2013: Lorde, Katie, Courtney, Neko and more

A New Zealand teenager stuns the world, while a Philadelphia-via-Alabama songwriter stuns the blogs.

“Royals” was, hands down, the biggest crossover hit of 2013. It was played on AAA, Top 40, Alternative Rock, Adult Contemporary and R&B stations, quite a feat for sixteen year old Lorde.

Meanwhile, Alabama-born / Philly-based singer-songwriter Katie Crutchfield was wowing blogs and local stations with her second LP Cerulean Salt, earning a Best New Music nod from Pitchfork and a spot on many year-end best of lists.

Neko Case took a break from collaborating on other people’s projects to release her first solo effort in four years, The Worse Things Get, the Harder I Fight, the Harder I Fight, the More I Love You. The album was nominated for a Best Alternative Music Grammy Award.

Courtney Barnett released her first international effort with The Double EP: A Sea of Split Peas, earning praise for her witty lyrics and relatable delivery.

Hip hop was once again reinvented by releases from Kanye, Jay-Z, Chance the Rapper, Childish Gambino and the Run the Jewels duo of Killer Mike and El-P.

Big reunions included Neutral Milk Hotel and Black Flag (as two separate acts), two very talked-about events that resulted in sold-out shows across the country.

Check out more of what made 2013 the Greatest Year in Music below, and let us know what you think in the comments and across social media with #XPNGreatestYear.



Cerulean Salt – Waxahatchee
Pure Heroine – Lorde
Days are Gone – Haim
Magpie and the Dandelion – The Avett Brothers
Mountains of Sorrow, Rivers of Song – Amos Lee
Reflektor – Arcade Fire
BEYONCE – Beyonce
mbv – My Bloody Valentine
On Oni Pond – Man Man
Stories Don’t End – Dawes
Let’s Be Still – The Head and the Heart
The Lone Bellow – The Lone Bellow
Regions of Light and Sound of God – Jim James
Sing to the Moon – Laura Mvula
One True Vine – Mavis Staples
B-Room – Dr. Dog
The Double EP: A Sea of Split Peas – Courtney Barnett
Hummingbird – Local Natives
The Beast in its Tracks – Josh Ritter
Honky Tonk – Son Volt
The Next Day – David Bowie
The 20/20 Experience – Justin Timberlake
Delta Machine – Depeche Mode
Overgrown – James Blake
Wakin’ on a Pretty Daze – Kurt Vile
The Terror – The Flaming Lips
Mosquito – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Ghost on Ghost – Iron & Wine
Bankrupt! – Phoenix
If You Leave – Daughter
Modern Vampires of the City – Vampire Weekend
Random Access Memories – Daft Punk
Loud City Song – Julia Holter
Major Arcana – Speedy Ortiz
Light Up Gold – Parquet Courts
The Bones of What You Believe – CHVRCHES
Muchacho – Phosphorescent
Monomania – Deerhunter
Acidrap – Chance the Rapper
Run the Jewels – Run the Jewels
The Worse Things Get, the Harder I Fight… – Neko Case
Nothing Was the Same – Drake
These Are Good People – Little Big League
Songs Cycled – Van Dyke Parks
Cupid Deluxe – Blood Orange
Ripley Pine – Lady Lamb the Beekeeper
If You Wait – London Grammar
Cupid Deluxe – Blood Orange
Doris – Earl Sweatshirt
The Electric Lady – Janelle Monae
Trouble Will Find Me – The National
Settle – Disclosure
Southeastern – Jason Isbell
Yeezus – Kanye West
Magna Carta… Holly Grail – Jay-Z
Wise Up Ghost – Elvis Costello and The Roots
The Civil Wars – The Civil Wars
Halcyon Days – Ellie Goulding
Kiss Land – The Weeknd
Because the Internet – Childish Gambino

Category: 10s


Article by: Julie Miller