NME's 50 Best Albums of 2019

NME's 50 Best Albums of 2019

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1. Billie Eilish - WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?

March 29, 2019
Critic Score
79
23 reviews

‘When We All Fall Asleep…’ is a memorable and game-changing debut record, with Billie's disruptive streak front and centre. We'll no doubt see the mainstream scrabbling to replicate it.

2. Tyler, the Creator - IGOR

May 17, 2019
Critic Score
85
21 reviews

‘IGOR’ is an accomplished and evergreen record that’s well worth putting your phone down, turning the TV off and devoting your full attention span to.

3. Lana Del Rey - Norman Fucking Rockwell!

August 30, 2019
Critic Score
86
31 reviews

Lana Del Rey is large – she contains multitudes, and the way she balances and embodies them on her fifth album is nothing short of stunning.

4. slowthai - Nothing Great About Britain

May 17, 2019
Critic Score
83
17 reviews
The Northampton rapper's unique debut album is authentic and honest in all its garish glory, an indication of the sprawling possible paths for his career to grow into.

5. Little Simz - GREY Area

March 1, 2019
Critic Score
87
17 reviews

London MC Simbi Ajikawo has come true on her early promise with this confident and unapologetic album, the best rap record of the year so far.

6. FKA twigs - MAGDALENE

November 8, 2019
Critic Score
89
29 reviews
Tahliah Barnett's been to tabloid hell and back and experienced gruelling ill-health, all of which is explored on her huge, panoramic second album.

7. Fontaines D.C. - Dogrel

April 12, 2019
Critic Score
91
20 reviews

The Irish troubadours come good on a debut album that offers both a storyteller’s narrative voice and a snarling new vision of youthful disillusionment.

8. Michael Kiwanuka - Kiwanuka

November 1, 2019
Critic Score
86
25 reviews

As well as being his most reflective album, it’s also Kiwanuka’s most hopeful.

9. Weyes Blood - Titanic Rising

April 5, 2019
Critic Score
86
27 reviews

‘Titanic Rising’ harnesses convention and refashions it into something singular. At once a document of this “wild time to be alive” and an escape from it, it’s often remarkably good.

10. Clairo - Immunity

August 2, 2019
Critic Score
74
21 reviews

‘Immunity’ is an album to burrow into and become resident in its songs. It’s a comforter that wraps itself around you when you’re feeling low and a resilient reminder that there are brighter times ahead.

11. Bring Me The Horizon - amo

January 25, 2019
Critic Score
74
17 reviews
It’s proof alone that this band can do what they want and get away with it. There’s nothing as exciting as a surprise that pays off. It ain’t rocket science, it ain’t heavy metal, it’s just class songwriting.

12. Vampire Weekend - Father of the Bride

May 3, 2019
Critic Score
78
36 reviews

Depending on your mood, there’ll be songs you’d happily lop off for a more streamlined listen, but by and large, all of these songs make the patchwork much more vibrant.

13. Slipknot - We Are Not Your Kind

August 9, 2019
Critic Score
81
18 reviews

The 'Knot's sixth album is an astonishing record: a roaring, horrifying delve into the guts of the band’s revulsion, a primal scream of endlessly inventive extreme metal and searing misanthropy.

14. Solange - When I Get Home

March 1, 2019
Critic Score
82
23 reviews

This surprise-released, self-produced record is a reminder that Solange is an R&B frontrunner in her own right. It’s a celebration of women, black culture and – above all – music.

15. Foals - Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost (Part 1)

March 8, 2019
Critic Score
80
24 reviews
If this is just the first act of ‘Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost’, then this era may just prove to be Foals’ making.

16. Lizzo - Cuz I Love You

April 19, 2019
Critic Score
82
27 reviews

On her self-love anthem-packed third album, Lizzo proves she's the electric, complex pop star that the world needs.

17. Dave - Psychodrama

March 8, 2019
Critic Score
89
11 reviews

A moving, quasi-concept album, this debut from the 20-year-old rapper is bold and thought-provoking, the kind of record that comes along only rarely.

18. The Chemical Brothers - No Geography

April 12, 2019
Critic Score
77
20 reviews

The futuristic Manchester duo return with another spell-binding and forward-thinking collection of festival smashers, still light years ahead of their peers.

20. Post Malone - Hollywood's Bleeding

September 6, 2019
Critic Score
71
8 reviews
At times he sounds like Julian Casablancas. At others he sounds like '70s FM radio. This accomplished and eclectic record, though, could only come from Post Malone.

21. Kanye West - JESUS IS KING

October 25, 2019
Critic Score
54
26 reviews

'Jesus Is King' lacks his trademark goofball sense of humour, but that's partly compensated for with warmth and hope for the future.

22. James Blake - Assume Form

January 18, 2019
Critic Score
77
34 reviews

The first five-star album of 2019! Proof that James Blake is one of the world’s greatest producers, this loved-up fourth record, featuring Andre 3000 and Travis Scott, sees him finally in control as a brilliant songwriter and emotive lyricist

23. AJ Tracey - AJ Tracey

February 8, 2019
Critic Score
74
11 reviews

As a document of British rap’s indefinable present ... AJ Tracey’s debut is perhaps the best of the current crop; twisted, vibrant and ever-shifting, but linked with that confident voice.

24. Angel Olsen - All Mirrors

October 4, 2019
Critic Score
87
32 reviews

Ultimately this record – her best yet – is about finding a different kind of love: the quiet self-examination after the dust of a break-up finally settles.

25. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Ghosteen

October 4, 2019
Critic Score
92
30 reviews

‘Ghosteen’ is one of the most devastatingly accurate accounts of grief that you’ll ever listen to. Yet it’s also, astoundingly, one of the most comforting.

26. PUP - Morbid Stuff

April 5, 2019
Critic Score
83
18 reviews

A refreshing, sarcastic antidote to fighting misery with the usual greetings card-meets-motivational poster sentiment, ‘Morbid Stuff’ secures PUP’s position at the top of the present-day punk rock pile.

27. Kano - Hoodies All Summer

August 30, 2019
Critic Score
86
12 reviews
It’s not as if Kano’s position as one of the Top Boys of an energised UK grime and rap scene needed any further cementing, though ‘Hoodies All Summer’ has done exactly that.

28. JPEGMAFIA - All My Heroes Are Cornballs

September 13, 2019
Critic Score
86
16 reviews
JPEGMAFIA’s third album is his most accomplished record yet. Sure, it might not slap you in the face quite like ‘Veteran’, but there’s far more invention here – and it seems like the kind of album created for multiple listens on headphones.

29. Sharon Van Etten - Remind Me Tomorrow

January 18, 2019
Critic Score
85
36 reviews
Don’t call it a comeback, but it may well be her most intoxicating and impressive work to date.

30. Ariana Grande - thank u, next

February 8, 2019
Critic Score
82
26 reviews

It could easily be a self-pitying album, one ready to dwell in the wreckage of incidents, but instead keeps picking up and moving on; providing a guide to how to keep on keeping on even when it feels like whatever you do is going to end in devastation.

31. Octo Octa - Resonant Body

September 6, 2019
Critic Score
76
5 reviews

32. The Desert Sessions - Volumes 11 & 12

The Desert Sessions - Volumes 11 & 12
October 25, 2019
Critic Score
76
10 reviews

33. Bon Iver - i,i

August 9, 2019
Critic Score
81
34 reviews
Bon Iver has pieced together this fourth album in an impossibly intelligent way.

34. DIIV - Deceiver

October 4, 2019
Critic Score
77
17 reviews

It’s actually the more fragile moments on ‘Deceiver’ that ultimately prove to be the most emotionally resonant.

35. Denzel Curry - ZUU

May 31, 2019
Critic Score
82
10 reviews

The 24-year-old Floridian rapper combines dreamy, ethereal beats with hard-hitting sounds and rhymes to relay his unique – and compelling – life story.

36. BTS - MAP OF THE SOUL : PERSONA

April 12, 2019
Critic Score
71
12 reviews

Eight months on from their last album, the Bangtan Boys explore the idea of artist versus idol, roping in a couple of high-profile cameos – from Halsey to Ed Sheeran – to craft a record that sees them continuing to raise the bar.

37. Stormzy - Heavy Is the Head

December 13, 2019
Critic Score
78
16 reviews

Stormzy isn’t aiming to be the biggest name in grime, or UK rap, or indeed even be one of the biggest UK artists; Heavy Is The Head is him trying to go for everything and become the sort of culture-defining talent that only pops up a couple of times in a generation.

38. Sam Fender - Hypersonic Missiles

September 13, 2019
Critic Score
82
11 reviews
‘Hypersonic Missiles’ mostly hits the notes he longs to convey: it’s by turns euphoric and melancholy, self-deprecating and righteous, untethered and claustrophobic. There are no easy answers here, but Sam Fender’s asking the right questions.

39. Orville Peck - Pony

March 22, 2019
Critic Score
81
7 reviews

40. Doja Cat - Hot Pink

November 7, 2019
Critic Score
67
6 reviews

‘Hot Pink’, on the other hand, sounds lush and considered. It seems like Dlamini might have actually broken a sweat with this one.

41. Taylor Swift - Lover

August 23, 2019
Critic Score
73
24 reviews

It succeeds in spite of its clunkier moments because Swift’s melodies are frequently dazzling and her loved-up lyrics are ultimately quite touching.

42. Anderson .Paak - Ventura

April 12, 2019
Critic Score
78
25 reviews
The Californian rapper and crooner continues his series of brilliant, self-mythologising records, and there's a distinct sense of a chapter coming to a close.

43. Coldplay - Everyday Life

November 22, 2019
Critic Score
71
22 reviews

These songs are sometimes more exciting in theory than in practise, but ‘Everyday Life’ regularly steps to the left-field, proving that Coldplay are more adventurous than they’re often given credit for.

44. Maggie Rogers - Heard It In A Past Life

January 18, 2019
Critic Score
71
25 reviews
On the intoxicating ‘Heard It In A Past Life’, Rogers sounds in love with art, nature and life itself.

45. Madonna - Madame X

June 14, 2019
Critic Score
69
18 reviews

Bold, bizarre, self-referential and unlike anything Madonna has ever done before, 'Madame X' finds the star with a glint in her eye.

46. Sneaks - Highway Hypnosis

Sneaks - Highway Hypnosis
January 25, 2019
Critic Score
72
14 reviews

A marked progression from her previous (brilliant) post-punk albums, Eva Moolchan’s third record is a woozy masterclass in understatement, endlessly inspired and fizzing with ambience.

47. Charli XCX - Charli

September 13, 2019
Critic Score
80
26 reviews

The result of years of experimentation, this album enlists established stars and emerging talents to create a work that is quintessentially Charli XCX.

48. Rex Orange County - Pony

October 25, 2019
Critic Score
73
13 reviews

He's spoken of feeling trapped and frustrated, but the 21-year-old wunderkind has channelled his struggles into a jubilant collection of hope-laced tunes.

49. Juice WRLD - DEATH RACE FOR LOVE

March 8, 2019
Critic Score
61
14 reviews

This will be the moment that solidifies his status as one of rap’s most exciting new stars.

50. The Japanese House - Good At Falling

March 1, 2019
Critic Score
80
19 reviews

The solo electro-pop musician was an enigma when she first arrived, but this accomplished debut album makes damn sure you won’t forget her.

Original Source: https://www.nme.com/features/the-greatest-albums-of-2019-2586777
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