Category Archives: Best of 2013

#21: Brett Dennen – Smoke & Mirrors

No countdown is complete without a ginger with a great voice. We’ve flaunted Allen Stone two years ago in 2011 and Ed Sheeran last year in 2012. Now it’s time for Brett Dennen to be highlighted on this site.

Brett Dennen is a seasoned veteran to music by now. Smoke & Mirrors just happens to be an epic refresh of his amazing songwriting skills.

The result is poppy and extremely refreshing radio-friendly music.

You can find the album here.

#22: Danny Brown – Old

Admittedly, there are only two true hip-hop albums on this countdown this year. That actually seems to be similar to how it’s been in years’ past as well.

#22 introduces Music’s Master readers to Danny Brown. Although it’s not a debut album, he received some critical acclaim with his latest album, Old.

I like Danny because he is more lyrical than most rappers out there. He also is a true musician himself. The fact that indie radio stations play his music like crazy is a true testament to his unique positioning in the music world.

You can buy the album here.

#23: Tegan and Sara – Heartthrob

Tegan and Sara are no stranger to “Best of” lists. I’ve been a huge fan of theirs for many years now.

It is so incredible to me how poppy and mainstream an act like them can sound without ever completely crossing over to pop radio. Maybe it’s the fact that a lot of their songs are between 2 and 3 minutes, but the result, is always an album filled with incredible hooks and melodies.

I hope this sisterly duo never stop making music. They are writing geniuses that everyone should be able to enjoy for years to come.

You can buy the album here:

#25: The Lone Bellow – The Lone Bellow

The Lone Bellow has been one of my favorite new finds in recent times. I’ve featured them on this blog a few times in the last two years. The first time it was after I saw a version of them in 2012 opening up for the Civil Wars. The second time was after they re-branded themselves as The Lone Bellow and released this debut album.

I’ve since seen them live a few more times – and their passion for their catchy folky pop rock music is truly inspiring. Any group of musicians that truly care as much as they do deserve SOME sort of recognition.

Here is that recognition – albeit not very noteworthy. A #25 spot on this countdown is something I hope The Lone Bellow will cherish for years to come – as they climb up the ladder of mainstream music.

My prediction is that with their next release, they hit it big with a really catchy radio pop song and become a group that you ‘ll be able to pin down next to Mumford and Sons and the Avett Brothers.

You can purchase this album here.

25 Days of Music Countdown 2013 Preview

Tonight, December 1st, will kick off the 25 Days of Music Top 25 Albums of the Year Countdown. This will start the seventh consecutive year of the countdown on this blog.

This year will be the same as the previous ones. Every day in December, I will write about one album a day making my way down from 25 to 1. If you’re good at math, you might uncover that the best album of the year will be revealed on Christmas morning. I do that intentionally. It’s because it’s a gift to you.

I look forward to counting the albums down for everyone. It truly is the most wonderful time of the year.