Exclaim!'s Best of 2013: Top 10 Dance & Electronic Albums



8. Ryan Hemsworth
Guilt Trips
(Last Gang)

At first glance, Ryan Hemsworth is a bit of an anomaly in the grand picture of electronic music: the decidedly low-key Haligonian doesn't plug in with one specific trend, and he eschews the web-presence naming conventions by utilizing the same moniker that appears on his birth certificate. Musically, too, his output was all over the place — jokey reworks like his A$AP Rocky/Britney Spears mash-up are at once timely, hilarious and disposable, while singles like "Colour & Movement" offered up emotive, near-twee compositions.

As Guilt Trips proved, hardline focus isn't always required to make a fascinating LP. Instead, excursions through cloud-rap, glitch-pop and all sorts of other hyphenates worked together, as did the wide array of guests Hemsworth brought in, among them Baths, Lofty305 and Sinead Harnett.

While Hemsworth's sense of humour disappeared some (or was, at least, harder to find), his ability to play within pop parameters was on full display. Guilt Trips is another great argument against genre segregation, and a reminder that we should keep paying attention to his every move. The final product is a snapshot of Hemsworth that's at once personal and, like a carefully curated social network identity that pulls from myriad subcultures, immensely personalized. (Josiah Hughes)