50 Best Albums of 2013


Beck, 'Song Reader'

Beck, 'Song Reader'
Courtesy McSweeney's Publishing

There's old-school, and then there's "Man, it would rule if someone would invent electricity" old-school. Beck's "album" of sheet music turned out to be a sly collection of folky swing tunes, steeped in Beck's absurdist wit. One ukulele ballad, "Old Shanghai," even became a YouTube hit.

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