies including one by a very very old Hulk Hogan. The tracks range from a love ballad with "Adore You" to "Do my Thang" where Cyrus takes a stab a rapping a verse or two. For fuck's sake people there is a country do-si-do inspired song that features Nelly of all people. Fucking Nelly in 2013. I enjoyed Cyrus' brazen attitude on the album even if many accuse her of trying way to hard to shed her Disney Girl image. My favorite track on the album after listening to it quite a bit is "FU" a track where Miley not so subtly lays out her feelings for her former boyfriend Liam Hemsworth. Really enjoyed her performance on this one and the feature verse by French Montana is one of the better features on the album. I'll be watching Cyrus from now on.
1. Lady Gaga - ARTPOP
Was there any doubt this would be my favorite of the year? Man, where do I begin. First off I'll just say that this is WAY better than Born This Way. I liked Born this Way but it lacked the same zing that The Fame Monster did. Artpop as a whole might even surpass The Fame Monster. She obviously had a lot of pent up emotions after breaking her hip on stage and having to cut her tour short. Which is something that she brings up multiple times on the album with the first single Applause directly addressing her lamentations from being away from the stage. Gaga even dips her to into the Hip-hop genre with "Jewels n' Drugs" which features T.I. , Two $hort and Twista. All of the songs on the album are solid but the stand out tracks for me are G.U.Y, Aura and my favorite track "Gypsy". God, Gypsy might not only be my favorite track on the album but my favorite Gaga track period. The upbeat tempo and lyrics are one of the most feel good songs I've heard all year. I'm really hoping Gaga makes it her 3rd single its a song that deserves all the attention it gets.