Best of 2013 - Brittany Strummer's picks (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Best of 2013

Brittany Strummer's picks (2013)

staff picks

[Brittany Strummer is a news editor for]

2013 was a roller coaster of a year. As I was making this list I realized how many releases I missed out on but I'm still pretty confident in my choices. So, this is what I loved from what I heard and my dumb opinions about it.



Crazy and the Brains: Let Me Go

Baldy Longhair

I have John Gentile to thank for showing me this band. It's weird and nutty and that's cool.


The Slow Death: No Heaven

A.D.D. Records

I saw the Slow Death a couple years ago at a small free show at Illegal Pete's with Elway and a solo Mikey Erg performance beforehand. It was wonderful and I was instantly hooked. I will slowly die for this band. Ha, just kidding. That's weird.


Great Apes: Thread

Asian Man Records

Asian Man Records put out a lot of great records this year. This one in particular had a super cool concept because every song is a different story about a different friend of the band.


Radioactivity: Radioactivity


My boyfriend kept bugging me to listen to this because it has members of the Marked Men and I already have another release on this list with members from the Marked Men so I couldn't resist and wow, it's great. Look at the Marked Men inadvertently taking over my life.


State Lines: For The Boats

Tiny Engines

This is my favorite Tiny Engines release! I want to yell every word.


The Steve Adamyk Band: Third

Dirtnap Records

Canada has some pretty good stuff up there. Like these guys.


Low Culture: Screens

Dirtnap Records

This band has members of the Marked Men and Shang a Lang so it's not a surprise they made a crazy addictive record.


The Murderburgers: These Are Only Problems

Asian Man Records

I saw these awesome Scottish dudes with Dear Landlord and they were very impressive. xBURGERxCOREx


Plow United: Marching Band

Jump Start Records

There's so many great sing alongs on this album and I love acting like I got no future.


Elway: Leavetaking

Red Scare

This sure as hell isn't a sophomore slump (I am not counting the 10-4 Eleanor release) and I can't wait to see these songs live. These dudes only seem to be getting better with each release.


Big Eyes: Almost Famous

Grave Mistake Records

I feel like I need to wear a leather jacket when I listen to this band.


Night Birds: Born To Die In Suburbia

Grave Mistake Records

Night Birds are best. I love Night Birds so much. They have the perfect punk rock style and attitude that everyone should be following.


Allison Weiss: Say What You Mean

No Sleep

I was never a fan of Allison Weiss' previous work so I didn't go into this record with high expectations, but I was obviously impressed or it wouldn't be in my top 10. So many great catchy songs on here.


A Wilhelm Scream: Partycrasher

No Idea

I almost completely forgot about this record which would have broken my heart because A Wilhelm Scream are another one of my "staple" bands. While I don't find this record as hard and fast as their previous efforts, I do find myself enjoying it just as much.


Iron Chic: The Constant One

Bridge Nine

This one almost slipped under my radar. I'm very glad it didn't, considering I absolutely loved Not Like This. Iron Chic are the perfect band to sing along to whether you're feeling hopeless or hopeful over the future as those feelings tend to fluctuate no matter what age you are.


Nightmares for a Week: Civilian War

Broken English / Suburban Home

This one came out of nowhere. I wasn't aware of this band until their release this year and I threw it on out of sheer boredom. Totally glad I did because this record is perfection and I can't wait to hear what they put out next.


Lipstick Homicide: Out Utero

Bloated Kat Records

This is a perfect pop punk record and I can't stop swooning over it.


Comadre: Comadre

Vitrol Records

Comadre made the perfect record to go out on. I was one of the fortunate people who were able to see Comadre on their last tour. The particular show I witnessed was at 1-2-3-4 Go! Records in Oakland, CA with my boyfriend, Rich (dante3000), and Adam of Gnarboots. It's quite a sight seeing two dads sharing pictures of their children one minute and then turning into kids twice their age as they sing along to a hardcore band.


Off With Their Heads: Home


Off With Their Heads are one of my "staple" bands which in turn causes me to see them every time they're in town and purchase any release of theirs I come across. They have yet to disappoint me with a release and I will be requesting songs from this album at shows just as much as their previous releases. It was also oddly comforting in a way to hear "Janie." Granted, I still prefer the original but it's always nice to find something familiar in a new place.


Direct Hit!: Brainless God

Red Scare

When a band says they're making a concept album my immediate thought is usually "ehhhhhh." But when they say it's a concept album about the end of the world well, that sparks my attention just a bit. Then when every song is perfect and I find myself mindlessly singing lines from the album throughout the day that make people question my sanity ("she cut him up, cut him up, with a hacksaw/ in his blood, in his blood, is where she'll end up") is when I immediately regret ever saying "ehhhhh" in the first place. I have fallen so completely head over heels for this record and almost couldn't finish my list because I couldn't stop listening to it.



Lemuria: Brilliant Dancer [7-inch]

Bridge Nine

I enjoyed this a hell of a lot more than The Distance is So Big. Maybe I can only handle Lemuria in small doses.


Paint It Black: Invisible [EP]

No Idea

Always loving whatever Dan Yemin creates.


Shook Ones / Death is Not Glamorous: Split 7-inch

Run for Cover Records

This is mainly on my list for the Shook Ones songs because holy crap are those amazing.


Masked Intruder / Dan Vapid and the Cheats: The Wedding 7-inch

Solidarity Recordings

Two fantastic pop punk bands. They should get married.


Martin: The Worst Part

If You Make It

I much prefer the style of this band to how Spraynard played. Hard and fast punk rock is my favorite.


Morning Glory: Born to December [7-inch]

Fat Wreck Chords

These folks need to put some more stuff out soon (aside from that new song on the Off With Their Heads split which is also great) because these three songs leave me anxious for more.


Chumped: Chumped [EP]

Anchorless Records

I think this is the list where this release belongs. This shit rules regardless of what list it's on!


Boys: Demo


This trio consists of members of Dead North, Kinder Words, and Mixtapes. The songs on this demo are way catchy and I can't wait to see what they come up with next.


Against Me!: True Trans [EP]

Total Treble

Oh man. I, like most Against Me! fans, get very excited over acoustic EPs from them and this one exceeded all my expectations. These two songs have given a small preview to how great Transgender Dysphoria Blues is going to be.