12. Jeremy Squires – When Will You Go
Jeremy Squires was clearly a big favourite artist this year and he is on my every year-end list. Central Nervous Station EP was my favourite release, but probably mostly because it was the first one and therefore hold a special place in my heart. This full-length album When Will You Go is equally amazing and full of magnificent songs.
11. Buffalo Gospel – We Can Be Horses
Milwaukee’s Buffalo Gospel has been steadily rising on my rankings. I instantly liked this album We Can Be Horses, but during the last few months it has become more and more important and it has been one of my most listened to albums lately. It really hurts to leave it just outside the top 10, because it’s such a wonderful record.
10. Daniel Romano – Come Cry With Me (Normaltown Records, 2013)
Canadian singer-songwriter Daniel Romano deliver some of the finest old-fashioned country sounds these days. This is how this country thing should be done. Come Cry With Me was a huge favourite early in the year and has hold its charm throughout the year.
9. Marine Dreams – Corner Of The Eye (You’ve Changed Records, 2013)
I’ve loved this from the start. The arrangements sound a bit sketchy and questionable (drum machines and such), if I just read about them from a press release. However when I actually listen to the album, it just sounds beautiful to me. And damn how I love that voice, the harmonies and those melodies. Well done Ian Kehoe. This is a fantastic album.
8. Jim Guthrie – Takes Time
Takes Time by Canadian pop mastermind Jim Guthrie is another late favourite. I bought this amazing record a month ago and it has been on heavy rotation in this household ever since. I love the songs and I love the way it sounds. It’s a bliss to listen to it.
7. Widower – Fool Moon (Mama Bird Recording Company, 2013)
I’ve been highly addicted to Widower lately. Fool Moon was the album of the month in December and Thoroughbred is my favourite song of the year 2013. I’m not sure how can a break up album sound so sweet and spiritually beautiful. There’s five songs that I love wholeheartedly. A couple are only good and that’s the only reason Widower isn’t also contender for the album of the year award.
6. Small Houses – Exactly Where You Wanted To Be (Yer Bird, 2013)
I’ve been a huge Small Houses fan for a few years now. His Finland tour was the highlight of the year and pretty much the best thing ever that has somehow partly happened because of onechord.net over these 12 years I’ve been writing this. The new album Exatcly Where You Wanted To Be is also magnificent and full of amazing songs.
5. The Heavy Blinkers – Health
A most welcome comeback from the master of harmonious and beautifully orchestrated pop music. Canadian The Heavy Blinkers wrote one of my favourite 2004 albums The Night and I Are Still So Young, but it took them a long while to create a follow-up. Health finally saw the light in 2013 and it was just as magnificent as I expected. Canadians seem to make my favourite pop music these days, because the few pop albums in the top 10, Takes Time, Corner Of The Eye and Health are all by Canadian artists.
4. Austin Lucas – Stay Reckless (New West Records, 2013)
I’ve been changing the order of the next three several times while making this list. I suppose these could all be on a tied second spot, but I forced myself to put them in some kind of order (even though making these lists and ranking albums is kind of stupid. This is music and not a sports event). Anyway, Austin Lucas was signed by New West Records and created probably his finest album Stay Reckless where every song is a winner. Highlight being the last track Splinters that really hits you hard.
3. John Moreland – In The Throes (Last Chance Records, 2013)
These next two don’t need an introduction if you’ve been reading the year-end of lists of americana, country and folk magazines/blogs/websites. These are completely worth all the love and hype they’ve been getting and are fantastic albums worth all hearts. First we have John Moreland and his brilliant In The Throes album on the third place. Reminds me a lot of early Bruce, but I don’t mind at all. John Moreland is a fantastic songwriter and In The Throes is one hell of a record.
2. Jason Isbell – Southeastern (Southeastern Records, 2013)
Jason Isbell has been a great songwriter for a long time and Southeastern is his masterpiece. This is a record that will stand the test of time and I’m sure this will be regarded as a classic 20 years from now on. Super 8 is probably the only song that isn’t anything special and even that is an ok rock song. The rest of the songs are all utterly wonderful.
1. Frontier Ruckus – Eternity Of Dimming (Quite Scientific, Loose Music, 2013)
And the Album Of The Year 2013 award goes to Eternity Of Dimming by Frontier Ruckus. I’ve been listening to this by far the most during the year and it still feels like I don’t know every corner of this amazing double album. It’s easy to enjoy, but difficult to master completely. And impossible to become tired of it. I know because I’ve tried real hard by spending countless amount of hours listening to it. There’s twenty songs and all of them are absolutely wonderful. Eternity Of Dimming is a treasure vault like no other and my favourite album of the year.