AOTY 2017
A.V. Club's Best Albums of 2017 So Far

A.V. Club's Best Albums of 2017 So Far

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Algiers - The Underside of Power

Algiers - The Underside of Power
June 23, 2017
Critic Score
83
20 reviews
This record might not justify the trying times under which it was created—what art could?—yet it captures them in a way that provides both comfort and catharsis to those who would resist. It’s an album we need right now, and will surely, sadly need again.

Blanck Mass - World Eater

Blanck Mass - World Eater
March 3, 2017
Critic Score
80
23 reviews
On his third proper album as Blanck Mass, Fuck Buttons’ Benjamin John Power finally cements an identity separate from his main gig.

Charly Bliss - Guppy

Charly Bliss - Guppy
April 21, 2017
Critic Score
84
7 reviews

Guppy, the debut album by Charly Bliss, is a nearly flawless exemplar of its kind, a record that captures a certain sound, mood, and energy with the passion and exuberance of a teen as-yet-uncrushed by life.

Feist - Pleasure

Feist - Pleasure
April 28, 2017
Critic Score
79
27 reviews

These all contribute to the record’s capacity for surprise, a playfulness that accounts for the most literal representation of Pleasure’s eponymous emotional state.

Forest Swords - Compassion

Forest Swords - Compassion
May 5, 2017
Critic Score
79
16 reviews

Compassion may feel especially timely, but music this passionately realized will always be worth revisiting.

Future - Future

Future - Future
February 17, 2017
Critic Score
68
11 reviews

Future - HNDRXX

Future - HNDRXX
February 24, 2017
Critic Score
79
6 reviews

Gas - Narkopop

Gas - Narkopop
April 21, 2017
Critic Score
79
10 reviews

Voigt’s music can be hypnotic, transporting, and soothing, or it can sound like an orchestra tuning up over a throbbing headache, depending on your own tolerance for such things. But for those who appreciate the palliative pleasures of those kinds of immersive ambient textures, Voigt’s first Gas album in 17 years marks a very welcome return.

Japandroids - Near to the Wild Heart of Life

Japandroids - Near to the Wild Heart of Life
January 27, 2017
Critic Score
77
29 reviews
The band has expanded its sound while hewing close to what it does best.

Jlin - Black Origami

Jlin - Black Origami
May 19, 2017
Critic Score
86
12 reviews

Kendrick Lamar - DAMN.

Kendrick Lamar - DAMN.
April 14, 2017
Critic Score
91
31 reviews

As on its predecessors, Damn. is packed tight with thoughts, anxieties, and anecdotes, but this time Lamar doesn’t even try to shape them into a big picture ... Lamar trusts every idea to stand on its own. When you’re making art this substantial, vital, and virtuosic, there’s no need to wrap a tidy bow around it.

Laura Marling - Semper Femina

Laura Marling - Semper Femina
March 10, 2017
Critic Score
84
29 reviews

In these songs, Marling looks at womanhood and female relationships from various angles and distances, giving the gray areas of these roles and intimacies plenty of breathing room. The result is a record of great affection and fluidity.

Mount Eerie - A Crow Looked at Me

Mount Eerie - A Crow Looked at Me
March 24, 2017
Critic Score
90
16 reviews

Pain is the crux of Elverum’s career, and without resorting to any of his brutally stark instrumentation, he offers his most sobering full-length to date, and likely of all time.

Perfume Genius - No Shape

Perfume Genius - No Shape
May 5, 2017
Critic Score
84
25 reviews

The new Perfume Genius often brings to mind the sort of music one listens to in a bedroom while fantasizing about escape. It has moments of populist ambition and self-consciously arty experimentation, and it’s a credit to Hadreas and producer Blake Mills that its 13 tracks sound as seamless and cohesive as they do.

Sampha - Process

Sampha - Process
February 3, 2017
Critic Score
84
29 reviews

Process is an exercise in finding beauty in even the tragedy of a parent’s death, a record of singular probity and hard-earned optimism. It’s the best R&B debut since FKA Twigs’ LP1.

Slowdive - Slowdive

Slowdive - Slowdive
May 5, 2017
Critic Score
82
26 reviews

Slowdive is not a quantum-leap record, nor does it slavishly replicate past successes. Rather it’s another collection of thoughtfully written songs, filled with evident joy for the band’s reformation.

Sylvan Esso - What Now

Sylvan Esso - What Now
April 28, 2017
Critic Score
77
17 reviews

Where Sylvan Esso collected some great songs, What Now feels like a statement of purpose, a duo stretching into the shape it was meant to be and bringing it all purposefully together.

SZA - CTRL

SZA - CTRL
June 9, 2017
Critic Score
83
14 reviews

Ctrl is as tough as Damn is tender, and it knocks as hard as The Sun’s Tirade swoons. It’s weirder than any of them, and maybe funnier, too.

Thundercat - Drunk

Thundercat - Drunk
February 24, 2017
Critic Score
81
23 reviews

Vince Staples - Big Fish Theory

Vince Staples - Big Fish Theory
June 23, 2017
Critic Score
87
23 reviews

Big Fish Theory veers off the course set by its predecessor, bucking the sophomore slump by ditching the vast majority of his old collaborators and peers in favor of the sort of whole-cloth artistic reinvention generally associated with canonical greats like Kanye or Bowie. What’s even crazier is that he sticks the landing. It’s his second classic LP in a row.

Visible Cloaks - Reassemblage

Visible Cloaks - Reassemblage
February 17, 2017
Critic Score
78
7 reviews

Waxahatchee - Out in the Storm

Waxahatchee - Out in the Storm
July 14, 2017
Critic Score
81
25 reviews

Each Waxahatchee album has felt like a big step forward, and Out In The Storm feels like the biggest one yet.

White Reaper - The World's Best American Band

White Reaper - The World's Best American Band
April 7, 2017
Critic Score
79
8 reviews

It’s the whole package that matters here, and taken together, The World’s Best American Band has the elements of one of the year’s best rock albums.

Original Source: http://www.avclub.com/live/best-albums-2017-so-far-257258/entry/1303
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