Zoran's ALBUMS top 20 of 2016 - #2

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Postby ArmyOfMe » Wed Dec 28, 2016 9:34 am

I haven't had time to update my chart in a while, but I definitely want to post my album top 20 now that I'm on holiday.
I'll try to make it as fast as I can, so I won't have to leave it unfinished once I get back to work (work work work work) :oops: :lol:

So, here are all the new albums/EPs/mixtapes I have listened to this year, from the first one I listened to to the last:

David Bowie - Blackstar
Rihanna - ANTi
Kanye West - The Life of Pablo
Seth Bogart - Seth Bogart
Medina - We Survive
HÆLOS - Full Circle
Junior Boys - Big Black Coat
AURORA - All My Demons Greeting Me as a Friend
Azealia Banks - SLAY-Z
HANA - HANA EP
dvsn - SEPT. 5TH
PJ Harvey - The Hope Six Demolition Project
Katy B - Honey
Drake - Views
Beyoncé - Lemonade
James Blake - The Colour in Anything
ANOHNI - Hopelessness
Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool
Ariana Grande - Dangerous Woman
Porches - POOL
SEREBRO - Сила трёх
Flume - Skin
Tegan and Sara - Love You to Death
KAYTRANADA - 99.9%
BROODS - Conscious
Delta Goodrem - Wings of the Wild
Blood Orange - Freetown Sound
Arca - Entrañas
Róisín Murphy - Take Her Up to Monto
Shura - Nothing's Real
Crystal Castles - AMNESTY (I)
Britney Spears - Glory
Frank Ocean - Endless
Frank Ocean - Blonde
Samaris - Black Lights
Carly Rae Jepsen - E•MO•TION Side B
Jenny Hval - Blood Bitch
Solange - A Seat at the Table
Bon Iver - 22, A Million
Alaska Thunderfvck - Poundcake
Tove Lo - Lady Wood
Lady Gaga - Joanne
Angel Olsen - My Woman

My countdown will start
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Last edited by ArmyOfMe on Sun Jan 22, 2017 6:24 pm, edited 20 times in total.
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Postby ArmyOfMe » Wed Dec 28, 2016 9:42 am

First of all, here is a list of albums from the past that I've really enjoyed listening to this year:

Grimes - Art Angels (2015)
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Crystal Castles - (III) (2012)
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múm - Yesterday Was Dramatic, Today Is OK (2000)
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David Bowie - Low (1977)
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Radiohead - Amnesiac (2001)
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Postby ArmyOfMe » Wed Dec 28, 2016 10:20 am

#20 Bon Iver - 22, A Million
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Sharing smoke
In the stair up off the hot car lot
Sun shine hard on the video spot
Sure as any living dream
It's not all then what it seems
And the whole thing's hauled away


This one is a bit of a mysterious effort. It's certainly a departure from Justin Vernon's usual style, incorporating more electronic elements while still keeping his usual criptic lyrics. However, I would have loved an even more radical change from him. It sounds like a transitional album, an exceptionally good one though.

Must listen: 22 (Over Soon), 10 (Death Breast), #29 Strafford Apts, 8 (Circle)

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Postby Carbon » Wed Dec 28, 2016 2:28 pm

I listened to it once I think, idk. my anger over the tracklist probably clouded my judgement :lol: I'll give it another shot before my album countdown (if I even have one, I'm becoming a singles hoe)
Ја кријам главата под шалот.
Само на веѓите ми се гледа
дека мислам на тебе.


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Postby ArmyOfMe » Wed Dec 28, 2016 4:40 pm

#19 Tove Lo - Lady Wood
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Sure we can chill, try and keep it platonic
Now you can't tell if I'm really ironic


The next album on the list is Tove Lo's sophomore effort. Packed with flawless pop tunes with witty lyrics, it is a good follow-up to the amazing Queen of the Clouds. If there is something this album is missing, it is the hits: nothing comes quite close to the catchiness of Habits or Talking Body. However, it flows better than its predecessor, as a result of her mastering the ability of creating concept albums. If the first one followed the katabasis of a relationship, Lady Wood's main theme is self-definition. And it serves its purpose of defining her place in a post-mainstream feminist landscape.

Must listen: Influence, Lady Wood, Cool Girl, Don't Talk About It, Imaginary Friend

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Postby ArmyOfMe » Wed Dec 28, 2016 4:41 pm

Carbon wrote:I listened to it once I think, idk. my anger over the tracklist probably clouded my judgement :lol: I'll give it another shot before my album countdown (if I even have one, I'm becoming a singles hoe)
You shouldn't even think of such a useless thing as a tracklist, gurl! The album is good, give it another try :D
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Postby Carbon » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:49 pm

ArmyOfMe wrote:
Carbon wrote:I listened to it once I think, idk. my anger over the tracklist probably clouded my judgement :lol: I'll give it another shot before my album countdown (if I even have one, I'm becoming a singles hoe)
You shouldn't even think of such a useless thing as a tracklist, gurl! The album is good, give it another try :D
it's not the tracklist per se, it's the whole "vibe" I get around this tracklist. pretentiousness :( but I suppose he can afford to be pretentious if he backs it with good music

re: Tove - love Cool Girl, still haven't warmed up to her fully apart from that song
Ја кријам главата под шалот.
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Postby NothingFails » Wed Dec 28, 2016 7:19 pm

Bon Iver's album is solid, not as good as his other work but a nice record.
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Postby Tansike » Thu Dec 29, 2016 9:27 am

Glad to see "Lady Wood" in your Top20. Great pop record, and i even prefer this to her debut album as her debut had more fillers IMO.

Also nice to see Grimes... i got into "Art Angels" quite late so it's more like a 2016 album for me. Can't wait to hear more from her in the future :D
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Postby ArmyOfMe » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:21 am

#18 Tegan and Sara - Love You to Death
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When did I fall so far?
Barely recognise me
When do I move on?
So I recognise me


Here we go at #18 with another pop album. The reason why Love You to Death is not higher is the same as my #20 and #19. Tegan and Sara hit all the right spots with a perfect pop album packed with catchy tunes (some irresistible, like Boyfriend, Dying to Know and U-Turn), but haven't progressed quite enough since their previous album, Hearththrob. However, their lyrics have never been so blatantly and unapologetically queer, and some songs still show signs of growth with a genre that is more akin to electronica than pop, which leaves great hope for the future of the duo.

Must listen: That Girl, Boyfriend, Dying to Know, U-Turn, Hang On to the Night

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Postby ArmyOfMe » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:25 am

Carbon wrote:re: Tove - love Cool Girl, still haven't warmed up to her fully apart from that song
You should try the songs Lady Wood and Influence from the last album, I think you may like them! :D

Tansike wrote:Glad to see "Lady Wood" in your Top20. Great pop record, and i even prefer this to her debut album as her debut had more fillers IMO.

Also nice to see Grimes... i got into "Art Angels" quite late so it's more like a 2016 album for me. Can't wait to hear more from her in the future :D
I think I prefer the first one, but to each their own! :D Still, she is one to watch.
As far as Grimes is concerned, it was the same for me! In 2016, I listened to Art Angels way more than I did in 2015.

NothingFails wrote:Bon Iver's album is solid, not as good as his other work but a nice record.
I agree that it doesn't quite compare with his previous album, but I appreciate it for what it is. It is evidently a transitional album.
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Postby Era » Thu Dec 29, 2016 1:19 pm

Lady Wood is a great album! Shame I haven't had the time to listen to it more often

I have been really meaning to check out the Bon Iver albums as well. Do you think I'll like it?

The Tegan and Sara is album is good! Played it a few times when it came out
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Postby ArmyOfMe » Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:40 pm

Era wrote:Lady Wood is a great album! Shame I haven't had the time to listen to it more often

I have been really meaning to check out the Bon Iver albums as well. Do you think I'll like it?

The Tegan and Sara is album is good! Played it a few times when it came out
Yay for Tove and T&S! I have the same problem with LW, I haven't been able to listen to a lot of music over the past 3 months, so it hasn't yet sunk in as much as I want to.

You should try Bon Iver's album, you may like it! But I think his sophomore, self-titled album is better.
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Postby NothingFails » Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:49 pm

Love You To Death is really good. I can be a snob when artists go unabashedly pop (like to me, Sia's last two albums can't compete with her earlier work) but with Tegan And Sara, I think it actually fits them very well and they're knocking it out of the ballpark.
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Postby ArmyOfMe » Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:56 pm

#17 Samaris - Black Lights
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This is the thing I wanted to say
This is the one I wanted to say
What is the point of making it right?


Samaris are a new discovery of mine. I casually heard Wanted 2 Say and Black Lights in a music shop while I was on vacation in Iceland, I checked whose album was playing and immediately downloaded it right after I came back to Italy. Black Lights is the group's first effort in English, and the first with a broader breath in their songs: they are "wide" sonic landscapes, painted by electronic instruments, voluptuous vocals and melodies that revolve on themselves. One thing I adore is to just lay down, close my eyes, listen to the album and be transferred to a different time and place.

Must listen: Wanted 2 Say, Black Lights, R4vin, T4ngled, In Deep

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Postby ArmyOfMe » Fri Dec 30, 2016 10:01 am

#16 Jenny Hval - Blood Bitch
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I clutch my phone
With my sweaty palm
In my hand
I clutch my heart
In the coffin for my heart
In my hand

It's so loud
And I get so afraid
So I start speaking


Blood Bitch is the first Jenny Hval's album that I actually enjoyed, rather than just being interested in it (as it happened with her previous stuff). It is as accessible as it is complex. While it features more proberly sung songs than just spoken word pieces (like in her past catalogues), the concept is as strange as it gets: an androgynous vampire named Orlando (after Virginia Woolf's character from the book of the same name) that changes sex, travels around time, while illustrating different physical images of the word blood, particularly menstrual blood. Music has always been a bit demure in talking about bodily functions, so Hval's approach is unusual and refreshing at the same time, especially since it's conveyed through the medium songs with easily recognisable melodies.

Must listen: Ritual Awakening, Female Vampire, Conceptual Romance, The Great Undressing, Secret Touch

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Postby ArmyOfMe » Fri Dec 30, 2016 10:02 am

NothingFails wrote:Love You To Death is really good. I can be a snob when artists go unabashedly pop (like to me, Sia's last two albums can't compete with her earlier work) but with Tegan And Sara, I think it actually fits them very well and they're knocking it out of the ballpark.
Yeah, that's what I think too! It totally fits them, and they channeled a vein that was already there in some of their past work.
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Postby Carbon » Fri Dec 30, 2016 10:56 am

I've gone totally off Jenny Hval, lost all patience for that music. my taste is going basic so fast :lol:

I remember liking a few of her older songs, even promoting her around here a few years back

seeing that this album features more singing and less talking, I'm a bit interested
Ја кријам главата под шалот.
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дека мислам на тебе.


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Postby LionH3art » Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:51 pm

I trust that you use songs that are representative for the respective albums.
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Postby heppolo » Fri Dec 30, 2016 7:11 pm

Samaris is one of the best albums this year, fantastic from start to finish
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Postby Tansike » Sat Dec 31, 2016 9:26 am

Heard a very few songs from that Tegan and Sara album and liked it. I guess i need to check out more from them...
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Postby ArmyOfMe » Sat Dec 31, 2016 11:35 am

#15 James Blake - The Colour in Anything
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I see the scenery changes, changes
I want it to be over, I want it to be over


I had waited so long for this album, that ironically, when it finally appeared, it kind of got lost in the midst of a string of records coming out at the same time (Beyoncé's Lemonade, ANOHNI's Hopelessness and Radiohead's A Moon Shaped Pool to name a few). However, it contains some terrific tracks that undoubtedly belong to James Blake's best. The only problem with the album is that it's too long and is made up of two different albums: one that is more organic, with Blake in a crooner mood, and another one that is more electronic. Being a long-time James Blake fan, I could have done without the first (or just listened to it as an interesting side project) and just used the latter, which is more coherent in his canon. It's a tough but rewarding listen, especially if split into two different playlists that highlight the two different sides of the album.

Must listen: Timeless, Choose Me, I Need a Forest Fire, Noise Above Our Heads, Two Men Down, Modern Soul, Always

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Postby ArmyOfMe » Sat Dec 31, 2016 11:38 am

Carbon wrote:I've gone totally off Jenny Hval, lost all patience for that music. my taste is going basic so fast :lol:

I remember liking a few of her older songs, even promoting her around here a few years back

seeing that this album features more singing and less talking, I'm a bit interested
We're trading places, aren't we? :lol: :cry:

LionH3art wrote:I trust that you use songs that are representative for the respective albums.
Thanks! I think it's a good way to raise the interest in people who haven't listened to those albums :D

heppolo wrote:Samaris is one of the best albums this year, fantastic from start to finish
It is truly best to listen to it from start to finish than just checking the songs individually!

Tansike wrote:Heard a very few songs from that Tegan and Sara album and liked it. I guess i need to check out more from them...
I'm pretty sure you'd love them! :D
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Postby ArmyOfMe » Sat Dec 31, 2016 1:32 pm

#14 Kaytranada - 99.9%
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We don’t have to fight no more
This isn’t the time to be tumbling on the floor
We just have to walk through that door together


99.9% is the debut album of producer Kaytranada. Despite the massive presence of different collaborators and guest vocalists, the album is one of the most cohesive of the year. The reason is easy: trailed by Kay's beats that effortlessly mix R&B, funk and electronica, the album flows seamlessly from one track to the other, so much that it becomes hard to isolate its standouts. Despite its length (it clocks out at almost 60 minutes), it's an exuberant listen from start to finish: joyous without falling into mainstream clichés, even when its guests are pop acts like Craig David or AlunaGeorge.

Must listen: Track Uno, Together (feat. AlunaGeorge), Despite the Weather, Glowed Up (feat. Anderson .Paak), Lite Spots, Bullets (feat. Little Dragon)

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Postby ArmyOfMe » Sun Jan 01, 2017 4:24 pm

#13 Ariana Grande - Dangerous Woman
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Don't need no hold up
Taking control of this kind of moment
I'm locked and loaded
Completely focused my mind is open


This was the first Ariana Grande album that I genuinely enjoyed. Instead of just being a record with three or four good singles drowned in an ocean of fillers, Dangerous Woman is packed in its entirety with possible singles and smashes. It might not be a coherent or cohesive record, but when you have an album with songs like Dangerous Woman followed by Be Alright, followed by Into You, followed by Side to Side, you just know you're here for a winner. Ariana's voice is confident, the songs are perfectly crafted to convey her growth as a pop artist. In my opinion, Grande has properly become an A-list pop singer with this album. Hopefully this is just the beginning of her "imperial phase", and in the future she will be able to create pop records just as great but with also a concept and cohesiveness.

Must listen: Dangerous Woman, Be Alright, Into You, Side to Side, Let Me Love You (feat. Lil Wayne), Sometimes, Touch It, Knew Better / Forever Boy, Thinking Bout You

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