27 Best Albums You Didn't Hear in 2013

The best of what flew under the mainstream radar

Omar Souleyman, 'Wenu Wenu'

Omar Souleyman, 'Wenu Wenu'
Courtesy Sublime Frequencies

The year's most surprising EDM record came from this Syrian wedding singer, who pitches bellydance-friendly woo in Arabic, spitting fierce fricatives over hookah-bar synths that conjure hand drums and other traditional instrumentation. Produced by Kieran "Four Tet" Hebdan, who sharpens the flavors without diluting the recipe, it's a cultural salvo that confirms there's more to life than builds and bass-drops.

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