Top 20 albums of 2021: 11-20

It’s seriously tough stuff, whittling down an entire year’s worth of albums into an elite list of records that left my jaw on the floor. But three cheers to decisiveness — I’ve done it. 

The final draft with rationale as follows, from 11 to 20:

  1. Little Oblivions — Julien Baker

Here we have music to weep to. The Tennessee singer and guitarist is nothing but note-perfect. 

  1. SLEEPS SOCIETY — While She Sleeps

Thought-provoking, mind-stirring metal that calls a spade a spade, with faultless electronics. 

  1. The Myth of The Happily Ever After — Biffy Clyro

Scottish rock done right — that’s Biffy for you. Every song’s like an impressive passage of biblical text. 

  1. W.L. — The Snuts

Pure, wholesome indie that topped the charts and cemented Glasgow’s place as a music mecca. 

  1. Vince Staples — Vince Staples

Staples’ namesake album is just a flavour of why he’s modern rap royalty. It’s full of lower-key hits.

  1. Modern Tricks for Living — Low Hummer

Welcome to the party, Low Hummer. The garage-rock-meets-indie misfits have delivered utter joy.

  1. The Off-Season — J. Cole

Envelope-pushing hip-hop is J. Cole’s MO, whether you could argue the verses are arrogant or not. 

  1. Life In Your Glass World — Citizen

The guitars take centre stage in this hypnotic, powerfully melodic collection from the Ohio trio. 

  1. Blue Weekend — Wolf Alice

The architects behind ‘Bros’ have a habit of churning out rock in differently-styled packages.

  1. Sound Ancestors — Madlib x Four Tet

While Madlib also raps, his DJ skills are combined with that of Four Tet’s. Lose yourself in the vibes.

Stay tuned for the second half: the coveted 1-10 spots… 


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