AOTY 2019
Spectrum Culture's Top 20 Albums of 2016

Spectrum Culture's Top 20 Albums of 2016

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20. Kanye West - The Life of Pablo

February 14, 2016
Critic Score
34 reviews

The album is almost workmanlike, a reflection of the artistic process of its creator rather than a grand statement of intent.

20. Isaiah Rashad - The Sun's Tirade

September 2, 2016
Critic Score
12 reviews

16. Mitski - Puberty 2

June 17, 2016
Critic Score
26 reviews

13. Danny Brown - Atrocity Exhibition

September 27, 2016
Critic Score
32 reviews

It’s unsettling, affecting and compelling in a way that few pieces of music have been this year.

12. Schoolboy Q - Blank Face LP

July 8, 2016
Critic Score
20 reviews

9. Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial

May 20, 2016
Critic Score
23 reviews

Teens of Denial is a generous record bursting with so many ideas that Toledo seems like he’s rushing to get them out, trying to connect and willing to share personal stories of failure.

8. Solange - A Seat at the Table

September 30, 2016
Critic Score
25 reviews

On A Seat at the Table, Solange with an expansive mix of features and co-producers, continues a legacy of Black cultural production that is not just self-referentially critical, but peaks in spiritual and emotional transcendence.

7. Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool

May 8, 2016
Critic Score
37 reviews

A Moon Shaped Pool is not the best Radiohead album, but it is still striking in its intimacy and introspection. It’s a step forward and further evidence of just how thoroughly the band has mastered their craft.

3. Frank Ocean - Blonde

August 20, 2016
Critic Score
37 reviews

The multiplicity of spins and perspectives Ocean draws out of love stories, social commentary and self-reflection is payoff enough to return to the album again and again.

2. Beyoncé - Lemonade

April 23, 2016
Critic Score
32 reviews

This is Beyoncé’s best album yet and one of the most compelling cases ever made for the pop album as confessional art form.

1. David Bowie - Blackstar

January 8, 2016
Critic Score
36 reviews

Blackstar will go down as one of the great Bowie albums, not simply for emerging on his deathbed but for the strength of its focus, the scale of its ambition and the clarity with which he incorporates swooning, sinister jazz with contemporary production and emerges with a quintessential statement.

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Songs of 2019 Playlist
Vinyl Me, Please