Kanye West - Life of Pablo
Aural snapshot of rap's only(?) "big idea" creator going kicking and screaming into a chasm of creative/lifestyle burnout.
Polica - United Crushers
Brutal realist synth songstress shifts focus from relationships to society at large. Results mixed but the TEXTURES and DAT BASS.
Tortoise - The Catostrophist
Post-jazz fusion soundtrack for when your computer components explore their pan-sexuality.
Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial
If teenage Tom Petty fronted a super group with members of Television and Sonic Youth. Being a real life, emotional teenager never shredded so hard.
The Avalanches - Wildflower
I can't believe it took 16 years to experience this kind of retro-futurist, dance-pop pastiche again. If it has been replicated elsewhere, I haven't heard it (and don't you dare bring up The Go! Team).
DJ Shadow - The Mountain Will Fall
Shadow, I heard you bought a synthesizer and Ableton and threw (most of) your turntables out the window because you wanted to make something real.
Anohni - HOPELESSNESS
The only dystopian synth pop that could soundtrack this awful 365 days. Bonus points for indicting our spineless president and all the corporate liberals that serve him.
Solange - A Seat At The Table
You are alternate universe Radio Raheem. It's December 29, 2016, and you still don't have clean water in Flint, MI. So you get your friends together, buy a case of bottled water and stand at city hall. Then you light candles in vigil and blast this record from your boom box.
VAPERROR - Acid Arcadia
Pure escapism in the form of weird EDM pastiche. It's a beautiful nightmare that Richard D. James pretends he's never heard of but probably secretly envies.
2 8 1 4 - Rain Temple
It's 3 am in Trump's USA and only these droning synths understand.
Beyonce - Lemonade
Turns out Bey's song of hope arrived right when everything was about to go shit south.
Daniel Lanois - Goodbye to Language
He makes vaporwave for aging, desert-wandering prog rockers now.
Maxwell - blackSUMMERS'night
SOMEBODY gonna' get pregnant.
Conor Oberst - Ruminations
We love you, Conor. Godspeed.
Radiohead - A Moonshaped Pool
Their band adulthood is a constant we need now more than ever.
//EP THAT DESTROYED MOST OF THIS LIST//
Floating Points - Kuiper