10 landmark albums turning 10 in 2023

From history-making debuts to unforgettable comebacks, we’re counting down the 10 landmark albums celebrating their 10-year anniversary in 2023. 

These 10 albums turning 10 prove that a whole lot can happen in a decade. Since 2013, we’ve collectively borne witness to masks becoming wardrobe staples, reality television star presidents, Tesla-turned-Twitter owners and, perhaps most egregiously, lettuce prices soaring to levels usually reserved for caviar. Heck, the events of 2022 alone — from slaps heard ‘round the world to prime ministerial beer-chugs — were enough to constitute their own year-end wrap up. 

10 albums turning ten: Kurt Vile, Kanye West, David Bowie, Beyonce
Credit: Jack Plunkett/Invision/AP; Getty; Getty Images for Parkwood Entertainment

However, in between all the chaos of decades’ past there remains a throughline: music that stands the test of time. The best albums are often those that stay active on playlists well beyond their initial release date, and still feel equally as essential as that coveted first listen. So while it might’ve been a decade since their first 2013 release, these are the 10 albums worthy of celebration ahead of their 10-year birthday in 2023. 

Pure Heroine — Lorde

Lorde’s 2013 debut album Pure Heroine catapulted the New Zealand singer to international acclaim, with the project’s lead single Royals becoming one of that year’s longest-running number one singles. Pure Heroine instantly drew comparisons to the work of Lana Del Rey and Florence Welch, while establishing Lorde’s distinct sound worthy of a place among these 10 albums. The record deals with the malaise of a TMZ-obsessed generation, and established one of pop music’s most enduring voices.  

Paramore — Paramore

Hayley Williams led her bandmates to what was widely considered Paramore’s best album to date. The band’s self-titled, fourth studio effort was praised for establishing a new sound without losing sight of arena-filling anthems in singles Still Into You, Daydreaming and the Grammy-winning Ain’t It Fun. With a five-year hiatus following Paramore’s successor After Laughter, fans can only hope the trio replicate the magic with this year’s much-anticipated comeback, This Is Why.   

The Next Day — David Bowie

Given that it was his 25th album, you’d half-expect David Bowie’s The Next Day to arrive at somewhat of a slump in the legend’s career. The reality, however, was the opposite, with Bowie’s 14-track opus universally deemed a masterful return to form. Far beyond its sonics, which were lauded for their energetic and noisy confidence, The Next Day was praised as a comeback for Bowie himself, with the album largely viewed as a legacy-maker for an already iconic musical figure.  

Settle — Disclosure

In what rivals Pure Heroine as 2013’s best debut, Disclosure’s Mercury Prize-nominated first album Settle made sibling duo Howard and Guy Lawrence household names. The Sam Smith-featuring lead single Latch became a sleeper hit across the globe, adding to the album’s already starry guestlist including Aluna George and London Grammar. Last year, Settle was named among Rolling Stones’ best debut albums of all time.    

Bangerz — Miley Cyrus

It’s difficult to imagine an album more formative in reorienting a career than Miley CryusBangerz. Released in September of 2013, Cyrus’ fourth studio effort was a controversial digression from the pop star’s once-pristine Disney sound. The record spawned what were Cyrus’ biggest songs at the time — Wrecking Ball, We Can’t Stop and Adore You — with assists from French Montana and Britney Spears. For better or for worse, Bangerz undoubtedly established the Miley Cyrus we know today.    

Wakin on a Pretty Daze — Kurt Vile 

Kurt Vile’s fifth album was the first to be absent of any contributions from the singer’s longtime collaborator and former The War on Drugs bandmate Adam Granduciel. The result is a record of spaciousness and calm, somewhat removed from the noisier, darker reaches of its predecessors. At the time, Vile described Wakin on a Pretty Daze as being “about my life, without thinking too much about it,” a sentiment of nonchalance that transfers to the album’s palmy beachside sonics.    

BEYONCÉ— Beyoncé

A list of 1o albums from any year would be remiss not to mention Beyoncé. Her first surprise-release album, the pop-star’s eponymous full-length arrived without warning in December, 2013. It was accompanied by a visual album, and prompted iTunes’ fastest-selling record in the platform’s history. BEYONCÉ featured the singles XO, Partition and Drunk In Love, all of which initiated the equal parts raunchy and experimental sound that Beyoncé carried through in future projects. 

Nothing Was the Same — Drake

Drake had already established himself with his 2011 sophomore effort, Take Care, but the release of Nothing Was The Same two years later all-but cemented his trajectory to rap’s upper echelons. The 2013 record placed in a number of year-end lists, and scored what was Drake’s biggest feature at the time with the Jay-Z-assisted single Pound Cake. Say what you will about Drake’s current canon, but the Canadian softboi’s early career justifies a place among 2013’s 10 albums list. 

Random Access Memories — Daft Punk

Marking their final album before disbanding, Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories has ensured the duo’s decade-spanning longevity. The 80s-indebted record spawned Daft Punk’s biggest single with ‘Get Lucky’ (featuring Pharrell Williams), and surpussed the duo’s already strong discography in the eyes of critics. Random Access Memories married dancefloor-fillers with technical finesse, sampling everyone from NASA to The Sherbs.  

Yeezus – Kanye West

Kanye West’s sixth studio album Yeezus was his most experimental at the time, with producer Rick Rubin stripping much of the tracklist down for a more minimalist approach. The record credited fellow producers in Daft Punk and Mike Dean, with guest features including Frank Ocean, Kid Cudi and Travis Scott. Yeezus’s departure from typical Ye production was praised by critics, with Happy Mag describing the album as a “reinvention of [West’s] and style. Though it’s successors might’ve gone on to disappoint — a trajectory not helped by West’s divisive behaviour of lateYeezus justifies its place among these 10 albums.