As is the year end tradition of this blog, I present to you my 2013 music round up. This was a very good year in music for me. Several very important things happened.
1. Justin Timberlake made his official comeback (totally out of nowhere!) and took up his rightful place as pop music royalty.
2. Britney Spears released her 8th studio album and is about to start her Las Vegas residency. She looks and sounds SO GOOD this era.
4. Lady Gaga released ARTPOP and it doesn’t suck as much as I thought it would. And she’s been naked a lot this era, which is always a plus.
5. Adam Lambert split from RCA Records (HALLELOO) and performed with Queen again.
He was also on Glee, but whatever.
6. DeStorm released his King Kong mixtape and Simon Curtis released WWW, both for free.
7. Detox/Willam/Vicky released a bunch of new music videos and remain flawless.
8. Ben Burnley, founder of Breaking Benjamin, is making music again, playing shows, and posting acoustic shit to Facebook. It’s been like a dream.
9. FUCKING NSYNC REUNITED FOR 90 GLORIOUS SECONDS.
There hasn’t been this much awesome in my music in at least five years. First up, my top five NEW songs of this year.
1. Sex Dreams (Lady Gaga)
Have you heard Sex Dreams yet? No? Go do yourself a favor and listen to it immediately. No seriously, stop reading. You’re not allowed to continue until you’ve listened. This song is basically my everything. I haven’t heard a song this fucking sexy since Britney’s In The Zone album. And I really didn’t expect something like this from Gaga. I love her and I think she’s gorgeous, but I don’t really get sensuality from her like I do from other female pop stars. She’s got this messy, raw sex appeal to me that isn’t airbrushed, and I think this song reflects that more than any of her previous work. The moment I heard the opening chords, I knew this was going to be my favorite song from the album.
2. Only When I Walk Away (Justin Timberlake)
So the first time I heard this song, I sort of had it on in the background as I was doing other things. Then Justin’s vocals came on in the first verse and I literally clutched my heart and went, “LAWD JESUS” out loud in my apartment. I cannot even deal with how much I love this song. It gives me such a strong visceral reaction. I just have to close my eyes and FEEL this song. And I totally feel like Justin could have written this song about me, so I sometimes like to pretend he did. Yeah, I’m that bitch. FutureSex/LoveSounds will probably always be the greatest Justin Timberlake album, but The 20/20 Experience is still pretty amazing. Especially the non-singles, which are superior to all the singles except Tunnel Vision.
3. Til It’s Gone (Britney Spears)
Britney Jean is a masterpiece. Obviously. It’s being advertised as her most personal album ever, and it may actually be. People who keep saying it’s robotic and not personal can fuck right off, because they clearly didn’t listen to any of the lyrics. It’s mostly mid-tempo stuff and she co-wrote and co-produced the album. A lot of it is clearly about her break up with Jason. Til It’s Gone is one of my favorites, roughly tied with Tik Tik Boom and slightly above Alien and Passenger. Obviously Blackout is Britney’s most perfect album and she’ll probably never top that, but I’m pretty satisfied with everything on this album except the Will.U.Stop song (unsurprising; we knew before it was even released that it would be trash).
4. King Kong (DeStorm)
I feel like I have plugged this song roughly a hundred times since it came out. But seriously, I still occasionally go watch the music video just because I like it so much. These are some of my favorite lyrics that DeStorm has ever written, and I like when he does his own videos instead of collabs. I’ve been a fan for years and I have always enjoyed his music, but the King Kong mixtape just speaks to me more than any of his previous work.
5. Boy Is A Bottom (DWV: Detox, Willam, Vicky)
Bottoming anthem forever and ever. This is a parody of Girl On Fire by Alicia Keys and I cannot listen to the original song anymore. The original might as well not exist, because every time the chorus hits I start singing, “THIS BOY IS A BOTTOOOOOMMMM.” I mean, I think we’ve already discussed how much I love things that are really, ridiculously, obnoxiously, campy gay. Plus Willam is my queen and I love him deeply, Vicky is hilarious and has a really great voice, and Detox’s makeup skills make me want to just throw away my makeup box and stop trying because I’ll never do my eyes or contour my face that flawlessly. Really though, this song is really great. And also really explicit, so put on headphones unless your roommate and/or grandma is cool with a lot of explicit anal sex jokes. Also, the outtakes are amazing.
And now, since so many things are making a comeback, my top five favorite older songs that I rediscovered this year.
1. Hush (Castledoor)
I’ve waxed poetic about my love for Castledoor before and occasionally when I’m having a really late night on Twitter I’ll cry about how much I miss them. My favorite music of theirs comes from the Follow The Dove EP, so that’s what I listen to most of the time. But for some reason in one of my late night Castledoor crying binges I heard this song and it just clicked. This song is gorgeous and it was pretty much my go to writing song during NaNoWriMo.
2. Shallow Bay (Breaking Benjamin)
And have an old live video too. The sound isn’t perfect, but it basically represents my life in high school, so I have a special attachment to it. In case you don’t know this, Breaking Benjamin was hands down my favorite band in high school. Saturate and Phobia are two of my absolute favorite albums ever. Unfortunately, I didn’t like their fourth studio album at all, and they went on “hiatus” after that. That’s about the same time I got into pop music, so they were sort of pushed out of my radar for a while. I was randomly reminded of them one night after actually listening to a song from Phobia and remembering how perfect they were, so I looked them up. And found out that the band is basically just Ben now (who is the vocalist and writes all of the songs). BUT, he announced early this year that he’s back. And then two months ago he played a few impromptu shows! And he posted VIDEOS of him performing! And I was like ‘HOW DO YOU LIFE’ because he was performing the old school songs like WATER. Nobody knows that fucking song! I love that fucking song! So I’m just sitting here bouncing up and down and waiting for a new album, which I hope will come in 2014 or early 2015.
3. Sleepwalker (Adam Lambert)
I just really wanted an excuse to post this video because he is taking it to CHURCH at the end (3:40 and beyond). Praise lesbian Jesus, his voice is ridiculous. And while you’re here, have this video of Shady and Fever too, because his stupid gay ass makes me laugh. He didn’t tour and didn’t make new music this year, so I spent a lot of time watching old live videos (fucking Gridlock, man) and all of the concerts he did overseas (Popping That Lock in Singapore like a bamf). And lots of Queen videos too, obviously. I probably listened to more of his live music than I did his recorded music.
4. Monster (Skillet)
OK, so I saw Skillet on accident in September and it was glorious. I completely forgot how fantastic they are live, so I actually went to listen to all of the music I’d missed since I stopped being a fan of Christian music. This song is definitely my favorite, and I understand now why they randomly sold a million albums (Literally. They went platinum.), because this song is pretty great. The rest of the album isn’t as good as this, unfortunately, but that’s okay. Collide will always be my favorite album of theirs, and I still listen to it when I’m feeling nostalgic. I’m just happy to know that they’re still rocking on and that they still put on an amazing show.
5. Bye Bye Bye (NSYNC)
NSYNC’S REUNION WAS THE ONLY IMPORTANT THING THAT HAPPENED THIS YEAR, NOW BYE. I mean, I always listen to NSYNC. Like a lot. And then I move on to Justin Timberlake and then I move on to JC Chasez and then I cry about JC’s career at 4am on Twitter and write really long emo Facebook posts about the perfection that is his voice. And then I get stuck watching live videos of NSYNC because there aren’t many videos of JC performing his solo stuff live and the cycle starts all over again. Bye Bye Bye is pretty much one of the best pop songs ever written and that dance is iconic. I’m pretty sure my neighbors thought I was being murdered when this happened at the VMA’s.
Still superior to every other boy band. Sorry not sorry.