For the music world, 2018 was a great year. It saw the releases of some great and highly anticipated albums. Here are ten of the best albums released this year.
10. Astroworld-Travis Scott
Astroworld was likely the most anticipated album of this year and, while likely not the most popular opinion, I believe it fell flat. Songs like “Stargazing,” “Sicko Mode,” and “Stop Trying to Be God” show Scott at his best, but as the album progresses, Scott’s “signature sound” wears out and leaves many of the songs sounding the same. A great album in parts, but not the best for a full listen straight through.
9. Life’s a Trip- Trippie Redd
Trippie Redd put out his debut studio album Life’s a Trip this summer to somewhat mixed reviews. This album will likely not go down as Redd’s greatest work, but serves as a fine addition to his catalogue. Singles “Dark Knight Dummo,” “Wish,” and “How You Feel” all rank among his finest work and are surprisingly varied.
8. Beware the Book of Eli-Ski Mask the Slump God
Beware the Book of Eli is Ski Mask the Slump God’s second mixtape and perfectly displays his mix of serious skill and quirky lyricism. Ski Mask may seem strange to some for his weird lyrics, but he should never be underestimated in terms of ability.
7. Beerbongs & Bentleys- Post Malone
Early this year Post Malone released Beerbongs & Bentleys the highly anticipated follow up to his 2016 album Stoney. Post managed to strengthen his status as a catchy songwriter and deliver a great album. Beerbongs & Bentleys included some of the best hooks of the year, from the smash hit “Rockstar” to the acoustic “Stay.” Post’s career is following a dramatic upward trend and shows no sign of stopping anytime soon.
6. Testing- A$AP Rocky
A$AP Rocky put out his third album over the summer, adding to his already revered catalogue. While it is hard to live up to the popularity of Long Live A$AP and At Long Last A$AP, Testing makes a good shot. Not every track is a hit, but songs like “A$AP Forever” and “Praise the Lord (Da Shine)” make up for anything not living up to Rocky’s usual standard.
5. Stokeley-Ski Mask the Slump God
Ski Mask the Slump God released his first studio album and second large project of the year, Stokeley, late this November. This is one of his most consistent projects to date and displays some of his best work. Ski Mask mixes some of his classic speed and intensity on songs like “Nuketown” as well as trying some singing on songs like “So High,” which is fairly uncharacteristic of him, but comes across well.
4. Taboo- Denzel Curry
Taboo is the second album by Florida rapper Denzel Curry. With this project he took the chance to fully display that he is not only a great rapper, but a great singer as well. His singing only has minor appearances in previous work, but is spotlighted on several of Taboo’s songs. While singing more on this album, Curry also maintains his signature intensity particularly on “PERCS” and “BLACK METAL TERRORIST.”
3. Fight the Good Fight- The Interrupters
Fight the Good Fight is the third album by ska-punk band The Interrupters. With it they continue to follow their usual topics of loyalty to friends and social issues. While it is not necessarily their best album, it has gotten them a fair amount of radio play for the song “She’s Kerosene” and continues their upwards trajectory.
2. “?”- XXXTentacion
XXXTentacion’s second album “?” is much more diverse than his first and perfectly displays his talent for covering a wide range of styles from the soft singing of “Alone, Pt 3” to the intensity of “Floor 555.” This album will also be recognized as the last album of his to come out before his death.
1. Time and Space- Turnstile
Time and Space is the second album by Baltimore hardcore punk band Turnstile. It is a strong showing from the band and easily one of, if not the, best album this year. Turnstile have continually been changing up their sound while still staying consistent enough to maintain their core fanbase. This album displays this with a mix of extremely intense songs, slower songs, and contributions from other artists, such as Diplo. Some standout songs are “Come Back For More,” “I Don’t Wanna Be Blind,” and “Right To Be.”
This year has introduced a lot of great new music from across the spectrum. These are far from the only releases this year. Mention should be given to Kanye and Kid Cudi’s Kids See Ghosts, XXXTentacion’s Skins, Migos’ Culture II, J. Cole’s KOD, Ghost’s Prequelle, and many others. Great music can be found any year, but 2018 certainly gave listeners an easy time finding it.
Photos from wikimedia commons: Paranaense87 and The Come Up Show from Canada
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