Mad Mackerel’s Top Songs Of 2013

Mad Mackerel's Top Songs Of 2013

As well as our Top 100 tunes of the year that we’ve posted over the past few days, each of the MM contributors have put together their own lists. The fifth and final instalment is our own.

20. Colleen Green – Heavy Shit
Totally infectious, stoned punk.

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19. Harmed Brothers – Love Song For The Assumed
Mixing folk and bluegrass with a wistful twist of poignant melancholy, Love Song For The Assumed was as sweet and as simple a song of heartbreak and longed for resolution as we heard in the whole year.

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18. Black Angels – Indigo Meadow
Tribal drumming, 60s Hammer-Horror organ, and reverb.

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17. Courtney Barnett – History Eraser
A late entry – deadpan, conversational, charming, funny, literal and literate – a drunken night’s tale told with an upbeat lo-fi jangle and amiable vocal delivery.

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16. Holograms – A Blaze On The Hillside
Most thrilling riff of the year?

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15. John Grant – GMF
One part waspish humour, one part resigned melancholy and one part bitter dislocation. Superb.

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14. Fuzz – Sleigh Ride
Heaviest riff of the year?

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13. Cass McCombs – Big Wheel
Hypnotic, rumbling, country-dirt travelogue.

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12. Dune Rats – Stoner Pop
In a parallel world somewhere, this was the smash hit of the summer.

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11. Blitzen Trapper – Feel The Chill
That old wreck of a shack buried in evergreen and murky darkness at the bend in the road up on Jackson Hill where we used to drink and never failed to give me a chill driving by in the old Impala for it’s implacable mystery.” That’s where Feel the Chill takes place.

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10. Public Service Broadcasting – Signal 30
Brilliant and mesmerising combination of high octane guitar riffage, retro public information film samples and electro beats.

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9. Parquet Courts – You’ve Got Me Wonderin’ Now
Stoned and Starving would have been our song of the year, but for its minor self-release in 2012. No matter scrappy, swaggering, nihilistic NY punks Parquet Courts gave us this gem instead. A highlight of their performance at the Green Man festival and our undoubted gig of the year.

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8. Foxygen – No Destruction
We may have lost Lou Reed this year, but his spirit lives on in No Destruction, a natural pretender to his throne, and this song has the best use of “weaseled” in any song we’ve heard.

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7. Wooden Shjips – Everybody Knows
Channeling Neil Young by way of Hawkwind, Wooden Shjips gave us this hypnotically evocative and brilliant slab of psych rock on latest album Back To Land

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6. Terry Malts – I Was Not There
To do simple, balls-to-the-floor, screw-you punk rock this brilliantly well takes real talent. Terry Malts have it.

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5. Big Haunt – Burn Me Up
We received an e-mail. It said, “We are a Portland, Oregon band called Big Haunt. We play spooky, gospel infused big beat indy folk. This is our first single, “Burn Me Up.”  It’s a song about ritualistic fire sacrifice and murder. We thought you might like it.“ We did. We liked it very much.

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4. Martha’s Vineyard Ferries – Blonde On Blood
Like the best ever Fall single played at 78rpm. This is, of course, a very good thing indeed.

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3. Low – Plastic Cup
One of those few songs that feels like it could have been written any time in the past 40 years. Timeless is over-used, but this really is that good.

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2. T. Hardy Morris – OK Corral
The sound of a ghost town set to song.

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1. Phosphorescent – Ride on/Right On
While I might be at odds with my shoalmates, this track from Phosphorescent’s peerless Muchacho album was my tune of the year. A little bit of funky rhythm and a whole lot of country grit combined to make the most compelling and enduring song of 2013.

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Best songs we heard this year, but released prior to 2013.

Parquet Courts – Stoned And Starving
A stonewall classic and worthy successors to the currently vacant slacker indie and resigned punk rockers crown.

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Edmund Wayne (with River Giant) – To The Bugs On My Ceiling

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Hank Williams III – Country Heroes

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And The Song We Wished We’d Heard Before We’d Compiled Our Top Twenty

Clara Berry & Wooldog – Hard Time Killing Floor Blues

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You can see our favourite cover songs of the year here.

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