Review of 2013 – LPs 11-20


The countdown of MPT’s favourite albums of the year continues with LPs 11-20 – all of which would have made the Top 10 in previous years.

20           eagleowl – this silent year

One of the most anticipated Scottish debut LPs of recent years finally appeared and eagleowl eschewed the easier option of including “the hits” in favour of (almost) all new material. Some of the record was slightly overshadowed by the epic “Too Late In The Day” but still indisputable proof that taking your time pays off.

19           K-X-P – II

A spec e-music purchase (based on an Uncut review), I still know very little about K-X-P (other than I think they’re Finnish) but in ‘Melody’ they had one of the tunes of the year and plenty others in hand to create a fine LP.

18           Veronica Falls- Waiting for Something To Happen

An odd beast – the first side is sublime whilst the second is much less inspired and much more derivative. But it’s another record with a strong contender for song of the year in the shape of single ‘Teenage’.

17           Birdhead – Pleasure Centre

Another much anticipated avian related LP, Birdhead’s debut soared above much electro rock in part by being so abrasive. Relied to a large extent on material from the singles/E.P.s but undoubtedly one of the under-rated Scottish releases of  the year.

16           Joanna Gruesome – Weird Sister

Like ‘Waiting for Something to Happen’, ‘Weird Sister’ wears its late 80s influences on its sleeves but delivers its thrills over the course of the full record. With not one but TWO takes on the ‘You Made Me Realise” intro!

15           Man Without Machines – The Kreuzberg Press

Energetic electro pop from Dundee, ‘The Kreuzberg Press’ established an identity for Man Without Machines very much separate from Spare Snare. There’s undoubtedly a strong 80s influence but shot through with 21st century energy.

14           Sparrow & The Workshop – Murderopolis

I’ve never really got S&TW fully before but with ‘Murderopolis’ something finally clicked. Another consistently strong record with several excellent singles and a heavy, dark vibe.

13           Spare Snare – Our Jazz

With two very different spin-off projects eslewhere in the Top 30, there’s no sign of the Snare’s creativity drying up. ‘Our Jazz’ was an angry focussed record, as discordant as anything else in this list. A fitting record for disturbing times.

12           Kid Canaveral – Now That You Are A Dancer

It says a lot about 2013 that Kid C delivered an upgrade on their debut yet find themselves outside the top 10 (compared to #2 in2010). That’s largely down to the volume of quality records this year but also in part to the fact that, as consistently strong as it was, NTYAAD lacks a ‘Couldn’t Dance’ or ‘YOWOTGDLN’ to elevate it to another level.

11.         Grant Hart – The Argument

‘The Argument’  is astonishing  containing, as it does, songwriting as varied as  you’ll hear anywhere else in 2013. And that songwriting is all contained within a double concept album with a typically bonkers Hart storyline. Essential.

The Top 10 follows tomorrow.

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