Boxx couldn’t let the year end without taking a look back at music’s high notes. From our favorite albums and music videos to the breakthroughs and comebacks we didn’t see coming, our critics have assembled a yearbook of Top 10 lists. Today, we list our favorite 10 collaborations of 2013 (in no particular order). There are few pleasures in life greater than finding out two of your favorite artists came together and made a kick-ass song or album. This year, so many artists made sweet music together, and we wanted to highlight a few of our favorites. Stay tuned in the days ahead for more coverage, culminating in our 2014 preview.
After Ellie Goulding covered Active Child’s “Hanging On,” the pair decided to team up on new track “Silhouette.” Their angelic voices blend together beautifully, set to a slow, dramatic and ethereal musical backdrop.
Australian singer Sia has collaborated with big names like Eminem and Flo Rida, but her song “Elastic Heart” with The Weeknd and Diplo conveys a sense of sadness and struggle as she transitions from soft to powerful vocals. The track is featured on the soundtrack for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.
Billie Joe Armstrong and Norah Jones – Foreverly
A very unlikely pair, Green Day‘s Billie Joe Armstrong and soft-rock queen Norah Jones, teamed up to recreate and honor the Everly Brothers’ classic album Songs Our Daddy Taught Us. Armstrong and Jones provide a fresh twist with a mix of male-female vocals. Check out Boxx’s review of the album here.
Punk-bluegrass-folk-traveling circus band Larry and His Flask asked Jenny Owen Youngs to lend her vocal talents for two songs on their latest release By The Lamplight. JOY adds a sense of urgency to the melodic and upbeat “The Battle for Clear Sight.”
Sisters unite! Katie Crutchfield and her sister Allison recorded a jangly, raw version of Grimes’ hit “Oblivion.” The Crutchfield’s chose to cover the song because the lyrics deal with feeling unsafe on the street, something the sisters feel passionately about.
The stripped down, but cheery “Kindness be Conceived” features delightful harmonies between Joanna Newsom and Thao. The track starts out dainty and clean, but builds to show off their powerful vocals.
Iron Chic snuck in a killer record just before the year’s end with The Constant One, and it features RVIVR singer Erica Freas on two tracks. Freas proves again that her vocals are a force to be reckoned with in on “Don’t Drive Angry,” especially after the 2:30 mark.
“Q.U.E.E.N.” is one of the standout tracks on Monáe’s The Electric Lady. It’s a feminist anthem, and these ladies know you can’t help but groove to this infectious tune: “Come on home and sing your song / But you gotta testify because the booty don’t lie.”
London Grammar vocalist Hannah Reid lends her resonating vocals to Disclosure’s ethereal dance track “Help Me Lose My Mind.” Disclosure collaborated with several other female artists on Settle, including AlunaGeorge and Sasha Keable.
Punk legend Joan Jett and Laura Jane Grace co-wrote “Soulmates to Strangers” for Jett’s latest album Unvarnished. The pair united on stage at Riot Fest 2013 during Jett’s set in front of a very excited crowd. Jett was one of the first people, Grace said, to send her a support letter after coming out as transgender in 2012.
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