The Greatest Albums of 2016


Hip Hop

The Life of Pablo by Kanye West

pabloPablo, aka Kanye West reflects the good, the bad and the ugly of his life all in one album. This album was not constructed the way his last piece Yeezus was. Since Kanye was feeling like a mess, he constructed an album that represents his cluttered mind, and I don’t mean this in a bad way. He has features from different people who write about different genres to add on to the several different vibes in this album. The features include artists like : Rihanna, Kendrick Lamar, Chris Brown, Kelly Price, etc. The style of music goes from gospel in the first song on the album Ultralight Beam to an old school hip hop vibe in No more parties in La featuring Kendrick Lamar. He also  has a deep side to the album where he freestyles about who he is and about who the media portrays him as in I Love Kanye. Most of the album is him talking about himself from another perspective, meanwhile there is songs like Famous where he “ wears his clown hat” and tries to add a little humor to the album. 

Rating: 4/5


Coloring Book by Chance the Rapperchance

Compared to TLOP there is a lot more gospel added on to Chance’s hip hop album Coloring Book. He really painted a vivid picture on what kind of person he is and how Chicago, his hometown shaped him as a person. In songs like Summer Friends his lyrics express common struggles him and his friends shared while growing up in his city. On another note there are songs like All Night and No Problem that are more playful and upbeat. According to Rolling Stone “Most everything on Coloring Book seems to take on a spiritual hue.” Features from D.R.A.M., Kanye West, Lil Wayne,  Lil Yachty, Jay Electronica, and Chicago Children’s Choir help represent the vibe Chance was trying to put out.

Rating: 4/5



lemonadeLemonade by Beyonce

If you are a victim of a recent heartbreak, Lemonade is an album you must hear! Beyonce filled this album with themes of “heartbreak and betrayalwhich is ironic because she is known to be a boss lady who does not need a man. In a way she still gives off the “I don’t need you” vibe in some of her songs. Another huge theme of the album is revenge. She knows she deserves the best. In songs like “Formation” and “Freedom” she expresses what recently has been going on with police brutality and the lives of African Americans is in the album.

Rating: 5/5


Anti by Rihanna

This piece put out by Rih is constructed based on different vibes. One moment she is giving the same “I don’t need you vibe” Beyonce gives in her album Lemonade, the next she is singing about her sex life. She seems very apathetic when it comes to relationships. The album also includes a bit of a Caribbean/Dancehall vibe in her and Drake’s song “Work.”  According to Rolling StoneAnti‘s beats are more muted than the flashier productions of her past work.”


Rating: 4/5





siaThis is Acting by Sia

Sia has always been known vivid lyrics that still make it up on the top charts. The album has several different vibes to it. Songs go to pretty sad such as but with a deep meaning, Alive to fun with another deep meaning like in Cheap Thrills. She uses imagery in her music alot. She never really gives away the message in her music, you kind of have to figure it out. She really shows what kind of person she is, including the struggles she’s faced. Rolling Stone agrees, “Sia’s personality often comes through.”

Rating: 3/5

album cover 1Joanne by Lady Gaga

This was a new start for Gaga. The songs on this album are not like Poker Face or Just Dance. Her lyrics have become much more sophisticated.  Even the vibe has switched. According to Rolling Stone “It’s an old-school Nineties soft-rock album, heavy on the acoustic guitar.”

Rating: 3.5/5







A Sailors Guide To Earth– Sturgill Simpson

Stirguil Simpson put a lot of heart and soul into this album. The genres vary from country to a bluesy kind of vibe. Stirguil tends to briefly sing about being a Sailor and being in the Navy so this album may be a bunch of all his experience in the Navy in one album. For example, in his song Sea Stories he is supposedly portrays “a cautionary tale that involves an enlisted man in Southeast Asia who gets booted from the Navy and ends up back home with a drug habit he regrets, but not completely” (Rolling Stone).

Rating: 4/5

Midwest Farmer’s Daughter by Margo Pricealbum cover 2

The music in this album paints very vivid pictures as to what she wants people
to see. In fact, the album shows great detail in how sad she may feel. The album does not portray any type of happiness.  For example, Weekender is about serving time in a county jail. A deeper example would be in World’s Greatest Loser when she talks about depression. Even in This Town Gets Around  speaks on liars and fake friends.  According to Rolling Stone, “the vocal style is restrained yet mighty, her songcraft amazingly vivid.”

Rating: 4/5