20. Mariah Carey – Caution
Mariah Carey fucked around and dropped another classic album on us and we weren’t even paying attention. Homegirl’s ability to consistently make modern music while simultaneously being so isolated from the world that I’m pretty sure she still uses a flip phone.
19. Cardi B – Invasion of Privacy
It took all of my strength to not automatically putting this album No. 1 on this simply out of my love for everything Cardi B is. I don’t need to run through her story. We get it. Stripper turned internet star turned reality star turned number one rapper in the world. Happens every day. Instead of putting Invasion of Privacy No.1, I decided to put it directly in front of Mariah Carey. Two women who are on opposite sides of the spectrum in every way.
18. Say Sue Me – Where We Were Together
This is a fully inclusive list. I span the globe for great music. Say Sue Me is a band from South Korea and all of their songs are about my life. Hm. That’s so weird. It’s almost as if we all share similar experiences regardless of our race or country of origin and we shouldn’t fucking throw tear gas at the Mexican Border.
17. Mitski – Be The Cowboy
*puts gun to your temple* listen to Mitski if you want to live.
16. Blocboy JB – Simi
When Shoot came out earlier this year, I didn’t really dig it. Wasn’t my specific flavor. But you really have to respect the come up of this kid from Memphis who created a dance that little kids playing Fortnite are doing in the cafeteria every day. Plus, Simi is an album dedicated to a friend he lost and Blocboy accomplished the impossible task of creating emotional music about a fallen friend that makes we want to dance.
15. Ariana Grande – Sweetener
I feel a certain type of way about Ariana Grande, especially as of late but I won’t pretend like Sweetener wasn’t the biggest pop album of the year. If Ariana Grande says God is a Woman then God is a Woman. When you sing as well as she does, you get to decide the gender of our deities. Those are the rules. I didn’t make those rules. Ariana Grande did.
14. Tierra Whack – Whack World
15 tracks. 15 minutes. Clock in. Clock out. Takes notes, Drake. You don’t need 30 track albums to steal streaming numbers. You don’t need to repeat the hook of the song for 3 minutes straight. I mean shit, you don’t even need a hook. Bars. Go home.
13. The Beths – Future Me Hates Me
There has never been an album title that has meant more to me than Future Me Hates Me. Even the album artwork is taken directly from my bathroom every morning before I crawl back into bed and listen to The Beths all day. Happy Unhappy is the anthem of the year.
12. Rich Homie Quan – Rich as in Spirit
For everyone asking themselves ‘what happened to Rich Homie Quan’, my man released one of the best albums of the year explaining it all. In 2018, it’s rare that I pull up a rap album with no features and actually enjoy it (looking at you, J Cole) but every single track hits and the former young money rapper proves that he’s far more than Young Thug’s old sidekick.
11. Noname – Room 25
We don’t deserve Noname. She is the greatest poet of our generation. She makes Emily Dickison seem like Charlie Kelly from It’s Always Sunny. Here is a bar from the intro track ‘Self’:
My pussy teachin ninth-grade English
My pussy wrote a thesis on colonialism
Now, I consider myself a masculine man. I have a beard and a voice that sounds like a wrecking ball crashing into an old skyscraper. I just watched a 5-part documentary series about mixed martial arts. I doubt I’ll ever kiss a girl again but I swear I’ve done it before. Ask her. I say all of that to say, that Noname bar makes me feel like Wonder Woman. Thank you, Noname.