AlternativeNation.net’s Top Ten Albums Of 2013

After our three part roundtable discussion series and vehement arguments on Facebook chat, here is AlternativeNation.net’s Top Ten Albums of 2013.

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10. Noiseheads- 1994

Noiseheads released their self-recorded/independently released debut album 1994 in March. The album’s highlights include the upbeat “Annie” and melancholic album closer “Dust.” While the album leans a bit heavy on 90’s nostalgia, frontman Nick Gray clearly displays his knack for being able to write a memorable rock song and gives a voice to disenchanted millenials. Noiseheads are primed to grow and evolve into their own unique sound on their 2nd album.

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9. Sound City Players- Sound City: Real To Reel

The Sound City album features rock greats like the surviving members of Nirvana, Paul McCartney, Stevie Nicks, John Fogerty, Trent Reznor, Josh Homme, and many others.

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8. Arctic Monkeys- AM

AM is a great addition to the Arctic Monkeys’ catalog, delivering several well crafted riff-based rock tunes which are definitely needed nowadays and featuring input from Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme.

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7. How to Destroy Angels- Welcome oblivion

Trent Reznor and his wife Mariqueen Maandig released their atmospheric debut album earlier this year.

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6. Middle Class Rut- Pick Up Your Head

Middle Class Rut’s second album packs quite a punch, channeling influences like Jane’s Addiction and Rage Against The Machine but possessing its own identity. Key tracks include “Aunt Betty” and “Dead Eye”.

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5. Filter- The Sun Comes Out Tonight

Filter’s latest album is their best since 2002’s The Amalgamut. Patrick’s voice sounds re-energized and the album features new Filter classics like: What Do You Say, Surprise, and We Hate It When You Get What You Want.

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4. Cage The Elephant- Melophobia

Cage The Elephant yet again changed up their sound for their latest album, with frontman Matt Shultz reaching new heights vocally and lyrically on tracks like Come a Little Closer, Cigarette Daydreams, Spiderhead, and Hypocrite.

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3. Pearl Jam- Lightning Bolt

Pearl Jam returned in style with Lightning Bolt, a nice addition to the band’s legendary catalog. New tracks like Mind Your Manners, Sirens, Infallible, and Lightning Bolt have fit in seamlessly with the band’s old classics on tour.

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2. Nine Inch Nails- Hesitation Marks

Trent Reznor shocked fans and brought NIN back from the dead after declaring that the band was done 4 years ago. Lead single “Came Back Haunted” showed that Reznor still had the ability to write a hit. There’s a sense of maturity on the new album, but the darkness is still there and even lighter tracks like “Everything” acknowledge his journey to where he is at today.

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1. Queens of the Stone Age- …Like Clockwork

By far the best album of 2013, Queens of the Stone Age returned with their first album in 6 years and it is their masterpiece. Josh Homme reaches a level of sonic bliss with a feeling of desperation that is not often heard in today’s hipster/mediocre rock scene. Highlights include: every song on the album.

  • Mathis

    No Alice In Chains?I liked The Devil Put Dinosaurs here a lot! I think it´s a awesome Record!!

    • diego

      yes! I was surprised too! you’re totally right, it is a great record and songs like voices, stones, scalpel, etc. are superb!

  • PUNK JAM

    # 1 ALTERNATIVE – GRUNGE ROCK ALBUM OF 2013 WINNER IS :PEARL JAM LIGHTNING BOLT BECAUSE IT ROCKS HARD AND MAKES YOU FEEL GOOD 🙂 HAPPY NEW YEAR , PEACE ON EARTHAND KICK OUT THE JAMS MOTHER FUCKERS

  • PUNK JAM

    PEARL JAM 🙂

  • Dan

    Come on, Brett. I realize it\’s your opinion and I usually like what you have to say; but no Alice in top 10?!? I agree it wasn\’t their strongest effort, but still better than most others out there in my opinion.

  • nikhil1994

    No Alice in chains Album..A huge letdown by brett

  • Gal

    TDPDH is definitely stronger than half of albums listed here. Actually, I think only QotSA and NIN deserve to be in the TOP 10. Noiseheads and Middle Class Rut are also good, but they\’re not \’top\’ material. And what\’s with the love for Lightning Bolt? One of the biggest disappointments of the year.

    • Hecate

      Gal says:
      TDPDH is definitely stronger than half of albums listed here.

      Yes. This. I agree. Brett liked Voices, but nothing else. TDPDH is a very eclectic record, meant to grow on you. Some songs I hated at the beginning are my favorites now. But I am a hard-core AIC fan, and I always will be, both old with beloved Layne and new with Will. Very talented group.

      Wondering what happened to Boom. Just saying.

    • Craigory52

      I agree, Lightning Bolt is way overrated and was very disappointing. But Hesitation Marks was really disappointing for me.

  • Drexl

    \”Black Pudding\” (Lanegan & Duke Garwood) needs more love.

    • billy

      Hell yeah man black pudding was awesome.

  • Mark Ryan

    Thanks! I will definitely give noiseheads and middleclass rut a chance!

  • Craigory52

    Hesitation Marks is terrible and I think Lightning Bolt is probably my least favorite album next to Binaural. I would have put The Devil Put Dinosaurs on the list before those two even if it wasn\’t as good as BGWTB. Filter\’s album is really good. Just my opinion and thanks for sharing.

  • Raj

    QOTSA’s …Like Clockwork is a great album. Lots of good songs, very well structured and composed. Great lyrics, it’s a very diverse and versatile album. I kept playing those songs over and over again. I still think TDPDH should be at least in the top 10. Granted it may not be BGWTB, but there are enough songs strong enough to carry the album.

  • Superfuzz

    TDPDH doesn’t deserve a place. I think that’s a pretty fair list.

  • Rayne

    I don’t know if I’m more surprised by no AiC or that Hesitation Marks made it on.

  • Barn

    The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here is worthy of making the list but it\’s no big deal. It\’s not groundbreaking as their past albums but it is a solid effort and better than most of what their contemporaries have put out recently.

  • http://nemsworld.com Christine

    Happy New Year Classy Excellent Taste in Music People – Looking forward to 2014 (Soundgarden, Jane’s, RHCP, and some QotSA US tour dates if were lucky with NIN)…..

    I feel like the world and I have caught up with each other that QofSA is in the #1 spot. I only own four on this list, I better get on that….. *runs to internetwebshopping*

  • Duncan

    Good list. You left out how much Boom sucks cock,

  • understood

    wow NIN and how to destroy angels……….jeez get off trent reznor already and wheres VISTA CHINO?

    • NIN & HTDA

      Deserved, both albums are great.

      • truthseeker

        How to destroy angels was trivial garbage thats why they cancelled the tour early and the band is over.

  • PUNK JAM

    You know something?? Not enough people and music critics give punk rock bands any credit in the whole alternative rock music movement from the 1990s and now in 2013. This year two great legendary punk bands: Bad Religion and Green Day put out incredibly good original albums this year. First, Bad Religion with True North, which came out in January of 2013, broke into the top 40 billboard charts for once in their entire career. Their music is still relevant today with its raw angry punk rock energy and political commentary mixed with a very devoted audience. Bad Religion is still on top of their game selling millions of albums worldwide and making music that speaks to todays youth and yesturdays punk generations. The other big hit of 2013 started off at the end of 2012 with Green Day\\’s triple album opus: Uno, Dos, Tre. Even after Billie Joe Armstrongs iheart radio festival mental meltdown and subsequent rehab for drugs and alcohol, the band came back stronger and better in 2013, selling out shows and their 3 albums broke the top 40 billboards charts. Green Day and Bad Religion are still keeping the fire alive in the world of punk rock, melodic punk and just loud aggressive rock music that has a good message and a youthful rebellion that was the early roots of todays comeback success of grunge bands like Pearl Jam, Soundgarden and Nirvana, as well as the Foo Fighters and so on. So please give punk rock bands the same respect and credit they have earned and deserve very much. I hope someday in fact, Green Day and Bad Religion also make it into the rock n roll hall of fame, so far their greatest influences: The Ramones and The Clash have earned their rightful place in the world of anti-social pop culture music history

  • PUNK JAM

    The top biggest alternative rock bands making a successful return to the mainstream charts of 2013
    1 Pearl Jam,
    2 Stone Temple Pilots with a new singer Chester Bennington ,
    3 Queens Of The Stone Age,
    4 Cage The Elephant,
    5 Bad Religion,
    6 Green Day,
    7 The Dead Weather ( Jack White’s other band , besides White Stripes and The Raconteurs ),
    8 The Hives,
    9 Nine Inch Nails,
    10 The Sound City Players soundtrack with Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, Pat Smear and that Sir Paul 🙂
    11 Alice In Chains
    12 Red Hot Chili Peppers B-Sides Collection

  • jon ian

    Jeez. You might as well have Miley and Kanye on this list also. To even lump these no names(I guess their friends of yours because they are truly no names) is an embarrassment. I just have to assume when the first QOTSA album came out you guys were probably listening to Barney at the time. Another release like this and the real fans who were there in the Kyuss(who apparently you don\\’t know anything about) days are going to be gone for good. And what a joke to have Trent and his wife\\’s terrible flop albums listed. That PJ LP is also the same garbage Vedder has been regurgitating for the past 20 years. The Alice In Chains record has no competition. Give me a song better than \\”Phantom Limb\\” released in 2013.

  • Shaney

    …Like Clockwork is fresh and interesting, but waaaay overrated. I miss their raw, stonerish vibe on the other hand, but at least we still have Vista Chino. I really like Hesitation Marks, yeah, it\\\’s a bit too poppy, but experimental and their best since The Fragile. Lightning Bolt, Sound City and Welcome oblivion are totally disappointing. Melophobia and AM provide few good tunes, but overall they are nothing special and the latter is a QotSA & The Black Keys rip off. Noiseheads and Middle Class Rut – decent, but what are they doing in TOP10? I haven\\\’t listened to Filter\\\’s album. I still can name a lot of records released this year which are better than those mentioned in this list. Russian Circles, The Ocean, Red Fang, Alice in Chains, Monster Magnet, Alter Bridge, Riverside, Obscure Sphinx, Anciients, Clutch, Palms, Cult of Luna, Church of Misery, Steven Wilson and so on, all of them came up with amazing efforts. But I guess you haven\\\’t listened to most of them … hence, I highly recommend.

  • http://www.alternativenation.net Brett Buchanan

    Keep in mind this list is based on me and 4 reporters lists. I’ve never even heard 2 of the albums it (Middle Class Rut and How To Destroy Angels). We were all pretty unanimous in QOTSA as #1 though.

  • Undecided

    The people that go on this site need to listen to Violent Soho,British India, Karnivool, Emperors, Children Collide and The Getaway Plan from Australia! Although only the first three released an album this year. Check them out and pay some attention to Australia. Also check out Wavves, which aren\’t from Australia but America.

  • Grunge fan

    Senium 2nd album “You’re not from here” should have made this list

  • John

    You know you only listen to like five bands when you add a soundtrack to your best of the year list.

    Also, speaking of bands who’ve been regurgitating the same crap for the past twenty years, Alice in Chains’ new one is certainly not the best of the year.

  • sheep

    Its like a list a sophomore in high school would dream up,…no foo fighters so they just toss a dave grohl soundtrack in its place……hilarious. That album trent reznor made for his wife was probably the worst music hes ever made in his career to even be on this list is appalling and clearly just a fanboy moment. Please editors listen to more/different music…