Paste's 50 Best Albums of 2016

Paste's 50 Best Albums of 2016

Original Source →

49.

Fruit Bats - Absolute Loser
May 13, 2016
Critic Score
75
5 reviews

Absolute Loser restores the Fruit Bats name, and thankfully this new start doesn’t come with attempts to concoct new tricks, but instead unfolds as a rock-solid example of what Johnson has done best for more than 15 years.

48.

September 30, 2016
Critic Score
85
15 reviews

The songs on American Band, for the most part, are well constructed, catchy-enough tunes that don’t quite rise into the first rank of the group’s deep and impressive catalog.

47.

September 9, 2016
Critic Score
76
4 reviews

Sea of Noise is a powerful testament to the unflagging power of music borne from faith and conviction.

46.

September 23, 2016
Critic Score
81
23 reviews

What gets left out of their pop experimentation much of the time are simply hooks. The callbacks to other artists and eras are easy to recognize, but it’s often hard to remember which song they are attached to.

43.

April 1, 2016
Critic Score
76
20 reviews

Like its predecessors No Time for Dreaming and Victim of Love, Changes is a strong entry into the canon of modern soul with a vintage heart. Even better is what the album represents for Bradley: after decades of struggle, the Screaming Eagle of Soul has come fully into his own.

42.

September 30, 2016
Critic Score
82
22 reviews

40.

November 18, 2016
Critic Score
75
9 reviews

39.

June 3, 2016
Critic Score
81
22 reviews

Without a doubt,Stranger to Stranger is a testament to an artist who refuses to be ordinary and pigeonholed. With this LP, Paul Simon has created his best work in many years.

38.

May 6, 2016
Critic Score
81
34 reviews

37.

June 3, 2016
Critic Score
78
21 reviews
The weird thing about labeling this record as a breakup album is that it’s both accurate and—paradoxically—widely off-base.It’s not angsty, or hastily prepared in a few drunken nights off of some fit of red-eyed nostalgia.

36.

March 4, 2016
Critic Score
83
31 reviews

This isn’t just a collection of b-sides: this is Kendrick’s What If version of his own mythology, flaws as alternate histories, unrealized retcons.

35.

Lake Street Dive - Side Pony
February 19, 2016
Critic Score
74
9 reviews

33.

January 8, 2016
Critic Score
76
29 reviews

Hinds makes music that is very much about capturing a mood and evoking a feeling: namely, those youthful, carefree times that loom large in our memories, or maybe only in our fantasies.

32.

June 17, 2016
Critic Score
81
26 reviews
During their respective well-established careers, Case, lang and Veirs had traveled in fairly different circles, which made the initial news of their collaboration a surprise—one that lasted just long enough to realize how well matched they really are.

30.

March 4, 2016
Critic Score
75
12 reviews

A Man Alive is an endearing listen and has all of the elements of a complete work—even pop-centric singles in “Astonished Man” and “Nobody Dies.”

27.

April 1, 2016
Critic Score
76
14 reviews

26.

September 9, 2016
Critic Score
74
27 reviews

Schmilco is an acoustic record but not a slow one—thank God—which proves the right vehicle for the band’s loosest, most unadorned set of songs since its debut.

25.

July 8, 2016
Critic Score
81
43 reviews

It took a childhood-and-a-half to come to fruition, but Wildflower is another album that snatches elements from the past but sounds like the future.

24.

April 1, 2016
Critic Score
77
18 reviews

Because it so directly explores matters of the heart, Are You Serious will likely end up as the “Andrew Bird Grows Up” album, even if it annoys him. But there’s beauty in the honesty of that evolution.

23.

September 9, 2016
Critic Score
90
35 reviews

Skeleton Tree ... isn’t something listeners can likely dislodge from their minds anytime soon ... There’s something to be said about Skeleton Tree and its starkness, which is as familiar as life and death, an elegy, and a hell of a thing to forget.

22.

Lucius - Good Grief
March 11, 2016
Critic Score
69
15 reviews

21.

September 27, 2016
Critic Score
84
34 reviews

20.

April 8, 2016
Critic Score
82
33 reviews
For all their obvious musical ability, the band’s real skill here is blending so many unexpected elements into a coherent whole that is at once adventurous and accessible, even if—or maybe because—you have to hustle a little to keep up.

19.

April 15, 2016
Critic Score
84
22 reviews

As a whole, A Sailor’s Guide to Earth is simultaneously eclectic and of a piece: It’s big and bold and sometimes messy, but never unfocused.

17.

October 21, 2016
Critic Score
88
29 reviews

The songwriting is masterful, with some new compositions like “It’s Better That Way” in every way equal to the best work he has ever recorded.

16.

January 15, 2016
Critic Score
81
17 reviews

15.

May 13, 2016
Critic Score
86
26 reviews
This varied soundscape keeps Chance on his toes, giving him infinite ways to twist his thoughts and his voice into the reverent praises he’s so devoted to.

14.

February 12, 2016
Critic Score
78
9 reviews

12.

March 25, 2016
Critic Score
83
12 reviews
Her voice is equally as engaging as her writing, going from mournful to exclamatory, oftentimes in the same song. There have been comparisons to Loretta Lynn, which must be flattering to the up-and-coming singer. To write, sing and relate to your listeners as she does is a rare trio of traits.

11.

February 14, 2016
Critic Score
77
35 reviews

The Life of Pablo is a fucking mess—the scattered, contradictory work of an icon straining to keep up with his own brilliant pace.

10.

August 20, 2016
Critic Score
86
40 reviews

Beautifully more simple than any of our mythmaking delusions, Blonde is Ocean’s life as he experiences it: fluid and fluctuating, one man in motion. This is what freedom sounds like.

9.

September 30, 2016
Critic Score
87
42 reviews

If it seemed incongruous that Justin Vernon was rolling with Kanye West on My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy in 2010 and Yeezus in 2013, Vernon’s new LP as Bon Iver shows that the indie-folk singer and megastar rapper are, in many ways, kindred spirits.

8.

February 26, 2016
Critic Score
75
10 reviews

With No Burden, Lucy Dacus challenges the little boxes everyone seems forced into at one time or another, exposing them for the weak material they’re built from. In the process, she’s created a debut record with an abundance of heart that should speak to anyone with a pulse of their own.

7.

September 2, 2016
Critic Score
86
37 reviews

Angel Olsen’s fearless and eloquent embrace of raw emotions in all their messy splendor ultimately feels oddly uplifting, the way it always does when you witness a gifted artist at her best.

6.

May 8, 2016
Critic Score
87
46 reviews

With A Moon Shaped Pool, Radiohead have resumed the greatest winning streak in modern popular music. Not by flaunting any new tricks—just by delivering their normal quota of catharsis.

5.

June 17, 2016
Critic Score
85
30 reviews

4.

November 11, 2016
Critic Score
87
30 reviews
These guys never rapped like this before, and they never will again, at least not in this configuration.

3.

May 20, 2016
Critic Score
82
28 reviews

With Teens of Denial, Toledo has practically guaranteed himself a viable career for years to come. The fact he did it while still in his early twenties after laying a foundation of solid self-released records proves even further that his most creative days are probably still ahead of him.

2.

April 23, 2016
Critic Score
90
37 reviews

1.

January 8, 2016
Critic Score
86
41 reviews

True to the tone of the record, Bowie is almost a spectre throughout ★. His vocals are often doubled in tight harmonies, or given an alien-like echo that might as well be broadcasts from the beyond. He never sounds less than marvelous, through.

Original Source: https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2016/11/the-50-best-albums-of-2016.html
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