Albums of the Year 2013


My albums of the year, countdown style. Was lucky to see Olafur Arnalds, Anoushka Shankar and Nick Harper, and had near misses with Steven Wilson and Arctic Monkeys. The list (which does contain albums penned outside of 2013) has been inspired in the main by my journey into the realms of yoga, meditation and reiki. Namaste:

10 – Clint Mansell (Moon Soundtrack). Former PWEI frontman turned composer, this soundtrack is sadly the best part of the film (which was good until half way through when the plot was revealed 40 mins early). Atmospheric, unlike the moon (or the film)…

09 – Hans Zimmer (Inception Soundtrack). Hans has produced numerous soundtracks for blockbuster films over the last decade, this being the one on the top of the pile for me. Mix that with one of the best films to come out of the last 10 years and you’d be a fool not to have this. Great for triathlon / Spartan training too…

08 – Agnes Obel (Aventine). My second intrusion into the realms of the neo-classicals, this quiet album is easy listening and relaxing and coupled with a soft lyric, is the ideal way to chill out after a day at a cut-throat corporation…

07 – Russill Paul (Shabda Yoga). Highly recommended by my 73 year old yoga master Pam, this one hits the chakras all right. Every time I listen to “Lokah Samastha” I float off to the moon like Neil the Hippy after being handed a particularly ‘heavy’ cigarette by Warlock…

06 – Nick Harper (Harperspace). An old one, but a classic. Went to see Nick again with Ruddock at Telfords in Chester. The album and the man himself live (and his snapping guitar strings) is something that I’ll never tire of…

05 – Arctic Monkeys (Humbug). This album came out when I was in Malaysia and only now have I given it air time. I recall it got a slating at the time it was released, but on my album counter, it is the one that has been played the most this year (behind Anathema’s Weather Systems of course)…

04 – Anoushka Shankar (Traces Of You). Heavy on the yoga, I was lucky enough to get a ticket to see her (and Olafur Arnalds) for ten English pounds in London, and she played 6 tracks from this. The album includes songs with Sting and Nora Jones. Great album for those practicing the Dhalsim yoga flame kick…

03 – Nine Inch Nails (Hesitation Marks). I’d have to say that most NIN albums contain some tracks which are album fodder, but in my opinion this album doesn’t and is the best work since “The Fragile”…

02 – Olafur Arnalds (For Now I Am Winter). Incredible compositions from a rising star on the neo-classical scene. I froze in time when I watched/heard him play at Fabric in London and “Only The Winds” came on. Sublime…

01 – Steven Wilson (The Raven That Refused To Sing). For lovers of Prog Rock this album is a must and my album of the year. If it doesn’t win the award for Progressive Rock Album of the Year 2014, I’ll eat my Slipperman costume…

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