The 2020 albums of the year DIScussion thread.

I’ve almost gone with every combination possible in the past 24 hours, so with a bit of help from =randbetween(1,6), it looks as if it’s going to be:

  1. Caspian - On Circles
  2. The Smashing Pumpkins - CYR
  3. METZ - Atlas Vending
  4. Post Louis - Descender
  5. The Flaming Lips - American Head

Apologies to Jesu’s Terminus, which really is fantastic and definitely worthy of the #1 spot.

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Yas points on the board the late in the day Post Louis surge to the top begins!

seriously though thank you it means a lot that we reached at least one person on here that deeply

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Had a look through the lists just now in advance of scraping all the data into Excel to do the analysis. Really don’t have a clue who’s won it, first time in the years I’ve been doing this that it hasn’t been clear early on which the 2 or 3 obvious candidates were. Not sure Waxahatchee have quite enough (but could be wrong). RTJ maybe? But wouldn’t write off Bridger or Apple as outsiders. Sault have done a Big Thief and ruined any chances they had by double releasing in the same year.

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Did Big Thief really not win last year?

Just realised I did the artist and album the wrong way round. FFS :man_facepalming:

My mistake they did win (although they could have won bigger with one release):


No worries, you’re not the only one!

Ffs dont give me false hope about these boards! :wink:

I’ve had it up to here with your anti-Big Thief agenda, let the people like what they want, STOP THE COUNT!

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Looking forward to your “happy to report Big Thief has somehow won again in 2020 despite not releasing an album this year, even more surprisingly defeating frontwoman Adrianne Lender’s solo album which was released this year”

That’s what I’m looking forward to. That.

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I like Big Thief. I’m “anti-UFOF” because it’s pretty average and their worst album. But I really like Big Thief and Adrienne’s solo work

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On my third listen to the Boomkat number 1 album by DJ Python. Super lovely. Very hypnotic cool album, blending IDM ambient with those drums is perfect :1st_place_medal:

It does just get a little repetitive and by track 5 I was thinking hmmm, I hope tactics change a little, then at the crucial time, the slicing sound of a lightsaber comes swooshing in and the direction totally changes. Absolutely timed to perfection. Classic stuff.

The blue vinyl edition looks fantastic…and is indeed a fantastic price :hushed: as I knew it would be.

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I was kidding of course (though you still managed to be wrong :wink:)

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I went for

Charli XCX
Fontaines DC
Kelly Lee Owens

And didn’t feel that inspired by it, but now I think I just got the order entirely wrong. Forgot I actually love Fontaines and KLO, should have stuck with my gut as those being my top 2. Quakers is grand and deserves to be up there, but think it was just so fresh (November release) that I got caught up in that

I’m so bad at deciding my own opinions :man_facepalming:

It really is a great album. Along with possibly METZ, it’s the only album in that top 5 that I wouldn’t change anything about, there’s really no dull or off moment. Hope people keep discovering it this year.

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Thank you that’s very kind, I (kinda obviously) hope the same and this kind of advocacy is a big help


Strongly agree with this. My personal take is that it’s the album she needed to make, but that doesn’t necessarily make it a coherent artistic statement. I might even go so far as to say that she knows that, to the extent that as these songs were forming in her mind she knew it couldn’t be a Paramore record. It’s wildly inconsistent and far too long.


I have read a collection of essays by women over the last few days that - while they have not changed my mind on the album - have given me an appreciation for what it means to other people whose experiences I can never start to understand.

I also have to say every time I hear one of these songs played live, I like it more. Dead Horse stands out like a sore thumb on the album but the Tiny Desk Bedroom Concert version is fucking great.

Thanks for the shout-out - every time I get someone into Spanish Love Songs I feel like I’ve recruited them into my personal cult.

What I would say @JohnnyPark is that they are, fundamentally, a pop-punk band which doesn’t really sit with most of the bands you listed (even more true of Schmaltz, which is somehow even more pop-punk despite taking a NOFX-style ‘hook-but-no-chorus’ approach to the songwriting).

And Dylan’s vocal choices are not for everyone (one friend complained about the “bleating” which has now become a running joke between my partner and me). But like @Avery said, Brave Faces Everyone was the perfect album at the perfect time and somehow only became more perfect as the year ground on.

All that said, I think Routine Pain is one of the best rock songs of the last ten years and I get it stuck in my head at least once a day. Dylan is a very smart guy, a Proper Writer if you will, and having heard some songs that didn’t make the cut for the album, it’s really interesting hearing how he’s repurposed lyrics from other songs. There’s a single line in Routine Pain, for example, which started life as the chorus to another song yet it works far better on Routine Pain. There’s a lot more thought that’s gone into this album than your average Plaid Emo release.

Going to shut up now, I could talk about this band all day


Replying to this here as want to make this more discussion based than results-focused:

A positive thing for equality but I was really not a fan of the album sitting at our collective number one this year (sorry Punisher fans but I gave it four listens this year and feel justified pouring scorn on it because that was time wasted) nor did I enjoy Taylor Swift albums nor Lenker’s vocal recording.

So I’d like to put forward the below as evidence that female artists have made other great music this year, countering the negativity I’ve displayed to some of the more popular female acts from the results. My ranking for the year in brackets.

(7) Chloe x Halle - Ungodly Hour
(8) Jessie Ware - What’s Your Pleasure?
(20) Nubya Garcia - SOURCE
(21) Okkyung Lee - Yeo-Neun
(24) Fiona Apple - Fetch the Bolt Cutters
(25) Laura Veirs - My Echo
(35) Les Amazones d’Afrique - Amazones Power
(38) Mary Lattimore - Silver Ladders
(42) Yelle - L’Ere du Verseau
(45) Kate NV - Room For The Moon
(49) Sarah Davachi - Cantus, Descant
(51) Ana Roxanne - Because of a Flower
(55) Thanya Iyer - KIND
(58) Porridge Radio - Every Bad
(59) Soela - Genuine Silk
(75) Anna Von Hausswolf - All Thoughts Fly
(77) Cinder Well - No Summer
(79) Beatrice Dillon - Workaround
(80) Nidia - Nao Fales Nela Que A Mentes
(81) Kelly Lee Owens - Inner Song
(85) Kali Uchis - Sin Miedo (del Amor y Otros Demonios) ∞
(87) Angel Bat Dawid & The Brothahood - LIVE
(93) Clarice Jensen - The experience of repetition as death
(94) Throwing Muses - Sun Racket
(99) US Girls - Heavy Light
(105) Bab L’ Bluz - Nayda!
(115) Agnes Obel - Myopia
(116) upsammy - Zoom
(117) Ulla - Tumbling Towards A Wall
(119) Noveller - Arrow
(129) Norah Jones - Pick Me Up Off The Floor
(136) Julianna Barwick - Healing Is A Miracle
(138) The Chicks - Gaslighter
(140) Lianne La Havas - Lianne La Havas
(143) Katie Gately - Loom
(148) Jyoti - Mama, You Can Bet!
(150) Angel Olsen - Whole New Mess
(167) Ela Minus - acts of rebellion
(170) Adrienne Lenker - instrumentals
(172) Carla Bley - Life Goes On
(173) Waxahatchee - Saint Cloud
(175) Sevdalisa - Shabrang
(176) FLOHIO - No Panic No Pain
(182) Lyra Pramuk - Fountain
(187) Paty Cantu - La Mexicana
(196) Saint Saviour - Tomorrow Again
(198) Yaeji - What We Drew
(203) Grimes - Miss Anthropocene
(205) Keeley Forsyth - Debris
(206) Natlia Lafourcade - Un Canto por Mexico, Vol. 1
(212) Jessy Lanza - All The Time
(215) Liv.e - Couldn’t Wait to Tell You…
(223) Rosin Murphy - Roisin Machine

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I wouldn’t say it’s miles better than Oh No but the more I listen to it, the more I like it, and I do think it just about shades it. Neither are as good as Pull My Hair Back, mind, which for me is one of the albums of the decade, but I just love her sound and vibe of scratchy techno beats, 80s rnb and whispered vocals. There’s some really great tracks on this album and, if I’d given it more time upon its release, it would have made my top 5 of the year.

I felt similar at first because I was primed for something else but it really is a beaut. Hope you’ve found a way in.