Top 10 Albums Of 2013

Can’t believe yet another year has passed! And what a great year 2013 was for music, not only in Canada but internationally as well. Coming up with a Top 10 list is never easy and though this is the list that I chose for my blog post, I’m sure I’ll change my mind a few more times before the year ends. These are my favorite ten records of the year, all genres combined!

I created a special playlist on Deezer with tracks from each record. You can listen to it here: Melsays’ Top 10 Albums of 2013

10 – Jimmy Hunt – Maladie D’amour

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60s/70s sounding romantic French pop. A fantastic lyricist and great production.

9 – The Strumbellas – We Still Move On Dancefloors

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The perfect combination between the folk tradition and pop. Catchy and uplifting throughout. Made me want to dance!

8 – Basia Bulat – Tall Tall Shadow

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Beautifully orchestrated and touching record. Her voice still gives me chills every time I hear her sing. Profoundly moving.

7 – Sebastien Grainger – Yours To Discover

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Beyond cool and original 80s inspired rock with incredibly catchy melodies.

6 – Phantogram – Voices

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The perfect electro-indie pop record. These guys blow me away each release with huge tracks every time.

5 – Koriass – Rue des saules

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According to me, Quebec’s finest rapper. Clever and effective MC with great underlying beats.

4 – Drake – Nothing Was The Same 

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One of the records I listened to most this year. Love the sincerity and variety in this record. Super strong follow up to the excellent Take Care.

3 – Young Galaxy – Ultramarine

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Grateful that a band like Young Galaxy is present in the Canadian music scene. I totally fell in love with their sonic universe on this record.

2 – Shad – Flying Colors

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Why Shad isn’t more popular baffles me. The wittiest, most positive and smartest rapper in Canada and one of the top rappers in the world if you ask me.

1 – Haim – Days Are Gone

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The most beautiful pop record that came out this year. These girls can’t be stopped. Catchy tracks, vocal melodies and killer music all along.

Honorable mentions also go to: Jordan Klassen, Katy Perry, Klô Pelgag, Les Soeurs Boulay, Justin Timberlake, Autre Ne Veut, Tegan and Sara and Chvrches.

What were some of your top records of the year? Anything I should check out? Let me know!

xo

ICI Bistro

A few weeks ago, Offner and I finally got a table at ICI Bistro. We had wanted to go check out the place but it was always booked every time we had tried to make a reservation. So if after reading this blog, you’re dying to try it out, make sure you plan your visit in advance!

The Bistro is located on Harbord St.  just at the corner of Manning St.. There aren’t that many restaurants in the area but I think that when a restaurant is good, it doesn’t really matter where it’s located, people will go to it. And ICI Bistro was sure worth the trek!

The first thing that appealed to me about this place was their slogan: “Food, Wines & Happy People Is What We Are Most Passionate About At ICI“. Sounds perfect!

We received a warm welcome when we arrived at the restaurant. The host took our coats, made sure we had everything we needed. Because there aren’t too many tables in the place (there are like 6 or 7) we opted to sit at the small bar, which gave us a really nice view of the room. The decor was simple but really nice. The restaurant felt extremely cozy. I loved their slightly elevated open kitchen concept.

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We started off with a nice bottle of wine from their extensive wine list. We opted for a French wine since we were in a French inspired bistro. We noticed that a lot of the staff were also either from France or from Quebec and as a result spoke both French and English. As we were picking out our meals, the waiter brought us a really yummy appetizer on the house, a sort of fine rice and cheese ball.

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We started off our meal with a plate of cheese. It was $18 for a selection of 3. We opted for double that just so that we could get as many different cheeses as possible. The cheese portion was great for the price and the cheese were all different and extremely tasty. The chef even came over to personally bring us a plate of fruit, nuts and jams to accompany the cheese we had ordered.

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While we were waiting for our mains, the server came over and offered us some homemade gnocchi on the house in order to tie us over before the mains arrived. I must say I was REALLY impressed by the quality of the service. Little things like that go a long way in my opinion. Plus the gnocchi melted in my mouth!

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By the time our mains arrived, I was almost full! Though they don’t have a big vegetarian selection (1 out of 11 dinner choices), I was told that the chef could always prepare something special for me if ever I didn’t like what they had on the menu. I opted for their homemade patties with cheese, fresh salad, pesto and homemade sauce and my boyfriend the duck magret. His said his was pure bliss! Mine was also very delicate and flavored perfectly. The chef even came by again during our meal to make sure everything was ok and asked us if we had liked everything. A very nice gesture!

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All in all, our experience at ICI Bistro was delightful. There aren’t too many restaurants in the city that have served us that well and that are so in tune with what their clients want. The staff at ICI made sure that we were fully satisfied with our meal.

Looking forward to returning very soon!