2020 is finally here! That means it’s time to look back and reflect on 2019. Making a list of the best albums of the last year would be too easy, so instead, here’s a list of ten great albums from 2019 you should go out of your way to listen to (in no particular order).
Freddie Gibbs & Madlib - 'Bandana'
Five years after the release of their critically acclaimed collaboration album “Piñata,” the duo appropriately known as MadGibbs resurfaced this year to release, arguably, the best pure rap album of the year. Filled to the brim with Gibb’s trademark street raps and Madlib’s unorthodox production, “Bandana” is a worthy follow up for the twosome.
Charli XCX - 'Charli'
Pop futurist Charli XCX followed up on the promise shown in a series of recent mixtapes to release her most ambitious and fulfilling record yet. For more on this one, read our full review here.
Tyler, The Creator - 'IGOR'
Fans of Tyler, The Creator could have seen another emotional album like this coming after 2017’s “Flower Boy,” but “IGOR” is so much more than a lot of people could see coming. With Tyler experimenting more with both vocal styles and production, he managed to create, no pun intended, maybe the best concept album of the year.
Billie Eilish - 'WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?'
Billie Eilish has been described before as ASMR pop music, but don’t let that comparison take your attention away from the music on her first full-length. The now 18-year-old Eilish has a bright future ahead of her first LP is anything to go by.
FKA twigs - 'MAGDALENE'
Another return to form after a five-year stretch, FKA twigs' “MAGDALENE” proved the elusive artist hasn’t lost a step since the last time she released a full body of work. More in the realm of art pop than anything else, twigs’ second LP feels like the most grandiose album of the year.
Thom Yorke - 'ANIMA'
The Radiohead frontman has released solo material before, but never before has it felt so fully realized. “ANIMA,” his third full-length record, is a dystopian masterpiece perfect for when life is on the existential side.
Carly Rae Jepsen - 'Dedicated'
Fans had to wait four long years for the follow up to 2015’s “E•MO•TION,” but nobody was disappointed to hear what she had to say next. “Dedicated” acts as a more optimistic successor to the aforementioned “E•MO•TION” without losing any of the latter’s charm or pop sensibilities.
Weyes Blood - 'Titanic Rising'
Baroque pop is often not a type of music that gets mentioned at the top of year-end lists. This album makes a case as to why it should be.
Lana Del Rey - 'Norman F------ Rockwell!'
The most mature album in LDR’s discography, “Norman F------ Rockwell!” is unlike anything she’s released prior. While Lana has always been a star with a cult-like fan base, she has finally released a project that will be remembered outside of the hardcore fans for years to come.
Fontaines D.C. - 'DOGREL'
Maybe the least celebrated album on this list, Fontaines D.C.’s “DOGREL” is nonetheless worth mentioning. The band’s debut LP is a worthy first offering and is over and above all a fun record to listen to.