The 50 Best Albums Of 2018

For what it’s worth, 2018 was a win for the underdogs. It was an absurd year for music in general but instead of pivoting to the afterlife with a mess of overrated radio fodder, it put younger innovators first and called attention to their ability to headbutt boundaries and re-imagine music as an art form. Kacey Musgraves made us believe in love again; Snail Mail and Let’s Eat Grandma showed us that (real) teens know a thing or two about nineties pop; and if hip-hop’s new wave wasn’t posterizing the charts, punk was sure as hell reinforcing friendships and giving us a reason to mosh in basements.

More so than ever, music felt new and while it was set on inciting discussion, it went out of its way to be a distraction for anyone dealing with heartbreak, anxiety, or isolation and loneliness. It challenged the old guard, pinned itself to new ideals, and continued to redesign the format for the better. 2018 was an absolute trip for the kids who “grieve in stereo” and these are our top picks from the year that was.


50. FRIGS : Basic Behaviour
[Arts & Crafts]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHpYpG5GjtU]

 


49. Elohim : Elohim
[Elohim Music]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bP450Etw9bw]

 


48. Molly Burch : First Flower
[Captured Tracks]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDbWycBKpNg]

 


47. Gia Margaret : There’s Always Glimmer
[Orindal Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwRVVu4f7IU]

 


46. Interpol : Marauder
[Matador Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gLk8i2zw2jU]

 


45. Wild Pink : Yolk In The Fur
[Tiny Engines]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CyA0UUahPwY]

 


44. The Beths : Future Me Hates Me
[Carpark Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iVImwSb4EYU]

 


43. boygenius : boygenius
[Matador Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OS48Lp34Zic]

 


42. Camp Cope : How To Socialise & Make Friends
[Run For Cover Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eENlbFxVXWk]

 


41. Mount Eerie : Now Only
[P.W. Elverum & Sun]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ul-gSdnQnlg]

 


40. JPEGMAFIA : Veteran
[Peggy/Deathbomb Arc.]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PO3mri47s7M]

 


39. 6LACK : East Atlanta Love Letter
[Universal/Interscope]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iSgUMPHQEWw]

 


38. Emma Ruth Rundle : On Dark Horses
[Sargent House]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=obvHacBj6Sc]

 


37. Turnstile : Time & Space
[Roadrunner Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HYzzmGjsWoE]

 


36. Sunflower Bean : Twentytwo In Blue
[Mom + Pop Music]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rm6ZtALw5KM]

 


35. Fiddlehead : Springtime And Blind
[Run For Cover Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7QA9q6bXIA]

 


34. Parquet Courts : Wide Awake!
[Rough Trade]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHfOqqQ1DLQ]

 


33. Iceage : Beyondless
[Matador Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Auufutrb-w]

 


32. Soccer Mommy : Clean
[Fat Possum Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Phsup-LrII]

 


31. Florence + The Machine : High As Hope
[Universal/Virgin]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GHXEGz3PJg]

 


30. Tierra Whack : Whack World
[Tierra Whack]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EOTebhPy04g]

 


29. Mick Jenkins : Pieces Of A Man
[Free Nation/Cinematic Music]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4dV4QC9qzBs]

 


28. Octavian : Spaceman
[Black Butter Limited]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tbz6xQkewo4]

 


27. Birds In Row : We Already Lost The World
[Deathwish Inc.]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cd41sUSfQkY]

 


26. Gouge Away : Burnt Sugar
[Deathwish Inc.]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJcs0vYnsDU]

 


25. Petal : Magic Gone
[Run For Cover Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qj0bSCU9z7s]

 


24. Foxing : Nearer My God
[Triple Crown Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3tCrHXFO9b0]

 


23. MGMT : Little Dark Age
[Sony/Columbia Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtL5oMyBHPs]

 


22. Freddie Gibbs : Freddie
[ESGN/EMPIRE]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EL-ekVjVIHM]

 


21. Lykke Li : So Sad So Sexy
[Sony/RCA Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rnY-5PTxr1E]

 


20. Pianos Become The Teeth : Wait For Love
[Epitaph Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHJMklnYugQ]

 


19. Architects : Holy Hell
[Epitaph Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqRYBWyvbRo]

 


18. Let’s Eat Grandma : I’m All Ears
[Transgressive Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGVv7SQ_jus]

 


17. Saba : Care For Me
[Saba Pivot]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6F2OrOjexs]

 


16. Jay Rock : Redemption
[Universal/Top Dawg Ent.]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JrO46CJd9ns]

 


15. Kids See Ghosts : Kids See Ghosts
[Universal/Def Jam]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8ibdsPYOgw]

 


14. Kanye West : ye
[Universal/Def Jam]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orGu5lQsgNg]

 


13. Jorja Smith : Lost & Found
[FAMM]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=80J2YroXH3g]

 


12. Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever : Hope Downs
[Sub Pop Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zj5tH-6vNKY]

 


11. Fucked Up : Dose Your Dreams
[Merge Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iaArL6rYl4]

 


10. Anderson .Paak : Oxnard
[Universal/Aftermath]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u749Hi0gDVM]

 


09. Vince Staples : FM!
[Universal/Def Jam]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vz9-pXuvFEU]

 


08. The Wonder Years : Sister Cities
[Hopeless Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ccIyBeLEjGM]

 


07. Beach House : 7
[Sub Pop Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9NBQwVlKoaQ]

 


06. Earl Sweatshirt : Some Rap Songs
[Sony/Columbia Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4caTCHR4xo]

 


05. Kacey Musgraves : Golden Hour
[Universal/MCA Nashville]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kw0ih4jPOBo]

 


04. Culture Abuse : Bay Dream
[Epitaph Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVTiKdTTOjE]

 


03. Pusha T : Daytona
[Universal/Def Jam]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7-0ugujS2U]

 


02. Mac Miller : Swimming
[Warner Bros. Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SsKT0s5J8ko]

 


01. Snail Mail : Lush
[Matador Records]

Listen to it on Spotify or Apple Music

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-d91Qn8QUks]

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