2018 in Review

A lot of what was big in 2017 really continued into 2018. Post Malone’s beerbongs & bentleys, and Invasion of Privacy by Cardi B were two of the biggest releases of the year, along with the popular, but underwhelming, double album Scorpion by Drake. Coming off his biggest year commercially, Kendrick Lamar starred in and curated the Black Panther movie soundtrack, which featured other growing stars like SZA.  And Travis Scott, A$AP Rocky, Playboi Carti and 21 Savage built up their popularity as well. 

The number of indie rock guitar ladies – like members of boygenius, Courtney Barnett – continued to grow, with new artists like Soccer Mommy and Snail Mail getting some attention. 

One change in the rock world though was the rise, or rebirth, of punk, post-punk and some post-hardcore bands that started to emerge and show more creativity and experimentation than other rock genres. Idles’ Joy as an Act of Resistance became a critical darling and was the first of many punk records to pave the way for aggressive and creative releases over the next five years. Other notables in 2018 included Shame’s Songs of Praise, and Parquet Courts’ Wide Awake!, which showcased a more indie punk and garage style. 

2018 is also known for Kanye West’s Wyoming Sessions and a feud between Kanye’s Good Music and some of Drake’s Cash Money affiliates. Over the summer Kanye put out five short albums for artists in consecutive weeks that he produced, including a solo record, surrounding the release of Drake’s supersized record. The aforementioned Scorpion was the biggest release of the rivalry, both in size and popularity, but was also pretty clearly the worst of the releases as a whole, while Pusha T’s Daytona was by far the best. 

Pop music was kind of a mixed bag. “This Is America” was an unexpected song to be the biggest hit of the summer, but Childish Gambino joined Post Malone and Carti B on the radio, alongside Panic At The Disco and Ariana Grande. Indie pop had less mainstream contributions from The 1975, Superorganism, Robyn and Let’s Eat Grandma, country saw Kasey Musgraves became mainstream, and a group of creative, poppy R&B and soul records were released by Janelle Monae and Kali Uchis.

Songs of the year

2018 Albums

SingularityJon Hopkins★★★★½91ElectronicAmbient
Double NegativeLow★★★★½87RockAmbientSlowcore
Joy As An Act of ResistanceIDLES★★★★½86RockPunk RockPost Punk
DiCaprio 2JID★★★★½85Hip-Hop
7Beach House★★★★84RockAlternative RockDeam Pop
DaytonaPusha T★★★★84Hip-Hop
Cocoa SugarYoung Fathers★★★★83Hip-HopAlternative Hip-HopNeo-Soul
i am > i was21 Savage★★★★81Hip-Hop
FM!Vince Staples★★★★81Hip-Hop
Twin FantasyCar Seat Headrest★★★★80RockAlternative RockIndie Rock
Songs of PraiseShame★★★★80RockAlternative RockPost Punk
Wide Awake!Parquet Courts★★★★79RockPunk RockIndie Rock
Care For MeSaba★★★★79Hip-HopAlternative Hip-HopJazz Rap
Room 25Noname★★★★78Hip-HopAlternative Hip-HopJazz Rap
Golden HourKacey Musgraves★★★★77CountryPop Rock
RedemptionJay Rock★★★★75Hip-Hop
Oil of Every Pearl’s Un-InsidesSophie★★★★75ElectronicArt PopGlitch Pop
Art of DoubtMetric★★★½74RockAlternative Rock
Drogas WaveLupe Fiasco★★★½74Hip-Hop
Be The CowboyMitski★★★½73PopIndie PopIndie Rock
IsolationKali Uchis★★★½72Hip-HopR&B
Die LitPlayboi Carti★★★½72Hip-Hop
iridescenceBROCKHAMPTON★★★½70Hip-HopAlternative Hip-Hop
TA13OODenzel Curry★★★½70Hip-Hop
ChrisChristine and the Queen★★★½69RockIndie Pop
Post-Jeff Rosenstock★★★½68RockAlternative RockEmo
SweetenerAriana Grande★★★½68PopR&B
KODJ. Cole★★★½67Hip-Hop
ASTROWORLDTravis Scott★★★½66Hip-Hop
In A Poem UnlimitedU.S. Girls★★★½65PopIndie PopArt Rock
LushSnail Mail★★★64RockAlternative RockIndie Rock
Jericho SirensHot Snakes★★★63RockPunk RockPost-Hardcore
Tell Me How You Really FeelCourtney Barnett★★★63RockAlternative RockIndie Rock
CleanSoccer Mommy★★★63RockAlternative RockIndie Rock
Ordinary Corrupt Human LoveDeafheaven★★★62RockMetalPost-Metal
MicroshiftHookworms★★★61RockPsychadelic Rock
WandererCat Power★★★61RockCountry Rock
Kids See GhostsKids See Ghosts★★★61Hip-HopR&B
Little Dark AgeMGMT★★★60RockIndie PopPsychadellic Pop
All MelodyNils Frahm★★★60ElectronicAmbient
I’m All EarsLets Ear Grandma★★★59PopArt PopSynthpop
Hope DownsRolling Blackout Coastal Fever★★★58RockAlternative RockJangle Pop
Dirty ComputerJanelle Monae★★★58PopR&BNeo-Soul
Czarface Meets MetalfaceMF Doom, Czarface★★★58Hip-Hop
Book of RyanRoyce Da 5’9″★★★58Hip-Hop
Crack-UpFleet Foxes★★★57RockFolkIndie Folk
Freedom’s GoblinTy Segall★★★57RockAlternative RockIndie Rock
East Atlanta Love Letters6lack★★★57Hip-HopR&B
Negro SwanBlood Orange★★★57Hip-HopR&BNeo-Soul
CriminalThe Soft Moon★★★56RockIndustrialPost Punk
Thank You For TodayDeath Cab For Cutie★★★56RockIndie PopIndie Rock
New MaterialPreoccupations★★★56RockAlternative RockPost Punk
Black PantherKendrick Lamar★★★56Hip-Hop
Safe in the Hands of LoveYves Tumor★★★55RockSoulExperimental
El Mal QuererRosalia★★★55PopArt Pop
Vacation in HellFlatbush Zombies★★½53Hip-Hop
yeKanye West★★½53Hip-Hop
boygeniusboygenius★★½52RockAlternative RockIndie Folk
HistorianLucy Dacus★★½52RockAlternative RockIndie Folk
Invasion of PrivacyCardi B★★½52Hip-HopPop Hip-Hop
Everything Is LoveBey-Z★★½52Hip-Hop
First FlowerMolly Burch★★½51RockAlternative RockIndie Rock
You Won’t Get What You WantDaughters★★½50RockIndustrialNoise Rock
A Brief Inquiry into Online RelationshipsThe 1975★★½50RockIndie PopSynthpop
Forever and EverSALES★★½50RockIndie PopBedroom Pop
Tranquility Base Hotel & CasinoArctic Monkeys★★½50RockAlternative Rock
SuperorganismSuperorganism★★½50PopIndie PopSynthpop
MarauderInterpol★★½49RockAlternative RockPost Punk
TestingA$AP Rocky★★½49Hip-Hop
Bobby Tarantino IILogic★★½49Hip-Hop
Lamp Lit ProsDirty Projectors★★½48RockArt PopIndie Folk
I Don’t RunHinds★★½48RockAlternative Rock
BeyondlessIce Age★★½48RockAlternative RockPost Punk
Elastic DaysJ Mascis★★½48RockAlternative Rock
Beerbongs & BentleysPost Malone★★½48Hip-HopPop Hip-Hop
Flamingo & KovalBobby Feeno★★44Hip-Hop
ScorpionDrake★★43Hip-HopPop Hip-Hop
ViolenceEditors★★42RockAlternative RockPost Punk
Tha Carter VLil Wayne★★42Hip-Hop
Lil Boat 2Lil Yachty★★42Hip-Hop
The Now NowGorillaz★★40Pop
VirtueThe Voids★★35RockAlternative Rock
Earl SweatshirtSome Rap Songs★½34Hip-HopAlternative Hip-Hop
Francis TroubleAlbert Hammond Jr.★½33RockAlternative RockIndie Rock
SR3MMRae Sremmurd★½25

50 Best Songs

  1. Bodys – Car Seat Headrest
  2. Never Fight A Man With A Perm – IDLES
  3. a lot – 21 Savage
  4. Noid – Yves Tumor
  5. Luminous Beings – Jon Hopkins
  6. Chewing Gum – Blood Orange, S$AP Rocky, Project Pat
  7. Shoota – Playboi Carti, Lil Uzi Vert
  8. Love It If We Made It – The 1975
  9. Immaterial – SOPHIE
  10. SICKO MODE – Travis Scott
  11. Make Me Feel – Janelle Monae
  12. Everything Connected – Jon Hopkins
  13. Your Dog – Soccer Mommy
  14. Nobody – Mitski
  15. Santeria – Pusha T
  16. Ullswater – Hookworms
  17. Skrawberries – JID, BJ The Chicago Kid
  18. BUSY/SIRENS – Saba, theMIND
  19. Silhouettes – American Football
  20. Wow – Young Fathers
  21. If You Know You Know – Pusha T
  22. Fly – Low
  23. Friction – shame
  24. Last Ride – Beach House
  25. Reborn – KIDS SEE GHOSTS
  26. Focus – Charli XCX
  27. Potato Salad – Tyler, The Creator, A$AP Rocky
  28. Fast Slow Disco – St. Vincent
  29. Nameless, Faceless – Courtney Barnett
  30. Prayer Song – Noname, Adam Ness
  31. Jupiter 4 – Sharon Van Etten
  32. Cute Thing – Car Seat Headrest
  33. Danny Nedelko – IDLES
  34. Vacation – Flatbush Zombies, Joey Bada$$
  35. SIRENS/Z1RENZ – Denzel Curry, JID
  36. Let Them Win – Jeff Rosenstock
  37. King’s Dead – Jay Rock, Kendrick Lamar, Future, James Blake
  38. We’re Not Done (End Title) – Mogwai
  39. Nice For What – Drake
  40. Six Wave Hold-Down – Hot Snakes
  41. After The Storm – Kali Uchis, Tyler, The Creator, Bootsy Collins
  42. If You Really Love Nothing – Interpol
  43. Honey – Robyn
  45. Tenderness – Parquet Courts
  46. This Is America – Childish Gambino
  47. Off Deez – JID, J. Cole
  48. Rainbow – Kacey Musgraves
  49. King Nas – Lupe Fiasco
  50. Tweakin’ – Vince Staples

Genre Highlights




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