OT: Favorite Albums of 2016

Credit to ReeseJenks for mentioning it, and Pierson for the original concept.

Ladies and gents, we've made it through another year. Which means it's time for the annual TKP music rap-up. Post and discuss the albums you most enjoyed that dropped in 2016. I'll start.

In date order:

Bowie: Blackstar
Randy Rogers Band: Nothing Shines Like Neon
Kendrick: untitled unmastered
The Joy Formidable: Hitch
Lumineers: Cleopatra
Bear Hands: You'll Pay for This
Catfish and the Bottlemen: The Ride
Blink 182: California
Grouplove: Big Mess
Tribe: We Got it From Here...Thank You 4 Your Service

Lot's of other stuff came out. What was TKP listening to?

Forums: 
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DIIV - Is The Is Are
King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard - Nonagon Infinity

All the legs for King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard

Nonagon Infinity times... infinity

"These people are losing their minds!"

NF - "Therapy Session"
Switchfoot - "Where the Light Shines Through"
Leon Bridges - "Coming Home" (the deluxe version came out in 2016, so I'll count it)

Cinemechanica- Self Titled LP

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Wow. Where do I even start. This year was.... amazing for music. Sometimes felt like the only good thing to come out of 2016 besides the rise of VT football again. But I guess I can give this a shot.

RTJ3 -- this doesn't really need an explanation, and going by Joe and his Twitter account, I think he can back me up on this.

Blond(e) and Endless -- Endless is slept on, imo. It deserves more recognition for the marketing brilliance that it came from. I was glued to my computer screen almost nightly watching that live stream. The night everything finally went down was a celebration with me and my friends.

Coloring Book/Merry Christmas Lil Mama -- Chance is my favorite artist right now. The fact that I got two projects from him made my year. Coloring Book is a new sound for him compared to 10 Day and Acid Rap, but I love the direction that he is going. The mix of vocals and rapping really makes Coloring Book a great project. The other mixtape was just a fun project that I played all of Christmas morning. Nothing like waking up to such an awesome present. I look forward to what he does in the future (collab with Childish plz)

Stoney -- This came out the same day as 4 Your Eyez Only so it didn't get the same amount of attention that I think it deserves, but man, Post really killed it on his first official album. The mixture of sounds and styles on this album is amazing.

Starboy -- I will always love The Weeknd, and I think that he delivered with this album. It was a little too full for me (19 songs is really pushing it), but some of those songs really got my attention.

The Human Condition -- I didn't really like this album at first, but the more listens I give it, the more it strikes me as an enjoyable project. Definitely a unique sound from Jon Bellion, but it grew on me.

Bobby Tarantino -- Logic is in my top 3 for favorite artists. I will always love any project he puts out, and especially if I'm not anticipating it. This surprise mixtape was great for getting me through the summer months. I'm really looking forward to his new concept album sometime in 2017.

Awaken, My Love! -- It's nice to finally get some new music from Childish Gambino. His work with Atlanta was outstanding (it won a couple awards tonight actually, and rightfully so.) The new sounds that came from this album were.... surprising. It's unfortunate that some people didn't enjoy the new sound, but it makes sense because of how drastically different it is.

Passion, Pain & Demon Slayin' -- I am happy to hear those all too familiar hums back. Cudi delivered with this project, in my opinion. It's got some a great contrast of bangers and some songs with deeper lyrics/meanings. Definitely another one of those albums that are hit/miss for people.

And now for my "overhyped" albums of the year

Views -- This album was ehhhhhh. It's got some catchy songs, but it just didn't really do it for me. I guess I've been spoiled by some of his older stuff, but Drake just didn't get my attention with a 20 song album.

TLOP -- The clusterfuck that was the release of this album just hyped it too much for anything good to come out of it for me. It's got some good songs, as every album from Kanye does. But there was so many different sounds that I just couldn't find it good enough for me.

Birds in the Trap -- Again, not a great album compared to some of my other favorites this year, but it has some great songs, especially the closing 5.

4 Your Eyez Only -- I'm spoiled by 2014 Forest Hills Drive, I think. J Cole did some great work on this album, but good luck ever beating 2014. It is interesting to hear the difference in his songs now that he's married and has a kid.

Ok I think that's all I've got. Let's hear what you think.

Edit: I added links to Spotify for all the albums.

Endless is a visual album on iTunes and Merry Christmas Lil Mama is free on SoundCloud.

Leg for J Cole!

4 Your Eyez Only, the song, is one of the more meaningful rap songs I've ever heard. I just kept relistening to it over and over again after I heard it, so sad. I liked the album overall as a story telling device, but I agree, gonna be hard to top FHD.

RTJ3 is definitely a solid album. I'd agree that both TLOP and Views left me feeling a bit underwhelmed. Logic is dope, his DJ- Rhetorik -was actually a Comm major a year above me at VT and ia also from VB. He's a fantastic dude.

VB born, class of '14, Semper Paratus

RTJ3 -- this doesn't really need an explanation, and going by Joe and his Twitter account, I think he can back me up on this.

i was a casual fan of El-P and Killer Mike but together as RTJ, i think their dynamic took it to another level that i had to re-evaluate my take on their individual efforts. after doing so, i SMH at what i was thinking originally. great record...

Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor's Guide to Earth

I liked this album a lot when it came out and it has progressively gotten better for me throughout the year. Such a great songwriter.

This and Meta Modern are two albums I can listen to over and over. And I am not that much of a country fan. The song writing is just spectacular.

only his voice is country. Especially with the last album, it's not that country at all, imo.

His voice is SO country though. His live band is basically a country singer, metal guitarist, and r&b horn section playing whatever they damn well please.

I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It - The 1975

This album really grew on me over time, but I like their self-titled album better.

4 Your Eyez Only - gets better with each listen. More of the mellow Cole that I've come to love. If you listen listen closely the album is a story - cleverly told via each song. It's a parallel between his life and a close friend's, with the reveal being made at the end. Very well done. My favorite tracks: Ville mentality, She's mine pt 1 & 2, and 4 your eyez only. Cole gets better with each album, i feel like he's making less commercial tracks and getting more real. I love it.

Coloring book - this is the album that solidified me as a Chance fan. I liked No Problems, decided to listen to the rest of the album. Loved it beginning to end, then i went and checked out Acid Rap and 10 Days. Definitely gospel heavy, and from what i understand Chance has done a lot of growing up since the birth of his daughter, which is evident even you compare to his last LP. The only track that I didn't really care for was Mixtape with Young Thug and Yachty, I'm not a fan of mumble rap. How Great is my favorite track, very powerful gospel choir intro leading into some of Chances best verses on the entire project, Jay electronica killed it too. I put Chance up there with Kendrick and Cole, honestly.

Untitled Unmastered - played the ever loving shit out of this album. K Dot is the best rapper doing it, no if, ands, or buts. Not album of the year material though, felt like an album thrown together from cuts that didn't make other albums (essentially it is.) You definitely get vibes from both GKMC and TPAB here. Still...strong lyrics and catchy hooks.

Blank Face LP - Probably my favorite album this year that didn't really generate any buzz. There are some tracks worth skipping over, but most tracks in this album absolutely bang. This is definitely more of a hardcore/west coast rap album...tells it like it is. I'm not big into music videos anymore, but the videos Schoolboy released with this album are very well done. I'd suggest you check them it. Schoolboy is definitely stepping out as his own artist, as opposed to..."oh, there's that dude that's featured on K Dot's album/mixtape."

The Life of Pablo - I really wanted to like this album. I really wanted to. I just...couldn't. The tracks that i did like were obviously influenced by Chance, or had good guest features. (ultra light beam, father stretch my hands pt1...not 2, waves, and a few others) You can tell he was going for that gospel vibe like Chance, but it just didn't come full circle. Felt very broken, although we get a more honest Kanye.

I didn't really listen to too many full albums this year, I'm picky like that. I'll just mention artists that caught my ear

Kevin Gates - love every single, but I'm a little apprehensive about giving the album a try. I'm not big into southern rap, and i feel like the singles might be the best tracks he offers.

Young M.A. - SHE'S BRINGING NEW YORK RAP BACK BABY. OOUUU was too dope, and her cyphers and freestyles on YouTube are incredible. I'll def give her album a listen.

DISLIKES

Young Thug - I don't get the love for this dude. I really don't.

The Weekend - Drab. Boring. Gray. All words that come to mind when I think of any of his singles (which all sound the same to me)

Drake - still one of the more talented rappers, but he's been sounding real uninspired for the better part of two years, in my opinion.

Lil Yachty/uzi vert/savage - ...it must be an age thing. I hate mumble rap.

edited: realized i didn't really give any descriptions, went back and gave a brief overview of each album listed at the beginning.

Acid Rap is soooo good

I was literally blown away by it. Prior to listening to it, I had only heard Coloring Book and his feature on Ultra Light Beam so I kind expected more of a gospel vibe. Obviously was not that. Very inspired, drug fueled, creative rap - great guest features too. Going back, I can definitely see how a lot of Chance fans were thrown off by Coloring Book after a few years to stew with Acid Rap.

That's how I was. I totally get why he didn't essentially do Acid Rap 2, but Coloring Book threw me.

Yeah, kind of glad I heard Coloring Book first. haha.

The Randy Rogers Band album is great - love Texas Country.

I'm into Folk / Bluegrass / Americana, so on that front the new Greensky Bluegrass album "Shouted, Writen Down & Quoted gets my nod.

“This guy is slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl full of snot!” - Mike Burnop

Still pissed at myself for passing up Greensky when they came through Richmond last year

Yea i was too. They are, however, playing a 3 night stint at the 9:30 club in DC in a few weeks. it's a little tougher to get to - would've liked it more if they were back in RVA this year.

“This guy is slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl full of snot!” - Mike Burnop

I have to miss that Greensky show at the 930 club, but I did get to see Trampled by Turtles this summer so that almost makes up for it.

I saw trampled too - up in Leesburg. Great show! Dave is touring as Dead Man Winter this year it seems, with limited/no time as Trampled. Hope they do a Trampled tour next year.

“This guy is slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl full of snot!” - Mike Burnop

At the beer festival? That's where I saw Trampled as well. The best part was I could walk home from there!

Yep - at the beer festival. Wow, it was so hot that day - great festival, just not enough water.

Side note, we're moving to Leesburg in a week and a half, not terribly far from Morven Park...

“This guy is slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl full of snot!” - Mike Burnop

Don't know if you'll see this, but Leesburg is great! We moved here almost a year ago and there are a ton of good restaurants and bars downtown. Most importantly, there are half a dozen breweries within walking distance.

We love it so far - we're about a mile from downtown just off West Market, near where it connects to Route 7 bypass that heads west. We were in Potomac Falls (Cascades) area of Sterling before, but always found ourselves coming to Leesburg - just a cool vibe out this way that is different from the rest of Northern VA.

“This guy is slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl full of snot!” - Mike Burnop

rap-up

Pun intended?

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors).

Alcest - Kodama

Kodama is the latest offering from French Shoegaze/Dream Pop/Black Metal (Blackgaze) act Alcest, and in my opinion their most complete LP since 2010's Ecailles de Lune. It marks a return to the black metal angle that was completely missing from their 2014 LP Shelter.

In my opinion just about everything that frontman Neige touches is amazing, and this album is no different.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

Twenty-one Pilots - Blurryface

Radio stuff is good, the deeper cuts are better!

We put the K in Kwality

That album was actually released in May 2015. Which seems absurd given the airplay they get.

Yea I am remember getting that when it dropped thinking why aren't these guys all over the radio right now. If you have the chance go back and listen to their first album Vessel (arguably their better album).

I swear to drunk, I'm not God

I love these threads because y'all give some great tips.
From an aging father, some strange listening choices for the year:
(Duplicates, agreeing with above posters):
1. Sturgill Simpson, A Sailors Guide to Earth
2. Twenty one pilots, Blurry Face
3. Kendrick Lamar, To Pimp a Butterfly (I know, released in 2015, but still being played on my 2017 commute.)

TPAB is a certified classic, what an experience. Can't fault you there, i still listen to Kendrick's mixtapes from like 09-10. haha

You know you're old when none of these ring a bell.

Ive never heard of a single person/group mentioned in this entire thread unless Bowie in the OP is David Bowie....

yes...me.....old.

edit - didn't read down far enough - didn't see Bob Weir- yeah, i was a DeadHead in my day.

suddenly realizes this reaffirms: yes...me.....still old.

My wife takes the kids and leaves the house while I watch my Hokie games.........nuff said

I heard a couple of songs for the first time a few weeks ago that made me want to buy some new albums. Turns out those songs/albums came out and were hits in 2008 and 2011, respectively. They still qualify as "new" music to me, though.

Chance - Coloring Book, this should win best Rap Album in a few weeks, but I can see drake winning it. Watch out Kendrick.

I See Stars - Treehouse, their best work yet. Great pacing. The last song is a great one to end on as well. Probably a top 5 album all time for me.

Kanye West - TLOP, people either loved or hated this album. It was really polarizing. But I feel like it was a great album in that it was well produced, and Ye's lyrics were much more personable, vindicated, and transparent. Loved Yeezus and MBDTF, don't get me wrong but this was just more honest and I appreciate that.

The Naked and Famous - Simple Forms, I LOVE this band. They've embraced their male/female duet lead. The two used to date but broke up, wrote this album, and are reaping the benefits. They have an awesome dynamic. I saw these guys in RVA in November and it was one of the best concerts I've been to.

Lonely the Brave - Things Will Matter, if anyone on this website has heard of these guys PLEASE tell me. They are pretty under the radar being from England and still new. They were on the new Guitar Hero. These guys sing and play with so much emotion and their music is certainly kind of dark, but its fascinating to listen. Give these guys a listen if you enjoy Biffy Clyro.

I'm sure I'll think of a couple more but these are probably my top 5. Each kind of a different genre haha.

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

Lonely the Brave! YES! They're like an English version of Biffy Clyro; in fact, I think they were touring together, but unfortunately, they didn't make it over the pond to us. But I'm down with both. Give the Biff a listen if you haven't before.

They were! Definitely have. I want LTB to come to US soooo bad but they're a long way from that. Would be an incredible show.

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

Not exactly new, but just released in 2016:

Also up there:

Those may be the only two new albums I listened to this year, not sure

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

That Bob Weir album is great - completely forgot about that one.

Thanks for the revisit to the Hart Valley Drifters - forgot about that one as well. That's some great old time down home back home music from JG!

“This guy is slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl full of snot!” - Mike Burnop

My wife got me Hart Valley Drifters for Christmas, and I got her Bob Weir...listened to both of them nonstop for a long time, lol

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

This post just made me realize how out of touch I am with music.
I don't hardly know any of these bands. I'll just stick with my Sirius XM
90's and Classic Vinyl.

@AMB4VT

Ditto.

Don't worry. I'm probably the one in the sweater vest. No, not that one. The slow one.

I LOVE THIS THREAD

Shout outs to the previously mentioned RTJ3; Passion, Pain, & Demon Slayin; and Blurryface

I listened to these next few an ungodly amount.

How to be a Human Being - Glass Animals
Currents - Tame Impala
Zonkey - Umphrey's McGee
The Beautiful Game - Vulfpeck
Pleasure - Pigeons Playing Ping Pong
Bright Future - Big Gigantic

I may(will) edit this several times throughout the day as I remember more

I, like AMB4VT, haven't heard of most of these bands, but I do enjoy finding new music. My question to all you TKPers is this...how do you stumble across new music? Most of my music experience takes place via Pandora or iHeartRadio at work, and neither are conducive to exploring new music. My tastes are about as varied as they come, and I can usually find something in nearly any genre that flips my skirt. Help me out TKP!!!

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

Pandora/Spotify related artists. Some Google/Wikipedia research to see an artist's related projects. Facebook groups for really obscure genres.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

Personally, I pay for Spotify premium so that I can listen to pretty much anything I want whenever. The Discover Weekly feature is awesome, and I believe it's available on the free version too. It uses some algorithm or something to determine a playlist every week of stuff you don't already have on your device. More often than not, it's spot on with new, funky jams for me. If I haven't heard anything else from someone I really like one song of, I can just shift over and listen to the full album.

I also have Sirius/XM in my car. Most of the stations I listen to stay on top of the new albums/singles and get plays weeks before anything hits the terrestrial waves

I need to check out Spotify. I used to have Sirius/XM in my car as well, but I cancelled my subscription because I think it's bullshit that they edit songs. I refuse to pay for a service that edits songs and it's bullshit that they edit when Howard Stern is on Sirius/XM being as profane as he pleases.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

Totally agree there. Most of the stations on my standard lineup don't censor though. The DJs tend to swear more than anyone in the music

What stations? It seemed like when I would find a station that I like on there I would always hear censored songs and get pissed that I was paying for it.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

Alt Nation (Alt-Rock), Jam On (Jam Bands/Funk/Etc), Faction (Punk/Jason Ellis Talk Show), Lithium (90s Grunge/Alternative), LiquidMetal (Metal), Octane (Kind of Metal), Shade 45/Hip Hop Nation (Rap).

Has Sirius/XM changed in the last few years? I used to listen to most of those and wound up with censored songs.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

I don't believe so. I've been subscribed for about 6 straight years now

Could've been the whiskey. I dunno.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

In addition to what the others have said, every few weeks I'll take a look at the music section of Metacritic to see what's coming out and how it's being received. Often the reviews there lead me to other sites that have a more niche focus which leads to more exposure.

I also subscribe to more genre specific subreddits which are helpful to finding music more in line with my tastes.

Whatever is playing on the latest top 40, of course.

HEAVY /s

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Jesus Christ, reminds me of when i was working in the clinic here on base. Back in the tech area, where we would type up our reports and what not, this Nurse named Gina would play the top 40 hits on the radio at the time.... every.single.day.

Do you know how much the top 40 changes throughout the year? Not much. Same effing songs everyday, over and over.

When casually asked if she wanted to listen to something else, she would simply say "no."

It was maddening.

Eventually it sort of became a running joke and she kind of picked up on it, and started listening to old school stuff. Which was nice.

Do you know how much the top 40 changes throughout the year? Not much. Same effing songs everyday, over and over.

Sounds like any of the lame Clear Channel "Alt Rock" stations.

Click for President

How has no one has mentioned Malibu by Anderson Paak yet!

I'd put it in the conversation with Coloring Book and TLOP honestly. Just flew under the radar. Very distinct album that I feel like might be 2016s Acid Rap in terms of a stand alone sound with no comparison. Be on the look out for his next album.

i honestly haven't heard of it. The wife and i got rid of satellite radio a while ago to save money and Rapid City doesn't have a hip hop station, so I'm not exposed to a lot anymore. I'll give it a listen.

Just started listening to Paak after kinda hearing about him all year, and that album is incredible. Probably won't be on my list since it's still too new to me, but really exciting stuff.

Currently listening to Malibu, and my God, if he doesn't sound like Kendrick Lamar doing r&b. haha. Everything I've heard so far has been dope. Thanks for the suggestion man.

Glad you like it. Was definitively my summer 2016 album

Gojira - Magma
Netsky - 3
Metallica - Hardwired.. To Self-Destruct
Novembre - Ursa
Ghost - Popestar
DevilDriver - Trust No One
Elephante - I am the Elephante

Magma goes SO HARD

Not my favorite Gojira album, but it's incredibly well-rounded and amazing live.

Metallica - Hardwired.. To Self-Destruct

i was really hesitant upon first listen but after multiple playings, i've grown to appreciate this record

Ghost needs more recognition as an amazing band

I don't really get Ghost and I've been a metal listener since high school.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

They robbed ABR of a Grammy last year and then I vowed to never listen to them

The Best Metal Performance Grammy is often a scraping of the surface of stuff that's mediocre but close enough to mainstream that it gets noticed. I put 0 stock into it. Some of the nomination lists in the past are absolute jokes, and the only winners I really respect as metal bands are Sabbath, Priest, Maiden, and Slayer.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

The Grammy's are always a sham for metal categories, but the Grammy win was for Cirice, which is an excellent song. '512' by Lamb of God was my close second, but all things considered Ghost winning for Cirice doesn't seem too ridiculous to me.

I really enjoy their music but it's definitely different than what you expect from metal, especially after their first album (not even sure I would say their second album was "metal"). Can also see how people enjoy their music less if you find their whole satanic image and humor too corny, it's really over-the-top but that's the point.

We Got it From Here was so f'ing good and nostalgic. I've switched over and only listen to Backspin at this point, get off my lawn. RIP Phife

@hokie_rd

So many good releases in 2016, I'm sure I'm forgetting some, but here's the short list in alphabetical order:

ATCQ - We got it from Here...
Bon Iver - 22, A Million
Chance the Rapper - Coloring Book
Childish Gambino - Awaken, My Love
Danny Brown - Atrocity Exhibition
Glass Animals - How to Be a Human
James Blake - The Colour in Anything
Phantogram - Three
Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool
Red Fang - Only Ghosts
Run the Jewels - RTJ3
Sleigh Bells - Jessica Rabbit

This is a list I can work with. Tribe's album, and Bowie's album are good listens also.

Leonard. Duh.

Haven't heard all of Atrocity Exhibition, but loved what I have listened to.

Phantogram's Three was a huge letdown for me, especially since I just discovered them two years ago. Went through their back catalog and they quickly became my favorite band. Everything I've heard from Three was a disappointment; it sounds to me like they're running out of ideas. That tends to happen into your 30's for most bands. I will say Three is far better live than on record; I saw them with Fitz and the Tantrums and both acts killed it.

Radiohead is my all-time favorite rock band, but you can tell they're at the end of their career, and are also out of ideas.

I got to see Radiohead live at Blossom both after In Rainbows and King of Limbs came out. Both concerts were great, but they definitely played less new music in the latest concert.

I never thought of Radiohead as a band winding down their career, but I can see that. I like Moon Shaped Pool more than King of Limbs, though.

Oh man, I was actually thinking of starting this thread today. Gonna have to solidify my list now

Deadpool Soundtrack.

#FUENTEenFUEGO
Waho's suck
Uva swallows

A Tribe Called Quest is not getting enough love. 'We got it from Here...' arguably the best album of their discography, well over a decade after their most recent release. Typically, when an all time great band/artist releases an album long after their career ends, it just feels like a money grab. This album was truly motivated by both the current state of hip hop, and the state of American politics. The album somehow creates a strong sense of nostalgia but yet, is more culturally relevant than any other ATCQ album (or any other hip hop album of 2016).

Twitter me

You're not the only person I've heard say this, and every time I'm like, "i gotta give that album a listen." ...then completely forget about it.

...I've got to give that album a try.

Tribe is my favorite rap group of all time, and I don't even think it's blasphemous to say this new one might be their best. I don't think any other artist has made an album so effective as a throwback that also sounds more forward thinking than anything else coming out in the genre*. Q-tip is maybe better than he's ever been, some of the new flows he brings out are mind-bending, though I do wish there was a bit more of the 5-foot Assassin.

*Bowie did this pretty well this year as well, which is also astounding

Keeping in mind his health throughout making the record, I'm happy we got as much of Phife Dawg as we did. The fact that they were able to put their differences aside and work together again before he died is really a great story. Maybe one day someone will put together a good behind the scenes documentary on this record, like a sequel to Beats, Rhymes & Life.

There's been rumors of a phife record coming out this year. Apparently he had been working on it for the past few years and was nearly done when he died. As long as it's really his work and not a cash grab could be pretty fantastic.

So, so many bands I've never heard of

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

out of fairness, most of the albums listed are non-mainstream/underground artists which makes it even more unknown to those who don't keep up with music in general.

that's why i love reading this annual listing--it caters to my validation of new musical discoveries since i've always felt some of the best stuff will never crack the mainstream but in many ways, will influence it eventually.

to give you an example, many of today's pop acts will mine underground tracks looking for new sounds that will give them an edge. the most recent of this was the use of EDM-like song structures in pop music in the past three years.

Barely anything new that I listen to will ever reach the airwaves of the FM. I have a feeling most of the groups listed here are probably not my style either, might have to look into a few...but pop, EDM, rap, etc will never willingly make its way into my ear holes. I typically stick with folk, indie, bluegrass and jam band type groups

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

for me, it's just musical curiosity in general. i grew up listening to punk/hardcore/metal which ended up me getting into indie rock. i then had a friend into reggae (i mean why not...VB/757 and its beach culture) and i went through that phase.

in college, i discovered electronic music from its early beginnings (Can, Neu, Kraftwerk, etc.) and some DJs at WUVT who came back from their semester overseas in the UK brought back some dubstep and played it non-stop at the station (the UK version of it). my attraction to this genre developed because i was well-versed in dub music and seeing its evolution through a purely electronic format intrigued me.

there was also a veteran DJ there who i'd talk music with during my radio show and we'd trade musical suggestions and was a fount of musical knowledge (shout out to Len Comarrata!).

also, since Blacksburg was close to Floyd County and its musical influence, i would randomly tune into our a.m. shows that played bluegrass and "Americana" or ("y'allternative," LOL) while bands like the Avett Brothers and Mumford and Sons were on my radar.

i love a good sunday morning where i can blare John Coltrane while taking in the solitude to think. nowadays, i just read a lot of music blogs (Pitchfork, Consequence of Sound, NME, Kerrang!, Under the Radar, etc.) to get a sense of what people are interested in to see if i'd like it.

I am so mad that I didn't think of ya'llternative to use during my Americana show. So many missed opportunities.

Someday they need to name studios for Len and Josh.

My favorite debut album of 2016 that I am surprised hasn't been mentioned yet was Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial

CSHR was easily my winner for album that gets me most excited for their NEXT album. The first 4 songs are absolutely fantastic, but the longer tracks tend to drag when they stretch out, and when his writing isn't brilliant it can obnoxiously self centered (although that may just be me being too freshly out of my early 20s to appreciate someone else's early 20's angst).

Thanks HightyTighty for starting this thread up! I've been wanting to write this for the last few weeks but admittedly wasn't able to find enough time to put something coherent together.

The truth is, 2016 wasn't exactly my favorite year of music in recent memory. There were certainly some fantastic albums, but I found myself listening to more 90's and 2000's rock music as the calendar year came to a close (not always the best sign). Knowing what's on tap for 2017, I'm looking forward to what's due to come out this year. With that being said, there were three albums that I really, really enjoyed this year:

A/B — Kaleo I absolutely love this album, from top to bottom. Indie rock with heavy blues undertones, the album transitions back-and-forth from high energy tracks to mellow (prototypically Icelandic, if that's a thing?) harmonies. There's way way more to this band than, "Way Down We Go," so be sure to give 'em a listen.

Home of the Strange — Young the Giant I've always liked YTG, but can't say that I ever felt a strong hankering to turn on one of their albums. It was always more of a single here and a single there kind of affair. "Home of the Strange" completely changed the way I view them, and I've probably listened to this album more than any other in 2016. It's just fun and unique the whole way through.

Give It Back To You — The Record Company Formed by a couple of fledgling musicians that killed time listening to vinyl and eventually transformed into a blues rock band with punk undertones that oozes traditional sound while feeling current. One listen through the album and their genesis becomes immediately apparent.

A couple of albums that I also loved this year (though not quite as much as the previous three) were How to Be a Human Being (Glass Animals), RTJ3 (Run the Jewels) and Coloring Book (Chance the Rapper).

I've enjoyed seeing what others have written — already have a nice list for the coming weeks. Thanks gang!

When I saw your description of " Indie rock with heavy blues undertones" for Kaleo, I was going to respond recommending The Record Company as that fits them as well but I see you have already discovered them. Both great albums. I am now going to check out YTG because like you said I have never really given them a fair shot but have liked some of what I heard. Thanks!

So I awake from my 2 year slumber....

Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial
Yeasayer - Amen & Goodbye
Chance - Coloring Book
The Range - Potential - Probably the only one on here that no one else will list. The track Florida shines like no other single i've heard in forever and features a sample of an obscure YouTube Arianna Grande cover. Unique AF and brilliant.
Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor's Guide to Earth
Blood Orange - Freetown Sound
Nicolas Jaar - Sirens
Anderson .Paak - Malibu

Edit: Oh and Tribe. Forgot Tribe.

Avenged Sevenfold - The Stage

It's a bit different from their previous work, but I found myself loving it more with each listen. With Brooks Wackerman on the set it feels like the band has new life

I feel like this list will change about every day for the next few months, a lot of great stuff that I didn't catch onto until the end of the year. For me, this year was largely marked by me finally enjoying hip hop again as well as a lot of top-notch songwriters fleshing out their sound and making killer rock records. I also basically stopped all music writing this year, so excuse the excess of words, ya'll are my outlet this year.

1. Lucy Dacus - No Burden
I started 2016 seeing Lucy play first out of 5 bands to maybe 20 people and ended it seeing her play a packed house of ~1.5k at The National*. As a writer she can go from off-handed wittiness to emotional gut punch within a single line and has a defined point of view that takes most writers their entire lives to develop. Meanwhile the band ranges from soft atmospherics to bruising guitar-driven indie rock adding some muscle and toughness even when lyrically the record is at it's most vulnerable. And then that voice is just enthralling. This record shows that there's a lot of room for the band to grow, but they're hitting for the fences from the get-go.
Key Track: Map On A Wall

*Not to mention a sold out album release show at the Broadberry that stands as my favorite of last year & an impromptu solo set at an open mic alongside the frontman from Head and the Heart*

2. A Tribe Called Quest - We got it from Here... Thank You 4 Your service
Tremendous as both a throw back to the classic sound as well as a step forward that's more adventurous and forward looking than anything else currently in hip-hop.
Key Track: Conrad Tokyo

3. Drive-By Truckers - American Band
For all the talk about this being a political statement, DBT did what they've always done best on American Band, taking nuanced stances on complex subjects through short stories and character sketches that humanize the varied points of view and the lives behind them. The rare political record that doesn't lecture. It's also stacked with shit-kicking guitar solos and a criminally underrated rhythm section.
Key Track: Ramon Casiano

4. Sturgil Simpson - Sailor's Guide to Earth
One of the strongest songwriters working today, he basically eschews country to form an old school R&B band and burn through a concept album about new fatherhood. Also features the rare cover of a Nirvana song that can stand with the original. Also features a line about getting high and playing Golden Eye, which is just wonderful.
Key Track: All Around You

5. David Bowie - Blackstar
For as much as this record will always be Bowie's death note, it stands on its own merit as one of the finest in his long catalogue. Blackstar can be defiantly weird, darkly triumphant, and emotionally heavy, all while featuring a crack jazz band playing at the top of their games. And Lazarus is a top 3 or 5 all time David Bowie song, which is saying a lot.
Key Track: Lazarus

6. Dawes - We're All Gonna Die
As a songwriter Taylor Goldsmith has been at the top of his game for some time now and continues that streak here. Few can weave mundane details and poetic imagery into classic songs better. The bigger surprise is the band musically moving out of their country-rock comfort zone thanks to working with Blake Mills, who between this record and last years Alabama Shakes is among the very best working today. A fantastic mix of Americana, Indie-rock, and string sections in a rock record that don't sound like complete butt.
Key Track: We're All Gonna Die

7. Big Thief - Masterpiece
A fantastic entry in my personal favorite genre of big guitars and wordy lyrics. Lyrically there is a ton to chew on, while the band's control of dynamics allow the songs to swell from quiet confessional to raucous catharsis. Also jam packed with hooks, even in the occasional acoustic interludes. Highly recommended especially if you were into chill 90's alternative rock.
Key Track: Masterpiece

8. Margaret Glaspy - Emotions and Math
Glaspy had been doing the solo singer-songwriter thing for a while, but for her first true album she got a band, picked up the electric guitar, and wrote by far her best songs yet. The arrangements are bare bones but to the point while her guitar playing does the heavy lifting spinning intricate riffs from timeless chord changes. Favorite line: "Oh, tonight I'm a little too turned on to talk about us/And tomorrow I'll be too turned off and won't give a fuck/About you and I"
Key Track: You And I

9. Kevin Morby - Singing Saw
Another strong songwriter remarkably fleshing out their best group of songs yet. "I Have Been to the Mountain" and "Dorothy" are unbridled, crunchy catharsis while "Singing Saw" is a moody groove backed by an actual singing saw. A record I kept expecting to grow old just got better with every listen.
Key Track: I Have Been to the Mountain

10. Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool
Meat and potatoes Radiohead is still a glorious thing. The arrangements are as intricate and compelling as ever while Yorke proves he has no equal in expressing claustrophobic paranoia through wordless wailing and weird dance moves.
Key Track: Identikit

11. Steve Gunn - Eyes on the Lines
A guitar virtuoso making a languid, laid back guitar record. Some spaced out Grateful Dead vibes, but from an artist weaned on primitive folk and outsider indie-rock. The music sounds lazy at first glance but the interlocking guitars form a dense and intricately detailed tangle of sounds that rewards a lot of close and repeated listening.
Key Track: Park Bench Smile

12. Childish Gambino - Awaken, My Love!
Some blatant Sly Stone and Funkadelic worship here but it's done so well it's hard to mind too much. Gambino has always outkicked his coverage when it comes to concept vs execution, but here he gets closer than he ever has, showing off some very impressive vocal chops against an impeccably well done psychedelic funk backdrop.
Key Track: Redbone

14. Open Mike Eagle - Hella Personal Film Festival
The art-rap mastermind Open Mike Eagle tackles modern technology and apprehension while staying wickedly funny and defiantly weird.
Key Track: Check to Check

13. Chance The Rapper - Coloring Book
I was super late to the game on this one, and went in super skeptical, but now that Kanye is a crazed shell of his former self, Chance seems eager and capable of filling the gap left behind. The positivity is absolutely infectious and his range of flows from chilled out meandering to confident boasting to intricate (and witty) internal rhyme schemes put him in an elite field of rappers.
Key Track: Angels

15. Avers - Omega / Whatever
A supergroup of heavy hitters from Richmond's music scene, I've seen this band many times but this is decidedly not a homer pick. One of the best pure rock albums of the year, their range from catchy garage tunes to punishing groove-heavy jams to big choruses on pysch-indebted ballads is something few bands matched this year.
Key Track: Holding On

16. Camp Howard - Camp Howard
One of several young Richmond bands putting out fantastic music right now, they hit the perfect sweet spot between heavy grunge riffs and hazy dream pop.
Key Track: Llorando y Fumando

Also, 3 albums that should be on here but I haven't listened enough to place yet:
RTJ3
Anderson .Paak - Malibu
Shovels & Rope - Little Seeds

Lol, Burn the Witch was on a Spotify playlist I was listening to and I was like "Man, someone is trying REAL hard to sound like Radiohead." Then it came on a few days later and I actually checked who the artist was and was like, der. The song does a really good job of freaking you out while you listen.

If anyone is a fan of the grungy blues rock type...I'd recommend checking out People's Blues of Richmond, saw them the first time at the first OBX Brew Fest. They play all over VA I believe, definitely a good show.

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

PBR is fantastic. I was at their album release show in May and it was one of the wildest I've ever been to. You could actually feel the waves of sweat and Jager emanating from the stage and they capped it with a spot-on cover of Killing in the Name Of after which he smashed his guitar to bits on stage.

Anyone who smashes his/her guitar on stage needs to listen to John Hiatt's "Perfectly Good Guitar".

For all you progressive metal fans out there:

Haken - Affinity
Dream Theater - The Astonishing
Periphery - Periphery III
Jason Richardson - I
Veil of Maya - Matriarch

I went to middle/high school with Jason and we played in the church band together. Pretty neat he's kinda made it in the metal scene.

And while The Astonishing wasn't quite what I was hoping for, it was still a killer rock opera.

This is an awesome thread! I'm always on the lookout for new music and am looking forward to trying some of these on Spotify.

The only album that hasn't been mentioned on here yet that I listened to is Dig Your Roots by Florida Georgia Line. Definitely my favorite album of 2016.

"It's a miracle in Blacksburg, TYROD DID IT MIKEY, TYROD DID IT!"

I guess they're not technically albums, but what got the most burn on my Spotify were:

Coloring Book - Chance the Rapper
Church Clothes vol. 3 - Lecrae

Coloring Book was just a masterpiece. Not a bad track on there. His live performance of Finish Line on SNL has to be one of the best things I've seen our of a performer in years.

Church Clothes was a little different than we've seen from Lecrae. Misconceptions 3 was the track for me.

Always choose joy.

Favorite:
Glass Animals - How to be a Human Being

Runner-Ups:
Run The Jewels - RTJ3
Childish Gambino - Awaken, My Love!
STRFKR - Being No One, Going Nowhere
Blind Pilot - And Then Like Lions
Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool

Just a couple of that I haven't seen up higher -

Frightened Rabbit - Painting of a Panic Attack - if you're into mellow, depressing Scotsmen
Biffy Clyro - Ellipsis - If you're into a little more aggressive Scotsmen

Wolf Alice - My Love is Cool - technically came out at the end of 2015, but I found it in 2016 so IT COUNTS, DAMMIT
Also, echo Warthog on Lonely The Brave - Things Will Matter

Finally, no albums from either, as far as I can tell, but based on Drop from the Estrons and Animals from Coast Modern, I'm excited to hear what both do next.

In no certain order here's my top records of 2016. It's not a "best of", but rather my favorites that I was able to get around to. It was a busy year and I'm sure I missed a lot. I'll also link a song to make it easy for ya'll to check it out if you want.

Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor's Guide to Earth. Fantastic songwriting that the likes of Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard would approve of.
Dirty Heads - Dirty Heads. Great summer music. RIYL: Sublime and cheap beer.
Butch Walker - Stay Gold. It's a good "windows down and sing along" kind of rock album.
Frightened Rabbit - Painting of a Panic Attack. Somber and dreary Scottish Rock.
Moose Blood - Blush. Just catchy rock and roll.
Kitten - Heaven or Somewhere in Between. A female fronted synth indie band. RIYL: The Joy Formidable or The Naked and Famous.
Brian Fallon - Painkillers. Singer/songwriter from Jersey. This album pretty much owned my spring.
Touche Amore - Stage Four. It's not the heaviest thing they've ever done, but it's still so good. NOT a feel good album.
Jimmy Eat World - Integrity Blues. This album floored me. I didn't expect this record to be as interesting or different and I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. Might actually be their best since Futures.

I'm sure there were more I'm forgetting right now, but these are definitely the ones off the top of my head that really made an impact. Also, now that it's 2017 the new Japandroids record can't get here soon enough.

I found TKP after two rails from TOTS then walking back to my apartment and re-watching the 2012 Sugar Bowl. I woke up the next day with this username.

Finally some Dirty Heads love!

Spenge the Man. Go Hokies!

If it's anything close to Futures it's gotta be great. I'll listen to it at work tomorrow.

Future Present Past - The Strokes

Yes it's three songs, but hard to argue against them as the best band of the 2000's, picking up where they left off in this one.

hard to argue against them as the best band of the 2000's

No it's not. The Killers. There, argument over. (Though to be fair the Strokes are solidly in second for me.)

The Killers were the band of the 2000s if you disregard all the years that Hot Fuss wasn't released in.

Psssh. Sam's Town fo life!

I found TKP after two rails from TOTS then walking back to my apartment and re-watching the 2012 Sugar Bowl. I woke up the next day with this username.

Hahhaha my sentiments exactly

Check out New Skin by CRX. It's Nick Valensi from The Stroke's side project and it's super catchy.

Yeah it is! Thanks for the recommendation. Not sure anyone can write them like Cassblancas, but this guy is doing a pretty good job

I really like the EP but Comedown Machine was a little disappointing for me. Still a big Strokes fan but not sure I would call them the band of the 2000's. I think I would have to give that title to Arcade Fire.

Love the Strokes, but I'd think it'd have to be Queens of the Stone Age.

I went to a music festival at Devil's Backbone a few months ago and heard the Revivalists for the first time. I may or may not have been partaking heavily in the finest DB has to offer at the time but I still really enjoyed their music. They're listed as a Jam band on wikipedia and I don't really know how else to describe them. If you had to start somewhere I would say check out "Keep going" that's my favorite. The lead vocalist has a really cool voice and sound.

Were you at Festy Experience? I've always wanted to go to that, but opt for the VA Beer Festival they've hosted the past two years instead.

Revivalists are one of the many reasons I'm prob going to Lockn again this year.

I went to the thing called hoopla. It's pretty much their new reboot of festy now that they're a little more big time apparently.

Ahhh thats right. Damn AB/InBev ruining everything. They wont be hosting the beer festival there anymore either

Leg for
Lumineers: Cleopatra
Blink 182: California
Grouplove: Big Mess

"Now Miami wants to talk about it." *Cue Enter Sandman*

The Growlers - City Club

Angel Olsen - MY WOMAN

PWR BTTM - Ugly Cherries

Parquet Courts - Human Performance

And both already listed Car Seat Headrest and King Gizzard were my go to's for 2016

Once I'm Mr. Beat, only miss a beat.

Super out there, relative to what y'all are talking about, but I loved Eco's Wolves - been waiting on his sophomore album for a while now, and boy was it worth the wait. Anjunadeep 08 also dropped right before the end of the year, and while I think I prefer 07, 08 is still excellent.

Achievement unlocked: All of the Fullers

"Sam Rogers is a college football icon" SB Nation

Thanks Frank!

"Best of Nickelback" **DUCKS**

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors).

So its an album full of the dead air between songs on each album they've released?

Felt like this was a down year overall, only great albums IMO were these few, 2 are actually Richmond VA bands

Inter Arma - Paradise Gallows
Cough - Still They Pray
Cobalt - Slow Forever
Jeff The Brotherhood - Zone

Few other solid albums like
DBT - American Band
Jim James - Eternally Even
Megadeth - Dystopia
Black Tusk - Pillars of Ash
Deftones - Gore
Red Fang - Only Ghosts

I'm not the devil by Cody Jinks

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Dwight Yoakam did a bluegrass rendition of Princes Purple Rain as a tribute and it is awesome! Ryan Beaver-Dark is awesome. Really got in to Yelawolf too this past year.

There are wolves and there are sheep, I am the sheep dog

Sixx:AM
Prayers for the Damned - volume 1
Prayers for the Blessed - volume 2