Josh Rouse “This Movie's Way Too Long” from The Happiness Waltz (Grabaciones en el Mar 2013) —40. The not quite a Spaniard yet returns with another easy-going collection produced by Brad Jones.Buy it!
Frontier Ruckus “Junk-Drawer Sorrow” from Eternity of Dimming (Quite Scientific Records 2013) —39. A great winter song from a a great band that knows a thing or two about the cold. They're from the Detroit burbs. Plus: musical saw.Buy it!
Slaid Cleaves “Rust Belt Fields” from Still Fighting the War (Music Road Records 2013) —38. This album could have been a whole lot higher. Song co-written by Rod Picott.Buy it!
Lindi Ortega “Tin Star” (Last Gang Records Inc. www.lastgangrecords.com 2013) —37. I really liked Lindi Ortega's album from a few years ago called "Cigarettes and Truck Stops." This one is even better. Now somebody bring her to St. Louis.Buy it!
The Parson Red Heads “Every Mile” from Orb Weaver (Fiesta Red www.fiestaredrecords.com 2013) —36. LA by way of Oregon band pretty much nails the Jayhawks sound.Buy it!
Billy Bragg “January Song” from Tooth & Nail (Cooking Vinyl 2013) —35. This album showed up on a few best of lists, including DJ Rob Levy. Bragg's show at the Old Rock House was one of the most memorable of the year.Buy it!
Gregory Porter “Movin'” from Liquid Spirit (Blue Note 2013) —34. Bill Withers meets jazz Lou Rawls on this excellent release. Featuring Yosuke Sato and Tivon Pennicott, saxophones; Chip Crawford, piano; Aaron James, bass, Emanuel Harrold, drums.Buy it!
Mia Dyson “When the Moment Comes” from The Moment (Black Door Records/MGM Distribution/The Co-Op 2013) —33. Aussie songwriter who has yet to break in the states. But she will.Buy it!
Milk Carton Kids “Memphis” from The Ash & Clay (Anti- 2013) —32. Check out Kenneth Pattengale and Joey Ryan's live session at KDHX.org.Buy it!
Josh Ritter “Bonfire” from The Beast in Its Tracks (self 2013) —31. Sun 2/23 Josh Ritter (Acoustic) with Gregory Alan Isakov – SheldonBuy it!
Typhoon “Dreams Of Cannibalism” from White Lighter (Roll Call 2013) —30. Kyle Morton's take on "Revolver."Buy it!
Kacey Musgraves “Blowin' Smoke” from Same Trailer Different Park (Mercury Nashville Records 2014) —29. Career record from Ms. Musgraves, and one I should have spun a whole lot more, given its excellence.Buy it!
Small Houses “Oh, Hiding Out” from Exactly Where You Wanted To Be (Yer Bird 2013) —28. Jeremy Quentin of Philadelphia. If there's a better song this year, then it would have to have been written by Steve Dawson. See down the playlist.Buy it!
Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison “Border Radio” from Cheater's Game (Premium/Thirty Tigers 2013) —27. Not quite sure why this one didn't show up on more lists this year. It's Bruce and Kelly!Buy it!
Ron Sexsmith “Deepens With Time” from Forever Endeavor (Cooking Vinyl 2013) —26. One of his most understated records, and also one of his best.Buy it!
Willie Nile “If I Ever See the Light” from American Ride (River House www.willienile.com 2013) —25. Another strong late period record from Mr. Nile.Buy it!
Yo La Tengo “Is That Enough” from Fade (Matador 2013) —24. The patent pending guitar tone of Ira meets a terrific string arrangement by Jeff Parker, beautifully recorded by John McEntire.Buy it!
Sam Phillips “All Over Me” from Push Any Button (Littlebox Recordings 2013) —23. John Wendland loves this record; me too.Buy it!
Grace Basement “Water Flowing Over a Mountain” from Wheel Within A Wheel (Avonmore 2013) L —22. Not counting Son Volt's "Honky Tonk," this is pretty easily the most accomplished record to come out of St. Louis this year.Buy it!
Phosphorescent “Song For Zula” from Muchacho (Dead Oceans www.deadoceans.com 2013) —21. Mon 1/27 Phosphorescent – FirebirdBuy it!
Travis “Warning Sign” from Where You Stand (Red Telephone Box 2013) —20. I may be the last person in St. Louis who cares about Travis but I don't care.Buy it!
Brandi Clark “The Day She Got Divorced” from 12 Stories (Slate Creek Records 2013) —19. Ms. Clark also wrote a bunch of songs on the Musgraves album. Apparently, she knows what she's doing.Buy it!
Valerie June “Somebody To Love” from Pushin' Against a Stone (Concord 2013) —18. Opening for Sharon Jones at the Pageant.Buy it!
The Lone Bellow “You Never Need Nobody” from The Lone Bellow (Descendant Records 2013) —17. Highly recommended live band.Buy it!
Charles Bradley “Where Do We Go From Here” from Victim Of Love (Dunham 2013) —16. A soul force.Buy it!
Vampire Weekend “Everlasting Arms” from Modern Vampires of the City (XL Recordings 2013) —15. Career record from VW. Everything -- singing, writing, concept and sound -- comes together.Buy it!
Neko Case “City Swan” from The Worse Things Get, the Harder I Fight, the Harder I Fight, the More I Love You (Anti- 2013) —14. Blasphemy, I know, but this isn't the best Neko record ever.Buy it!
Patty Griffin “Ohio” from American Kid SINGLE (New West www.newwestrecords.com 2013) —13. Any time Patty releases a record, it's an event.Buy it!
Laura Marling “Where Can I Go? (Radio Edit)” from Once I Was an Eagle (Ribbon Records 2013) —12. Stunning.Buy it!
Jesse Dee “Tell Me (Before It's Too Late)” from On My Mind / In My Heart (Alligator 2013) —11. Out of left field and instant soul classic.Buy it!
Caitlin Rose “Dallas (Radio Edit)” from The Stand In (ATO www.atorecords.com 2013) —10. Somebody make her a star, or at least get more people out to her show next time she comes to St. Louis.Buy it!
Dolly Varden “Saskatchewan To Chicago” from For a While (Mid-Fi 2013) —9. My song of the year. You got something better? Really?Buy it!
Mount Moriah “Those Girls” from Miracle Temple (Merge 2013) —8. Heather McEntire is one of my favorite singers on the indie side of Americana or is that vice versa?Buy it!
Veronica Falls “Buried Alive” from Waiting For Something To Happen (Slumberland) —7. Relentlessly rhythmic and tuneful.Buy it!
Mavis Staples “What Are They Doing In Heaven Today” from One True Vine (Anti- 2013) —6. Such a pleasure to see Mavis, live and charismatic, at the Blues and Heritage Fest this past year.Buy it!
Dawes “Something In Common” from Stories Don't End (HUB Records 2013) —5. This band put on my favorite show of 2013 at Off Broadway, and a record of well-told, quotidian stories.Buy it!
Camera Obscura “Do It Again” from Desire Lines (4AD 2013) —4. A truly great headphone record, as in you're missing the bongos on this track otherwise.Buy it!
Son Volt “Bakersfield” from Honky Tonk (Rounder www.rounder.com 2013) L —3. Nobody makes country music like Jay Farrar.Buy it!
The James Hunter 6 “So They Say” from The James Hunter 6 (Concord / Fantasy 2013) —2. Raspy and real. The album James Hunter was born to make. Mixed in beautiful mono.Buy it!
Jason Isbell “Songs That She Sang in the Shower” from Southeastern (Thirty Tigers www.thirtytigers.com 2013) —1. No record this year had more extraordinary, powerful and inspiring songs than this one.Buy it!
Like everything else, times are approximate.
Spinitron and this station are not liable for errors or omissions.