Naturally, there are no real surprises here: Power Up sounds unapologetically like AC/DC, and Angus has likened the LP to a tribute to Malcolm the same way that Back in Black was a back-pew eulogy for Bon Scott
Unlike his authenticity-branded contemporary Sturgill Simpson, Stapleton has never appeared tortured by the idea that he represents some sort of bygone country-rock ideal, and his fourth album, Starting Over, feels similarly at home trying whatever comes naturally.
McCartney III works best when he leans all the way into the solo acoustic concept.
At its best, Fake It Flowers is right up there with the first Veruca Salt record or That Dog’s Totally Crushed Out in its ability to fuse pensive elation, sugary guitar charge, and sweet pop melodies.
Sophie Allison follows her 2018 breakthrough with a sucker punch of emotion.
There’s enough top-shelf Connie here that a few speed bumps don’t slow it down too much.
After turning heads on their debut, Dogrel, last year, the post-punks flirt with psychedelia and echoey guitar while their singer stands his ground.
Musically, After Hours hits the best balance yet of the gloomy melodrama of the Weeknd’s early EPs or his 2018 release My Dear Melancholy and the pop slickness of his 2016 LP Starboy — at once lachrymose and sleek, cold but plush, like a lavishly ornamented fallout shelter.
It’s the sound of an artist blooming into some of the best music of her career.
Reunions is a nuanced, probing record that finds Isbell more restless than he’s been since Southeastern, a rich portrait of an artist eternally searching deeper within himself.
The Savages frontwoman explores electronic sounds and stream-of-consciousness self-analysis for a dark, compelling listen.
Manic is about the here-and-now real world and her fight for a place in it as a young woman.
Gomez re-enters public life with grace and clarity, two very rare finds indeed.
The singer pays homage to her New Wave heroes and channels classic country; it’s a karaoke night out that ends up being something more substantial.
Positions is minor growth, major strength and a solid step forward in the right direction for one pop’s most exciting stars.
Trifilio is a very good songwriter with a lovely, somewhat folk-toned voice, and Beach Bunny are all good musicians who’ve attained an impressive amount of musical know-how in their few years together.
Their second album is a multi-faceted R&B treat, full of glistening vocal chemistry, sharp writing, and a self-determination you want to get up and cheer for.
Surprise fourth album combines deeply pleasant vibes with high-flying studio ambition, for an LP about letting go and being thankful for what we’ve got.
The K-Pop boy band’s latest blockbuster is full of stylistic experiments that all flow together.
Mostly, Gaga has focused Chromatica’s spectrum on the kind of body-moving music that comes naturally to her. Dance music will always be her salvation, and her pop renaissance couldn’t come at a better time.
Eleven expertly rendered, largely downcast songs about broken faith, desperate, occasionally self-destructive love, and tenuous recovery.
It is ... , undeniably, the British pop star’s best album yet: a sumptuous tribute to both peak- and post-disco as well as the black, brown and LGBTQ people the genre resonated with most deeply.
Eternal Atake is Lil Uzi Vert’s best album yet, with a cohesiveness, slick concept, and performance that justifies every ounce of hype.
On her latest album Saint Cloud, the 31-year-old songwriter trades in the indie-rock neurosis of her previous work for a mellower, twangy sound that nods towards her roots in Birmingham, Alabama. But her piercing observations have only grown sharper with time.
The agit-rap duo’s fourth LP was recorded before America was ignited in protest, but it still feels perfectly apt for 2020 America.
Future Nostalgia is a breathtakingly fun, cohesive and ambitious attempt to find a place for disco in 2020. Incredibly, Lipa is successful: the upbeat album that she decided to release a week earlier than planned is the perfect balm for a stressful time.
On Rough and Rowdy Ways, Dylan is exploring terrain nobody else has reached before—yet he just keeps pushing on into the future.
For his sophomore solo release, he’s trying something even more ambitious: asking the world to crossover to him.
For longtime fans who are expectantly, perhaps giddily, steeling themselves for another brutal LP from Apple, Fetch The Bolt Cutters will not disappoint.
Her eighth album is a radical detour into the deepest collection of songs she’s ever come up with.