Consequence of Sound's Top 50 Albums of 2016

Consequence of Sound's Top 50 Albums of 2016

Original Source

50. Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression
March 18, 2016
Alternative Rock
Critic Score
74
25 reviews
User Score
74
162 reviews

Post Pop Depression feels like salt in an open wound. The only thing more frustrating about the thought of Iggy leaving the game is the ample proof he’s left behind that he can still deliver the goods.

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49. Weaves - Weaves

Weaves - Weaves
June 17, 2016
Indie Rock
Critic Score
70
12 reviews
User Score
74
17 reviews
Weaves’ music is difficult to pin down, yet undeniably memorable. A distinctive wonky guitar sound, commanding vocals, and disobedient rhythms create something beautifully unhinged and challenging.
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48. White Lung - Paradise

White Lung - Paradise
May 6, 2016
Noise Rock
Critic Score
77
19 reviews
User Score
75
151 reviews

Paradise is White Lung pushing their limits and coming out bloodied, hungry for more. It’s a record full of disease, doubt, dumpsters, and death, with the band rising above it all and reveling in their filth. Damn anyone who tries to get in their way.

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47. Japanese Breakfast - Psychopomp

Japanese Breakfast - Psychopomp
April 1, 2016
Indie Pop
Critic Score
75
7 reviews
User Score
75
95 reviews

Psychopomp is round and full, yet still light. Sure, it may have been smarter to crank out hits instead of inserting a few filler tracks, but at least she focuses on fullness over cheap melodies.

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46. Martha - Blisters In the Pit of My Heart

Martha - Blisters In the Pit of My Heart
July 1, 2016
Pop Punk
Critic Score
77
10 reviews
User Score
73
21 reviews
There’s only a certain level of cute that some listeners can tolerate in their guitar rock cocktail, but for those willing to embrace a style of music that’s immediately satisfying and goes out of its way to relate to the people who need it most, it’s hard to do better than four Brits who, by their own admission, “stumble over words from time to time.”
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45. Young Thug - Jeffery

Young Thug - Jeffery
August 26, 2016
Hip Hop
Critic Score
79
10 reviews
User Score
77
153 reviews

44. Lambchop - FLOTUS

Lambchop - FLOTUS
November 4, 2016
Indietronica
Critic Score
81
20 reviews
User Score
73
66 reviews

While FLOTUS may be Wagner’s calmest collection of music to date, his foray into a new genre is far from a safe bet. Full of meditative wisdom that he adds to his genre-blurring work, FLOTUS contains a restless energy that frequently surprises.

Full Review →

43. The Hotelier - Goodness

The Hotelier - Goodness
May 27, 2016
Emo
Critic Score
83
10 reviews
User Score
75
161 reviews

This music is powerful, eliciting physical responses, the feelings located in different parts of the body that the brain may otherwise tune out — arm hair bristling or the pulse booming in the ears. 

Full Review →

42. Kevin Gates - Islah

Kevin Gates - Islah
January 29, 2016
Hip Hop
Critic Score
79
7 reviews
User Score
63
109 reviews

Like Boosie Badazz’s Touch Down 2 Cause Hell or Freddie Gibbs’ Shadow of a Doubt last year, it’s a showcase of versatility that plays to its creator’s strengths enough to feel like a definitive statement, no matter how many other projects he’s released before it.

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41. Mothers - When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired

Mothers - When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired
February 26, 2016
Indie Rock
Critic Score
79
9 reviews
User Score
76
110 reviews

Like all impactful records, When You Walk a Long Distance You Are Tired elevates its words with sharp, aware, and plush instrumentation. 

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40. Deftones - Gore

Deftones - Gore
April 8, 2016
Alternative Metal
Critic Score
78
18 reviews
User Score
72
110 reviews

Gore could be the Deftones’ best album, but you can earnestly say that about any album they’ve ever created and make a strong argument. If anything, it’s the most modern, and a statement that style and substance are not mutually exclusive.

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39. Savages - Adore Life

Savages - Adore Life
January 22, 2016
Post-Punk
Critic Score
79
30 reviews
User Score
75
301 reviews

Adore Life is many things, but the thing it feels most like is a celebration. On one level, it’s a celebration of the fact that guitar-driven rock music is probably here to stay. But it’s also a celebration of life at its strangest, messiest, and most vital.

Full Review →

38. Whitney - Light Upon The Lake

Whitney - Light Upon The Lake
June 3, 2016
Indie Rock
Critic Score
80
17 reviews
User Score
79
273 reviews
Their dulcet, vintage tones intoxicate and overwhelm the senses, while the cutting lyrics set the table for a thoroughly emotional listening experience.
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37. The Range - Potential

The Range - Potential
March 25, 2016
Future Garage
Critic Score
80
13 reviews
User Score
75
138 reviews

Potential not only makes a shockingly strong case for the top tier of contemporary sample-indebted achievements (alongside pillars including Burial’s Rival Dealer EP and Jamie xx’s In Colour), but does so while insisting that the universe, much like ourselves, will never be explored in its entirety.

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36. Noname - Telefone

Noname - Telefone
July 31, 2016
Hip Hop
Critic Score
81
7 reviews
User Score
80
156 reviews

Telefone shows a great sense of promise and complex beauty, Noname using her art to salve wounds — both her own and others.

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35. Into It. Over It. - Standards

Into It. Over It. - Standards
March 11, 2016
Emo
Critic Score
74
8 reviews
User Score
73
62 reviews

Standards is by far the most bombastic album of Into It. Over It.’s career.

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34. Sioux Falls - Rot Forever

Sioux Falls - Rot Forever
February 19, 2016
Emo
Critic Score
72
3 reviews
User Score
76
9 reviews

The massive Rot Forever gives Sioux Falls the capacity to be both: both sensitive and aggressive, messy and precise, cloyingly retro and fiercely modern.

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33. Gojira - Magma

Gojira - Magma
June 17, 2016
Progressive Metal
Critic Score
81
9 reviews
User Score
75
70 reviews

Magma is the most accessible and varied Gojira album yet.

Full Review →

32. Explosions in the Sky - The Wilderness

Explosions in the Sky - The Wilderness
April 1, 2016
Post-Rock
Critic Score
76
18 reviews
User Score
72
125 reviews

For a group whose bread and butter has until now been the musical equivalent of a whisper building to an H-bomb explosion over the course of twelve minutes, The Wilderness proves that Explosions in the Sky aren’t stuck in any creative rut.

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31. Babymetal - Metal Resistance

Babymetal - Metal Resistance
April 1, 2016
Alternative Metal
Critic Score
69
4 reviews
User Score
52
25 reviews

Anybody still calling this novelty is either ignorant or in denial. BABYMETAL hone a fusion of technical metal, dance music, and power pop that’s both competent and emotionally invigorating. 

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30. Pinegrove - Cardinal

Pinegrove - Cardinal
February 12, 2016
Indie Rock
Critic Score
80
7 reviews
User Score
76
182 reviews

Pinegrove builds and burns a lot on Cardinal, and they’re left with the hard-earned knowledge that everything’s probably going to be alright. It’s not the stuff teenage anthems are made of, maybe, but maturity comes with its own small pleasures.

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29. Nicolas Jaar - Sirens

Nicolas Jaar - Sirens
September 30, 2016
Ambient Pop
Critic Score
80
13 reviews
User Score
81
225 reviews

You don’t have to understand Sirens to enjoy it, and Sirens doesn’t make listeners feel at odds for not understanding it in full either.

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28. Frankie Cosmos - Next Thing

Frankie Cosmos - Next Thing
April 1, 2016
Indie Pop
Critic Score
77
17 reviews
User Score
76
191 reviews

Frankie Cosmos solidifies her style by strengthening her voice. Next Thing gives short songs life, chasing the vibe of impromptu chirps thanks to cushioned, velvety delivery.

Full Review →

27. Tegan and Sara - Love You to Death

Tegan and Sara - Love You to Death
June 3, 2016
Synthpop
Critic Score
76
22 reviews
User Score
68
90 reviews
These are tight pop cuts that pack a swift punch before disappearing in a cloud of glitter confetti, showcasing ’90s keyboard sounds and drum machine beats.
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26. Jamila Woods - HEAVN

Jamila Woods - HEAVN
July 7, 2016
Alternative R&B
Critic Score
83
3 reviews
User Score
80
55 reviews

HEAVN itself feels like a happy secret, one that finds connection and joy despite the fuel of oppression.

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25. Danny Brown - Atrocity Exhibition

Danny Brown - Atrocity Exhibition
September 27, 2016
Hip Hop
Critic Score
83
28 reviews
User Score
85
385 reviews
These songs aren’t for everyone, but they stand as some of the most fearlessly created music of the year.
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24. James Blake - The Colour in Anything

James Blake - The Colour in Anything
May 6, 2016
Alternative R&B
Critic Score
80
24 reviews
User Score
78
451 reviews

Now that a broken heart’s left him wounded, the melancholic fissure of his music widens, dropping him into a pool deeper than any he’s ever found himself swimming in before. Yet here he is, splitting it up, sectioning it off, and presenting a work that feels equal parts natural and divine.

Full Review →

23. The Body - No One Deserves Happiness

The Body - No One Deserves Happiness
March 18, 2016
Drone Metal
Critic Score
78
10 reviews
User Score
69
49 reviews
Despite the misery that inspires and thrives within their suffocating work, the band shows a remarkable sense of vitality, inspiring to longtime and new fans alike.
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22. KAYTRANADA - 99.9%

KAYTRANADA - 99.9%
May 6, 2016
Electronic
Critic Score
78
17 reviews
User Score
77
251 reviews
Whether working in strands of hip-hop, house, funk, or whatever next might come to mind, there’s something inherently glowing about his beats. All those genres are jammed together into a single album, just like they are within Celestin; he finds joy and fun in them all, so why bother trying to deny any of it?
Full Review →

21. Jenny Hval - Blood Bitch

Jenny Hval - Blood Bitch
September 30, 2016
Art Pop
Critic Score
82
19 reviews
User Score
77
161 reviews

She experiments with darkness and various forms of liberation on the regular, particularly so in last year’s Apocalypse, girl, but Hval goes deeper on Blood Bitch while somehow staying lighter.

Full Review →

20. Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things, Vol 1

Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things, Vol 1
August 12, 2016
Synthwave
Critic Score
83
7 reviews
User Score
81
51 reviews

While certainly many will picture the ordeals of Mike, Nancy, and Chief Hopper while listening, this is music that also stands on its own, a work by turns eerie and sparse, but also tinged in the warm nostalgia of bike rides at dusk and the loyalty of friends. The score is ultimately more than a mood. It’s a world unto itself.

Full Review →

20. Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things, Vol 2

Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things, Vol 2
August 19, 2016
Synthwave
Critic Score
78
2 reviews
User Score
78
19 reviews

19. Solange - A Seat at the Table

Solange - A Seat at the Table
September 30, 2016
Alternative R&B
Critic Score
86
22 reviews
User Score
82
357 reviews
Here she evades definition entirely, bolted steadfast to the burden of the past, but stubbornly careening toward the future, life through death. Solange is R&B as hell.
Full Review →

18. Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial

Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial
May 20, 2016
Indie Rock
Critic Score
82
19 reviews
User Score
82
410 reviews

Teens of Denial takes its power from its absence of blind spots, its lack of Freudian suppression. Toledo looks long at himself and us, a sort of nauseous survivor of modernity.

Full Review →

17. Tim Hecker - Love Streams

Tim Hecker - Love Streams
April 8, 2016
Ambient
Critic Score
81
19 reviews
User Score
73
149 reviews

Very few composers can achieve this kind of beauty or this kind of experimentation, and yet Hecker does both, time and time again. Love Streams feels a lot like drifting along a cool river under the Northern Lights on a sailboat, until the boat sprouts wings and zooms into the heavens.

Full Review →

16. Wilco - Schmilco

Wilco - Schmilco
September 9, 2016
Indie Rock
Critic Score
75
20 reviews
User Score
73
129 reviews

The songs have chaos without ever being chaotic. This leaves room for some of Tweedy’s surliest (and best) one-liners that tie back to that idea of joyous negativity.

Full Review →

15. Schoolboy Q - Blank Face LP

Schoolboy Q - Blank Face LP
July 8, 2016
Hip Hop
Critic Score
78
17 reviews
User Score
77
207 reviews
It’s hard and sinister like a gangster rap album, but it’s also sprawling and even psychedelic at times. Nothing else sounds like it, and that’s a joy to behold.
Full Review →

14. Blood Orange - Freetown Sound

Blood Orange - Freetown Sound
June 27, 2016
Alternative R&B
Critic Score
81
25 reviews
User Score
80
290 reviews

Built on that confidence and a bold, uncompromising vision singular in scope and execution, Freetown Sound stands concurrently as a deeply personal work and a striking representation of the struggles present in today’s society.

Full Review →

13. Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool

Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool
May 8, 2016
Art Rock
Critic Score
87
31 reviews
User Score
86
830 reviews

Only now does it seem like Radiohead, a group too big to break up, could call it quits after pouring everything into their music, ending with a record of personal exhaust examined through leisurely means.

Full Review →

12. A Tribe Called Quest - We got it from Here... Thank You 4 Your service

A Tribe Called Quest - We got it from Here... Thank You 4 Your service
November 11, 2016
Hip Hop
Critic Score
86
22 reviews
User Score
84
307 reviews

It seemed like the best Tribe could hope for was an album that longtime fans would embrace, but excite few younger listeners unfamiliar with the group. As it turns out, We got it… is a triumphant defying of such expectations.

Full Review →

11. Mitski - Puberty 2

Mitski - Puberty 2
June 17, 2016
Indie Pop
Critic Score
86
23 reviews
User Score
80
363 reviews
While this might sound like dangerous territory for an artist who’s known for searing riffs and vicious live performances that include screaming into the pickups of her guitar, Mitski uses her voice to measure the slightest nuances within complex emotions.
Full Review →

10. Leonard Cohen - You Want It Darker

Leonard Cohen - You Want It Darker
October 21, 2016
Singer-Songwriter
Critic Score
86
17 reviews
User Score
82
190 reviews
Using his remaining time, he’s not only putting his house in order, he’s tidying up ours too.
Full Review →

9. Bon Iver - 22, A Million

Bon Iver - 22, A Million
September 30, 2016
Art Pop
Critic Score
89
30 reviews
User Score
81
556 reviews
Justin Vernon challenges listeners to accept a new, self-aware perspective, one delivered honestly and beautifully.
Full Review →

8. Anderson .Paak - Malibu

Anderson .Paak - Malibu
January 15, 2016
Neo-Soul
Critic Score
80
14 reviews
User Score
80
510 reviews

.Paak seems to be in total control of his talent. It might be a challenge for him to make something as relatable and soulful as Malibu again, but fortunately, the album has the kind of substance that suggests he’s built to last.

Full Review →

7. Angel Olsen - My Woman

Angel Olsen - My Woman
September 2, 2016
Indie Rock
Critic Score
86
28 reviews
User Score
82
420 reviews

My Woman oozes unhurried glamour and moments of sweeping grandeur. Olsen shifts between genres with graceful precision, breaking down the limiting (and, sometimes, sexist) critiques that have dogged her career.

Full Review →

6. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree
September 9, 2016
Art Rock
Critic Score
90
24 reviews
User Score
84
392 reviews

Throughout the record, Cave moves in and out of focus, though always clearly to his own ends ... As an artist, he needed to release the record in just this way in order to process his pain. Skeleton Tree was released for us, but it’s for him.

Full Review →

5. ANOHNI - Hopelessness

ANOHNI - Hopelessness
May 6, 2016
Art Pop
Critic Score
81
26 reviews
User Score
77
379 reviews
For so long, ANOHNI had felt like a supernatural force, of this world but able to see a thread of love and hope through all the sadness. By expressing the grimmest realities, that thread becomes harder and harder to find. But ANOHNI’s music makes that struggle all the more powerful.
Full Review →

4. Frank Ocean - Blonde

Frank Ocean - Blonde
August 20, 2016
Alternative R&B
Critic Score
86
31 reviews
User Score
84
601 reviews

Blonde is R&B minimalism that only Ocean could have made, and he created it as such so that its details emerge when they feel comfortable to do so — namely when the listener is prepared to face their similarities to his autobiographical faults with the same lack of a need for exoneration.

Full Review →

3. David Bowie - Blackstar

David Bowie - Blackstar
January 8, 2016
Art Rock
Critic Score
84
30 reviews
User Score
85
748 reviews

Blackstar is a battle cry against boredom, a wide-eyed drama set in a world just beyond our scopes. It doesn’t get more Bowie than that.

Full Review →

2. Chance The Rapper - Coloring Book

Chance The Rapper - Coloring Book
May 13, 2016
Hip Hop
Critic Score
86
21 reviews
User Score
77
440 reviews
Serving as a stark antithesis to the drill movement, Chance’s gospel worship doesn’t seek to hold a mirror to the daily horrors of Chicago, but instead to uplift, empower, and heal its people.
Full Review →

1. Beyoncé - Lemonade

Beyoncé - Lemonade
April 23, 2016
R&B
Critic Score
89
28 reviews
User Score
79
619 reviews

Lemonade marks Beyoncé’s most accomplished work yet. It is the perfect combination of the sharp songwriting of 4 with the visual storytelling acumen of her self-titled record. Here, we see Beyoncé fully coming into her own: wise, accomplished, and in defense of herself.

Full Review →
Original Source: http://consequenceofsound.net/2016/11/top-50-albums-of-2016/

MORE 2016 YEAR END LISTS:


MORE YEAR END LISTS FROM CONSEQUENCE OF SOUND:


Check out our 2016 Year End Summary.