In the last moments of poise before the internet music machine squats down and shits out 2013, I’d like to take a look back at three great artists who came up this past year. I’d venture to say they all produced under-appreciated records, but to be honest I’m nauseated by music journalism so probably I’m unqualified to make statements like that or to write about music at all, but hey, I’m just here playing my trumpet. Let’s finish this up before I puke in my lap.




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The self-titled debut from Swedish producer Axel Backman (aka 1991) is beautiful and screwed and dark. On the single “Open To The Dark,” a well placed snippet of The Cure’s “Charlotte Sometimes” loops amid 1991’s spiraling analog haze in a manner that defines the record’s best moments.

Looking forward, if the bleepingly maniacal tracks on 1991’s next EP offer any clues about future output, then 2013 is going to see this dude coming out of left field over and over again.

1991 EP was released by Bristol label Astro:Dynamics.



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Anyone who’s come to my house for slow jams & wine knows that music gets extra points if it could be mistaken for a Vanessa Williams B-side. But what makes “My Refuge” incredible is not it’s homage to sweet histories, but it’s sharp turn into transcendence. That pause after the opening keyboard passage is really long, and very necessary, because the following plunge is literally into the future.

Also, future is the real conversation here. Napolian was only 19 or 20 when this was recorded. The record shows sonic ability, drum smarts, instrumentalism, and real songwriting talent. I seriously hope this kid lands in the stables at Def-Jam cause I can’t fucking wait to hear the Napolian/Ocean/Bieber hit-parade.

Stream the entire Rejoice EP here, courtesy of Brooklyn’s Software Label.



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Like most of Anduin’s Stolen Years, “Dyadic 27” is incredibly stylish and immediately terrifying. Over a backdropped synth canvas, Richomond VA’s Jonathan Lee layers the snick and scratch of worn 20th century apparatuses. The song’s gentle narrative curve leads the listener on a singular search. Somewhere along the way, a saxophone turns up and lets out a few lonely secrets, and that’s the moment when I really fall for this record. This is truly music to inspire revelatory investigations, but let’s be careful what we dig up.

Stream Anduin’s Stolen Years in it’s entirety here and pick up a copy via label SMTG.