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totally top five 2k13: albums

It’s time to talk about more music! Albums! And, like last year, I’m not, y’know, the ~hippest person when it comes to music, so this is just what I really loved and listened to. Truthiness before coolness.

5. Miley Cyrus, Bangerz

Bangerz is a great pop album and hasn’t even started to wear out its welcome yet. It is straight-up loaded with danceable, singable, jammable jamz and I will 100% go to the mat defending it and Miley. I can’t excuse her appropriative behavior or the implied racism of it — no one should — but she’s young and learning and I will straight-up murder you if you talk about her “fall from grace” or whatever people are claiming this week. This album is so, so great and I can’t wait to see what she does next.

Notable Jamz: “Love Money Party”, “#GETITRIGHT”, & “FU”

4. Bastille, Bad Blood

Bad Blood is so, so good. It’s big and sweeping and tender and, like, magical. I listened to it on repeat for like, a month and a half straight and never got tired or bored. It’s an album that had great standalone tracks, but is most pleasurable when you hear the whole thing in order. I can’t remember the last time I felt that way about an album. It’s also got this great sort of orchestral, storytelling thing going on that I love, where I can imagine a whole bunch of people with large, important instruments backing up the band? I don’t know, the drumming just screams timpani.

Notable Jamz: “Bad Blood”, “Things We Lost in the Fire”, & “Icarus”

3.Major Lazer, Free the Universe

We’ve all been jamming to Major Lazer for like, four years now, right? The first time my BFF heard Major Lazer, she was in my car and I had put it on a playlist specifically for her and she stopped dead in the middle of dancing and was like, “Who is this?” and for the first time ever in my life, I was cool. For about thirty seconds.

Anyway, Free the Universe is super solid. It doesn’t have quite as many standalone killers as Guns Don’t Kill People…Lazers Do but it is still totally loaded with jamz. Let’s be real, any year that Major Lazer puts an album out is probably a year that it’s going to end up on my best of list.

Notable Jamz: “Jessica”, “Bubble Butt”, & “Jet Blue Jet”

2. Rita Ora, Ora

Ora is g-l-o-r-i-o-u-s. There isn’t a single song on the album I don’t love, it works as a whole and as individual jamz. There are so many great danceable hits that I wish I was 13 and had a full-length mirror to perform in front of. I cannot even begin to count the number of times I’ve broken down crying to “Hello, Hi, Goodbye”. It’s just a phenomenally fun album. I only wish it were 100 songs longer.

Notable Jamz: “Young, Single, & Sexy”, Shine Ya Light”, “Hello, Hi, Goodbye”

1. Janelle Monáe, The Electric Lady

I can’t talk about The Electric Lady or Janelle Monáe without just flipping out and losing my shit because I love her so much. I don’t think I’ve ever loved a musician with the veracity and respect awe with which I love and adore and worship Janelle Monáe. One of the most well-spoken, articulate, and smartest women I’ve ever heard speak and so, so incredibly talented I can’t process it. Goddess.

Uh, anyway, The Electric Lady is phenomenal. I l-o-v-e concept albums universally and I love music that tells a story and this album just does it all so well and looks and sounds cool as hell while it’s doing it. And as part of her larger concept? Killer. There are songs both aching and danceable and her voice just floors me. I can’t even explain the torrent of emotions I feel during “Primetime” or how many times I’ve turned into a sobbing mess listening to it. Basically every time I’ve heard it. This album is a gift

Notable Jamz: “Q.U.E.E.N.”, “Dance Apocalyptic”, “We Were Rock & Roll”, “Ghetto Woman”, & “Primetime”

Honorable Mentions

Previously: 2K12 | JAMZ | MOVIES