The best records of 2013

This past year was great for record lovers. Sasha & Artem chose 13 best records from 2013. Here we go!

13. Simple Symmetry — Incredible Adventures In Khazar Khaganate 12” [Glenview Records Inc.]
The faith in Russian electronics lives in me since appearance of this record by Simple Symmetry. Association with this gem leads to Angkor Wat and the music that might play there. Something deep and mysterious tropical permeates into this record right from from the start. I love also strong remix from wizards of Stallions. Keep up the quality output Lipsky brothers, huge respect!
[Artem Super Ikra]

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12. Finis Africae — El Secreto De Las 12 LP [EM Records]
GK Machine introduced me with Finis Africae music. It’s interesting that this Brazilian group had two compilations this year on the same label. The second one is 2xLP, and maybe it’s more yummy than actual one. But! I made the choice after hearing the El Secreto De Las 12 track and it blew my mind. Living jungle sung this beautiful melody almost thirty years ago. There’s some sort of mystery about it.
[Sasha Tessio]

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11. Tornaado — Instrumentaaltsukkel “Ragatt” 10” [Frotee]
The first release from a newborn Estonian label Frotee was a real delicacy. After listening to a Finn track it’s became clear to me that I can’t miss it. Tornaado is a whirlwind of disco, reggae-pop and yacht rock, the 10 inches of heavenly pleasure. Ragatt is a worthy companion of any digger. Bravo!
[Artem Super Ikra]

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10. 33-10-3402 — Mecanica 12” [ESP Institute]
Debut release from 33-10-3402 opened cult Dusseldorf-based label Kunstkopf. Every underground European DJ already have it or looking for a copy. A year passed and now time had come for the second record from this mysterious project. Mecanica is a long narcotic trip through the dark grooves, broken voices, and very interesting sound structures. keep your ears on this guy. He’s a serious composer (you will agree if you also heard 18-minutes long snippet from 33-10-3402 liveshow on Soundcloud)
[Sasha Tessio]

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09. Spike — Orange Cloud Nine LP [Golf Channel Recordings]
We heard 4 tracks from this record in Phil South‘s mix on Resident Advisor from 2010. We, the whole world and especially Phil were waiting for it on wax for more then three years. And finally we have it in our hands: collection of pure gold tunes from forgotten Dutch guitarist-genius Spike full of deep smoke, melancholic mood, simple “guitar, voice, drum machine” structure. Thank you Spike & Phil, you did it!
[Sasha Tessio]

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08. Steaua De Mare — Steaua De Mare LP [Ambassador’s Reception]
Imagine it… You’re in the desert. It’s crazy hot. There are hot sands, cacti and succulents. And then you see… an oasis: palm trees, cool, creek, a riot of colors … This record has all it inside — mystery and sadness, romance and psychedelia. And most importantly — there are a balance and whisper of the morning stars. It’s an undoubted masterpiece from Steaua De Mare.
[Artem Super Ikra]

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07. Jonny Nash — Snaker 004 LP [Snaker]
Japanese label Snaker did a lot of noise this year. Every release was a boom. Number 004 is very special: it’s the first record of original music (not sample-based like Cos/Mes or Ikeda X) and the first solo work of Jonny Nash. Some tracks are too short. Some are unfinished. Some is very Land Of Light’ish. But all have the right spirit. Jonny’s guitar is gorgeous. I love it in euphoric Platonic Love, sadly it ends too early.
[Sasha Tessio]

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06. Crystal & S.Koshi — Break The Dawn [Beats In Space Records]
To be honest, I forgot about BIS label after its fourth release (Lauer’s EP with remix from mr Lee Douglas). But thank God, NYC-based imprint passed its crisis. There are two signs of it: upcoming EP from Hidden Fees and this excelent single from Crystal & S.Koshi released in September. I felt in love with it from the first listening. Japanese artists Crystal & S.Koshi have some special ingridient they put in their works, and it made their music distinct from other monotonous piano house. Some sort of drugs. Is it ecstasy? Maybe. I could choose other Crystal’s stormy-house record as one of the best in 2013 (Vanish Into The Light 12” on Crue-L), but the one for BIS has mind-blowing tracks on both sides.
[Sasha Tessio]

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05. Leon Lowman — Liquid Diamonds LP [Music From Memory]
I find this record perfect for a hangover morning) Opening sounds of Bumpin’ On Sunset lead you from deep drunk dream into a new day. You open the curtains, bright sun light strike you in eyes and you hear a Morning Song. Third track is Open: first cup of coffee is ready and you’re trying to remember how you got home yesterday. You come into second room and find Friends there… I love Liquid Diamonds and looking forward to upcoming releases from amazing Music From Memory.
[Sasha Tessio]

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04. Saada Bonaire — Saada Bonaire 2XLP [Captured Tracks]
We heard and read enough about Saada Bonaire compilation. This album has no weak track — all compositions are fruitful, bold and desperate. The passion with it made is exciting and catchy. It’s a clean female magnetism. There is only one question — did you buy it? No? Why?
[Artem Super Ikra]

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03. Phil France — The Swimmer LP [Twentysix-Two Recordings]
The Swimmer LP for me is an album-inspiration. It is ideal for creation. Impressions from it are so amazing, it’s like you come into the clear sea and feel the essence of the universe. When I got tired of all music, I turn France‘ LP on and get on the heavenly Olympus, where all is quiet, peaceful, harmonious and feel the spirit of freedom.
[Artem Super Ikra]

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02. Tambien — Robusto/Sexalitat 12” [Public Possession]
Miracle from Munich called Tambien is an absolute bomb. I love all in this 12” — from the mad artwork to the strong and catchy groove. This record is a luxury gift for any prime-time set. It is like the god of Dynamo from the Wells’ story, it captures and absorbs head. It’s a rare bullet. Krossfingers recommends!
[Artem Super Ikra]

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01. Merge — Long Distance LP [Growing Bin Records]
It was easy to choose the best record of past year. Love the Long Distance LP from start to end. The album was recorded back in 1994 so today it seems like a mammoth excavated from an ice. You can hear here the vibes and the mood of early Cafe Del Mar parties, Padilla’s magic, experiments of Pat Metheny. It’s deep, emotional, light, percussive, honest, innocent music. It’s like a warm ultraviolet evening after the whole day spent on the sea. You are full, calm and light. Thank you trio of magicians: Jo Lienen, Harald Karla and Basso. We’re looking forward for more goodness from Growing Bin Records, Merge was an ace start!
[Sasha Tessio]

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Texts Sasha Tessio & Artem Super Ikra