What you like in your twenties is not completely trustworthy. I trust the teens more. Especially before you develop an aesthetic, you like what you really like, and they just glow to you in this way and it’s beyond capitalism. It’s not necessarily because things were marketed towards you – Devo was marketed towards me, but I was just like “this is the shit.” It just sticks out like a sore thumb.

King Krule
"Neptune Estate"

I don’t think I could ever really explain what this song makes me feel, or what it means to me, and I think I like it better because of that. But I will say that “a surplus blank white surface” is a very accurate description of depression as I have experienced it in my life, and that “can we lose our emotions and still live well?” is a question I thought a lot about in the first quarter of this year, before I ever heard this song. Also, my heart always jumps when he sings the “when true blue love meets, this faith will dissolve” part, and the sound of the saxophone in this strikes me as almost unbearably romantic. This is probably my single favorite song from 2013.

The Best of the Best of 2013

I’m very proud of the set of year-end posts Aylin Zafar and I put together at BuzzFeed this year, with big help from Caitlin White, Maria Sherman, Alex Naidus, Tanya Chen, Gabriela Kruschewsky, and many other writers. Our goal was to be as helpful to readers as possible, cover as much as we possibly could, and avoid the sort of apples vs. oranges dilemmas you get by mixing everything together, so we broke things out into genres and themes. Here’s the full set. I hope you find some things to enjoy.

31 Excellent Records You Might Have Missed In 2013

25 Pop Records That Made Everyone’s Life Better In 2013

13 Electronic Music Albums From 2013 You Need To Hear

25 Dance Records That Gave Us Life In 2013

26 Reasons Country Music Was Great In 2013

13 Magnificent Metal Albums That Ruled 2013

24 Reasons To Love Folk Music In 2013

20 Songs From Around The World You Might Have Missed In 2013

The 36 Best R&B Records of 2013

The 32 Best Rap Albums of 2013

12 Brazilian Songs From 2013 You Need To Hear

15 Reasons 2013 Was A New Golden Age For Punk

23 Amazing Rock Albums From 2013 Everyone Should Hear

15 Times K-Pop Quietly Owned The World In 2013

22 Of The Most Heart-Melting Love Songs From 2013

26 Things That Defined Music In 2013

22 Essays I Wrote For BuzzFeed In 2013

If you grow up in the United States, it can be very easy to have no perspective on living in a culture dominated by art and media from another country. Some music from around the world seeps into mainstream American culture, but it’s never dominant, and music from abroad is made with the understanding that you have to cater to the American market to be a big star. Americans are used to the rest of the world bending over backwards to blend in with their culture, and think nothing of foreign stars from ABBA and Björk to Shakira and Phoenix singing in their second language to appeal to the English-speaking world. Americans are almost never asked to adapt, and very rarely have to feel as though their culture is being infiltrated by the value systems of foreign nations.

Lorde’s “Royals” Isn’t Anti-Rap, It’s Anti-Imperialism

I wrote about Lorde’s hit, and how it’s mainly about the experience of having weird values from another culture enter your life through pop music.