10. Far East Movement ft. Cover Drive – “Turn Up the Love” (2012)
I absolutely hated “Like a G6” but when I first heard this song on an advert I was converted. With a great upbeat chorus it’s a happy song, then there’s the breakdown and rap that takes dance music to a level as slow as it will go. It manages it effortlessly.
9. Zedd – “Stay the Night” (feat. Hayley Williams) (2013)
In a year with a new Paramore album, it’s almost a shame that this is my favourite Hayley Williams song of 2013 – but what a great song it is. It’s about spending one last night before breaking up with someone, and the emotion that Hayley puts into what is, essentially, just another club track, is amazing. The drop is pretty good too, and with someone like Hayley Williams singing over it – it’s an instant win in my book.
8. Justice – “Phantom” (2007)
Justice’s † is one of my favourite albums, but by finding the album’s songs individually, I didn’t come across “Phantom” (Pt. I) until this year. It’s an ultimate Justice song, with a brilliant beat and a minimalist atmosphere that builds brilliantly into the more grandeur Part II. Probably my favourite Justice song now.
7. E.L.O. – “Hold On Tight” (1981)
An unrelenting piano accompanies what could be E.L.O.’s most upbeat song, even more so than “Mr Blue Sky”. With a great message about sticking with things, delivered with sing-song brilliance, and even a verse in French, this song is the most cheery song I can think of, and I love it.
6. Altered Images – “I Could Be Happy” (1982)
Listening to this is a weird experience, because you can be happy and sad at the same time. Clare Grogan’s bubble-gum voice is beautiful and cheery, but the song is about escaping from somewhere where you are unhappy, with the guitars almost crying for help in the background. It’s a go-to song for me if I’m ever having an off-day, but good at other times too.
5. Knife Party – “LRAD” (2013)
“LRAD” was Knife Party’s most successful single off their latest EP Haunted House, and it was a great song. It’s not quite as epic, in either sense, as some other Knife Party tracks, but its two minimalist drops are great at getting people to move. The second one, in particular, has a beat that is memorable.
4. Disclosure – “White Noise” (ft. AlunaGeorge) (2013)
A perfect marriage of two of 2013’s new stars of UK music, “White Noise” is a song that toes the line between dance and hip hop beautifully. That background rhythm will last in everyone’s minds far past this year, and the simple chorus make it a brilliant personification of 2013 in music. A great song.
3. Young Empires – “Rain of Gold” (2010)
Lord knows what this song is about, but it’s really good. From the second those drums kick in, it’s a rhythmical masterpiece. There are so many different melodies going on that overload your musical senses in a good way. Another example of a great song from a FIFA soundtrack, it’s a song that I’ll never get sick of hearing.
2. Le Tigre – “Deceptacon” (DFA Remix) (2006)
I really don’t expect anyone else to like this song, but there’s something about it that I love. The singer shrieks over the entire song’s jerky rhythm, and there’s just something about the way the two work together that make it an irresistible combination. DFA remixes are generally good, and this is the pick of the bunch.
1. Knife Party – “Power Glove” (2013)
“Power Glove” is the ultimate Knife Party song. With a first verse that bangs drums of war and a magnificent drop, followed by a carnagical breakdown – it’s fantastic if Knife Party are your thing. They may have thought they’d made the “sonic recreation of the end of the world” with Pendulum, but I think “Power Glove” is a more fitting creation by Swire and McGrillen. It’s my song of the year.
So there are the tunes that were my favourites this year. A few great songs didn’t quite make the list, for one reason or another, such as: “Y Control” and “Sacrilege” by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore, “Free Bird” by Lynyrd Skynyrd and “Still Into You” by Paramore – but they are also well worth a listen and a mention in relation to this year’s finest.
Feel free to share your opinions on the list in the comments, as well as offering your favourite songs to grace the airwaves in 2013. Who knows what next year will bring music-wise? Thanks very much for reading, and I’ll leave you with a playlist of the songs from this list that you can find on Spotify: