AOTY 2020
A.V. Club's Best Albums of 2017 So Far

A.V. Club's Best Albums of 2017 So Far

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Algiers - The Underside of Power
June 23, 2017
Critic Score
84
23 reviews
This record might not justify the trying times under which it was created—what art could?—yet it captures them in a way that provides both comfort and catharsis to those who would resist. It’s an album we need right now, and will surely, sadly need again.

Blanck Mass - World Eater
March 3, 2017
Critic Score
77
26 reviews
On his third proper album as Blanck Mass, Fuck Buttons’ Benjamin John Power finally cements an identity separate from his main gig.

Charly Bliss - Guppy
April 21, 2017
Critic Score
82
11 reviews

Guppy, the debut album by Charly Bliss, is a nearly flawless exemplar of its kind, a record that captures a certain sound, mood, and energy with the passion and exuberance of a teen as-yet-uncrushed by life.

Feist - Pleasure
April 28, 2017
Critic Score
80
35 reviews

These all contribute to the record’s capacity for surprise, a playfulness that accounts for the most literal representation of Pleasure’s eponymous emotional state.

Forest Swords - Compassion
May 5, 2017
Critic Score
79
19 reviews

Compassion may feel especially timely, but music this passionately realized will always be worth revisiting.

Future - HNDRXX
February 24, 2017
Critic Score
77
8 reviews

Future - Future
February 17, 2017
Critic Score
66
14 reviews

Gas - Narkopop
April 21, 2017
Critic Score
77
13 reviews

Voigt’s music can be hypnotic, transporting, and soothing, or it can sound like an orchestra tuning up over a throbbing headache, depending on your own tolerance for such things. But for those who appreciate the palliative pleasures of those kinds of immersive ambient textures, Voigt’s first Gas album in 17 years marks a very welcome return.

Japandroids - Near to the Wild Heart of Life
January 27, 2017
Critic Score
77
36 reviews
The band has expanded its sound while hewing close to what it does best.

Jlin - Black Origami
May 19, 2017
Critic Score
84
15 reviews

Kendrick Lamar - DAMN.
April 14, 2017
Critic Score
93
40 reviews

As on its predecessors, Damn. is packed tight with thoughts, anxieties, and anecdotes, but this time Lamar doesn’t even try to shape them into a big picture ... Lamar trusts every idea to stand on its own. When you’re making art this substantial, vital, and virtuosic, there’s no need to wrap a tidy bow around it.

Laura Marling - Semper Femina
March 10, 2017
Critic Score
83
38 reviews

In these songs, Marling looks at womanhood and female relationships from various angles and distances, giving the gray areas of these roles and intimacies plenty of breathing room. The result is a record of great affection and fluidity.

Mount Eerie - A Crow Looked at Me
March 24, 2017
Critic Score
91
18 reviews

Pain is the crux of Elverum’s career, and without resorting to any of his brutally stark instrumentation, he offers his most sobering full-length to date, and likely of all time.

Perfume Genius - No Shape
May 5, 2017
Critic Score
84
31 reviews

The new Perfume Genius often brings to mind the sort of music one listens to in a bedroom while fantasizing about escape. It has moments of populist ambition and self-consciously arty experimentation, and it’s a credit to Hadreas and producer Blake Mills that its 13 tracks sound as seamless and cohesive as they do.

Pile - A Hairshirt of Purpose
March 31, 2017
Critic Score
82
4 reviews

Playboi Carti - Playboi Carti
April 14, 2017
Critic Score
68
4 reviews

Power Trip - Nightmare Logic
February 24, 2017
Critic Score
80
12 reviews

Priests - Nothing Feels Natural
January 27, 2017
Critic Score
76
13 reviews

Sampha - Process
February 3, 2017
Critic Score
83
36 reviews

Process is an exercise in finding beauty in even the tragedy of a parent’s death, a record of singular probity and hard-earned optimism. It’s the best R&B debut since FKA Twigs’ LP1.

Sleaford Mods - English Tapas
March 3, 2017
Critic Score
74
21 reviews

Slowdive - Slowdive
May 5, 2017
Critic Score
82
34 reviews

Slowdive is not a quantum-leap record, nor does it slavishly replicate past successes. Rather it’s another collection of thoughtfully written songs, filled with evident joy for the band’s reformation.

Sylvan Esso - What Now
April 28, 2017
Critic Score
75
21 reviews

Where Sylvan Esso collected some great songs, What Now feels like a statement of purpose, a duo stretching into the shape it was meant to be and bringing it all purposefully together.

SZA - Ctrl
June 9, 2017
Critic Score
82
20 reviews

Ctrl is as tough as Damn is tender, and it knocks as hard as The Sun’s Tirade swoons. It’s weirder than any of them, and maybe funnier, too.

Tee Grizzley - My Moment
April 7, 2017
Critic Score
59
4 reviews

Thundercat - Drunk
February 24, 2017
Critic Score
81
29 reviews

Vince Staples - Big Fish Theory
June 23, 2017
Critic Score
86
27 reviews

Big Fish Theory veers off the course set by its predecessor, bucking the sophomore slump by ditching the vast majority of his old collaborators and peers in favor of the sort of whole-cloth artistic reinvention generally associated with canonical greats like Kanye or Bowie. What’s even crazier is that he sticks the landing. It’s his second classic LP in a row.

Visible Cloaks - Reassemblage
February 17, 2017
Critic Score
75
7 reviews

Waxahatchee - Out in the Storm
July 14, 2017
Critic Score
80
31 reviews

Each Waxahatchee album has felt like a big step forward, and Out In The Storm feels like the biggest one yet.

White Reaper - The World's Best American Band
April 7, 2017
Critic Score
78
9 reviews

It’s the whole package that matters here, and taken together, The World’s Best American Band has the elements of one of the year’s best rock albums.

Original Source: http://www.avclub.com/live/best-albums-2017-so-far-257258/entry/1303
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