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Best Albums of 2013

December 11, 2013


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We thought of doing this video a few days ago. We posted an Instagram clip of me running around the apartment with Meemers chasing me, and Pharell’s “Happy” was playing in the background. Someone in the comments asked what song it was, and suggested that they like our taste in music. To which I thought, hell, we don’t really talk much about the music we listen to outside of Kpop, now, do we? Couple that with the fact that I had a day to kill while Martina was getting her tattoo done (almost done; just one more session to go!) and I figured that I’d spend the time to talk about my favourite albums, which is what you see in the video above.

I realize this video might shock some people, because my taste in music is rather unpredicted, no? Unless people follow us on Last.fm, I doubt they know what we listen to outside of Kpop. So, here it is! Yes, a lot of it is electronic. A lot of it serious. Not much of it is pump your fist high energy music. Why? Probably because we hear a lot of that in Kpop, anyways, and so I don’t feel like I can listen to the same kind of stuff all day long. Different times of day have different soundtracks to them, different moods.

A lot of this music is night-time music for me. That’s because we’re seriously seriously super night owls. We wake up at 1PM and don’t go to sleep till 5AM most days. Now that it’s winter, by the time we get out of bed and have breakfast and get ready to go to the studio, the sun has already set. Most of the music we listen to is in the dark. So this list is rather emolicious.

I said that I’d mention 10 more albums that didn’t make the list, so I’ll share those here as well:

Iron & Wine “Ghost on Ghost”

Now, this album isn’t really GREAT to me, like Iron & Wine’s “Our Endless Numbered Days,” which was almost perfect. God that album’s so great I crey. This album has a different vibe to it. A lot less folky, a lot more bluegrasssy, I think. Is that what it’s called? Bluegrass? I don’t know. But I imagine it being sung on the set of True Blood. It has a gospel feel to it, almost. See! I like diverse music! This falls under the Sunday home-cleaning category, though. Not really night-timey, IMO.

Nine Inch Nails “Hesitation Marks”

I was surprised to like this album. Seriously. I didn’t read good things about it, and I find Trent Reznor a bit too high school poetry-club-ish at times (I hate the line “why do you get all the love in the world.” Bleh), but I really love Industrial sounds. I love it when El-P does it in hip hop, and I love Fuck Buttons’ albums as well. And this album had a lot of great songs on it, so I’ll shamelessly share with the world that I like listening to it. THERE!

Jon Hopkins “Immunity”

OOH more moody mature music. You know how I described Bonobo’s album, as dimly lit adult bar music? I was actually at one of these adult bars recently. It was a Vinyl bar, where you can request songs from the DJ. I owned that playlist, for sure. And I played a lot of Bonobo. Afterwards I spoke with the DJ and he said he loved the requests, and asked me if I knew Jon Hopkins’ album, to which I shouted “I WAS GONNA REQUEST THAT BUT I WASN’T SURE IF IT WAS TOO DARK!” But he loved the album as well, and I was shocked and pleased. Hopefully you’ll like it, too.

Flying Lotus “Until the Quiet Comes”

I loved this album. Flying Lotus is one of our most played artists ever. All of his stuff is great. And this album was perfectly Night-Timey as well! Yay! You might remember Flying Lotus from our video a long time ago on Bucheon’s Sun and Clouds. Oh man FlyLo is great stuff. I love his “Fall in Love” remix, which isn’t on this album, but check out his video for Tiny Tortures, featuring Elijah Wood! Probably the best song on the album, IMO.

Lastly: I remember reading on his Twitter that he’s part Korean! So I’m not sure if that excludes him from the list :D

Jessy Lanza “Pull My Hair Back”

This was a total rough gem for me. I have no idea how I found this album, really, but I’m freaking ecstatic that I did. Why? Because supposedly her album was produced by one of the guys from Junior Boys, and Junior Boys are up there for our top artists of all time. They’re not the best artists of all time, but they have a very special place in our hearts, when we first started dating. And their last album kinda stank. But this…this is great! It’s got the same vibe as Junior Boys of yore, bedroom pop kinda stuff. SO NICE!

Mazzy Star “Seasons of Your Day”

Yes, this is kinda country-ish. So what! Country can be alright at times. Country’s just another kind of folk, except Mazzy Star has a kind of Dream-Pop vibe to her which I really like. And this is their first album in a really long time. “Fade Into You” is a freaking fantastic song from a long time ago, and this album is a lovely follow up to that. Yay!

Disclosure “Settle”

What’s this? Another uppity album? Something you can dance to? Ho ho! It’s true! I don’t just listen to night time stuff. Though this is dance music that feels a bit darker. Doesn’t matter. It’s still totally badass. It has kind of a micro-house feel to it. It almost reminds me of Herbert a bit. Anyhoodledoodle, shake your ass to this album right here. Especially the first full track. SO GOOD!

The Lonely Island “The Wack Album”

TAKE ME SERIOUSLY! This album is hilarious. It’s really well done. Really well done. The fart song made us pee with laughter. Spring Break is a brilliant commentary on society. The compliments song is hilarious as well. It’s good fun. Really. Listen to it and laugh. There’s nothing wrong with laughing when you listen to music. Admit it: Kpop makes you laugh sometimes, too :D

Purity Ring “Shrines”

You know our friend Ryan? I wonder if he’s reading this blog post now. Hi Ryan: this section is about you. Now, Ryan suggests a lot of music to us, the majority of which I don’t have the time to look into. Seriously I see his messages and think “yeah I’ll check it out” and then pfffft forget because I have a lot of things to do. Nothing against Ryan. I’m just scatterbrained. The point is, this band Ryan forced me to listen to by coming into the studio and just playing it. I could’t avoid it. And I liked it! A lot. To the point that I played it a lot on my own afterwards. Again, this is dark nighttime music but that’s the sexiest kind of music anyways. Listen to it!

Bibio “Silver Wilkinson”

Ok I don’t know what’s up with this album. Most of it is serious, slower music, which I like and think is great on its own, but then “A tout a l’heure” comes out of nowhere and is a gloriously uplifting. It’s lovely. Really lovely. Skipping through the park as the sun streaks through clouds lovely. Be happy when you listen to this song and it’ll make you happier.

As for songs I’ve listened to but couldn’t get through the rest of the album:

RJD2 “More Than it Isn’t” – Track 2 “Temperamental”

Damn I love this song! It’s perfect for the gym, perfect pacing. Great singing, and has that RJD2 doo-wop feel that I freaking love from Deadringer that he abandoned for some freaking reason to do other stuff. This song has that vibe that I like. The rest of the album is a steaming turd, but man this song is great! Side note: do you like Mad Men? RJD2 made the opening credit song to it :D

Pharell “Happy”

We just got into this song over the past couple of weeks. Holy smokes this is a lovely song. It has that Cee Lo Green chantable feel to it. It’s got a great message and I’m not ashamed to say that I like it. And the website for the song is lovely as well. We actually wanted to do something like that for Seoul as well. I don’t know. Just listen to this in the morning. You’ll fell better about life.

Yeah! That’s it for this list. Yes this video’s got little to do with Korea, but I felt like doing it. I hope I introduced you to some new stuff and you like some of it. Let me know what albums you recommend, because I always like checking out new stuff, or – if you like any of these albums I talked about – let’s squeal about them together in the comments! You can be interested in Korea and like non Korean music as well, right? RIGHT!

Subscribe for more of our random videos on our neglected random channel! Martina’s got a video she’s working on that she’ll put up there, which you won’t see if you didn’t subscribe!



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Best Albums of 2013


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  1. Hey simon, which song of BOARDS OF CANADA did you play? I really like the beat of it. Thanks :D

    1 year ago
  2. Hey. So, it’s not all to indie or anything, and yall probs have already heard it, but for the past week I’ve been stuck on the album “The Fall” by the Gorillaz. I’ve been talking about it a lot. It’s really good. So don’t judge me. (My favorite song on it is Bobby in Phoenix. It has this whole old timey, bayou feel to it.)

    2 years ago
  3. Holy crap dude, The North Borders is one of my favourite albums of all time. Please listen to his previous albums, especially Black Sands, but the older ones like Dial M for Monkey or Animal Magic are amazing too

    2 years ago
  4. This is a bit late, but S&M and fellow nasties? do any of you listen to Breakbot or Sam Sparro? Breakbot is from the same label as Justice, and both have a special place in my heart. I love the breakbot mixes that you can find on the youtubes~ so good for just washing dishes/cooking and dancing along in my kitchen. Sam Sparro’s most popular song is “black and gold” but “clingwrap” has a very special place in my ears! How’s about Kraftwerk? I really love listening to them on long night drives, makes me feel like I’m driving in space. OH! and dangit Lorenz Rhode! As you can see, I love that funky stuff.


    1. Breakbot

    2. Sam Sparro
    http:// http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18Mtcem90_k

    3. Kraftwerk

    http:// http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okhQtoQFG5s

    4. Lorenz Rhode

    http:/ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RUrHDVs_ow


    2 years ago
  5. What about Stromae and his album Racine Carrée? All the songs on that are amazing! =D

    2 years ago
  6. How have you NEVER seen Portlandia?!? Oregon Nastys UNITE! <—this results in multiple copies sent in care packages :P

    2 years ago
  7. I knew you guys listened to non-kpop I just didn’t realize that we listened to a lot of the same artists….. so needless to say I loved this video

    2 years ago
  8. You guys should check out “A Color Map of the Sun” by Pretty Lights! It’s up this alley, albeit with more electronic but still great jam music :D

    2 years ago
  9. *squeals* the neighborhood!
    Do you like Cage The Elephant?

    2 years ago
  10. Simon & Martina, do you guys listen to Boom Boom Satellites? I think you might like them (by the way, they are a Japanese electronic duo)

    2 years ago
  11. I usually like to just watch videos or read articles and comments online, but I love this so much I can’t help but comment. I am always looking for new music to get into and I think this is a cool idea, sharing other music that you like because I listen to music in all languages and I like seeing what types of music people like to listen too.

    2 years ago
  12. Omg it’s no surprise that u guys know lonely island but I’m still fangrilling whenever u guys mention lonely island,they’re super cool people I luv em :3 my favorite collab is rihanna’s (shy Ronnie) and Justin timberlake’s (3-way,mother lover,dick in a box) ^^

    2 years ago
  13. Knew of some of these bands/groups/musicians/???, and I am thinking I will like the rest, who I have not heard about, just by your descriptions. I find it really hard to stay on top of some of this music since you really have to search for it, i usually rely on a few people to feed me info. Maybe I’ll be the one with the info this time around.

    P.S. Did you know ‘Boards of Canada’ is actually a scottish group (2 guys i believe) who got their name from those old-school narrated nature shows (that were funded by the ‘boards of canada’… haven’t seen them on anymore, but always made that statement in the credits with a little canadian flag). This fact was obtained by the internet and I cannot actually confirm any of it, kinda makes sense though, their music fits it.

    2 years ago
  14. Wow, you mention a lot of bands that I had no idea of, thanks a lot for this video!!

    2 years ago
  15. thank uou so much for putting me up on all this musical goodness! you da siMAN! UNH! allow me to put you up on my favorite app/game of the 2013! its called puzzle and dragons! if you liked pokemon games at all as a youth (or if you just love a good rpg) you will be com insanely obsessed with this game as i am! i really hope you love this game because i love you guys and i want you to love me for putting yall up on PAD! if you wish to level speedily, please do not hesitate to friend me and use my beastly monsters! my id is 328,775,224. im so excited i hope you try it! ps. im currently applying to teaching in korea agencies! hopefully well be in the same country by next month!

    2 years ago
  16. Oh Boards, how I had forgotten you. never again.

    2 years ago
  17. all I can say is that this is an amazing playlist!

    2 years ago
  18. After watching this, I think you might like the album “Jackasoul” from Mayson The Soul, released about 2 months ago. It’s korean indie, with a comtemplative twist and well… a soul vibe.

    I actually bought the entire album since I’ve been listening to “Holiday” for the past month/month and a half.

    I wanted to do a Kindie request about it, but since my computer is old and my webcam is shitty, I’m having a hard time with anything related to video production. Hope you’ll check it out.

    2 years ago
  19. Please take an aural gander at The Maine’s Forever Halloween or their newest EP “Imaginary Numbers” because it’s fucking fantastic! [Lololol aural gander. Pretty sure I made that up.]

    2 years ago
  20. Nice ~ !
    This is interesting.

    Next one …um… favorite Christmas songs?

    2 years ago
  21. o.O I have… wow, way different musical tastes. XD For the year, um, I actually don’t think I have any favorite albums from this year. A lot of my favorite bands only put albums out every other year or so, and I’m still just listening to those XD

    2 years ago
  22. Omg Jhameel is my JAM

    2 years ago
    Can I ask for a favor?
    Please like our page for our short film, Countdown, please?
    It was based off on a KaiSoo fanfic :)

    2 years ago
  24. I feel like you and everyone that likes calm electronic music might enjoy Orelha Negra, they’re portuguese and have some great stuff.


    2 years ago
  25. I used to only listen to K pop for well over 2 years and after a while realized that I was missing out on so much. So I started to explore the world of music and since then have found so many gems that I absolutely love! I would have missed them if I hadn’t decided to listen to other genres and languages. I Still listen to K pop just not nearly as much as what I used to.

    Here are some good kiwi artist that I like:

    Soljah – message
    Six60 – Don’t forget your roots ( love that song)
    Shapeshifter ( love these guys)
    and the Naked and famous.

    I have so many other artists that I just love! I’m not sure exactly what your interests are but could always give a lot more at another time :D

    2 years ago
  26. I like your music tastes!! Must say, I’m a little surprised at this list, but it’s awesome! I like a lot of those type of music too!
    I’m just gonna let playlist mode go, while I sit here desk warming. :)

    2 years ago
  27. I really love Pharrell and Happy! Is incredible!! I love it! Because I’m Happy~~ (8)

    2 years ago
  28. I’m just blown away of how similar our music tastes are ohmyohgfho,, I actually started jumping up and down when you mentioned Tyler, The Creator; that album is so great! Definitely checking out some of the other bands you mentioned. Love how it’s all so chill
    And I actually have a few recommendations that you guys might like, too! Check out King Krule as well as The Internet (their new album, “Feel Good”, is flawless in my opinion). Actually, maybe even Kilo Kish! They’re not really “ambient” but they’re pretty cool
    Anyway, this was an awesome video! I’d be down to see more videos of your current music faves or something of the sort in the future~

    2 years ago
  29. Ha! I was marathonning through your old videos last night and thought “I wonder what Simon and Martina listen to outside of K-pop? I’ll ask if they can do a video on that next time” Then I wake up this morning, and here it is… spooky :)

    2 years ago
  30. OMG!!!! I’ve been obsessed with Pharell’s song “Happy” ever since I heard it while watching Despicable Me 2. The other songs that he made for that movie series (1&2) are amazing. I recommend listening to “Fun,Fun,Fun” and “Just a cloud away”. “Happy” and “Fun, fun, fun” are similar in their uppity, feel good, dance around moods. “Just a cloud away” is slower, relaxing, having fun while cooking dinner music. It’s got this old timey, soulful vibe to it too. Makes me think of this image of a really young person and a really old person slow two-stepping and smiling on a sunny day in the kitchen. It’s also a song that makes me feel better if I’m having a crappy day. Great exploring the streets at anytime of the day music too. Everytime I hear it I wanna grab a random sad looking stranger on the street and dance with them and make them feel better. Pharell is a musical genius.

    2 years ago
  31. I’m happy that I in some way triggered this video/blog (or at least I think it was me…. <. .>)). I’ve been listening to Pharell’s song almost every morning. Good way to start the day. I loved almost every you artists/songs you mentioned and thanks to you I now have new music I can listen to besides Kpop. Thank you soooo much Simon!

    2 years ago
  32. One thing that I got from Primary’s plagiarism scandal is that it introduced me to Dutch singer Caro Emerald, her songs are really really good.

    2 years ago
  33. Listen to “Chocolate” -THE 1975…. LOVE IT!!!

    2 years ago
  34. GuisE! i loved this video so much :D but why no tame impala? there’s a aussie lack :c

    2 years ago
  35. This does not surprise me at all.

    2 years ago
  36. That Jessy Lanza album is so so good. Also, new flying lotus in the works. The bits they released today are blowing my mind,.

    2 years ago
  37. Aw yiss Purity Ring, “Shrines” – i love that song

    Anyway, as a heads up, I dunno if you guys know about the Night Vale podcast but they share a lot of great indie music stuff
    (as a super bonus to their already awesome “creepy town” community news thing, it’s a great podcast, check it out.

    A favourite of mine they showed me was The Tiny – “Closer”
    Check dat out here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4GbDa2UnAO4

    Also speaking of music and hipsters, one of my all-time favourite bands is “Man Factory”
    who is a rock band but their first 3 albums (2 out already) are a rock opera all about the video game Street Fighter.
    Check them out here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4s6Hy338rs&list=PLB6DFE3456BA1DF35

    Hope y’all find hear something you enjoy :3

    2 years ago
  38. Ooh! new music!
    I love it when I’m introduced to music I’ve never really listened to before.
    I just can’t help it. When it comes to music, I’m greedy. I want to know everything. :P
    Doesn’t matter where it’s from, what language it’s in, or how weird it is
    if I like it, I like it.
    If there’s one thing I’ve learnt, it’s not to dismiss anything because of pre-conceived ideas, because you might end up liking it.
    And then you will look like a fool. :P

    2 years ago
  39. Hey! Love the video and music you mentioned! Have you heard Braid’s Flourish // Perish? I think you’ll enjoy it. Love u guise! Keep it up!

    2 years ago
  40. In Classixx’s “I’ll Get You” it’s Danish, not Norwegian. ;) Though I don’t blame people for getting it mixed up. I’m from Denmark, and I listened to the song expecting to hear Norwegian, so the first minute or so I had no idea what was being said. Lol, can’t even recognise my own native language!

    2 years ago