Best of 2013: The Songs

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Who doesn’t love lists?

We here at Pop-Break were raised on lists. We love them like we love bears, Keanu Reeves’ surfer movies and all things pop culture.

So as we do every year, we present to you our personal favorites in film, music (albums and songs) and television.

If you’d like to listen to the songs on the list click this link…Pop-Break.com’s Best Songs of 2013

Here’s Who is Contributing to this Year’s List:

Brent Johnson (Co-Founder, Managing Editor, Singles Party Columnist):

15. ‘Brave’ by Sara Bareilles
With its bouncy beat, soaring vocals, and seize-the-day lyrics, the latest single from the piano-playing Grammy nominee is the second-best pure pop song of the year — anchored by a perfectly constructed chorus.

14. ‘Mirrors’ by Justin Timberlake
What then is the best pure pop song of the year? JT’s groove-laced love letter to his wife — anchored by another perfectly constructed chorus.

13. ‘The Auld Triangle’ from The ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ Soundtrack
An a capella version of an Irish folk song about prison? Such is the definition of gorgeous when sung by Chris Thile of The Punch Brothers, Marcus Mumford, and Mr. Timberlake. (No, that last one isn’t a typo. He does folk music, too.)

12. ‘Still Into You’ by Paramore
Yes, it’s a big piece of pop-punk cheese. But what wonderful pop-punk cheese it is. If only for the reckless glee in which Hayley Williams sings about her beau.

11. ‘Man’ by Neko Case
If punk rock and alt-country procreated, their child would sound like this: a stinging piece of gender celebration from a woman blessed with one of popular music’s most compelling voices.

10. ‘Dirty Boys’ by David Bowie
An off-kilter horn section. Bursts of stabbing electric guitar. Lyrics that rhyme “feather hat” with “cricket bat.” Yep, David Bowie still has it.

9. ‘Reflektor’ by Arcade Fire
The album was a disappointment — all experimentation without joy or energy. But the title track is magnificent: moody, spooky, and alluring. It’s like ’80s synth-pop walking through a haunted house.

8. ‘Save Us’ by Paul McCartney
This wins the 2013 award for the best song that absolutely doesn’t sound like it was written by a man born in 1942. The opening track from Macca’s fantastic new album is a collaboration with Adele producer Paul Epworth — and the result is a driving rocker with a killer riff that has the former Beatle sounding as fresh as ever.

7. ‘Getaway’ by Pearl Jam
The opening track from Pearl Jam’s stellar new album is anchored by a slithering bass riff, a high-energy Eddie Vedder vocal, and a chorus that most rock bands their age forget how to write 20 years into their career.

6. ‘Dance Apocalyptic’ by Janelle Monae
We can only hope this is what the end of the world sounds like: bubblegum disco that’s so deliciously infectious you can’t help but dance.

5. ‘Sugar Won’t Work’ by Elvis Costello & The Roots
The much-hyped collaboration between my favorite artist and the hip-hop icons was intriguing, if not quite spectacular. But this track is a clear highlight: a slinky bit of subdued funk with one of Costello’s trademark catchy melodies.

4. ‘Get Lucky’ by Daft Punk, Pharrell Williams, and Nile Rodgers
How did Daft Punk mark their return to the pop charts? By enlisting Rodgers, one of the past’s most underrated hitmakers, and Williams, one of today’s smartest hitmakers, to concoct the catchiest piece of sex music since Marvin Gaye was alive. And points for doing so without ripping off Marvin Gaye.

3. ‘Ya Hey’/’Hudson’/Young Lion’ by Vampire Weekend
Okay, so this is really three songs. But the Brooklyn alt-rockers deserve credit for closing out their great new album with the most diverse 1-2-3 punch of the year. The first tune floats along with a fuzzy beat, airy keyboards, and strange backing vocals. The second is a haunting minor-key elegy. And the third is a pretty piano-sprinkled confection that wraps the record up on a unique little note.

2. ‘Black Skinhead’ by Kanye West
What do you get when you mix together kinetic drums, a wellspring of confidence, confrontational lyrics, otherworldly yelps, and production help from Daft Punk? Not only the best hip-hop song of the year, but the most thrilling punk song in a long time.

1. ‘Royals’ by Lorde
So much about this record is perfect: The sparse instrumentation. The utterly infectious vocal lines. The tongue-in-cheek satire of hip-hop excess sung over a hip-hop beat. And all of it comes from a 17-year-old from New Zealand. Thanks to Lorde, 2013 marked the return of a No. 1 smash with substance.

Matt Agosta (Staff Writer, Hip-Hop Writer, Singles Party Columnist):
1. “Rap God” by Eminem
2. “Work (Remix)” by A$AP Ferg featuring French Montana, Trinidad James, Schoolboy Q, and A$AP Rocky
3. “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe (Remix)” by Kendrick Lamar featuring Jay Z
4. “B.I.T.C.H.” by Tech N9ne
5. “Power Trip” by J. Cole

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Erica Batchelor (Staff Writer, Interviewer):
1. “Demons” by Imagine Dragons
2. “Do I Wanna Know” by Arctic Monkeys
3. “Young Legs” by Anthony Green
4. “Harlem” by New Politics
5. “Sometimes You’re the Hammer, Sometimes You’re the Nail” by A Day to Remember

Bill Bodkin (Co-Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Interviewer, Singles Party Columnist):
1. “Lift Me Up” – Five Finger Death Punch f./Rob Halford
2. “High Hopes” by Bruce Springsteen
3. “Out of Time” – Stone Temple Pilots featuring Chester Bennington
4. “Standing in the Sun” Slash featuring Myles Kennedy
5. “Earth Rocker” – Clutch
6. “All Kinds” by Sebadoh
7. “Big Room Bass” by DJ Prime
8. “It’s About Time” by Young the Giant
9. “Reflektor” by Arcade Fire
10. (tie) “Do I Wanna to Know?” by Arctic Monkeys
“My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark” by Fall Out Boy

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Sue Bodkin (Editor-at-Large):
1. “Royals” by Lorde
2. “Ghosts That We Knew” by Mumford & Sons
3. “Supersoaker” by Kings of Leon
4. “Stubborn Love” by The Lumineers
5. “Closer” by Tegan & Sara

Mallory Delchamp (Staff Writer):
1. “Royals” by Lorde
2. “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke
3. “Mirrors” by Justin Timberlake
4. “Wake Me Up” by Avicii
5. “We Can’t Stop” by Miley Cyrus

Laura Dengrove (Staff Writer)
1. “Locked in a Cage” by Brick+Mortar
2. “Sacrilege” by The Yeah Yeah Yeahs
3. “The Mother We Share” by CHVRCHES
4. “You’re Not The One” by Sky Ferreira
5. “The One that Got Away” by The Civil Wars

Eric Gallegos (Video Game Columnist):
1. “Venus” by Lady Gaga
2. “Lose Yourself to Dance” by Daft Punk
3. “Entertainment” by Phoenix
4. “Step” by Vampire Weekend
5. “I Lived” by One Republic

Kelly Gonsalves (Staff Writer, Interviewer, Singles Party Columnist):
1. “Royals” by Lorde
2. Probably some terribly artsy little thing by an artist I wouldn’t listen to but is universally accepted as very talented (The National, The xx, Arcade Fire, etc.)
3. “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons
4. “The Wire” by Haim
5. “Clarity” by Zedd f./ Foxes

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Ann Hale (Senior Editor, Horror Editor):
1. “Young and Beautiful” by Lana Del Rey
2. “Brave” by Sara Bareilles
3. “Royals” by Lourde

Matt Haviland (Staff Writer):
1. “Organs” by The Uncluded
2. “Rap God” by Eminem
3. “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk, Pharrell Williams, Nile Rodgers
4. “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe” by Kendrick Lamar
5. “Delicate Cycle” by The Uncluded

Mike Heyliger (Staff Writer, Singles Party Columnist, Editor-in-Chief of Popblerd!):
1. “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke feat. T.I. & Pharrell
2. “Dance With You” by Bad Rabbits feat. Teddy Riley & Clinton Sparks
3. “Hold On, We’re Going Home” by Drake feat. Majid Jordan
4. “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis feat. Wanz
5. “Wildfire” by John Mayer

Brendan Hourican (Staff Writer):
1. “Heavenfaced”- The National
2. “Knives”- The Dangerous Summer
3. “Royals”- Lorde
4. “Chocolate”- The 1975
5. “Blood on the Leaves”- Kanye West

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Luke Kalamar (Television Editor, Senior Editor):
1. “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk, feat. Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers
2. “Entertainment” by Phoenix
3. “Semicolon” by The Lonely Island feat. Solange
4. “Unbelievers” by Vampire Weekend
5. “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis feat. Wanz

Al Mannarino (Staff Writer, Interviewer):
1. “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk, feat. Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers
2. “Demons” by Imagine Dragons
3. “Trying to Be Cool (Remix) by Phoenix feat. R. Kelly
4. “Sweater Weather” by The Neighborhood
5. “If So” by Atlas Genius

Asia Martin (Staff Writer):
1. “Primetime” by Janalle Monae ft/ Miguel
2. “Counting Stars” by One Republic
3. “The One” by Tamar Braxton
4. “Madness” by Muse
5. “Ocean” by Alice Smith

Lisa Pikaard (Senior Editor, Country Writer, Interviewer):
1. “Right Back at it Again” by A Day to Remember
2. “Best I Ever Had” by Gavin DeGraw
3. “Wake Me Up” by Avicii
4. “Drink a Beer” by Luke Bryan
5. “We Were Us” by Miranda Lambert and Keith Urban

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Nick Porcaro (Senior Writer, Singles Party Columnist, Website Designer):
1. “We Are” by Karnivool
2. “Diane Young” by Vampire Weekend
3. “Black Skinhead” by Kanye West
4. “Atlas Stone” by Haken
5. “Still Into You” by Paramore
6. “Whisper” by The Dear Hunter
7. “#Beautiful” by Mariah Carey and Miguel
8. “The Bastards, The Vultures, The Wolves” by The Wonder Years
9. “The Paddington Frisk” / “Radiate” / “Rat Race” by Enter Shikari
10. “Numbers on the Boards” by Pusha T

Kelly Spoer (Copy Editor, Senior Editor, Singles Party Columnist):
1. “Copy of A” by Nine Inch Nails
2. “Q.U.E.E.N.” by Janelle Monae feat. Erykah Badu
3. “Applause” by Lady Gaga
4. “Work, Bitch” by Britney Spears
5. “I Need Your Love” by Ellie Goulding

Lauren Stern (Assignment Editor, Singles Party Columnist):

1. “Creep in a T-Shirt” by Portugal. the Man: I can’t lie… this album has been out there for 7 months and I still find myself humming along to this song while putting on my shirts in the morning. This song is just SO damn catchy that it’s hard to forget it exists. Even more difficult was picking a favorite song from Evil Friends for this list. I think it’s safe to say Portugal. the Man won over my heart this year.

2. “Synesthesia” by Andrew McMahon: I was really disappointed that McMahon’s first solo EP didn’t lead to a full length this year but I still find myself listening to the first four songs every once in a while. This one was by far my favorite. There was something about it that set the bar high and I can’t wait to see in the upcoming year if the rest of the songs match up.

3. “Mirrors” by Justin Timberlake: I tend to swoon whenever Justin Timberlake is mentioned which is half the reason why this song is on my list. The other half is because I can’t stop smiling when I hear it. I’m sticking by my year-long statement that it’s the perfect love song and I won’t be convinced if you tell me otherwise.

4. “Royals” by Lorde: Now that this song has gotten an unhealthy amount of airplay, I thought I’d be sick of it by now, but nope, still catchy as hell. Not to put more pressure on Lorde but she’s definitely going to be an artist to watch out for the next few years. I’m willing to bet that she will reach Adele status, which is a large statement considering her age.

5. “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk ft. Pharrell and Nile Rodgers: If 2013 were summed up in a song, it would be this one. I hear this song once a day at least now and I can’t help but pull out the sick dance moves.

Jason Stives (Music Editor, Album Reviewer, Singles Party Columnist):
1. “Royals” by Lorde
2. “Varsity” by Smith Westerns
3. “Do I Wanna Know?” by Arctic Monkeys
4. “Hold On, We’re Going Home” by Drake
5. “The Wire” by Haim

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Anthony Toto (Staff Writer, Interviewer):
1. “The Hell in Me” by Killswitch Engage
2. “Brave This Storm” by Trivium
3) “A Wolf Amongst Ravens” by After The Burial
4) “End of the Beginning” by Black Sabbath
5) “Cry of Achilles” by Alter Bridge

Joe Zorzi (Senior Editor, Singles Party Columnist):
1. “Robbers” by The 1975
2. “This is the Last Time” by The National
3. “Catholic Girls” by The Dangerous Summer
4. “Alone Together” by Fall Out Boy
5. “Chocolate” by The 1975

Founded in September 2009, The Pop Break is a digital pop culture magazine that covers film, music, television, video games, books and comics books and professional wrestling.

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