The FG collated writer poll of albums of 2013 is still to come but in the meantime, here's five top albums from the past year. Honourable mentions go to David Bowie, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Miles Kane, The Courteeners, Foals, Manic Street Preachers, and Suede.
5. HAIM – 'Days Are Gone'
Sundrenched perfection from the trio of sisters, this is essentially the perfect album to listen to when you want to something to singalong to in the comfort of your own home. 'Falling' and 'Forever' are stand out highlights, along with the phenomenal 'The Wire' (which wakes me up every morning, incidentally), the whole album is just a dream. And despite beginning the year disliking the band and their combination of Fleetwood Mac and Destiny’s Child but I eventually caught up and spent the rest of 2013 wishing I was the fourth sister. Still not happened.
4. Franz Ferdinand – 'Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action'
'Right Thoughts' was the sound of a revitalised Franz Ferdinand, with the titular track seeing them return to the indie disco dance floor fillers of yesteryear. While at times it reads like Franz by numbers, they really are bloody good songs. 'Evil Eye' is another highlight, and ending on 'Goodbye Lovers & Friends' is an ideal touch for any Franz fan, even if it could possibly mean the end is in sight. A shame really.
3. Queens Of The Stone Age – '...Like Clockwork'
Essentially I love anything Josh Homme does. Any other year and this would quite possibly have been sat there at the top of this list. After waiting an age (and after the disappointing 'Era Vulgaris') this was just what the general populous wanted, nay needed. The searing rock riffs you expect from the band, along with one the most unexpected collaborations of the year with their work with Elton John, this truly was a delight to behold.
2. Arctic Monkeys – 'AM'
A slight departure and more mature sound for the boys, the LA sunshine did the boys some good. They created masterpieces in the form of 'R U Mine?' and 'Arabella' (oh how many girls wished they were her) and owned Glastonbury to boot. Throw in the ability to take one of the nation’s finest poets words and turn it into a bleedin’ wonderful song, an album of the year list would be amiss without those freezing primates.
1. The National – 'Trouble Will Find Me'
Perhaps the most perfect release from the band to date, 'Trouble Will Find Me' is the only possible AOTY in my eyes. From the crushing sadness and loss of love in 'Sea Of Love', to the frankness of 'Demons', with the possibly quite cathartic lyric “I am secretly in love with everyone I grew up with”, the whole album is instantly accessible and despite being released in Spring, it compliments the dark days of winter to a tee.
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