Under the Radar's Top 100 Albums of 2018

Under the Radar's Top 100 Albums of 2018

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100. Villagers - The Art of Pretending to Swim

September 21, 2018
Critic Score
75
14 reviews

By all accounts, The Art of Pretending to Swim is a remarkably encompassing record for a group that has been lauded as exclusively one genre of music. O'Brien and company prove that folk music is an emotive device, a way of describing a certain atmosphere, a moment in time, or place on the seaside.

99. Tunng - Songs You Make at Night

Tunng - Songs You Make at Night
August 24, 2018
Critic Score
78
9 reviews
A must-listen for Tunng fans, this could mark the start of the second phase of their career.

97. Deafheaven - Ordinary Corrupt Human Love

July 13, 2018
Critic Score
83
27 reviews
From here, there can be no mistake; Deafheaven are the real deal.

96. Tim Hecker - Konoyo

September 28, 2018
Critic Score
81
18 reviews

That you may find yourself frozen in a listening state is evidence of Hecker's genius and there's always something more profound about finding yourself in that state unwittingly. He reaches for and finds spaces on shelves in a cupboard behind a wall separating you from a dimension you didn't know existed. Konoyo represents his farthest reach.

95. Goat Girl - Goat Girl

April 6, 2018
Critic Score
77
16 reviews

For a debut, this is a strikingly well-realized collection of songs with a clear sense of purpose and identity.

94. Anna Burch - Quit the Curse

February 2, 2018
Critic Score
73
12 reviews
Burch has grown immensely as an artist, each song instrumentally richer than the last. Burch's voice is as confident as ever, but more heartbroken than before. ­­­­

93. Django Django - Marble Skies

January 26, 2018
Critic Score
74
23 reviews

Marble Skies probably won't change anyone's mind about Django Django; it's a touch scattershot and not every experimentation works perfectly. But those qualities usually dog indie rock groups on their "difficult third album," and this one functions beautifully as a step further for Django Django. It's full of creative songwriting and risks that mostly pay off.

92. The Goon Sax - We're Not Talking

September 14, 2018
Critic Score
79
12 reviews

Even if Forster had a head start in his craft, he and the other Goons aren't taking any shortcuts—these are the hard-earned lessons of a band still tossed by youth, still fine-tuning both their chops and their compassion.

91. Jaakko Eino Kalevi - Out of Touch

Jaakko Eino Kalevi - Out of Touch
October 12, 2018
Critic Score
59
6 reviews

90. Melody's Echo Chamber - Bon Voyage

June 15, 2018
Critic Score
75
22 reviews

Bon Voyage really highlights the musical vocabulary of Prochet, and as such, the record achieves a great deal in very little time.

89. Young Jesus - The Whole Thing Is Just There

Young Jesus - The Whole Thing Is Just There
October 12, 2018
Critic Score
81
2 reviews

88. of Montreal - White Is Relic/Irrealis Mood

March 9, 2018
Critic Score
68
12 reviews
Barnes has a once again solid outing under the of Montreal moniker on an album that is as quirky as it is seamless.

87. CHVRCHES - Love is Dead

May 25, 2018
Critic Score
71
26 reviews

Not exactly a faultless record, by any stretch of the imagination, Love Is Dead nonetheless confirms that The Bones of What You Believe was far from a fluke effort and that the band, regardless of the success found in the intervening years, are still capable of delivering exciting, engaging and boundary-pushing synth-pop when it really matters.

85. Thom Yorke - Suspiria (Music for the Luca Guadagnino Film)

October 26, 2018
Critic Score
79
19 reviews
Like most music composed for cinema, it suffers without the images, sound that exists to enhance is often lacking when left alone. It doesn't lack anywhere near as much as most scores do though, suggesting Yorke might match his bandmate after all.

84. Anna von Hausswolff - Dead Magic

March 2, 2018
Critic Score
75
10 reviews

Dead Magic is a five song, 47-minute record that her career has been building towards, amounting to her most majestic and complete work to date.

83. Hop Along - Bark Your Head Off, Dog

April 6, 2018
Critic Score
79
18 reviews
Everything about the Philadelphia quartet's sound on their latest record sounds more accomplished, but also more polished, which takes a little from what made Hop Along such an exciting prospect on previous songs such as "The Knock."

82. Parcels - Parcels

October 12, 2018
Critic Score
83
4 reviews

81. Eleanor Friedberger - Rebound

May 4, 2018
Critic Score
73
18 reviews

The conviction that has defined her career so far is nowhere to be seen here and, whilst the reason for this change is still unclear, the result is a record of missed opportunities and inexcusable shortcomings.

80. Frontperson - Frontrunner

Frontperson - Frontrunner
September 21, 2018
Critic Score
71
2 reviews

79. Suede - The Blue Hour

September 21, 2018
Critic Score
78
13 reviews

While it may be overlong, overwrought perhaps, it's a worthwhile entry into their canon that should delight fans.

78. Field Music - Open Here

February 2, 2018
Critic Score
78
16 reviews

On Open Here, the brothers only continue to push outwards as they reckon with both their personal experiences of fatherhood and the state of society in their funk-led tunes.

77. Flasher - Constant Image

June 8, 2018
Critic Score
82
8 reviews
Washington, DC trio Flasher surge with danceable dialogue on their full-length debut, a lightning-strike leap from the post-punk shadows of their first EP into full-color radio waves.

76. Cat Power - Wanderer

October 5, 2018
Critic Score
76
30 reviews

72. Beak> - >>>

September 21, 2018
Critic Score
78
11 reviews

Spotted with muffled, R. Stevie Moore-like vocals and bathed in warm, low electronica, >>> holds some of the band's most immersive and enveloping material to date.

70. Ryley Walker - Deafman Glance

May 18, 2018
Critic Score
74
12 reviews

Deafman Glance feels like attempting to recall a half-remembered dream while in the throws of a gentle hangover, making it one for lazy days and Sundays. Consequently, the spoils of these incorporeal meditations are misty and transitory, and while they may not dazzle, they do have a tranquil charm and unique character.

69. Robyn - Honey

October 26, 2018
Critic Score
86
23 reviews

68. Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Sex & Food

April 6, 2018
Critic Score
73
24 reviews

On Sex & Food Unknown Mortal Orchestra are inventive, ragged, sometimes tiring, and very cool.

67. serpentwithfeet - soil

June 8, 2018
Critic Score
83
17 reviews
That he's prepared to drift off into erotic and spiritual imagery, laying himself bare in such a vulnerable and emotive way is one of the delights of the year.

65. Sons of Kemet - Your Queen is a Reptile

March 30, 2018
Critic Score
82
8 reviews
An immaculately conceived record, the latest from Sons of Kemet is proof that British jazz is alive and well and, even beyond that, may be one of the best cultural tools we have in fighting the oppressive and deeply troubling political landscape that appears to be forming in the west, of late.

64. Lala Lala - The Lamb

September 28, 2018
Critic Score
80
8 reviews

The Lamb cloaks itself in a sobering, stable minded, eloquently thought out state of realism. West's lyrics read like observational prose, her melodies hashed out and clearly defined.

63. Neko Case - Hell-On

June 1, 2018
Critic Score
82
22 reviews

Hell-On is an impressive adventure through the mind and talents of one our most erstwhile and beloved musical treasures.

61. tUnE-yArDs - I can feel you creep into my private life

January 19, 2018
Critic Score
74
33 reviews

I Can Feel You Creep Into My Private Life is a natural addition to the Tune-Yards catalog, a group of albums with songs so singular that practically every track seems like an evolution in the Tune-Yards sound.

60. Franz Ferdinand - Always Ascending

February 9, 2018
Critic Score
67
24 reviews

The only reason Always Ascending does not rate a perfect 10 is because of a couple of David's amongst the Goliaths. Two slower, more contemplative tracks that don't work as well, but don't qualify as clunkers either. Always Ascending is definitely an early contender for best of 2018 lists.

59. Still Corners - Slow Air

August 17, 2018
Critic Score
65
8 reviews

Slow Air is an excellent, if not totally innovative, album of crafty atmospheric dream-pop that is rich and full and can be enjoyed at low volume as soothing morning music or as engaging rock music blasted at full volume.

58. Jeff Rosenstock - POST-

January 1, 2018
Critic Score
82
14 reviews

57. Florence + The Machine - High as Hope

June 29, 2018
Critic Score
75
29 reviews

This is a deep well of an album that demands repeated listens—the subtleties and intricacies revealing themselves satisfyingly and sometimes inspiringly as time goes on.

56. Nils Frahm - All Melody

January 26, 2018
Critic Score
80
19 reviews
These are nocturnes that cover ground like a true tracker. Frahm can get a little lost in his acreage and compositions might benefit from the fences of editing but transportation requires a sense of adventure and following Nils Frahm has hidden rewards.

55. Amen Dunes - Freedom

March 30, 2018
Critic Score
80
13 reviews

54. Adrianne Lenker - abysskiss

October 5, 2018
Critic Score
79
16 reviews

By the time the consistently pleasing play comes to an end, you're thoroughly settled into the environs she has spun. Even when some songs leave you thinking there's a better, fuller version out there, abysskiss coalesces around its imperfections.

53. Marlon Williams - Make Way for Love

February 16, 2018
Critic Score
79
12 reviews

Make Way for Love is the soundtrack to a longing gaze across a mostly empty, darkly lit bar in which two lonely strangers find someone to spend the night with. It's a meditation on love—and perhaps, at times, simply on companionship—that seems born to echo out the speakers of a convertible taken on a midnight drive.

52. Noname - Room 25

September 14, 2018
Critic Score
85
16 reviews
Original Source: http://www.undertheradarmag.com/lists/under_the_radars_top_100_albums_of_2018/
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