A Late Late Late Top 10 Albums Of 2016 Year List

On my personal twitter I made a top 70+ list of my favorite albums from 2016. It was received pretty well and I wanted to write about these albums in a relaxed review format, but didn’t have the time to do it. Now that we’re well into 2017, I figured that I would revisit these albums and review them editorial style!

 

10.    Skepta -Konnichiwa 

konnichiwa

To say that the past few years have been good to Skepta would be a massive understatement. He has gone from being a small time DJ in a small grime outfit called the Meridian Crew to rapping alongside the likes of Drake at his OVO Festival and being alongside Kanye West at The BRIT awards. The Drake affiliation really was the spark that would ignite Skepta’s worldwide takeover, but it wasn’t until 2015’s banger Shutdown that things really began to pick up steam for the East Londoner. The track was a smash hit for Skepta as it hit the number 3 spot on the UK Indie charts and number 9 on the UK R&B charts. Even here in the states, Skepta’s buzz grew exponentially. He embarked on a sold out tour last year which culminated with him on stage with Drake in Toronto in a magical setting.  The world was just itching for a new Skepta album.

 

Konnichiwa is hands down one of the best records of last year and Skepta does incredible work with this record. This album is essentially Skepta introducing us to the world of grime, UK hip-hop, and life in the UK while doing it in a way that is very accessible to new listeners all the while keeping the same intensity that a grime regular will just salivate over. For first time listeners, there may be a couple hurdles you may need to consider first though. Grime is a pretty polarizing genre for people not familiar with it. It blends elements of UK garage (UKG), drum and bass, and even a little bit of dubstep. This kind of music was used for underground raves in 2000’s, so it has to be loud and pulse pounding. In a sense, this isn’t a true grime record. JME’s, a fellow grime artist and Skepta’s brother, album Integrity fits more in line of what a traditional grime record should be like. Still, the beats on Konnichiwa are filled with tons of energy and oomph, but it’s not too abrasive.

 

Man, Shutdown, That’s Not Me, and Corn on the Curb are the best tracks on the album and they are all incredibly hype. Man in particular will make you want to start your own 1 person mosh pit with the incredibly infectious hook and some of the best lyrics on the album.

“Came a long way from when whites never used to mix with blacks

Now all my white niggas and my black mates, we got the game on smash

I used to rate your page on MySpace but you never stayed on track.”

 

“They wanna see me drown

Tryna hold the mandem down

Cause I shutdown Shoreditch car park

And I got bars like Camden Town”

That last bar references when Skepta held a huge rave in a Shoreditch parking lot in 2015. This is the kind of pull that Skepta has and it shows. The energy in just the video alone is enough to make your spine quiver. If there’s one thing Skepta was able to do with this album, it was show the world that the UK’s music scene is not to be messed with. Skepta’s got the world’s attention and I’m definitely anxious to see what else he was in store for us.

 

Best Tracks: Man, Shutdown, Numbers, That’s Not Me, Detox, Corn on the Curb, Konnichiwa, Numbers, Crime Riddim.

 

 

9. Kanye West – The Life of Pablo 

pablo

 

Like many of you, I was unsure what to make of this album when Kanye released it back in February. Initially, I thought it was a jumbled and discombobulated mess with way too much going on. The lyrics were very tasteless with several references to different parts of Kanye’s anatomy (He literally wishes that his penis had a GoPro camera on the track Highlights) and shots at various artists like Taylor Swift and Ray J. On all accounts, I should have hated this album. Yet, I could not stop listening to it. For all of its glaring imperfections, The Life of Pablo’s beautiful moments completely overpower the negative ones. The opener, Ultra-Light Beam, floored me when I first put the album on.  The track just oozes with a gospel vibe with the layered background vocals, to the somber production, to the amazing singing from Kanye, The Dream, and Kelly Price However, the best part of this opener is feature from Chance The Rapper, which might be favorite feature on the entire album. His lyrics references everything from Kanye’s influence on him, to Noah’s Ark, to the 90s sitcom Martin (Damn Gina!). This track is the most gospel-rap album I have ever heard and it works flawlessly.

“You can feel the lyrics, the spirit coming in braille

Tubman of the underground, come and follow the trail

I made Sunday Candy, I’m never going to hell

I met Kanye West, I’m never going to fail”

 

It wouldn’t be a Kanye album without comical amounts of vulgarity and pot shots at his critics. While it’s not as coarse as his 2013 album Yeezus, there are still some moments on The Life of Pablo that will make your eyes twitch a bit. The interesting part about this album is the paradox with the gospel aspects of the album with the vulgar parts. Kanye described this album as “a gospel album with a lot of swearing” which is a very accurate assessment, albeit a very simple one.  When I read that statement, I did a double take. “Gospel album? THIS? No way,” I thought. After sitting with the album for about a year, it started to make sense. This dichotomy between these two things makes this album endlessly interesting and perplexing at the same time.  “What kind of gospel album has lyrics about the singer’s genitalia or doling out big booty bitches out as the ghetto Oprah” you may ask yourself. Well, this one and it works. The gospel part of the album comes from Kanye himself and what he considers to be Christianity. We are all flawed, even the man himself. Every human is repulsive in way shape or form. He is telling us that even the most repulsive human beings can be elevated.  This album is irony in its purest form and Kanye does a fantastic job of displaying this fact. That fact is that Kanye ultimately human.

On this album, we see Kanye shed his exterior shell to reveal a softer side of himself that we haven’t seen too often. The song Real Friends is a beautiful song about Kanye’s insecurity about his friends and family. With his popularity, it’s hard for Kanye to even relax and spend time with his family. He questions how many real friends he really has. It’s a look into Kanye’s psyche’ that is often put in question due to his antics in the media.

Like him or not, it’s hard to deny Kanye’s ability to turn something provocative into something great. This album made me realize why I love and admire Kanye so much.

 

Best Tracks: Ultra-Light Beam, Father Stretch My Hands Pt 1, Famous, Freestyle 4, FML, No More Parties in LA, Highlights, Fade, Saint Pablo, Real Friends, Wolves.

 

 

8. James Blake – The Colour In Anything 

blake

The Colour in Anything is 70+ minutes of raw emotion to the point where it feels more in common with a classic soul album sometimes.  Blake strips everything back on this album, so that it feels so bleak in comparison to his previous efforts. This might be a major turn-off to some people, but for me though, it just means more James Blake, which is damn awesome. The fact that James is able to convey such definitive emotions of sadness, loneliness, and heartbreak with just a piano, some instrumentals, and no drums is no small accomplishment.  The tone of the album can be summarized with the album cover alone. Blake, walking alone on a long, desolate road with storm clouds looming over him getting ready to begin a torrential downpour. The lyrics on this album are heart-wrenchingly beautiful to the point where it’s hard not to tear up at points.  Take the track Forever for instance.  The track is the shortest on the album, clocking in at 2 minutes and 44 seconds, but it captures something that is beyond description. Some of the most passionate lyrics James has ever written are on this particular track and even now it’s hard not to get sad thinking about it.

 

The track I Need a Forest Fire is probably my favorite track on the album and a must listen as it’s one of the best tracks James Blake has ever made.  It’s a song where Blake uses a forest fire as an analogy for starting anew in a relationship. The relationship has gone out of control, like a forest fire, and it is clearing through everything. The burning lingers for a while, but afterwards everything settles down leaving fertile soil to start again. Bon Iver’s contributions to this track are invaluable as well as he lends his voice to the majority of the song along with James Blake. The chorus is absolutely stunning with the constant “another shade, shadow” repeating while Justin compares ending relationships to burning cedar. It’s like the Watch The Throne of electronic R&B and I need another collab with these two as soon as possible.

If there is one gripe I have with this album it’s the fact that there is filler, a lot of it. Some of the tracks on here can definitely feel like they drag on for a lot longer than they should and will definitely be a hurdle for some people. I won’t lie to you, it’s very hard to listen to this album in one sitting.  It’s over an hour of very sad, depressing music that will begin to wear on you after a while. That being said, don’t let that stop you from checking this album out. It’s fantastic and I think it might be my favorite James Blake album to date. If you want to cut straight to the meat of the album, we’ve got you covered. Don’t feel ashamed for skipping around to see what tracks you like. As usual, we are going to recommend the best tracks for you to listen to if you want to just get right to those.

Best Tracks: Radio Silence, Forever, The Colour In Anything, I Need A Forest Fire, Put That Away and Talk to Me, Waves Know Shore, Choose Me, Modern Soul, Meet You In The Maze, Love Me In Whatever Way.

 

 

7. Bon Iver – 22, A Million 

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It really is hard to come up with the proper words to fully describe how incredible this album is.  I have never seen an album tackle the essence of humanity in a way that this album does. Justin Vernon’s return to the Bon Iver project is a masterful look at how we as humans deal with our thoughts. With song titles like 22 (OVER S∞∞N) and 21 M◊◊N WATER, you would expect this to be an album overflowing with pretentiousness, but in fact it’s quite the opposite. Justin Vernon’s lyrics about unease and unable to escape the reality of the situation he is living in are presented in a way that you, as the listener, can’t help but relate to. It is a raw and eerily personal look at his feelings and it’s simply heartbreaking, but beautiful. Sadness is a theme that frequently appears in Bon Iver’s music. While Vernon’s first album For Emma Forever Ago was a testament to sadness and soul-crushing loneliness, 22, A Million dives into personal crisis and life’s irrevocability.

The lyrics in this album are oblique and often times very indistinct, almost stream-of-conscious like. The first track, 22 (OVER S∞∞N), immediately grabs you with its stuttering, glitch lo-fi opening seconds with the highly pitched vocals crooning repeatedly “It might be over soon….soon”. This particular track deals with Vernon’s personal insecurities, anxieties, and his need to soul-search.

“Where you gonna look for confirmation?

And if it’s ever gonna happen

So as I’m standing at the station

It might be over soon”

I’ve interpreted the station as the destination in Vernon’s soul search. He’s finally reach his journey’s end, and yet he still feels inadequate. He’s standing at the station, contemplating and thinking about his life. This is another theme that is featured heavily on 22, A Million: uncertainty. We don’t know what life is going to bring to us next. Life in many ways is a cruel thing because of how it is able to throw curveballs at us at the worst possible times.

Before the album released, Vernon released this press statement about the album:

22, A Million is part love letter, part final resting place of two decades of searching for self-understanding like a religion. And the inner-resolution of maybe never finding that understanding. The album’s 10 poly-fi recordings are a collection of sacred moments, love’s torment and salvation, contexts of intense memories, signs that you can pin meaning onto or disregard as coincidence. If Bon Iver, Bon Iver built a habitat rooted in physical spaces, then 22, A Million is the letting go of that attachment to a place.

Best Tracks: 22 (Over Soon), 715 Creeks,  10 Deathbreasts, 33 God, 29# Stratford APTS, 21 Moon Water, 00000 (Million).

 

 

6. A Tribe Called Quest – We Got It From Here….Thank You 4 Your Service

tribe

After almost 2 decades, ACTQ’s final album feels like they never took a break from music to begin with. It’s almost hard to imagine that Tribe could make an album that could match their classic string of 90’s albums, but not only did they manage to match it, they surpassed some of them in a lot of ways. This album fits very snug up there with Low End Theory, Midnight Marauders, and People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm. This is Tribe’s passing of the torch album to the younger generation of rappers and it’s

The song Dis Generation is a tribute to the new generation of rappers who are paving the way for the culture like Tribe did during the 90s. The group shouts out Joey Badass, Earl Sweatshirt, J. Cole and Kendrick Lamar and calls them the “gatekeepers of the flow”. Tribe realizes that the new generation is going to carry hip-hop farther than ever before. It’s a great song, not because of the message itself, but it helps emphasize how important Tribe was back during the hip-hop golden age. They were in the thick of it and the group was able to pioneer a sound that has aged extremely well. This sound carries over for this album as well. Jazzy, soulful production from Q with samples ranging from Elton John to Black Sabbath. It wouldn’t be a Tribe album without the signature back and forth rapping between Phife, Q, and Ali. Going in, I was a little concerned about how cohesive the group would sound since it has been such a long time and the group’s last few records before their hiatus were questionable at best.  Boy, was I in for a surprise when the first track hits. It’s vintage Tribe and they don’t miss a single beat.

Another common theme of any Tribe album is the socially aware message that accompany the tracks. We The People, which is the best song on the album, talks about everything from police brutality, gender equality, racial discrimination, and immigration. Tribe is one of those artists that is able to have a political message in their music without sounding preachy. It’s a great song and has endlessly quotable lyrics.

“The fog and the smog of news media that logs

False narratives of Gods that came up against the odds

We’re not just nigga rappers with the bars

It’s kismet that we’re cosmic with the stars”

With great instrumentals, flows that will make you bob your head, and lyrics that are meanfinful and thought provoking, Tribe easily delivers one of the best hip hop albums of the past couple years and it’s a testament to how to make a quality comeback album. Now that the torch has been passed, it’s time for the younger generation of artists to carry the mantle that Tribe set.

 

Best tracks: Dis Generation, We the People, Kids, The Space Program, Black Spasmodic, Solid Wall of Sound, The Donald, The Killing Season, Mobius.

 

5. Death Grips – Bottomless Pit

death

 

It’s almost insane to think that it has been 6 years since Death Grips’ breakout mixtape Exmilitary. The group’s extremely experimental approach to industrial hip-hop was something fresh that many people have not heard before and the hype behind the band grew to astronomical heights after their 2012 album The Money Store. After a break-up rumor, tons of no-shows at their last tour, the release of two soundtrack albums (Fashion Week and Interview 2016), and a double album called The Powers That B, the Sacramento trio is back with Bottomless Pit.

Whereas Jenny Death (the second half of The Powers That B) was more visceral and intense with the band bringing a hardcore punk sound, Bottomless Pit is in many ways similar to The Money Store. It’s brutal, as a Death Grips album has to be, but it’s very electronically tinged with Flatlander handling all of the electronic and synth parts of the production. Still, as with any Death Grips album, MC Ride absolutely kills it on this record by delivering some of the best hooks of the 2016 bar none. This is no more apparent than on the track Eh, which was a bit of a head scratcher for me when I initially heard it. It’s way more subdued than your average Death Grips song, but it still remained to be one of, if not, the catchiest song on the album. A lot of wild and warbling synths accompany Ride’s dispirited vocals about apathy.  The hook is nothing grandiose or epic, but the lyrics are what make it so great. It’s endlessly quotable and it plays into the essential theme of lethargy so well.

 

“Who you think you are?

Fucks like, “Do you know who I am?”

Fucks fail to understand

I’m like, “Eh”

Who you think you are?

Fucks like, “Do you know who I am?”

Fucks fail to understand

I’m like, “Eh”

 

Eh seems out of place on this album when you look at it at first. It’s sandwiched in between Warping, which sounded like it could have potentially been on 2014’s Niggas on the Moon, and Bubbles Buried in This Jungle, which is one of the most brutal tracks on the album. Normally this would bug me, but it fits in the track listing in such a snug way because of how Death Grips are able to flow songs together so well.

Another strength that this album has going for it is the fact that the production is fantastic. It might the best production in Death Grips’ discography to date. While The Money Store is their magnum opus, the recording at the time was very lo-fi and dirty sounding. Bottomless Pit sounds so clean and polished sounding while still keeping that visceral sound. If you listen to this record with some quality headphones, your mind will probably explode.

The best thing about Death Grips is that they always surprise me with each new record. Each time they release a single or tease a new project, it’s always hard to pinpoint what they are going to do and I love it. The fact that this band is already 5 albums in and are still able to amaze me with new material is an achievement worthy in it of itself. I hope that the band doesn’t stay silent this year and is able to give us another album in the near future.

Best Tracks: Hot Head, Eh, Trash, Bubbles Buried in This Jungle, 80808, BB Poison, Giving Bad People Good Ideas, Spikes, Three Bedrooms in a Good Neighborhood.

 

 

4. Danny Brown – Atrocity Exhibition 

dannt

With Atrocity Exhibition, Danny Brown still remains one of the most unique and eclectic rappers working today and this album is his magnum opus. Brown’s last album Old was decent, but it wasn’t as memorable as XXX or The Hybrid. It was an album, as Brown described, full of songs that were made for festivals and commercial appeal. Ironic in a way because one of the best songs off of XXX was Radio Song, where he mocks that very idea of compromising art for commercialism.

Atrocity Exhibition though holds nothing back and is easily one of the most weird, yet fascinating hip-hop albums I have heard in a very long time. I would hesitate to even call it a hip-hop album. In fact, the beat selection on this album is the farthest from hip-hop you can possibly get. This works in favor of the album because the production is insanely good to the point where it confuses me. These beats are bizarre  and layered in such a way that you question them.  One the most bizarre tracks is Ain’t It Funny, which has one of the strangest instrumentals I have ever heard. It’s very loud and chaotic, but enthralling in a way because of the lyrics that Danny writes.

“Staring in the devil face

But ya can’t stop laughing

It’s a living nightmare”

This album is a trip into the mind of an insane, broken, drug addicted man who stares into the face of Satan and laughs. It’s a wild ride that never lets up. The track Really Doe  features Kendrick Lamar, Ab Soul, and Earl Sweatshirt is a posse cut that clicks on every cylinder possible. It’s hard to pick who rapped the best on track because everyone did a stellar job. Earl is a stand-out because he doesn’t normally do feautre on tracks, but he absolutely kills it.

Admittedly, this album is most definitely not for everyone. If you are interested in Danny Brown, I would definitely listen to XXX first, then Old, and then this last. Still, if you think you can handle this album, by all means go ahead and dive into the most insane, ramblings of a lunatic.

Best tracks: Downward Spiral, Rolling Stone, Really Doe, Ain’t It Funny, Gold Dust, Lost, When It Rain, Pneumonia, Dance In The Water, From The Ground, Hell For It.

 

3. Car Seat Headrest – Teens of Denial 

car

Teens of Denial is the quintessential album for millennial’s and is Car Seat Headrest’s best record since 2013’s Twin Fantasy.  It’s very hard for an artist to talk about the issues that concern millennial’s without sounding like they are whining or preachy. The fact that Will Toledo was able to do this very thing and then some is in it of itself incredible.  The songwriting is one of the highlights of this album as it is some of the most cleverly and thought-provoking written music I’ve listened to in a very long time.  Will Toledo is an expert at making his music not only extremely catchy, but I smart, self-aware, and extremely relatable for young people.

Take the song (Joe Gets Kicked Out Of School For Using) Drugs With Friends( But Says This Isn’t A Problem), which is one of the best song titles I have ever heard. The entire track is essentially Will retelling his first time ever getting high off of acid and mushrooms. These kind of songs are often pretty played out and poorly written for the most part. This track however is brilliant because of how vivid a picture Toledo is able to paint with his words. I have never taken a mixture of any substances, but the way that Toledo writes this song makes you feel like you’re having the bad trip with him. He doesn’t romanticize the fact that he is high, in fact quite the opposite actually.

 

“Last Friday I took acid and mushrooms

I did not transcend, I felt like a walking piece of shit

In a stupid looking jacket”

He wanders around the city seeing visions of Jesus and his father who both scold him. “Who are you to go against the word of our father!” It’s simply brilliant and it perfectly captures the idea of having a bad trip. The track ends with him chanting in anadiplosis,

 

“Drugs are better, drugs are better with

Friends are better, friends are better with

Drugs are better, drugs are better with

Friends are better, friends are better with”

 

The hooks on this album are probably Car Seat Headrest’s best so far. The track Destroyed by Hippie Powers has a hook that is so infectiously catchy that it has been stuck in my head for literally over a year’s time. Not many songs can do that. The track Drunk Drivers/Killer Whales, which was the single for this album, is another fantastic track with an absolutely incredible chorus that will make you sing along with Toledo every single time.

This album reaches highlights on the track The Ballad of Costa Concordia, referencing the cruise ship that went down in 2012. He compares his failures in life to the ship going down and he asks many questions about adulthood and not being prepared. This track absolutely floored me when I heard it.  Being a young adult, I can vividly remember asking myself many of these questions myself. It’s absolutely tragically beautiful.

“How was I supposed to know how to drive a van?

How was I supposed to know how to ride a bike without hurting myself?

How was I supposed to know how to make dinner for myself?

How was I supposed to know how to hold a job?

How was I supposed to remember to grab my backpack after I set it down to play basketball?”

I cannot recommend this album enough. If there was a counter of how many times I have listened to this album in its entirety, It would be probably well over twenty times, maybe even more. Hopefully the band will give us more material soon.

Best tracks: Fill In The Blank, Vincent, (Joe Gets Kicked Out Of School For Using) Drugs With Friends( But Says This Isn’t A Problem, Destroyed By Hippie Powers, Drunk Drivers/Killer Whales, 1937 State Park, The Ballad of Costa Concordia, Cosmic Hero, Connect The Dots.

 

2. David Bowie – BlackStar 

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David Bowie’s parting gift is one of the most haunting albums I have ever heard. The fact the album so perfectly predicted Bowie’s death is still shocking to me to this very day. Call it fate or premonition, but it is one of the craziest things I have ever seen happen in all of my life of listening to music. This particular album is probably one of my favorite David Bowie albums which is a very high achievement to have considering Bowie’s extensive discography.

It’s very hard to listen to this album due to its subject matter. It’s dark, in a reflecting way. The song Lazarus is one of the most heart-breaking songs that Bowie has ever written. Hearing Bowie’s sparce voice essentially singing his own epitaph is an experience than I will never forget.  He knew he was dying, but he looked death square in the face and painted a picture of what it was like to be dead. It’s art in its purest form.

This way or no way

You know I’ll be free

Just like that bluebird

Now, ain’t that just like me?

Death is freedom. Bowie looks at death and sees a chance to finally be free of the scars that he lived with on a daily basis. It’s scary when you truly think about how he looks at such a sensitive topic. When you look at the idea of Blackstar, you begin to realize that Bowie did something incredible. He was able to figuratively and literally predict his own demise. In a sense, he immortalized himself.

This album is beautiful in so many ways that it almost astounds me how Bowie was able to capture all of these thoughts and emotions into a 51 minute album. The opener Blackstar is a 10 minute epic of a track that shifts numerous times throughout the album. This track is probably his most experimental work since the Berlin trilogy albums. Every single shift pays off perfectly and I honestly could not see the song without it. The lyrics on this track, like the others, look at death in an abstract way. Bowie asks the listener, ”

How many times does an angel fall?

How many people lie instead of talking tall?

Definitely an interesting question. How often do we as humans go from being pure to being flawed? Frequently and it happens to absolutely everyone. The satanic imagery helps give this song a vibe that is not only creepy, but disturbing.

If you haven’t listened to Blackstar, you need to. Even if you are not a David Bowie fan, I would recommend it because it’s an album that is perfect at everything it attempts to do. It’s bold, experimental, and looks at death in such an obtuse way that has not really been done to this level of  quality.

 

Best Tracks: ALL OF THEM

 

1. Frank Ocean – Blonde 

blonde

Do you ever listen to an album that is so good, you feel like you’re not worthy enough to listen to it more? That’s this album for me. Blonde is perfect in every way possible, which is interesting considering the hype for this album. An album that was 5 years in the making turned out to be one of the most beautiful, heart tugging ones that I have ever heard. It’s a masterpiece of minimalist alternative R&B that contains stellar production, singing and lyrics.

I was pretty disappointed with this album when I first though. I initially expected this album to be similar to Channel Orange. The single for this album, Nikes, threw me for an absolute loop. Frank uses his pitched up, chipmunk vocals to sing about hedonism and commercialism. Definitely a different kind of start than Channel Orange. It took me a long time and many listen for me to truly enjoy this track. Once Frank starts singing in his normal voice, the production settles down and the tone gets set for the rest of the album.It’s beautiful and the last few minutes are absolutely flawless.

The central theme of Blonde is love. Many of the tracks on this album are smartly written heartfelt ballads about break-ups, betrayal, and love. The song Ivy is all about a failed relationship and becoming overwhelmed with sadness. Frank is reflecting on his ex and how they grew apart over the course of their relationship. His ex, even though Frank realizes that the relationship is over, thinks that something can be salvaged.

“I thought that I was dreaming

When you said you loved me

It started from nothing

I had no chance to prepare

I couldn’t see you coming

It started from nothing

I could hate you now

It’s quite alright to hate me now

When we both know that deep down

The feeling still deep down is good.”

The production credits on this album were released to the public prior to the release of the album and the names that were listed are very interesting. There are obvious contributors like Kanye West,  Beyonce, James Blake, Jamie xx, Tyler The Creator and Kendrick Lamar. However, there are some really weird ones like Venezuelan electronic producer Arca and ambient pioneer Brian Eno.

The production is simply incredible on every single song on this album and when you listen to this album with good headphones, you hear new sonic tricks during every listen.It’s layered in such a complex way that you might miss thing at first.  I was listening to the tracks Nights and  around the middle of the track, there is a clicking that eventually leads to an amazing switch-up that absolutely floored me. Now, that’s all well and good, but after doing some research I learned something great. Blonde is hour long straight, it doesn’t go past 60 minutes. The clicking begins at the 30 minute mark on the album which signals the second half of not only the track, but for the album. With that switch up happening, Frank is obtusely referencing the dichotomy between his bisexuality, masculinity and femininity.

If you haven’t listened to this album yet, stop what you’re doing and listen to the whole thing. This album is like a painting in auditory form. It’s a sonic picture that even a year later still manages to amaze me. It’s complex, but very well rewarding to those who have the patience to sit with it. It’s utterly brilliant and well worth the 5 year wait.

Best Tracks: ALL OF THEM

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5 responses to “A Late Late Late Top 10 Albums Of 2016 Year List

  1. Definitely chose some really great albums, Frank Ocean’s is definitely at the top of the list for me. The feeling that he gives off, the experimentation in sounds, it’s all refreshing. What would you say is your favorite track off of it if you had to choose?

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