Harding continues to keep listeners on their toes with Designer which, overall, is a unique, luminous record that's about whatever you need it to be about.
Aside from a few less-than-strong features, Rap or Go to the League allows 2 Chainz, a veteran rapper, to use his powers to acknowledge a picture much larger than him — it's one that's rooted in his past, but is planting the seeds for the feature.
While it's tough to imagine Whitechapel ever topping This Is Exile — one of the most important deathcore albums ever — this record is an extremely close second. The Valley solidifies the band in their current musical direction and is easily Whitechapel's most diverse and well-composed album.
It certainly has a strong first half ... if less praise can be heaped on the latter half of No Geography, its contours will at least be sweetly familiar to longtime fans.
Young Enough makes clear that the band, particularly Hendricks' knack for weaving clear-eyed narratives into her writing, aren't about to have their vision hemmed in by any one scene or sound.
No longer masked by double exposure, deep blues and greys, Assume Form is Blake coming into focus.
Now that they're mostly unburdened from the narratives of their past, Father of the Bride finds them at their most relaxed, jovial and inviting.
GREY Area, as the title suggests, is far from the theatrics of a black and white world, but lays in the complexities of everything in between.
On the Line is full of such raw realizations laid bare — it's Lewis squaring up a difficult period of her life with an affected but steady gaze.
LEGACY! LEGACY! is a complex and near-flawless reworking of genre ... as the singer-songwriter evolves her art, thought and reason for being.
Big Thief are accepting the inherent beauty of life's invisible forces and their contemplation with the unknown has led them to a mindful state of raw, celestial power. U.F.O.F. is trembling with mystical energy and is truly one of the year's best records.
At its core, Cuz I Love You is dripping in a confident rebellion that has been a catalyst for the R&B/soul divas throughout the decades.
Eilish's success is no fluke — When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? is a debut record that showcases a bold artistic vision and a willingness to move beyond the boundaries of pop conventions.
Across 27 songs — many of them lasting between a minute and two — Flamagra plays like a staggered daydream, where you occasionally return to consciousness, only to slip back into slumber soon after.
The best parts of the album, though, are the moments where it doesn't sound exactly like anything either artist has released before, yet still shows two songwriters at the height of their talents.
I Am Easy to Find feels like a restart for a band in its 20th year. It might challenge some fans and may not ever grow on others, but more than anything, it proves that the National are not the band you thought they were. They're way more than that.
Titanic Rising may draw inspiration from the past, but it's ultimately a clear-eyed look at love, catastrophe and hope that's perfect for the present moment.
Driven by feelings, mindfulness and a newfound sense of purpose, the avant-garde album takes on an intensified jazz approach filled with sonic repetition, chord progression and freeform collaboration. And despite being light in lyrics, it's heavy in Houston traditions.
Dedicated is a more nuanced and subdued work than Jepsen's 2015 masterwork, trading in some of her last record's razzle-dazzle for a more refined emotional palette, but losing none of the songs' staying power.
At the heart of it, Morbid Stuff just still sounds like friends having fun and making catchy, cathartic punk anthems for teens and almost-adults alike — offering a brief, but much needed respite from the hell that is everyday life.
Remind Me Tomorrow is not only a reminder of the power of love but also features some of Van Etten's finest work to date.