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My Top 10 Albums of 2016

2016, widely described as the worst year ever. Personally, it might have been one of the best years of my life. Musically, it was very... merh. There was a lot of great music this year, but there was a lot of very poor or disappointing music released. But I have managed to compile my list of favourites together, this is only my personal list, so if you disagree with this or I missed out your favourite album then I'd love to hear it because I'm always open to hearing new music.

10. Take Control - Slaves
slaves, take, control, punk, rock, album, slave, take control, album cover, art

It's 2016 and punks not dead. The duo from Kent made a stellar debut with the album 'Are You Satisfied?' so there was alot of hype surrounding this project, in my eyes especially. The album did not disappoint with tracks such as Consume or Be Consumed, Angela and Steer Clear in many ways this trumps their first album and in many ways it doesn't. Not to mention I was lucky enough to catch these on tour twice this year and it was incredible both times they are funny, full of energy and great performers. A must see for anyone who is a fan of live music.

9. Mind of Mine - ZAYN
mind of mine, one direction, zayn malik, directioners, album art,

I never thought this album would make it. I went into this album thinking it was going to be awful, I listened to the leaked demos from the sessions with Naughty Boy and I honestly hated them. I thought they were very bland, obvious attempts at tongue in cheek RnB. So when I pressed play on this album I was expecting the same. I was so very wrong. Mind of Mine is a phenomenal pop/RnB mix with a mixture of dark, brooding vocals by Zayn and catchy, in your face, sexed up Pop. A great debut from the ex 1D singer. 

8. Run The Jewels 3 - Run The Jewels

run the jewels 3, elp, el-p, killer mike, rtj, rtj3, album art, album cover, rap, album of the year, 2016
Picture this, it's christmas morning. You wake up, one of your favourite artists has dropped an album with the tag "Merry F*cking Xmas". Imagine my ecstasy, and imagine the further happiness when the album turns out to be absolutely incredible. Now this is better than RTJ1, without a doubt, but it does not quite reach the standards of RTJ2's greatness. The production on this album is truly phenomenal, and the rapping is utterly up to that par. Killer Mike and El-P bounce of each others verses with such ease that it almost seems unfair on other MC's that they are allowed to release RTJ albums on a yearly basis, and even better than that. FOR FREE!

7.100 - The Hunna
100, hundred, one hundred, hunna, the hunna, indie, rock, album, album art, cover, album cover

I'd never heard of The Hunna before July, and yet here they stand at number 6 on my top 10 albums of the year. That is simply because of their brilliant Indie Rock, great riffs and amazing voice. This album never lets up throughout and creates an amazing album with songs that fit together perfectly, with a great flow. Songs such as 'Bonfire' and 'She's Casual' are personal highlights of the album, especially the latter of those 2 songs which is in my top 10 songs of the year.

6. I Like it When You Sleep - The 1975
I like it when you sleep for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it - the 1975, indie, matt, matty, truman black, synth, 80's, album cover, album, art

This album is LONG. I was contemplating not putting it in the list at all because of songs like 'I Like it When You Sleep' and 'Paris' which are low points on the album that could have easily been left off. But when the album kicks into gear it really hits new heights and brings out the personality of frontman, Matt Healy, it almost feels like he poured his soul into this album at times with songs such as 'Somebody Else' and 'The Ballad of Me and My Brain'. Not to mention tracks like 'The Sound' and 'Love Me' take all the best bits of 80's synth pop and pump it out so loud you can't help but adore it.

5. Everything You've Come To Expect - The Last Shadow Puppets
eycte, tlsp, the last shadow puppets, alex turner, miles kane, arctic monkeys, tina turner, album cover, album art

If this list would have been made a month ago, this album wouldn't have got anywhere near this list, because I liked it but it just wasn't top 10 in my opinion. But this past month I've been listening to this album a ridiculous amount and it just hasn't gotten old. Tracks like 'Sweet Dreams, TN' and 'Dracula Teeth' are incredibly written songs by Alex Turner and they really emphasis his love of poetry because that is mainly what he has exerted his power of on this album, words. Alex Turners songwriting has reached a new level right here on this album and it has truly paid dividends throughout. And placed it top 5 on this list, which I'm sure Alex Turner will be buzzing about when he finds out.

4. The Ride - Catfish & the Bottlemen
the ride, catfish and the bottlemen, catfish, the balcony, indie rock, welsh rockers, van mccan, bottlemen

What would a list by me be without my favourite band at the moment, Catifsh & The Bottlemen, their first album was a true classic in my eyes and this album follows suit. The mixture of acoustic tracks and straight up Indie Rock songs leave you with the greatness of Van McCans singing whilst proving that they can play guitar and drums with the best of them. Not to mention, much like Alex Turner, Van's songwriting skills really were emphasised on this album and songs like 'Heathrow' and 'Emily' really bring that to the forefront. Also, I love the fact that they kept the tracklisting and album cover in sync with the first album.

3. Lemonade - Beyonce
lemonade, beyonce, jay z, becky, album cover, album art, solange, jack white, album of the year, 2016

I've never been a fan of Beyonce, I do like some of her songs but her projects as a whole have never been that appeasing to me. But this album! the concept behind it: I loved. The production: I loved. The switching up of song styles to match the story: I adored. Throughout this album, I was hooked on the story and much like the rest of the world I still want to know who Becky is, and what sort of hair products she uses that makes Queen B think she has good hair. There are at least 5 different genres of music within this album and it really worked because it brought out the rollercoaster of emotions throughout the tumultuous story of her cheating husband. A must listen for any fan of music at all, this album truly was incredible.

2. WALLS - Kings of Leon
WALLS, Mechanical bull, only by the night, come around sundown, kings of leon, kol, album art, caleb followill, jared followill, album cover, eads, reverand, reverend, around the world

I've always been a fan of Kings of Leon, I've never been a die hard stan of them but I enjoy their music. What I feel like theyve always been missing is that one stellar album that puts them up there as a band I love, THIS is that album. WALLS is an incredibly cohesive and finished album. I can put on every single song on this album and enjoy it, out of these 10 songs I've seen a different, slower, more vulnerable side to the band from Tennessee. Stand out tracks have to be WALLS, Reverend and Over. I thoroughly look forward to hearing this live in February!

1. The Life of Pablo - Kanye West
kanye west, the life of pablo, tlop, kw, kkw, kim kardashian, young thug, msg, yeezy, yeezus, kanye, 2016, aoty, album of the year

Anyone who knows me knows that I love Kanye West, but that hasn't automatically made this album number 1 on my list. If anything, that makes me harsher on Kanye as a critic because I know he's the greatest and that's all I ever expect from him. This album opens beautifully with the soul sampling, gospel singing 'Ultra Light Beam' which is one of my top 5 songs of the year and then it's followed up with both parts of 'Father Stretch My Hands' and it soon becomes evident that Kanye's ear for a beat and incredibly significant production is as poignant and perfect as ever. The album is a bit of a mess as a whole and the version of Wolves before the fix was arguably better but this album is absolutely phenomenal and thoroughly deserves its place atop anybody's year end list of music. If you haven't listened to it then go and listen to it.


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