Artist: Eminem ft. Nate Ruess
Album: The Marshall Mathers LP 2
Released: Nov. 5, 2013
“Headlights” is Eminem’s written apology to his mother. This may come as a surprise to fans of the rapper, as the bitterness harboured towards his mother has been far from secret. “But I’m sorry mama for cleaning out my closet, at the time I was angry,” he raps, making reference to his highly acclaimed 2002 single, “Cleaning Out My Closet.” Ruess’ signature voice, rare and salient, embodies the song’s emotional eminence. “Headlights” is indisputably a highlight of The Marshall Mathers LP 2—if not the rapper’s career. Just when fans thought he could not get more real, the hip-hop icon proves us wrong.
Album: Pure Heroine
Released: Sept. 30, 2013
Lorde has taken the music industry by storm with the release of her first studio album, Pure Heroine. At just 16 years of age, the New Zealander possesses maturity well beyond her years. “Team” is a shout-out to her fans. “I’m kinda over gettin’ told to throw my hands up in the air,” she sings, suggesting that the classic adage of pop music may be worn-out. Showing off her rich tone and compelling rumble with this song, Lorde makes it known that she intends to pave her own lane in the realm of pop—proudly deviating from what has become the norm.
I’ll Be Gone
Artist: Linkin Park (Vice Remix ft. Pusha T)
Released: Oct. 28, 2013
With DJ Vice putting forth an exciting EDM arrangement to a song originally produced by musical genius Rick Rubin, it’s no wonder the remix is so appealing to the ear. G.O.O.D. Music artist Pusha T makes a fine appearance, delivering solid verses. Band member Mike Shinoda puts impressive rhymes to the test as well. The remix takes the form of a great electronic song, but with an atypical fresh feel—as opposed to just another good beat-dropping electronic compilation.
Artist: Arcade Fire
Released: Oct. 29, 2013
In one of Reflektor’s more critical songs, Arcade Fire questions whether a ‘normal person’ exists, while successfully tackling the band’s rock and roll roots in the track’s musical arrangement. This song sounds like a well-blended mix of Bruce Springsteen and The Pixies, with a touch of Neil Young thrown in.