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Quietus Charts

The Quietus Albums Of The Year 2016, In Association With Norman Records
The Quietus , December 19th, 2016 10:06

A few notes on the list: the annual Quietus chart was compiled by Luke Turner, John Doran, Christian Eede and Karl Smith and based largely on what we've listened to and loved the most over the year rather than any attempt at consensus and objectivity. A thousand thanks to Paddy Clarke for his assistance putting the feature together.

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The majority of the music that makes up The Quietus' 100 best albums of 2016 was surely conceived of, written and recorded before the events that have made this year such a strange, challenging, even traumatic one. The sparks that led to this being one of the best years for albums since we started The Quietus in 2008 ignited before Brexit and Trump, the murder of Jo Cox, the rise in British hate crimes, record-breaking increases in global temperatures, the slide of the pound, the growing sense that we're teetering on the edge of something very grim indeed. They of course were also born before David Bowie, Prince, Lemmy, Leonard Cohen, Pauline Oliveros, Alan Vega, Sharon Jones, David Manusco, Jock Scott and many other greats joined the silent majority in recent months.

What purpose does music serve in these times? I suspect that our best of list in years to come will reflect these seismic changes in politics, society, and the environment. This is not to say, of course, that we (as some foolishly and dangerously do) subscribe to the belief that a terrible period in history will produce great music. Instead it's that culture ought and must reflect the times that creates it, even if it is aware of its limitations in effecting change. It's necessary to try and avoid the complacency that has dominated cultural discourse in recent years, with a (apologies for using the term) mainstream media that often seems to fear music that engages with difficult issues, that is more than entertainment, that is more than just about the LOLs. We do after all have a man who made his name in reality TV as President of the USA - to reference the title of a Coil album from many years ago, constant shallowness can indeed lead to evil.

As ever, looking over our list it is hard to pull out a continuous thread or theme other than that these records resonate with a sense of purpose, drive, ingenuity, and psychic strength. It's interesting that two of the most 'mainstream' records on the list, by the good sisters Knowles, are also the most defiantly political. Solange's A Seat At The Table and Beyoncé's Lemonade are both robust slaps in the chops for those Golden Ager duffers who like to claim that pop has lost its political urgency.

In a world that is increasingly sinking into myopic nationalism and putting up borders, music is a vital, universal force that can unite people, open up the channels of understanding that exist even beyond language, as is reflected by this year's list that features music from Norway, the USA, Sweden, Finland, Iran, the UK, South Korea, Australia, Jamaica, Canada, Germany, Italy, Poland, France, Iceland, Mauritania, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Egypt and beyond. We need this music not just for solace and escape in uneven times, but to instigate debate and change minds. The old notions of what constitutes "politicised" music have changed, and I think for the better, and this can be seen in so many of the records on this list, considering as they do race, sexual and gender diversity, the environment, mental health, history and even spirituality.

We must hear these songs, listen to these voices - this is a huge part of what drives us to keep The Quietus going despite the never-ending battle against the Facebook and Google algorithms that decide what you see. Last year I wrote about how most of the artists we love are part of the "fucked bottom", struggling to survive in an age when money has been sucked out of the music business. I am sorry to report that conversations with small labels over the past year, and especially the past few months, have been depressing - sales are going nowhere but down. Please do support labels and artists by buying the records from this list that intrigue you - thanks to our friends at Norman Records for making that easy via the links provided. This is, after all, why we do it. And while we're on the subject, a word from us. The Quietus is currently funded pretty much entirely via ad revenue. We understand ad blocker is a useful tool when most websites are so plastered in animated propaganda that they become unreadable, but the plugin is proving to be, and increasingly will be, a disaster for independent publishers like The Quietus. Please do switch it off for us, and other, small websites that you read. If you must have us bare, there's always the option of donating to our fund that we use directly to pay writers. I have a feeling that in years to come independent music and independent publishing are going to be increasingly important sites of solace and resistance to a strange new world order. Let's try and keep it all alive for, as one of the greats who left us this year had it, "there is a crack in everything / that's where the light gets in". Thanks for reading The Quietus in 2016. We hope you enjoy the music below. Luke Turner, 5th December 2016

100. Stein Urheim - Strandebarm
(Hubro)

"His tastes remain impressively catholic, as he skilfully references the late 20th Century sufi music of Morocco; Chinese gu qin; Norwegian folk; Carnatic ragas; kosmische; spritual free jazz and the Delta blues. Psychedelic, texturally rich and great fun, Urheim has knocked it clean out of the park again."
John Doran

Read our review of Strandebarm here

99. Melt Yourself Down - Last Evenings On Earth
(The Leaf Label)

"Snake coils of fuzzed up bass courtesy of Acoustic Ladyland's Ruth Goller and high tension horns by Pete Wareham and Shabaka Hutchings create the bed for Kush Gayal's satisfyingly unhinged vocal exhortations, making Melt Yourself Down (travelling via Cairo and Algiers) one of London's premier party bands." John Doran

Read an interview with Pete Wareham of Melt Yourself Down here

Buy Last Evenings On Earth by Melt Yourself Down from Norman Records

98. Ahrkh Wagner - Ahrkh Wagner
(Tesla Tapes)

"By steering and ultimately subsuming vocal layers into their cosmic circuitry Ahrkh Wagner bring both drama and a rare romantic, libertarian lilt that bravely stands apart from the more common evocations of urban decay in electronic music." Russell Cuzner

Read our review of Ahrkh Wagner here

97. Cat’s Eyes - Treasure House
(Kobalt)

"On Treasure House they find an impressive balance: classical, symphonic music melds with garage and post-punk, giving credence to the cliché that opposites attract, outstanding in its complex sounds and arrangements."Guia Cortassa

Read our review of Treasure House here

Buy Treasure house by Cats Eyes from Norman Records


96. The Dwarfs Of East Agouza - Bes
(Nawa)

"Time is a luxury that The Dwarfs Of East Agouza indulge themselves in fully. Deeply satisfying riffs are explored fully by the trio of Cairene electronic producer Maurice Louca, Sam Shalabi of the Land Of Kush and Sun City Girl, Alan Bishop, producing hypnotic psych rock that lies somewhere between Circle, Omar Khorshid, Can and the Groundhogs." John Doran

Buy Bes by The Dwarfs of East Agouza from Norman Records

95. Jackie Lynn - Jackie Lynn
(Thrill Jockey)

"The record's economy is striking: a little over 20 minutes in length, the listener is still treated to a wealth of textures, atmospheres and narrative ideas, bound together by Fohr's vocals and an insistent, Lynchian sense of the uncanny." Luke Cartledge

Read an interview with Haley Fohr of Jackie Lynn here

Buy Jackie Lynn by Jackie Lynn from Norman Records

94. Wire - Nocturnal Koreans
(Pink Flag)

"It's asking to be appreciated differently, to let it wash over and absorb you as on sedate post-rocker 'Pilgrim Trade', as opposed to having it hammer its way into your skull. With their unwillingness to play their old tunes and history of persistent experimentation, Wire are, without question, a band that wants to be moving forward, and all power to them for that." Tom Marsh

Read our review of Nocturnal Koreans here

Buy Nocturnal Koreans by Wire from Norman Records

93. The Invisible - Patience
(Ninja Tune)

"The closest Patience comes to something unsettling lurking stage-left is in the minor keys of 'Best Of Me', where Okumu's promise that "you'll always have the best of me" rears up like a threat. But soon sinister electro-pop thickens into a jacking workout, then an overlapping cosmic wig-out, as The Invisible unfurl their full, joyous breadth of skills." Matthew Horton

Read our review of Patience here

Buy Patience by The Invisible from Norman Records


92. John Cale - M:FANS/Music For A New Society
(Domino)

"Just because this album taps into dark themes does not mean that its tracks sound tired or defeated. Even at its weakest ebb, the album still finds strength to push out." Lottie Brazier

Read our review of M:FANS/Music For A New Society here

Buy M:FANS by John Cale from Norman Records

91. Gnaw Their Tongues - Hymns For The Broken, Swollen And Silent
(Consouling Sounds)

"When Peter Kürten, the German serial killer known commonly as The Vampire of Düsseldorf, pleaded guilty to nine murders and seven attempted murders in 1931, he was sentenced to death by guillotine. He was pleased with the result, saying: 'Tell me, after my head has been chopped off, will I still be able to hear, at least for a moment, the sound of my own blood gushing from my neck? That would be the pleasure to end all pleasures.' But then Peter Kürten had not heard the utterly wretched and remorseless Gnaw Their Tongues."
John Doran

90. Knifeworld - Bottled Out Of Eden
(Inside Out Music)

"Above all, the three-piece saxophones-clarinets-bassoon section keep things kinetic with their stabs of sunshine, sorrow and surprise. It can never settle into the crushingly conventional when they're interjecting so impishly."Chris Roberts

Read our review of Bottled Out Of Eden here

Buy Bottled Out Of Eden by Knifeworld from Norman Records

89. Omar-S - The Best
(FXHE)

"While Omar S' signature qualities can be heard across The Best maintaining much of the humour of past work as well as that sound that could only emerge from Detroit, it's still an album that throws up a number of surprises on the way. No more clear is the producer's ability to bring together both those sides of his output on this album than on 'Ah'Revolution', a charming beatless cut with its instrumentation sitting in stark contrast to Amp Fiddler's crooned vocal about partying." Christian Eede

Buy The Best! by Omar-S from Norman Records

88. Bon Iver - 22, A Million
(Jagjaguwar)

"It is the sound of a musician coming to terms with the excruciation of making art and exposing himself without armour. The understanding that the spirit is not enough, it's the body they –the audience, the fans, the press, the industry – will always lay claim to: as a relic, as a trophy, as a proof of faith." Guia Cortassa

Read our review of 22, A Million here

Buy 22, A Million by Bon Iver from Norman Records

87. Swans - The Glowing Man
(Young God)

"Much like religious experience, the constellations of songs here (and their brethren on the two prior albums) rely on an intensely relatable core, a simple idea or feeling sizzling at the center that anyone can attach to. From there, the instrumentalists ripple out in meditative layers, never covering over or distracting from it, but rather reinforcing." Lior Phillips

Read our review of The Glowing Man here

Buy The Glowing Man by SWANS from Norman Records

86. Carla dal Forno - You Know What It's Like
(Blackest Ever Black)

"What really gives this record its strength is the total lack of bombast. There’s no sense of braggadocio. No sense of being in the “music industry”. No striving to make a point to peers."
Richard Foster

Read our review of You Know What It’s Like here

Buy You Know What It's Like by Carla Dal Forno from Norman Records

85. FIS - From Patterns To Details
(Subtext)

Buy From Patterns to Details by FIS from Norman Records

84. Ghold - Pyr
(Ritual Productions)

"Ghold's primordial sludge is not gratuitous, it's a masterclass of doom-laden sturm und drang with an eerie, dread-filled undercurrent that sets the heart pacing and the mind wandering."
Louise Brown

Read our review of Pyr here

83. Pangaea - In Drum Play
(Hessle Audio)

Buy In Drum Play by Pangaea from Norman Records

"In Drum Play, Pangaea’s first studio album proper, is considerably less seamless than his Fabric mix and all the better for it: not only does the BPM here fluctuate considerably, from beat-free numbers like ‘Scaled Wing’ to ‘DNS’’ 140BPM sprint, but the 10 tracks here vary wildly in style."
Ben Cardew

82. Sam Shalabi - Isis and Osiris
(Nashazphone)

"Hectic piano arpeggios, voice manipulation, an AFX sounding jaw harp, a hypnogogic narrator, outer edges oud explorations, berserk tape manipulation and machine noise mark this out as a truly unique and psychedelic listening experience." John Doran

Read our review of Isis and Osiris here

Buy Isis and Osiris by Sam Shalabi from Norman Records

81. Hannah Peel - Awake But Always Dreaming
(My Own Pleasure)

"[Recording Awake But Always Dreaming] has been a life-changing experience in terms of opening my mind and contextualising my grandma’s [dementia]. People may ask why it has taken five years to make another solo album, and it is because it took that time for all the pieces of the puzzle to fall into place – meeting the scientists, coming to the Wellcome Collection, talking to people and hearing their experiences and also realisng that we can find a cure for dementia if we can raise awareness and divert funds to research. Also, from a musical perspective, finding the correct resonance in the blend of organic and electronic sounds was a massive challenge. I didn’t want it to feel like an electronic album – I wanted it to feel like stepping into another world. My grandma’s world." Hannah Peel

Read our interview with Hannah Peel here

Buy Awake But Always Dreaming by Hannah Peel from Norman Records

80. Kristoffer Lo - The Black Meat
(Propeller)

"Played on just a tuba and flugabone, it is a dynamic, bright and almost poppy piece of music… well, for a drone LP at least. Just when you think you’ve heard all you want to hear (or need to hear) from the drone genre, another unexpectedly brilliant piece of music swoops in out of the wide blue yonder."
John Doran

Read our review of The Black Meat here

79. Kassem Mosse - Disclosure
(Honest Jon’s)

"Disclosure eschews the traditional intro and outro formula of much of his past output across its 11 tracks in favour of showing another side to a producer who is already considered one of the most compelling operating within electronic music today." Christian Eede

Buy Disclosure by Kassem Mosse from Norman Records

78. Hen Ogledd - Bronze
(alt.vinyl)

"Unlike much experimental music that can pose various challenges, be it alienating, overly academic, cold and austere or plain impenetrable, Bronze is warm and inviting. While not always immediately accessible, it encourages its listeners to go with it, to delve in and find a way in to its way-out-ness."Russel Cuzner

Read our review of Bronze here

Buy Bronze by Hen Ogledd from Norman Records

77. Mica Levi & Oliver Coates - Remain Calm
(Slip)

Micah Levi & Oliver Coates - Remain Calm from Norman Records

76. Noura Mint Seymali - Arbina
(Glitterbeat)

"The music played by Seymali and her group follows a tradition of folk music that dates back hundreds of years, but it has never sounded quite like this molten form of sunbaked Saharan psychedelia." Richie Troughton

Read our review of Arbina here

Buy Arbina by Noura Mint Seymali from Norman Records

75. Gyða Valtýsdóttir - Epicycle(12 Tónar)

"As a founding member of Múm, Gyða Valtýsdóttir's musical allegiance can be safely — and rightly — assumed to lie in the understatement camp; where Sigur Rós succumbed to bombast over time, Múm remained loyal to their downbeat, bit-crushed brand of pop melancholia. A collection of recordings of well-known and less-well-known classical tracks,Epicycle is less your usual OTT 'reimagining' and more like a musical anagram: while the familiar components of those original pieces remain, they do so latently as part of a new, cogent whole with their own singular beauty." Karl Smith

74. Billy Bao - The Lagos Sessions
(Night School)

"As a portrait of the infinitely interesting chaos of modern Lagos, it's hugely valuable, but as an expansion of the aesthetics of noise, punk, and concrète, The Lagos Sessions could end up labelled a decisive moment in years to come."Tristan Bath

Read our review of The Lagos Sessions here

Buy Lagos sessions by Billy Bao from Norman Records

73. Julien Marchal - Insight II (11)
(1631 Recordings)

"Insight II is located in the acoustic sweet spot of the now-far-too-ubiquitous contemporary classical (post-classical, neo-classical, whatever) spectrum; each note is given individual room to breathe, time to ring out and to resonate properly rather than used as a gaudy showcase of Marchal's technical proficiency as a composer and a piano player. But where these ten tracks really excel is in the depth of their humanity: like Nils Frahm's Felt or John Hopkins' and King Creosote's 'Immunity', where Marchal's record has the most impact is in the creaking between notes — in not eradicating its human touch as a failure of production, but rather placing it front and centre as a reminder of where it came from." Karl Smith

72. Pattern Man - Pattern Man
(Self-released)

"It’s really about asking yourself why it is you do what you do, and I think all artists are fascinated by that. Presenting words in different contexts is probably mine, or allowing them to work physically on you rather than functionally."
Rick Holland

Read an interview with Rick Holland of Pattern Man here

71. Marie Davidson - Adieux Au Dancefloor
(Cititrax)

"Adieux Au Dancefloor balances Davidson’s dry vocal delivery with instrumental cuts, taking in electro, new wave, EBM, industrial and various other forms of electronic synth-heavy music."
Christian Eede

Read our review of Adieux Au Dancefloor here

70. SHXCXCHCXSH - SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs
(Avian)

"Obliquely titled SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs, the scope of the project was simple yet audacious: the melding of techno alien intelligence with machine learning AI weaned on a recursive model derived from kabbalah and carious esoteric teachings, before force injecting it into reality, first virtual, then material."
Bob Cluness

Read our review of SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs here

69. Atlantikwall - Atlantikwall
(Sivilised)

"The artist behind Atlantikwall is an intensely clever arranger, and each of the 10-minute plus tracks builds and shifts with a keenly thought out logic, occasionally parting the sea of criss-crossing textures and chanting for a perfectly placed guitarpeggio." Tristan Bath

Read our review of Atlantikwall here

Buy Atlantikwall by Atlantikwall from Norman Records

68. Chance The Rapper - Coloring Book
(Self-released)

"No doubt about it: Chancelor Bennett has the joy game on lock. No other hip hop artist this year has even come close to the ebullience and mirth emitting from Coloring Book, the incessantly buzzed-about Chicagoan’s third mixtape." Gary Suarez

Read our review of Third Law here

67. Roly Porter - Third Law
(Tri Angle)

"Even the most abstract, percussion-light pieces are defined by a relentless forward motion, each one building in incremental steps towards a more fleshed-out whole from sparse beginnings, whilst the noisier aspects on Third Law are ultimately closer in feel, if not approach, to the more rhythmic side of noise than, say, the abstract, claustrophobic and beatless harshness of wall noise." Joseph Burnett

Read our review of Third Law here

Buy Third Law by Roly Porter from Norman Records

66. Wacław Zimpel - Lines
(Instant Classic)

"The entire album is a spectacular solo statement from Waclaw Zimpel - and yet another essential transmission from modern Poland to boot. Above all it's a heartfelt response to the ongoing influence of American minimalism that pays tribute and rebuts in equal measure."
Tristan Bath

Read our review of Lines here

65. Laniakea - A Pot Of Powdered Nettles
(House Of Mythology)

"A Pot Of Powdered Nettles is as much a beautiful work of art as it is a fulsome tribute to a lost friend. Stepping outside the biographical and listened to dispassionately, Laniakea's music sounds possessed, inspired, driven into the realm of the angelic on the steady processional which the story and the music both tell, funereal yet celebratory."
Richard Fontenoy

Read our review of A Pot Of Powdered Nettles here

Buy A Pot of Powdered Nettles by Laniakea from Norman Records

64. Darren Hayman - Thankful Villages Vol. 1
(Rivertones)

"Darren Hayman is rapidly becoming a national treasure." Stewart Lee

Buy Thankful Villages Vol. 1 by Darren Hayman from Norman Records

63. G.H. - Housebound Demigod
(Modern Love)

Buy Housebound Demigod by G.H. from Norman Records

"Exploring drone, black metal and rattling sub-bass, Housebound Demigod does a lot from very little, its eight tracks unflinchingly murky."

62. The Body - No One Deserves Happiness
(Thrill Jockey)

"With it's conventional melodic stretches constantly threatened by encroaching walls of noise and Chip King's anguished howls, it becomes a statement of intent. Its rage in the face of despair is given a perfect metaphor. No matter how far the album threatens to fly, it's always getting pulled back into the filth."Mat Colegate

Read our review of No One Deserves Happiness here

Buy No One Deserves Happiness by The Body from Norman Records

61. Babyfather - BBF Hosted By DJ Escrow
(Hyperdub)

"BBF is a rare example of an album that invites both arty introspection and head nodding. Much like Blunt himself, BBF is not always easy to love. But that makes the eventual rewards even more satisfying."Ben Cardew

Read our review of BBF Hosted by DJ Escrow here

Buy "BBF" Hosted By DJ Escrow by Babyfather from Norman Records

60. The Comet Is Coming - Channel The Spirits
(The Leaf Label)

"Afrofuturist analogue kosmische jazz funk. Huge, played-live (rather than sequenced) synth bass lines, drums Lee Dorsey would have a fit for, more reverb and echo than a dub soundsystem in the Grand Canyon, and King Shabaka's unmistakable, frenetic but still melodic sax lines over the top of it. Reduced to words it sounds chimeric, but realised as music it makes perfect sense."Nick Southall

Read our review of Channel The Spirits here

Buy Channel The Spirits by The Comet Is Coming from Norman Records

59. Oren Ambarchi - Hubris
(Editions Mego)

"It is essentially Weather Report, Massacre and the Live Evil rhythm section doing Jan Hammer's 'Crockett's Theme'. And don't pretend you don't want to hear what that sounds like."John Doran

Read our review of Hubris here

Buy Hubris Variation by Ricardo Villalobos & Oren Ambarchi from Norman Records

58. Skee Mask - Shred
(Ilian Tape)

"While Skee Mask's debut album doesn't deviate too far from what we have to come expect from Ilian Tape in recent years, it's a standout take on the label's break-beat indebted sound as the Munich producer wraps stunning, plaintive melodies around beats that rarely lose sight of the dancefloor."

57. Leonard Cohen - You Want It Darker
(Columbia)

"On the final track, he offers up a string reprise of ‘Treaty’, allowing the start and finish lines to overlap. It feels like the best possible ending: a reassurance that, come what may, there’ll always be time to laugh and cry and cry and laugh about it all again." Ben Hewitt

Read our review of You Want It Darker here

Buy You Want It Darker by Leonard Cohen from Norman Records

56. Grumbling Fur - Furfour
(Thrill Jockey)

"With Furfour the duo has altogether eschewed contemporary psychedelia’s hackneyed reliance on drones and heaviosity, and in doing so have made a powerful case for catchy tunes as a vehicle for mind-expanding music." Danny Riley

Read our review of Furfour here

Buy FurFour by Grumbling Fur from Norman Records

55. Bruxa Maria - Human Condition
(Extreme Ultimate)

"Extra-curricular diversions into drum & bass notwithstanding, Gill Dread has returned, via Conmungos, to her noise-rock rearing but Human Condition is no exercise in futile nostalgia. Its sublimely furious, filthily pummelling style is directly informed by the dismal world that Dread sees around her, as well as the more heartening experience of playing and touring with likeminded artists" - JR Moores

Read our interview with Bruxa Maria here

54. Kano - Made In The Manor
(Parlophone)

"By chronicling the twists and turns of his own personal life, his family's lives and general life in the East End, Kano draws attention to the role of the past in influencing every path taken on the road of life. This resultant collage, produced by all this cutting and pasting of personal experience and observational wisdom, is a wonderful snapshot in time of the thoughts behind one of the most unique voices in British rap." Josh Gray

Read our review of Made In The Manor here

53. Beyoncé - Lemonade
(Parkwood Entertainment)

"Coming off the back of another surprise release, Beyoncé continues to play with pop conventions as she chips away somewhat at the veneer of her carefully-controlled public image and unveils an album imbued with rage, dealing in the same collection of songs with apparent relationship complications as well as US police brutality."

52. Bully Fae - Defy A Thing To Be
(Vague Terrain)

"'Sissy Fatigue' is the banger, about as perfect a song we've heard that goes on for less than 90s seconds involving bleach and chlamydia all year. Dirty, austere, queerly fun, this is the sort of defiantly odd underground record that's going to become ever more important in this new dark age of America." Luke Turner

Read our review of Defy A Thing To Be here

51. Tim Hecker - Love Streams
(4AD)

"Beyond all order, Hecker and co. lean into expressive moments with heightening, heartbreaking, idiomatic sensitivity that leave even the strangest of things with a warm cerebral tingle. Love Streams is both a masterpiece of contemporary composition and of emotional sensitivity in a way still, even after scrambling all the chordal idiomatic anchors that des Prez and others had come to define explicitly, finds beauty without structure, realism without ignominy, tension without reprise. It's an album's worth of soaring gothic architecture, now parsed into digital infinities. It's God in the hard drive, a ghost in the shadow of Big Data's endless eternity forward. It's a dramatised document of these strange, glorious times, forever teetering on the brink of oblivion." Rob Arcand

Read our review of Love Streams here

Buy Love Streams by Tim Hecker from Norman Records

50. Factory Floor - 25 25
(DFA)

"A 'Slow Listen' this album is not. If you’re listening, it may swallow you up before spitting you out, leaving you discombobulated and disorientated, limbs akimbo. Best not surrender to it, though at the end of the day, you might not really have a choice."Mollie Zhang

Read our review of 25 25 here

Buy 25 25 by Factory Floor from Norman Records

49. Anna Meredith - Varmints
(Moshi Moshi)

"Everything comes from a really practical place – it's not like there's been a guiding artistic principle that's governed it all. I'm not a craftsman, I'm not somebody who enjoys spending hours finding a vintage synth, or a valve, or whatever. If it can work with really shitty sounds, then I'm happy, because that means the material's good." Anna Meredith

Read our interview with Anna Meredith here

Buy Varmints by Anna Meredith from Norman Records

48. Equiknoxx - Bird Sound Power
(DDS)

"Equiknoxx’s work takes many of its cues from the club drawing on elements of juke and the kind of rib-rattling sub-bass that filled the best productions emerging from the UK over a decade ago, albeit with a firmly Jamaican dancehall sensibility." Christian Eede

Read our review of Bird Sound Power here

Buy Bird Sound Power by Equiknoxx from Norman Records

47. Idris Ackamoor & The Pyramids - We Be All Africans
(Strut)

"The Pyramids listen to each other with almost as much intensity as the part that they are playing themselves; it requires the ability to hold back and add only a small amount to the overall piece as the musician sees fit at any given time. The musicianship here is self-aware but in a reflective rather than destructively fussy way." Lottie Brazier

Read our review of We Be All Africans here

Buy We Be All Africans by Idris Ackamoor & The Pyramids from Norman Records

46. Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith & Suzanne Ciani - Sunergy
(RVNG Intl.)

"You can’t help but feel that a record comprising two instrumental tracks that invite the listener to consider the world’s largest ocean for almost 36 minutes without lyrical distraction feels timely, especially coming as it does from a country that could be led by a man whose rejection of global warming would put him in a minority of one." Laurie Tuffrey

Read our review of Sunergy here

Buy FRKWYS Vol. 13: Sunergy by Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith & Suzanne Ciani from Norman Records

45. Underworld - Barbara Barbara, We Face A Shining Future
(Beat)

"It’s a celebratory return for Underworld, showing that not only have they not lost it, but they might never." DJ Pangburn

Read our review of Barbara Barbara, We Face A Shining Future here

Buy Barbara Barbara, We Face A Shining Future by Underworld from Norman Records

44. Lord Tang - Butterflies
(Meakusma)

"Spinning elements of dub, early electronic experimentations, spoken word and all manner of other abstract sounds, Butterflies makes for gloriously odd listening as Dominic Cramp weaves various eccentric compositions together from field recordings and sparse synth play." Christian Eede

43. Daniel Patrick Quinn - I, Sun
(Self-released)

"As well as providing a release from the idiocies of modern life, Quinn’s music is a clear sighted rejoinder to a lot of what passes for alt-folk these days." Richard Foster

Read our review of I, Sun here

42. Black Merlin - Hipnotik Tradisi
(Island Of The Gods)

"Black Merlin, aka George Thompson, travelled to Bali to make the field recordings which constitute the backbone of Hipnotik Tradisi: Island Of The Gods' inaugural release. A close attention to detail provides an almost porous, organic interface between field recording and ambient techno, which is shot through with quicksilver flashes of gamelan and the rumble of throat singing." John Doran

41. Puce Mary - The Spiral
(Posh Isolation)

"With The Spiral, Hoffmeier has built on rich promise to take her rightful place at the forefront of modern, forward-thinking noise music. Compared to it, so much made under the genre's banner seems locked in a self-defeating prism of pointless swagger, but so long as artists like Puce Mary continue to refuse to use noise for noise's sake, and shock value for shock value's sake, then impressive potential futures are emerging." Joseph Burnett

Read our review of The Spiral here

Buy The Spiral by Puce Mary from Norman Records

40. Kemper Norton - Toll
(Front and Follow)

"Toll shows Norton is surely becoming a master of music that, alongside other modern outlier visionaries such as Daniel Patrick Quinn, is not concerned with purity and nostalgia, but instead pieces itself together from the flotsam and jetsam of sounds and tales that collect all around us."Bob Cluness

Read our review of Toll here

Buy Toll by Kemper Norton from Norman Records

39. Kanye West - The Life Of Pablo
(GOOD Music)

"Samples range from Iranian pop to 70s Italian prog rock to Goldfrapp: West has always been more interesting as a sonic nerd and producer/curator than as a persona." Alex Macpherson

Read our review of The Life Of Pablo here

38.Convextion - 2845
(a.r.t.l.e.s.s.)

"What’s so remarkable about 2845 is just how carefully considered every element seems to be and yet how unfussy the end result is - a record that is sure to earn the same mythical status that Hanson’s debut Convextion album did ten years ago." Christian Eede

Read our review of 2845 here

37. Jambinai - A Hermitage
(Bella Union)

"Yes, there is a gloaming quality to the music, a sense of humidity that at times verges into the oppressive, but A Hermitage, in its reflectiveness, feels both symptomatic and sympathetic. Where even Godspeed! would occasionally take on a superego-ish quality and set the framework of the mood with their pace and timbre, Jambinai's 'Echo Of Creation', for example, is so violently unpredictable in its transitions that it can't even be said to have a single mood." Karl Smith

Read our review of A Hermitage here

Buy A Hermitage by Jambinai from Norman Records

36. Suede - Night Thoughts
(Warner)

"Night Thoughts is a record that deals poetically and bravely with the shadows that start to grow as we age and life's responsibilities weigh heavier on our shoulders. Brett Anderson seems as comfortable writing about the aging process as he did chemical smiles in the backs of Volvos and bored suburban housewives done in on sleeping pills etc, something that bodes well indeed for the future." Luke Turner

Read our review of Night Thoughts here

Buy Night Thoughts by Suede from Norman Records

35. Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool
(XL)

"‘Daydreaming’ is gob-smackingly gorgeous, a song I can hold against my chest and feel my heart swell in synch with its fluttering keys; and the you-took-your-sweet-time studio recording of ‘True Love Waits’, a song that’s been in the Radiohead canon since the mid-1990s, shakes the soul like nothing the band’s put out since ‘Nude’" Mike Diver

Read our review of A Moon Shaped Pool here

Buy A Moon Shaped Pool by Radiohead from Norman Records

34. Julianna Barwick - Will
(Dead Oceans)

"As compared to 2011’s The Magic Place there’s far less air, less room to maneuver in the songs here: ambient swirl, while far from gone, has been filled out with lusher instrumentation – with more traditional electronics and strings – to the point where Barwick’s music now feels less like watching ripples than a deep ocean tide. Inherently less reflective, structured to project to rather than from the listener, perhaps unsurprisingly, there’s a lot more of Barwick’s own, impassioned will here than ever before." Karl Smith

Read our review of Will here

Buy Will by Julianna Barwick from Norman Records

33. A Tribe Called Quest - We Got It From Here… Thank You 4 Your Service
(Epic)

"The beauty of Tribe albums comes from the sheer jumble of voices, and while this one is no exception, the expanded universe present on this reunion makes it all the more special. Q-Tip toasts Phife in the afterlife on the gripping ‘Black Spasmodic' while veritable free-for-all ‘Dis Generation’ shows love to the new breed of socially thoughtful rappers.:" Gary Suarez

Read our review of We Got It From Here… Thank You 4 Your Service here

Buy We Got It From Here... Thank You 4 Your Service by A Tribe Called Quest from Norman Records

32. The Stargazer’s Assistant - Remoteness Of Light
(House of Mythology)

"With such auspicious assistance the ride is unsurprisingly illuminating and ethereal. Its mix of modern and ancient instrumentation gives rise to a sense of alien space technology made from organic materials, as 'Agents Of Altitude', the first of three twenty-minute pieces, describes a launch from an enchanted forest. The percussion is played as much on chimes, bells and other objects as it is on drums, while the outsider folk vibe of the wyrd woodwinds treads through the rising synth trails."Russell Cuzner

Read our review of Remoteness Of Light here

31. Blood Orange - Freetown Sound
(Domino)

"Although Hynes, who was raised in London, has become the consummate local New Yorker, Freetown is a cosmopolitan album: one could easily argue it’s just as fitting a soundtrack for the streets of Sierra Leone as it is for New York or London or just about anywhere else; the operative word is “free.”"Lauretta Charlton

Read our review of Freetown Sound here

Buy Freetown Sound by Blood Orange from Norman Records

30. Huerco S - For Those Of You Who Have Never (And Also Those Who Have)
(Proibito)

"With this new album Leeds has peeled away from the house and dance-oriented sounds he has hitherto been associated with, moving into more ambient territory: a natural progression for the Huerco S. project — this solipsistic, eerie and ambient side having always been present in Leeds' work. Now, however, we find this stylistic trait firmly at the forefront of his music." Christopher Sanders

Read our review of For Those Of You Who Have Never (And Also Those Who Have) here

Buy For Those Of You Who Have Never (And Also Those Who Have) by Huerco S. from Norman Records

29. Jute Gyte - Perdurance(Jeshimoth Entertainment)

"Perdurance is aggressively antisocial music, systematically stripped of anything remotely enjoyable or expressive. The guitar tone has been forcibly sterilised, the drum machine reduced to a Casio click. Nothing is left but convulsion and abrasion, alienation and revulsion."
Pavel Godfrey

Read our review of Perdurance here

28. Wolfgang Buttress & Bees - Be One
(Rivertones)

"A stunning record featuring sculptor Wolfgang Buttress, his relations, members of Spiritualized and tens of thousands of bees that draws attention to the disastrous decline in bee populations in recent years, and reasserts their importance to nearly all global ecosystems. Ambient as if Eno had made an album called Music For Apiarists. Luke Turner

27. GNOD - Mirror
(Rocket)

"Every second of this album feels gargantuan. The aural vistas seems to stretch for mile after mile of mountainous terrain, complete with giant peaks and chasms. This is where Gnod stride gloriously ahead of many of their contemporaries." Mick Middles

Read our review of Mirror here

Buy Mirror by GNOD from Norman Records

26. King - We Are King
(King Creative)

"Twin sisters with voices, Paris and Amber Strother plus Anita Bias make up the godlike King. On their first album proper they hit the sweetest of sweet spots, referencing the 80s R&B of Sade, Off The Wall Michael Jackson and Anita Baker but with an enchanting gossamer-light production touch that always suggests that things are going drift off into vapourwave, dream pop or smooth jazz but then never do." John Doran

Buy We Bring You A King With A Head Of Gold from Norman Records

25. Brian Eno - The Ship
(Beat)

"With true respect to its wartime narrative The Ship is not an overwrought, gaudy attempt at stirring a tear; feeling is built over the slow pace of the album and reaches its peak in its impassioned finale. The Ship is the work of someone who fully believes in the power of art as an empathic tool, as a means to invoke a particular viewpoint, an unconsidered perspective." Lottie Brazier

Read our review of The Ship here

Buy The Ship by Brian Eno from Norman Records

24. Sex Swing - Sex Swing
(the Quietus Phonographic Corporation)

"Straying deep into murky canal waters - past the rusting shopping trolleys and unidentifiable body parts - Sex Swing pulsates, chugs and hisses in malevolent intent, laying down lumbering sonic threshings like a psychotic farmer scorned: a wall of sound both foreboding and slippery." Harry Sword

Read an interview with Sex Swing here

Buy Sex Swing from Norman Records

23. Katie Gately - Color
(Tri Angle)

"Color's power lies in the visceral imprints it leaves on our mind's ear. Mutated beats and overbearing percussive noise point to the body's rebellion against annihilation in some kind of post-human, post-body futurist utopia in which we will upload our minds and float off into cyberspace."Danijela Bočev

Read our review of Color here

Buy Color by Katie Gately from Norman Records

22. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree
(Bad Seed Ltd.)

Skeleton Tree isn't an album written about the death of his son, the majority of the music and lyrics were written before it happened, but it is entirely shaped by it.” Luke Turner

Read our review of Skeleton Tree here

Buy Skeleton Tree by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds from Norman Records

21. Sote - Hardcore Sounds From Tehran
(Opal Tapes)

"This juddering slab of Iranian techno not only lives up to the anticipation generated by the glorious sight of a forged metal war hat - it exceeds it and then some. With a kick like a Cyberman drunk on shore leave and acidic bass synths that would melt your shoes, this is a total keeper and I insist that you buy it from Opal Tapes' Bandcamp immediately." John Doran

Read our review of Hardcore Sounds From Tehran here

Buy Hardcore Sounds From Tehran by Sote from Norman Records

20. Marissa Nadler - Strangers
(Bella Union)

"Nadler’s is a lyrical voice that invites you to lean in just a little, to catch meaning rather than to simply relax in the sound of her voice. A song title like ‘All the Colors of the Dark’ is the kind of capsule paradox other writers might strain to spell out, while the character studies in songs like ‘Janie in Love’ and ‘Shadow Show Diane,’ if more allusive than not, are no less subtly intriguing for it."Ned Raggett

Read our review of Strangers here

Buy Strangers by Marissa Nadler from Norman Records

19. Peder Mannerfelt - Controlling Body
(Peder Mannerfelt Produktion)

"In a busy year for Peder Mannerfelt, Controlling Body stands out as one of his biggest triumphs as the Swedish producer contorts protagonist Glasser's voice across ever-mutating synth work. Sometimes Mannerfelt sets his sights on the dancefloor as on 'Her Move' while elsewhere, on tracks such as 'BZ Reaction', he settles for a gorgeous, maximalist take on dub techno."

18. Shackleton - Devotional Songs
(Honest Jon’s)

"The record feels like a carefully wrought and rather brilliantly executed tribute to the later work of Coil, with nods to fellow travellers Current 93 and Nurse With Wound thrown in along the way."Luke Turner

Read our review of Devotional Songs here

Buy Devotional Songs by Shackleton with Ernesto Tomasini from Norman Records

17. Oranssi Pazuzu - Värähtelijä
(Svart)

"The very best moments of Värähtelijä are still for the most part the fucking heavy ones, but Oranssi Pazuzu are dealing with a much broader visionary scope here. It's not Venom or Watain or Darkthrone, but rather the likes of Swans and Neurosis (and perhaps the recently released double album from Ulver) that naturally spring to mind as contemporaries to this music. Värähtelijä is most definitely descended from trope-riddled black metal, but no other band is anywhere near taking the music in a more interesting and open-ended direction while retaining its brutal core."Tristan Bath

Read our review of Värähtelijä here

16. The Caretaker - Everywhere At The End Of Time
(History Always Favours The Winners)

"It’s a bit of a con talking about Everywhere At The End Of Time, stage one, on it’s own. Leyland James Kirby is finally calling time on his musical alias, The Caretaker, which he began in 1999. Inspired by the final seconds of The Shining and the soundtrack to Pennies From Heaven he took pre-WWII big band swing music and processed it to create a "haunted dancehall" ambiance. The project took on a different tone in 2005 when he released the 72-track collection, Theoretically Pure Anterograde Amnesia and began to explore different concepts of memory loss via his music. Now he has one last job - to give the project itself dementia over a period of three years and six albums, with the music (not just from this album or the tracks he’s yet to write and record but from the entire project) being dragged into confusion and finally into the void. This is the first stage, which he has described as "an old person daydreaming" and is relatively upbeat. When it’s all over in 2019 is this how we will struggle to remember it... in happier times? Whatever transpires, it’s a fascinating project." John Doran

Read an interview with Leyland James Kirby here

Buy Everywhere At The End Of Time by The Caretaker from Norman Records

15. Skepta - Konnichiwa
(Boy Better Know)

"Grime may be poised ready to sally forth out of its largely self-built walls and conquer hearts and minds the world over, but its fate rests firmly in the hands of its head bannerman. This is his warcry."Josh Gray

Read our review of Konnichiwa here

14. Klara Lewis - Too
(Editions Mego)

"While Ett introduced us to Klara’s external world, Too is more reflective. Klara excels at recording the real world, deconstructing it, abstracting it and then reconstructing it in a way that reveals more about ourselves. The world she creates is both familiar and alien, real and interpreted. As with Ett and Msuic, Too is a great display of musicianship and self-control. Her fearless experimentation and determination to occupy the space between sound and music perpetually excite, but it’s her understanding of personal perception and feeling – and confidence in playing with that with such subtlety – that elevates this album to another level." Amelia Phillips

Read our review of Too here

Buy Too by Klara Lewis from Norman Records

13. Matmos - Ultimate Care II
(Thrill Jockey)

"This album is a triple threat: it expands the palette of sounds normally at the disposal of the electronic musician; it teases with questions about the meaning and politics of objects; and it is suffused with an expert dance floor aesthetic. In other hands this would have been a dry, conceptual conceit, but this is 50/50 head and heart." Leo Chadburn

Read our review of Ultimate Care II here

Buy Ultimate Care II by Matmos from Norman Records

12. Laura Cannell - Simultaneous Flight Movement
(Brawl Records)

"‘Horselore’ builds and builds skywards, whilst ‘A New Theory of Eclipse’ is more swooping, with the notes seesawing in and out of focus. Again, bird metaphors abound, but one can just as easily drink in this music without any context. Much is made of the contextuality of “historic” music of the sort played by Cannell, but she projects it into a broader continuum that feels both ancient and modern at once, from the haunting folk of ‘Sheltering Hollows’ to the improv and jazz flourishing that dominate on ‘A New Theory of Eclipse’ and ‘Three Stones’." Joseph Burnett

Read our review of Simultaneous Flight Movement here

11. Frank Ocean - Blond(e)
(Boys Don’t Cry)

"When you listen to Blond(e), there’s no mistaking the fact you’re listening to Frank Ocean’s fully conceptualised, curated personal vision – that you’re on his schedule. The form isn’t that of a typical pop or R&B album – it tends to meander into his surreal, almost vaporwave-y dreamscapes, cut with jarring samples of conversation, odd effects, drifting guitars and beatless melodies that go on longer than expected. While these explorations may teeter on the brink of being detrimental to the flow of the album, Ocean just about manages to keep his indulgences in check when things threaten to get repetitive or dull." Tara Joshi

Read our review of Blond(e) here

10. Jenny Hval - Blood Bitch
(Sacred Bones)

"Blood Bitch, to me, is a palimpsest of ancient themes – menstruation, lunar cycles, nature, witchcraft – that are constantly vibrating against each other, and that don’t need to be centred around a character, or indeed, Hval, to make cosmic sense. They are part of a porous palette, rather than a collection of connatively dense symbols with things to teach us, like when saints hold stuff in cathedral friezes." Suzie McCracken

Read our review of Blood Bitch here

Buy Blood Bitch by Jenny Hval from Norman Records

9. D∆WN - Redemption
(Local Action)

"It’s orchestral, it’s odd, it’s experimental, it’s ornate, it makes you want to dance, it makes you want to swoon - at its heart Redemption is reflective of so many touchstones of black music from the past 30 years or so. It feels odd to say what Richard is doing is still perhaps too niche to get her a place in the R&B ‘Hot 100’, given her sound is so broad and all-encompassing, but its true. Richard has carved out an ambitiously futuristic place for herself that the mainstream hasn’t quite caught up with yet." Tara Joshi

Read our review of Redemption here

Buy Redemption by D∆WN from Norman Records

8. Ian William Craig - Centres
(FatCat)

"As I will attest, strange things can happen to you once you come under the gravitational pull of this man's singular music." John Doran

Read our interview with Ian William Craig here

Buy Centres by Ian William Craig from Norman Records

7. David Bowie - Blackstar
(Columbia)

"The Next Day elicited the usual cries of best album since time immemorial on its release in 2013, but Blackstar reveals it to be a neoteric John the Baptist preparing the way for the all-singing, all-dancing Second Coming. Whether or not this is the best thing since Let's Dance (you're with me on this now aren't you?) is too early to say, but by God is it a cohesive collection that contains the same inscrutable attention to detail that a latter Scott Walker album surely would. And rejoice, because David Bowie hasn't sounded this relevant in an age."Jeremy Allen

Read our review of Blackstar here

Buy Blackstar by David Bowie from Norman Records

6. Fat White Family - Songs For Our Mothers
(Fat Possum Records)

"Songs For Our Mothers is worth that stay in their red room. First of all, it sounds incredible. If you've heard 'The Whitest Boy On The Beach' you've had a taste of their new Kraut-pop style, but 'Tinfoil Deathstar' takes it supernova. Imagine a wilder version of Broadcast's 'Pendulum', echoed crashes and guitar skree like meteors imperilling and sharpening your high. Its ingenious conceit sets the tone for the album's often hair-raising lyrics: heroin use is taking off as the government culls its citizens through benefit sanctions, a grim vision we all recognise." Lee Arizuno

Read our review of Songs For Our Mothers here

Buy Songs For Our Mothers by The Fat White Family from Norman Records

5. Shirley Collins - Lodestar
(Domino)

"Lodestar sees Shirley Collins creating a boundary-pushing, exhilarating work by doing nothing other than what she does best: reanimating the folk songs of Britain with all the respect and veneration she feels for them. Given the strength of this woman, evidenced in her artistic triumphs past and present, it’s unsurprising that her comeback album is invested with grace and audacity, from its experimental flourishes to its reverent traditionalism." Danny Riley

Read our review of Lodestar here

Buy Lodestar by Shirley Collins from Norman Records

4. Jessy Lanza - Oh No
(Hyperdub)

"Far from those in-vogue themes of empowerment and tackling society's wider ills, Lanza's busy dealing with herself and a lingering sense of inadequacy. 'VV Violence' directly addresses a fear of being ignored (“I'm working all day long / For the love I never see / Yeah, I say it to your face, but it doesn't mean a thing”), but like on the rest of the album, Lanza solves the problem with the joy of beautiful pop music." Tristan Bath

Read our review of Oh No here

Buy Oh No by Jessy Lanza from Norman Records

3. Innercity Ensemble - III
(Instant Classic)

"Removed from the noise of the mainstream, tucked away in (literally) a palace away from the city, Innercity Ensemble successfully achieve what not only the 1970s American jazz fusion movement did, but also what contemporaries such as Copenhagen’s Selvhenter, Chicago’s Good Willsmith, or even our own Teeth of the Sea manage. Like Marvel’s Avengers a group of likeminded musicians assemble, and their task is merely to create an immovable object to shield against the unstoppable force of comfortably unadventurous aesthetics and mainstream logic. On III Innercity Ensemble are easily at their strongest yet." Tristan Bath

Read our review of III here

Buy III by Innercity Ensemble from Norman Records

2. Solange - A Seat At The Table
(Saint Records/Columbia)

"Taking a step back from the shimmering, groove-led sounds of 2012's True EP, A Seat At The Table sees Solange produce an album that very much reflects the time in which it was made, setting its sights on the Black Lives Matter movement and analysing what it means to be a black woman in 2016 with reference to past history and current happenings, interspersing these musings with deeply personal interludes in the words of her mother and father, and above all, coming out triumphant amidst affecting, uncertain times."

Buy A Seat At The Table by Solange from Norman Records

1. Årabrot - The Gospel
(Fysisk Format)

"Before, their appeal was limited by their approach, however excellent it might have been. Now, the sludgy guitars and snarled lyrics are a minor component, not the driving force. There's tinkled ivories, rock-club air guitar moments, a genuine pop sensibility, camp theatre and high drama. Plus a backstory with an ending that's happy not just for Årabrot, but for all of us.” Noel Gardner

Read our review of The Gospel here

Buy The Gospel by Arabrot from Norman Records

The Quietus Albums Of The Year 2016

ONE: Årabrot - The Gospel
TWO: Solange - A Seat At The Table
THREE: Innercity Ensemble - III
FOUR: Jessy Lanza - Oh No No No
FIVE: Shirley Collins - Lodestar
SIX: Fat White Family - Songs For Our Mothers
SEVEN: David Bowie - Blackstar
EIGHT: Ian William Craig - Centres
NINE: D∆WN - Redemption
TEN: Jenny Hval - blood bitch

ELEVEN: Frank Ocean - Blonde
TWELVE: Laura Cannell - Simultaneous Flight Movement
THIRTEEN: Matmos - Ultimate Care II
FOURTEEN: Klara Lewis - Too
FIFTEEN: Skepta - Konnichiwa
SIXTEEN: The Caretaker - Everywhere At The End Of Time
SEVENTEEN: Oranssi Pazuzu - Värähtelijä
EIGHTEEN: Shackleton - Devotional Songs
NINETEEN: Peder Mannerfelt - Controlling Body
TWENTY: Marissa Nadler - Strangers

TWENTY ONE: Sote - Hardcore Sounds From Tehran
TWENTY TWO: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree
TWENTY THREE: Katie Gately - Color
TWENTY FOUR: Sex Swing - Sex Swing
TWENTY FIVE: Brian Eno - The Ship
TWENTY SIX: King - We Are King
TWENTY SEVEN: GNOD - Mirror
TWENTY EIGHT: Wolfgang Buttress & Bees - Be One
TWENTY NINE: Jute Gyte - Perdurance
THIRTY: Huerco S - For Those Of You Who Have Never (And Also Those Who Have)

THIRTY ONE: Blood Orange - Freetown Sound
THIRTY TWO: The Stargazer’s Assistant - Remoteness Of Light
THIRTY THREE: A Tribe Called Quest - We Got It From Here... Thank You 4 Your Service
THIRTY FOUR: Julianna Barwick - Will
THIRTY FIVE: Radiohead - A Moon Shaped Pool
THIRTY SIX: Suede - Night Thoughts
THIRTY SEVEN: Jambinai - A Hermitage
THIRTY EIGHT: Convextion - 2845
THIRTY NINE: Kanye West - The Life Of Pablo
FORTY: Kemper Norton - Toll

FORTY ONE: Puce Mary - The Spiral
FORTY TWO: Black Merlin - Hipnotik Tradisi
FORTY THREE: Daniel Patrick Quinn - I, Sun
FORTY FOUR: Lord Tang - Butterflies
FORTY FIVE: Underworld - Barbara Barbara, We Face A Shining Future
FORTY SIX: Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith & Suzanne Ciani - Sunergy
FORTY SEVEN: Idris Ackamoor & The Pyramids - We Be All Africans
FORTY EIGHT: Equiknoxx - Bird Sound Power
FORTY NINE: Anna Meredith - Varmints
FIFTY: Factory Floor - 25 25

FIFTY ONE: Tim Hecker - Love Streams
FIFTY TWO: Bully Fae - Defy A Thing To Be
FIFTY THREE: Beyoncé - Lemonade
FIFTY FOUR: Kano - Made In The Manor
FIFTY FIVE: Bruxa Maria - Human Condition
FIFTY SIX: Grumbling Fur - Furfour
FIFTY SEVEN: Leonard Cohen - You Want It Darker
FIFTY EIGHT: Skee Mask - Shred
FIFTY NINE: Oren Ambarchi - Hubris
SIXTY: The Comet Is Coming - Channel The Spirits

SIXTY ONE: Babyfather - BBF Hosted By DJ Escrow
SIXTY TWO: The Body - No One Deserves Happiness
SIXTY THREE: G.H. - Housebound Demigod
SIXTY FOUR: Darren Hayman - Thankful Villages Vol. 1
SIXTY FIVE: Laniakea - A Pot Of Powdered Nettles

SIXTY SIX: Waclaw Zimpel - Lines
SIXTY SEVEN: Roly Porter - Third Law
SIXTY EIGHT: Chance The Rapper - Colouring Book
SIXTY NINE: Atlantikwall - Atlantikwall
SEVENTY: SHXCXCHCXSH - SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs

SEVENTY ONE: Marie Davidson - Adieux Au Dancefloor
SEVENTY TWO: Pattern Man - Pattern Man
SEVENTY THREE: Julien Marchal - II
SEVENTY FOUR: Billy Bao - The Lagos Sessions
SEVENTY FIVE: Gyda Valtysdottir - Epicycle
SEVENTY SIX: Noura Mint Seymali - Arbina
SEVENTY SEVEN: Mica Levi & Oliver Coates - Remain Calm
SEVENTY EIGHT: Hen Ogledd - Bronze
SEVENTY NINE: Kassem Mosse - Disclosure
EIGHTY: Kristoffer Lo - The Black Meat

EIGHTY ONE: Hannah Peel - Awake But Always Dreaming
EIGHTY TWO: Sam Shalabi - Isis And Osiris
EIGHTY THREE: Pangaea - In Drum Play
EIGHTY FOUR: Ghold - Pyr
EIGHTY FIVE: FIS - From Patterns To Details
EIGHTY SIX: Carla Dal Forno - You Know What It's Like
EIGHTY SEVEN: Swans - Glowing Man
EIGHTY EIGHT: Bon Iver - 22, A Million
EIGHTY NINE: Omar-S - The Best
NINETY: Knifeworld - Bottled Out Of Eden

NINETY ONE: Gnaw Their Tongues - Hymns For The Broken, Swollen And Silent
NINETY TWO: John Cale - M:Fans
NINETY THREE: The Invisible - Patience
NINETY FOUR: Wire - Nocturnal Koreans
NINETY FIVE: Jackie Lynn - Jackie Lynn
NINETY SIX: The Dwarfs Of East Agouza - Bes
NINETY SEVEN: Cat’s Eyes - Treasure House
NINETY EIGHT: Ahrkh Wagner - Ahrkh Wagner
NINETY NINE: Melt Yourself Down - Last Evenings On Earth
ONE HUNDRED: Stein Urheim - Strandebarm

ijb
Dec 6, 2016 10:59am

No Sting, no Metallica, no Elton John? I don't believe it! I'll never read your texts again. Just kidding of course. No thanks, great list, positively surprised to see Solange at No.2, but Årabtot is surely one of my favorites as well. As are many others on your list. Always inspiring to visit the Quietus.

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Dec 6, 2016 11:55am

Props for putting Solange so high. It's a brilliant, important album and in my top 3 (along with Bowie and Nick Cave). Good to see Gnod in the list as well!

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Matt F
Dec 6, 2016 12:32pm

Wotno?: Kiran Leonard, Aethenor, Mary Lattimore (the Ghostly one), KA Smith (although I love the Ciani collab, Ears felt way more teeming with life - assume it was a toss up between the two)

Great list! Heartened to see Shirley so far up, and grateful generally for your coverage of the knottier and more loosely defined ends of f*** music (or whatever you want to call it, Laura Cannell and Hen Ogledd and that) - Dan P Quinn was a great discovery, thanks for plugging it! Seamus Cater's 'The Three Things You Can Hear' also a good one

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Mossy
Dec 6, 2016 1:49pm

The positive: Interesting and informative list as per usual from you guys.

The negative: No space in the Top 100 for Autechre's mammoth and mindbending elseq 1-5?

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Tog
Dec 6, 2016 1:57pm

Yes!, always look forward to these end of year lists. Some excellent choices, that I myself love, some that have been on my radar for a while, some releases that are seemingly near impossible to get a hold of (at a sensible price anyway) but I wouldn't have it any other way.

Arabrot managed to hold their spot then. Number 2 is a bit surprising. Cool to see Kano and Tim Hecker in the mix even though they weren't in the mid year list. I have to say, I didn't even realise A Tribe Called Quest were back. I will be checking that bad boy out.

Notable omissions for me include Wild Beasts, Flowdan, Zomby, Acid Arab, Cakes Da Killa, Kuedo, Exploded View.

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Dec 6, 2016 2:09pm

Orphx
Mannequin Pussy
Beverly
Noname
Father
Barker nd Baumecker
Ashley Shadow
Summer Cannibals
Tacocat

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JeremyToulalan
Dec 6, 2016 2:21pm

Yves Tumor!!

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linne
Dec 6, 2016 2:42pm

no still corners? no wax idols? no esperanza spalding? well you got your style, i got mine.

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Monty Cantsin
Dec 6, 2016 3:57pm

Great list, but no Mean Spread, Motherhood of Bran, Selfie Death, The Distended, The Pedal Pushers, Paratantric, Win & Lois, Amongst The Talk and Laughter, Purple Ache, A Flowery Band, or Mice Go Clang?

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zak
Dec 6, 2016 4:12pm

I'm kinda busy, will spotify this list by the weekend, if anyone did it before that plz let me know. my spotify username is absurdologist

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mhn
Dec 6, 2016 4:55pm

any aoty list that excludes Jamie XXXX AKA Jamie Four Eggs and The Tamed Impalalas is on the wrong side of history………imo

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Gman
Dec 6, 2016 5:02pm

Plenty of great albums in 2016 (many of which do appear in your list) but the one that stood head and shoulders above anything else for me was Let's Eat Grandma's I, Gemini. Not only genuinely fresh and original (in a time when very little seems new) but also containing songs that warrant more repeat plays than anything I've heard so far this decade. Truly brilliant.

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Gman
Dec 6, 2016 5:02pm

Plenty of great albums in 2016 (many of which do appear in your list) but the one that stood head and shoulders above anything else for me was Let's Eat Grandma's I, Gemini. Not only genuinely fresh and original (in a time when very little seems new) but also containing songs that warrant more repeat plays than anything I've heard so far this decade. Truly brilliant.

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Dec 6, 2016 5:40pm

You're telling there were 100 better albums than Kevin Morby this year? Mind you, you also said that Be Here Now is Oasis's finest hour.

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Sparkplug
Dec 6, 2016 6:47pm

Definitely consider:
Anonhi - Hoplessness (can't believe it didn't make the top 100!)
Roisin Murphy - Take Her Up to Monto (reminded me of your #4 Jesse L.)
Trentemoller - Fixion (surprised you guys don't love this)
Microfilm - Houndstooth Harmonics https://microfilm.bandcamp.com/
Junior Boys - Big Black Coat
Matthew Mercer - Salvo https://matthewmercer.bandcamp.com/
Bat for Lashes - The Bride

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Jai
Dec 6, 2016 7:24pm

The new Cindytalk is devastating, perhaps too new for this list unfortunately. Some great tips though, thanks Quietus!

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Hang on
Dec 6, 2016 7:35pm

Top tip on Jessy Lanza, just bought a copy from Norman's records, thanks.

Arabrot are better live, right?

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Culturrhoea
Dec 6, 2016 7:59pm

The more I (try to) keep track of what's being released, the more I get the feeling that every person's music taste is becoming an island. None of my top 7 favourite albums are featured in this list.

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Jo Mygoni
Dec 6, 2016 8:34pm

grrrr really wanna see weird albums on here like Bitch 'N' Monk - We are peering over , and Three Trapped Tigers - Silent Earthling. and wtf wheres deerhoof's new album its sick!

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Robert W
Dec 6, 2016 9:28pm

The 'reply to' button doesn't seem to be working at the mo so...

'Culturrhoea
51 minutes ago

The more I (try to) keep track of what's being released, the more I get the feeling that every person's music taste is becoming an island. None of my top 7 favourite albums are featured in this list.'

What's your top 7 albums of the year?

This is not directed to you, but to everyone on here wanting to comment on the Quietus top 100... instead of moaning about what's on it, and what's not (which happens every bloody year on every bloody poll no matter where), why don't we instead post up a personal top 10 of our own, and maybe some reasons why if we're arsed?

It would make for a far more interesting stream of comments, and maybe give me and others a reason to listen to something.

There's been a lot of pain this year as has been noted in the intro above... so instead of carrying on the tedious, internet bile... share a bit of joy, and tell us what's turned you on this year.

No Cavern of Anti Matter?! I mean what the fuck!? Really?

Haven't come up with my own top 10 as yet, but my favourite album I think that's not in this list was by Repetitor called 'Gde ces'. Very popular band from Serbia - at least I think they are popular there. Should be here too.

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ijb
Dec 6, 2016 11:53pm

In reply to Robert W:

I am picking up Robert W.'s idea of commenting with our own top lists. good idea. I find it highly amusing every year how lots of readers of all kinds of music websites are so annoyed by writers not sharing their own taste of music they feel frustrated by some of their (often highly unknown artists') favorites not being mentioned.

I have focused on a way of selecting albums that resonated most emotionally with me (as far as I recall them...) and I have listened to so many great new albums this year. ftr: Along my favorite bands are Radiohead, Wilco and Tindersticks, but for whatever reason they did not make it into my top 20), so I came up with these:

01 David Bowie: Blackstar
02 Nick Cave: The Skeleton Tree
03 PJ Harvey: The Hope Six Demolition Project
04 Tord Gustavsen, Simin Tander & Jarle Vespestad: What was said
05 Lucinda Williams: The Ghosts of Highway 20
06 Ian William Craig: Centers
07 A Tribe Called Quest: We got it from here … Thank you 4 your Service
08 Eliot Sumner: The Information
09 Ayumi Tanaka Trio: Memento
10 Anthony Johnson: Caribbean Roots

11 Michael Kiwanuka: Love & Hate
12 Sturgill Simpson: A Sailor’s Guide to Earth
13 Alicia Keys: Here
14 Erlend Apneseth Trio: Det Andre Rommet
15 Kuedo: Slow Knife
16 Kate Tempest: Let them eat Chaos
17 Anders Brørby: Nihil
18 Bon Iver: 22, A Million
19 Exploded View: Exploded View
20 Thomas Köner: Tiento de la luz

21. Solange: A Seat at the Table
22. Kim Myhr: Bloom
23. Naqsh Duo (Golfam Khayam & Mona Matbou Riahi): Narrante
24. Jenny Hval: Blood Bitch
25. Suede: Night Thoughts
26. Andrew Cyrille Quartet: The Declaration of Musical Independence
27. Nicolas Jaar: Sirens
28. Årabrot: The Gospel
29. Sinikka Langeland: The Magical Forest
30. Katie Gately: Color

I hope you find something that inspires you...

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James H
Dec 7, 2016 2:07am

In reply to Robert W:

Thanks for alerting me to that new Repetitor album – I didn't realise they had one out this year. Some Slovenian friends introduced me to them a few years ago and, yes, they *are* big in Serbia.
Cheers, as ever, to The Quietus crew for their stalwart efforts in bringing under-acknowledged music to wider attention. It's always heartening to look through an end-of-year list and realise there are 30+ albums I've never even heard of, let alone had a chance to listen to. Your coverage of the Polish music scene, in particular, has been exceptional – really grateful for new discoveries like Waclaw Zimpel.
Each to their own, but this year I've also been enjoying...
Steve Lehmann & Sélébéyone – Sélébéyone
Horse Lords – Interventions
Elza Soares – The Woman at the End of the World
Anohni – Hopelessness
Kafka's Ibiki – Nemutte
Shintaro Sakamoto – Love If Possible
Foodman – Ez Minzoku

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JMH
Dec 7, 2016 5:14am

1. Roy Montgomery- RMHq
2. Holy Sons- In the Garden
3. Liminanas- Malamore
4. D.K.- Island of Dreams
5. Khemmis- Hunted
6. Chris Forsyth- The Rarity of Experience
7. NxWorries- Yes Lawd!
8. Heaven's Jail- Widow's Work
9. Grumbling Fur- Furfour
10.Adrian Younge- Something About April II

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manimal
Dec 7, 2016 8:02am

Good to see Daniel Patrick Quinn in there - if anyone's interested in a FREE full length comp/sampler of his work, e-mail the man himself. He had over 900 codes for this waiting to be given away:

danpquinn@gmail.com

(No, this isn't a trick or scam. Occasionally you can get things for free :-)

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B
Dec 7, 2016 10:08am

Lots I haven't heard that I"m gonna enjoy listening to

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B
Dec 7, 2016 10:15am

I also am so bored of the "what no blah blah blah". Some of this list overlaps my taste, some of it doesn't. Some of the albums I"d regard as overrated. But I don't expect this to be a narcissistic reflection of my own taste, i like it because its different to my own. Some of these that I haven"t heard I will like, some I will listen to once and never again. I love these lists because they are a great resource for finding new music

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Bob
Dec 7, 2016 11:47am

In reply to B:

Well said. None of my favourites are on this list. I can't wait to check these out.

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Cvlt
Dec 7, 2016 12:30pm

what, no Crystal Johnnies? No Jaguar Sharks? No Curry Rearwater Survival? No Golden Stream? No Alicia Q. Argyle? No Seumul Han Jojongsa?

Were you even trying?

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No Refugee
Dec 7, 2016 2:00pm

In reply to Sparkplug:

No.

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Dieter Falanx
Dec 7, 2016 2:20pm

So Årabrot are album of the year, the comedy band with the laughable sense of gravitas and zero originality. Most of the rest of the list is dull dross too. I am now giving up on The Quietus as your taste has gone to shit.

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Badgerfodder
Dec 7, 2016 3:04pm

Une Meeles by Maarja Nuut is great, surprised it didn't make the list - especially as tQ was the only place I heard about it.

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isca
Dec 7, 2016 3:16pm

I'd never heard of Ian William Craig before. Thank you so much for changing this! I've been listening all day.

Great list (as usual). Looking forward to more great stuff from you guys next year.

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Ricardo
Dec 7, 2016 6:06pm

In reply to ijb:

Dead on about Arabot. Until this year, never heard of them. This album revisits everything I love about Killing Joke, PIL, et al without being derivative of that era. And their prior album was pretty bad so this was a big step forward.

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Ricardo
Dec 7, 2016 6:10pm

Always great to see the Swans in there (though at the back end) but what about the Wrekmeister Harmonies "Light Falls" release which takes a few listens to fully engage with but one it is attained, well, it was the best album of the year for me, totally taking what Michael Gira strives for and going way, way beyond.

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Ricardo
Dec 7, 2016 6:10pm

Always great to see the Swans in there (though at the back end) but what about the Wrekmeister Harmonies "Light Falls" release which takes a few listens to fully engage with but one it is attained, well, it was the best album of the year for me, totally taking what Michael Gira strives for and going way, way beyond.

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Tara
Dec 8, 2016 12:29am

Hm I appreciate this list straying from what it seems every other best of list has done...Årabtot was a favorite of mine this year. But no Lily Mae? Her album was far superior to most of the things on this list. Maybe you just haven't heard her.. Nice to see a change though!

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Joseph
Dec 8, 2016 12:32am

I always enjoy The Quietus list more than 99% of them. There were a couple of things I missed that I am glad were called to my attention. Autechre and Valerio Tricoli missing is just as weird as that awful album at number one I subjected myself too. It's just bland.

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Derg Nasty
Dec 8, 2016 3:33am

nice list - as always LOTS of music goes past my ears so will defo check out some shizz. My top 10 (in no particular order). Probably changes alot too - only listed to Demdike's new album once through so far. Same with Jackie OST:

Ka - Honor killed the Samurai
Swet Shop Boys - Cashmere
Death Grips - Bottomless Pit
Swans - The Glowing Man
Bitchin' Bajas & Bonnie 'Prince' Billy - Epic Jammers & Fortunate Little Ditties
Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree
Mark Pritchard - Under the Sun
The Drones - Feelin' kinda Free
Danny Brown - Atrocity Exhibition
Avalances - Wildflower

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bob job
Dec 8, 2016 10:43am

How off the mark is The Quietus with this list?

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John Doran
Dec 8, 2016 1:23pm

"what, no Crystal Johnnies? No Jaguar Sharks? No Curry Rearwater Survival? No Golden Stream? No Alicia Q. Argyle? No Seumul Han Jojongsa?
Were you even trying?"

Comment of the Year. jxx

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larry hagman
Dec 8, 2016 2:41pm

Wolf Müller & Cass's The Sound Of Glades LP was excellent.
Must agree that Anohni's LP is a glaring omission. Gazelle Twin's Fleshed Out was solid [yet a remix LP]. Overall, a good list and good year for music. Thank you Quietus.

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Scott T
Dec 8, 2016 3:01pm

Great list as always, lots to investigate. I'd echo folks above about Let's Eat Grandma and Maarja Nuute and add JK Flesh - 'Rise Above' and The Magnetic North's 'Prospect of Skelmersdale' as notable omissions for me, you can never have too much Hannah Peel! Cheers Quietians

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Ruel Fox
Dec 8, 2016 4:48pm

solid list .... and always enjoy digging into the many weird and wonderful unknown bits on these lists.

personally I didn't feel like it was a particularly strong year for albums/LPs. Not too much really stood out or kept me coming back.

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Spencer
Dec 8, 2016 5:08pm

I have looked at about 50 best of 2016 lists and this is the only one I found interesting. I will be back to this website.

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mokia
Dec 8, 2016 9:46pm

I will say Katie Dey but list is fine as always congrats to another year of Quietus.

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aleh
Dec 9, 2016 10:15am

princess nokia????

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Bjørn E. Larsen
Dec 9, 2016 1:03pm

Taman shud is missing

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Julian Bond
Dec 9, 2016 3:19pm

With the disappearance of Rory Gibb's Hyperspecific column there seems to be less electronic club music than previous years. More puzzling was that there is less world music than previously.

What does it mean?

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Pedro
Dec 10, 2016 5:59am

Kaitlyn Aurelia's solo album is sorely missing! I would also add Eli Keszler's Last Signs of Speed, and Pinegrove although that's not your type of thing. Thanks for the list! Hated that album on the first place but I might learn to like it.

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James Shirley
Dec 10, 2016 1:20pm

Love the list, diverse and challenging as ever - thank you.

I just wish there was a little more to go on in terms of the info given about some of these records, especially given that they're typically off the beaten track. I often find myself reading the artist/band's name, the label, and the excerpt/blurb - and still having no idea what to expect from the record. Don't get me wrong - the writing is always thoughtful and engaging - it's just sometimes slightly meaningless taken out of context.

I appreciate that its reductive to shoe-horn an album into a particular style or genre, and in an ideal world we'd be able to give each and every album the attention it deserves based on our intrigue alone - but if you are pressed for time and you're looking for albums on this list that might particularly appeal to your own tastes (as I suspect many people do!)plenty of these albums risk being overlooked because of a lack of info given. Even very broad/vague genre indicators would be useful!

That's my two cents. And when all is said and done these lists are excellent and very much appreciated - I've discovered some wonderful albums, so thank you.

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Christian Eede
Dec 10, 2016 4:16pm

In reply to Julian Bond:

Hey, the Hyperspecific column is still very much going, but now being written by me. There was a lot of electronic music amongst my personal picks for the year which are in the list above - they're not particularly 'club'-oriented but I don't think there were too many great albums of 'club' music this year anyway.

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Trevor Boyd
Dec 11, 2016 8:02am

Excellent choices - going to cost me a few quid though

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Dec 11, 2016 2:03pm

Not sure what I think about the inclusion of the Beyonce album. However, this is possibly the only best of year list, from a music website where you will find both Beyonce and Gnaw their tongues, lol.

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pumpsiegreen
Dec 11, 2016 7:06pm

Will be purchasing many of these from Norman, but here's The Quietus playlist on Spotify (minus 20 unavailable albums): https://open.spotify.com/user/pumpsiegreen/playlist/4uSdK62cz0OaSzkr4NKtT0

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Geoffrey Head
Dec 11, 2016 7:31pm

Good to see Knifeworld, Marissa Nadler and Jenny Hval on here but In Dynamics "Everything I See", Boat To Row's "I Found You Here", The Black Feathers'"Soaked To The Bone" and Dakesis' "The New Dawn" are well worth your attention.

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Patahuka
Dec 11, 2016 8:12pm

Good grief, cry me a river. Is this supposed to be a list of best records or the authors' coming out party as political hacks? The world will survive Trump just as it has survived Obama. The same people dumb enough to elect Trump were dumb enough to elect Obama. Get over it and stick to the music. I, for one, care not one wit about your political opinions.

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Dec 12, 2016 7:13am

One of the most essential sources in music today. I concur about 50% of the time and wonder at others... All interested should listen to teh #1 freeform radio show in the world and VOTE https://inmemoryofjohnpeel.com/festive-51-2016-voting/
KFFP LP 90.3 FM Portland

Zaph Mann

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TomAngel1
Dec 12, 2016 9:21pm

A far less exhaustive list is here -

https://tomhocknell.wordpress.com/2016/12/10/albums-of-the-year-2016/

But Bear's Den is absent from too many lists -

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H-BOMB
Dec 12, 2016 10:22pm

Wait, Alan Vega died? Goddamnit.

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Gutter
Dec 13, 2016 4:16pm

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression

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Reek of Putrefaction
Dec 13, 2016 9:00pm

It's hard to accept that "Hopelessness" was excluded from this list.

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Dec 15, 2016 7:56am

What an amazing list!

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Matt Wilson
Dec 15, 2016 12:09pm

Keep your chins up Knowles sisters! One day you´ll beat Arabrot in a popularity contest.

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Martin
Dec 15, 2016 10:04pm

You missed the best two albums of the year.

No 1. The wedding present - going going
No 2. Bob Mould - patch the sky

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Joe Lake
Dec 16, 2016 2:00pm

Solid list, I guess, but excluding Anderson Paak was a huge oversight. Also, Coloring Book was ranked way too low along with, and I can't believe I'm saying this, Lemonade. It was a fantastic album that deserves to be much, much higher than where it's ranked.

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Dec 24, 2016 6:30am

Trying too hard with with this list.

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Julian Bond
Dec 26, 2016 1:43pm

In reply to Christian Eede:

Hmmm. Not sure what happened there. And not quite sure how I missed the continued health of Hyperspecific. Many apologies.

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James H
Dec 28, 2016 12:25pm

"Solange's A Seat At The Table and Beyoncé's Lemonade are both robust slaps in the chops for those Golden Ager duffers who like to claim that pop has lost its political urgency." I confess I don't know who Solange is but Beyonce is now some kind of political commentator!? Good grief you guys are a long way from ground level. Do you even like Corbyn I wonder? Great list as ever though.

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James H
Dec 28, 2016 3:11pm

In reply to Patahuka:

I totally disagree with this – music journalism is best when it’s laced with political insight IMHO. NME in its 80s and 90s heyday had a really good political undercurrent to it. The problem with tQ is just that its politics are lame petit bourgeois/liberal Owen Jones-type fluff that doesn’t reflect the mood of the nation. Yes the Brexit debate was risible but only due to the lack of a visible left wing exit case (Corbyn’s first huge failing, his second being his constant use of the olive branch to traitorous right wing Labour MPs who simply need to be deselected) and not because it reflected any sizeable working class racism as tQ and other hysterical liberal commentators believe (whither the BNP in that case? Chased out of even their Northern strongholds in recent years, that’s where). The Brexit vote was simply a myriad of frustrations channelled through one prism that sadly proved too complex for liberals like tQ to disentangle. And yes of course Trump’s election is appalling (although for me his opposition being Clinton was the bigger tragedy – what happened Bernie Sanders!? Independent ticket dude!) However, instead of bleating on about these negative angles they could be writing glowing articles about Corbyn attracting the largest public gatherings to hear a politician speak in Britain for decades and maybe even charting the rise of Socialist Alternative in the US, who mobilised tens of thousands to take to the streets following Trump’s election. It’s not all doom and gloom. tQ should absolutely continue to be political into 2017 – I just think for them the biggest decision will be whether they’re in or out when things move sharply to the left, which Corbyn’s huge grass roots support alone would seem to indicate is the likeliest outcome.

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Punter 1
Jan 1, 2017 10:17pm

I think there's something wrong me.

Listened to all the top tracks and all of the top 100 albums and there were 1-2 derivative headnodders and nowt else that grabbed me.

Too much rhymthless self indulgent amateur noise stuff that would never have made it to vinyl back in the day, wafer thin art takes on r n b (jessy Lanza) that sound like aquas barbie girl, mainstream r n b poop and by the book black metal.

I suppose you can only make your list from what's released and th hollowing out of recorded music now seems to be putting quality levels in dire straits.

Sad.

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Critic 2
Jan 1, 2017 10:20pm

In reply to ijb:

arabrot sounds the sort of stuff made by the past its sell by goth band that existed in every provincial town in the mid 80s that couldn't write a decent hook.

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Patrick
Jan 2, 2017 6:06pm

only one i am not seeing that i feel should be there is "These Hidden Hands" Vicarious Memories does more for me that the Roly Porter

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exorial
Jan 3, 2017 1:25am

Interesting entries but to see Arabrot's latest at #1 is an absolute surprise. I rate 2011's Solar Anus as the best they ever did and in a round table of very diverse, though noise orientated heads a few days ago, there weren´t any fans of a very disappointing The Gospel. Seeing this at #1 is weird.

My list of my absolute top 10 albums:

Adrian Younge - The Electronique void
Bloody Knives - I will cut...
David Bowie - Blackstar
Exploded View - s/t
Moor Mother - Fetish Bones
Palehorse - Looking wet in public
Schammasch - Triangle
The Body - No one deserves happiness
Throane - Throane
Whores - gold

Thanks Quietus!

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pumpsiegreen
Jan 6, 2017 7:19pm

Is the artist name correct for #95? Found this album under Circuit des Yeux in Spotify.

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Martin Hoffmann
Jan 8, 2017 11:57am

Hi There!
Four goodies from Germany not included in your Top 100:
Karies - Es geht sich aus
Parfum Brutal - Into Earth
Die Krupps - Stahlwerkrequiem
Bohren & der Club of Gore - Bohren for Beginners

Did you note already that the bass is disappearing in TV concert transmissions? We're getting tweeter mixes nowadays... There is no bass that can be found. Even not in active speakers!

That's a subject.

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Baggieboy
Jan 9, 2017 10:22am

No Marillion FEAR...unbelievable.

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enrik3
Jan 17, 2017 5:45pm

Dejen de admirar a la Solange, por favor.

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jimmymac
Jan 29, 2017 4:57pm

kevin morby not in the top 100! not to mention ryley walker.
arabrot... really?!? they're toss

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Fildo
Mar 13, 2017 11:56am

Årabrot - The Gospel is my favorite album. Thanks for keeping it at number one.

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