RBMA Radio spotlight: Best of 2013

Killer Mike
© Erik Voake / Red Bull Content Pool

Enjoy a grab bag of our eight favourite recordings from around the world in 2013.

Killer Mike runs the stage at Primavera Sound

If Killer Mike's 2012 album, R.A.P. Music, wasn't enough to transform him from one of the most sought-after guest rappers in the business into a star in his own right, then his heavy collaboration with El-P as Run the Jewels certainly has. Live, Killer's thumping, agitated, and politcally-motivated verses are something to behold. If you want something with a little more heat from the same festival, try (with caution) Death Grips.

Kaytranada and Prodigy of Mobb Deep
Kaytranada and Prodigy of Mobb Deep© Roger Kisby

Mobb Deep in conversation

Quite a coup, this interview. Prodigy and Havoc, better known as Queensbridge hardcore-rap legends Mobb Deep, took time out from recording new material to chew the fat about early hip-hop memories, influences, recording the seismic Shook Ones Part II, and sticking together for 20 years.

Omar Souleyman performs during the Red Bull Music Academy Weekender at Teatro Kapital in Madrid, Spain.
Omar Souleyman© Jacobo Medrano/Red Bull Content Pool

Omar Souleyman speaks

From setting the mood at Syrian weddings to headlining festivals and showing the West's live dance-music outfits how it's done, Omar Souleyman has gone from family concern to cult superstar. The station collared him for a chat about his 2013 Wenu Wenu album, produced by Kieran Hebden, as well as his influences and changing fortunes.

FKA Twigs arrives

Young Turks had a busy 2013 – one that forecast an even brighter 2014. New signing FKA Twigs bewitched all and sundry when she turned up in Berlin to discuss the influences behind the otherworldly blend of post-house and pillow-talk soul she showcased on Water Me, and to perform tracks which are sure to be ubiqutious soon enough. Fellow Young Turks Sampha and Pional dropped by, too, to show off the label's premier-league standing.

Giorgio Moroder
Giorgio Moroder's first DJ set© Christelle de Castro / Red Bull Content Pool

Giorgio Moroder's first-ever DJ set

The man who powered electronic music's cogs as the Munich Machine and catapulted Donna Summer to worldwide fame wasn't the only old-timer to appear on the station this year. Messers Brian Eno, Ginger Baker and Lee 'Scratch' Perry also put in stints behind the mic, but Giorgio was the only one making his DJing debut at Deep Space in New York and his twinkly-eyed, disco-packed set was captured for all to enjoy. Enjoy more from Red Bull Music Academy New York here.

These New Puritans' latest adventure

The UK's most adventurous group, These New Puritans, continue to shapeshift dramatically. They've transformed themselves from minimal, Mark E.Smith-loving post punks, via thundering, hypnotic noise-mongers, into widescreen, neo-classical experimentalists with more emotional punch than Bambi. Climb into the minds of the UK treasures behind one of 2013's most majestic albums, Field of Reeds.

Flume performs at the Red Bull Sound Select show at the Echoplex in Los Angeles, CA, USA on 27 March 2013.
Flume© Erik Voake / Red Bull Content Pool

Flume washes away the blues

Harley Streten, aka Sydney electronic-music tinkerer Flume, found himself doing battle with – and beating – One Direction in the Australian album charts in 2012. This year, he took his screwy, wide-eyed electronic pop further afield and gave us an insight into what greases his wheels. If you need more new sounds, check out further excellence from acid-house mangler Daniel Avery and wonderful new Hyperdub artist Jessy Lanza.

Get your bleep on

There were plenty of esoteric moments on RBMA Radio in 2013, with sets and interviews from Peter Broderick, Hauschka, Nurse with Wound and Prurient's Dominick Fernow among them. But best, especially in light of the rebooted Radiophonic Workshop and the reappraisal of artists such as Suzanne Ciani, was vinyl addict Kirk Degiorgio's Electronic Music series. Focussing on the early exploratory years of bleep-making his three shows are an essential primer.