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Mixtape: The Essential Songs of 2013

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This year’s treasure trove of musical gems made curating a 40-song list both effortless and hard as hell cause it could’ve gone on and on. The sonic spectrum of 2013 was vast, eclectic and just plain amazing—from Kanye West’s critically acclaimed masterpiece Yeezus to the cosmically buzzed about LP Days Are Gone from Los Angeles sister act Haim. Even lesser known artists churned out music worth oceans of praise. Cue Arthur Ashin AKA Autre Ne Veut, which means, “I want no other” in French. Yeah. The name itself oozes romance and sex appeal even before hearing standout tracks “Counting” and “Play by Play”—the latter has a bridge breakdown that’ll make you weak in the knees.

The mixtape jumps from big names to recognizable names to up-and-comers packed with promise. Check out the gritty, deep-voiced Archy Marshall, better known as King Krule, a 19-year-old British singer/songwriter who has a lot to say. And keep all eyes on Philadelphia’s pop-noir mysteriosos Bel Heir. This quartet has stolen hearts across the blogosphere with their vow to release one single (in a classic A-side, B-side format) on the first Tuesday of every month for an entire year.

Although this isn’t a “best of” album list, certain LPs released this year are too good not to mention. Some favorites: London Grammar’s stunning If You Wait, Lorde’s Pure Heroine, Blood Orange’s Cupid Deluxe, Phosphorescent’s heartbreaking Muchacho and many, many, more.

So to celebrate the harmonious triumphs of 2013, here’s a mixtape filled with tracks that’ll deliver all that hot love and emotion stuff, endlessly.

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