Back at it again with a list article, am I getting predictable yet? Call me nostalgic, but music is a great measurement of time and the vibes throughout the year, I can’t help but reflect.
I did a mid-2019 “Top Albums” write-up back in July. If you compared that list to this one, you wouldn’t think it was made by the same person. I couldn’t tell you why, but my opinion has changed on a lot of these albums throughout the year. Not in the sense that I like any less, others have just really grown on me.
A lot of artist make really good music, is what I’m trying to say… which I know is a scorching hot take but stay with me!
- Lamb Over Rice– Action Bronson & The Alchemist
This album dropped came around the same time a lot of the current top tier of rappers released their projects. (Kendrick, Cole, Rocky) But for some reason, Action never really got to their levels, mainly because he didn’t have a standout album under his belt. Almost 10 years in and I still don’t know if he has that album, but this is as close as he’s gotten, and I love it. It’s his most cohesive project with Alchemist handling all the production and even throwing a verse on the last track, very rare. Bronson is at his peak when he’s talking food over beautiful foreign samples and this is exactly that.
Top track: Accoutrements
Ugh, those feels again– Snoh Aalegra
If you are not hip with Ms. Aalegra, I suggest you become hip fast. Her sophomore album was a huge step forward. Her first album Feels, was a collection of sounds and styles, that felt like an audtion tape. She laid all the variety out there, but on -Ugh, those feels again she really made a project that flows and stands together, rather than a collection of songs. Her voice is amazing and she really writes tremendous songs from top to bottom. Expect to see more of her.
Top track: Find Someone Like You
- Baby on Baby- DaBaby
What’s not to love about DaBaby? The guy is charismatic, funny, well versed, and will beat your ass… total package! To fully understand how big he’s gotten, look no further than President Barrack Obama who has ‘Suge’ listed on his yearly playlist. Wild! DaBaby is so much more than ‘Suge’ though, his verse on the Dreamville album is probably his verse of the year, and tracks like ‘Baby sitter’ and ‘Joggers’ continue to blow, so will DaBaby.
Top track: Pony
- Berkley’s on Fire- SWMRS
About two people I know have heard of SWMRS, and I don’t know why that number isn’t higher. The young band makes powerful alternative music, with some softer tracks sprinkled in. The songs go from deeply personal ballads about abuse, to absolute “open that fucking pit” music. The album feels nostalgic, like some teenagers just trying to figure out the world around them.
Top track- Trashbag Baby
- Outer Peace- Toro Y Moi
Honestly I’ve written about this album a lot… if you really want to dive in, jump here! https://micdropmusic.com/album-reivew-toro-y-moi-outer-peace/
Top track: Freelance
- Dispora- Goldlink
Goldlink has gotten shit on pretty consistently this year about some very questionable Instagram posts about Mac Miller. The posts range from accusations of theft of ideas, and he hasn’t exactly been loved by the fans as of late. With that being said, he still dropped a hell of an album. He made one of my favorite tracks of the year, along some amazing features. He’s one of the few artist that gets washed on his own songs, but he lets that happen gracefully. Wizkid gives an amazing guest spot, along with Khalid and Tyler, the creator. I would expect Goldlink to take a break for a bit, but this album is a good parting gift.
Top track: U Say
- BUBBA- Kaytranada
It has been 3 long years since Kaytranada’s last official release and he did not disappoint. The album flows like one long set with each song morphing into the next, it’s basically an hour of dance music with features splashed along the way. With his last album 99.9%, he fell into sort of a sampler platter rather then a 5 course meal. BUBBA holds strong, as a no skip album.
Top track: what You Need
- Fine Line- Harry Styles
Who woulda thought I’d love a Harry Styles album? Not me. Look at us! If you would’ve told me in 2012 that the kid in One Direction would be making music that sounded like Steely Dan mixed with Stevie Nicks, I would’ve laughed at you. Truthfully I wouldn’t even call this a pop album, I don’t even know what I would call it. There was a point during me listening to this that I out loud said, “Frank Ocean who?” Long story short, this album is amazing.
Top track: She
- Bandana- Freddie Gibbs & Madlib
Top track: Palmolive
- IGOR– Tyler, the Creator
When this first dropped, I did not love it as much as I do now. At the time, it kind of got lost in the rotation. I did think it was an amazing album, maybe even Tyler’s best, then I saw the IGOR tour. Not sure when Tyler decided that he was going to really dive into this IGOR character, but wow did it work. The steps he has taken and fully committed to on this album really speak to the level of work and development he has taken as an artist. Everyone will talk about his early music comparatively to now, but even the stuff he was making three years ago is nowhere near the level it is at now. Tyler fully dives into this sexy world and gives us something I never saw him capable of. This is not only his most cohesive project to date, but his best.
Stand out Track: I THINK, PUPPET