Music

Staff Lists: Uproxx Publisher Jarret Myer’s 10 Best Albums Of 2016


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Uproxx has a diverse staff who write about all sorts of things, from sports to politics to food and travel, to TV and film, but obviously, most of the people who work here share a passion for music, because music is always in the background throughout all of those other things. It’s one of the things that links us, no matter what our lifestyle, job, or location may be.

To celebrate that, Uproxx staffers are sharing their own personal year-end lists. Our official best albums list is here, and our favorite rap albums are here, with more genre-specific lists rolling out the rest of the week. For now, you can read Jarret Myers’s top 10 albums below.

10. The Jayhawks, Paging Mr Proust
These are my guys. I have been a close fan ever since their debut on American Recordings. I am not sure what my exact gateway was into country music, but I think it was these guys going back to hearing “Waiting For The Sun” in 1992. I anticipated all of their releases, but this one feels especially elevated and informed. Everybody that I have recommended it to has thanked me.

9. Jack White, Acoustic Recordings 1998-2016
Did this record get a lot hype? I honestly have no idea. I just know that every time I hear a track from it, it immediately clicks for me. Maybe the acoustic format was just the thing to turn me from a Jack White fan into a super fan.

8. Common, Black America Again last minute swapped out for Childish Gambino, Awaken, My Love!
When I head a few of these Common verses I was hyped. When Common goes hard with lyrics and bars I am all ears. I played my favorite tracks over and over again even if the album didn’t feel like a masterpiece as a whole. When Common is on, it is magic. Then along came Gambino’s Awaken, My Love! and I lost my mind.

My first reaction was, “How did he even make that music?” It felt like he sucked his emotions out of his body and somehow molded them into music. For me it was the complete album experience that Black America Again was not, but I still love hearing Common on his game enough that I listen regularly.

7. Anderson .Paak, Malibu
This album blew a lot of minds and rightfully so. Funky can feel nostalgic, but in the hand of Anderson .Paak it feels like a new invention crafted with all the sensibility you expect from the coolest guy in the room.

6. Drive-By Truckers, American Band
This is a band that I loved for a long time and follow whatever they do. That being said, I still didn’t expect American Band to deliver the way it did. There is a lot of hype about 2016 being the year of the album, and I think this is clearly the album that stand for what a rock n’ roll album should be or can be.

5. Chance The Rapper, Coloring Book
Chance proved that he could deliver beyond the hype. Even the hits feel like soul-drenched bits of lyrical brilliance.

4. Kanye West, The Life Of Pablo
I felt this album the moment it was “released.” Pablo feels a bit like an historic moment in that it was the first time I can remember an artist editing their material in real time with the world watching. Based on this tweet, stating that “The Life Of Pablo is a living breathing changing creative expression” we knew that Kanye was trying to reinvent a format. The question is, did it work? Going back to listen, it feel feels just as potent as I remember.

3. Iggy Pop, Post Pop Depression
2016 was the year that I began to really love the album format again. Post Pop Depression played a huge role in that transformation. From the moment I hit play, what came out of the speakers felt like a fully formed artistic work from the dopest musicians at what they do. While this could have been merely a master class in cool, nothing is forced from these tracks. Instead, Homme and Co bring out the best of Iggy and let the world appreciate his brilliance in a modern setting that feels organic and complete.

2. David Bowie, Blackstar
This album blew me away. I remember after a few listens thinking that is was one of the best albums I have ever heard. It is music with a capital “M.” I hope it’s not too corny to use the word “sublime,” but that is only word I can think of that captures the power, beauty and awesomeness of this album.

1. A Tribe Called Quest, We Got It From Here… Thank You 4 Your Service
I have heard friends say that they can forgive friends and family for voting Trump, but not loving the new ATCQ album crosses a line that is unforgivable. I know exactly what they mean. This album is everything I love rolled up in one. It conjures up so many emotions in me because it does everything right. As a final album in the ATCQ legacy it cements a trilogy of perfection also including A Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders.

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