The Official Andy Derer Show “Greatest Albums of 2016” List

Here is the Official Andy Derer Show “Greatest Albums” list of the year, a tradition dating back to 1995. You can hear Andy discussing these selections in depth on Episode #177 of The Andy Derer Show – Year In Rock 2016 with special guest Stephen Thomas Erlewine

bowie

1. David Bowie – ★ (ISO/Columbia)

Bowie’s calculated final magic trick was this album, simultaneously epic and succinct at just seven tracks.

READ MY REVIEW (PUBLISHED PRIOR TO BOWIE’S PASSING)

tribe

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

In a world where the Drake’s and Kanye’s had taken over, who knew A Tribe Called Quest could return with such a poignant, of-the-times statement.

iggypop

3. Iggy Pop – Post Pop Depression (Loma Vista)

Iggy found another tall redhead dude to collaborate with and the result was his best solo album since the 1970s.

READ MY REVIEW FOR CHICAGOIST

kanyewest

4. Kanye West – The Life Of Pablo (Def Jam)

This album’s release may be the biggest head-scratcher of Kanye’s career, with multiple missed deadlines and release dates, but the music found Mr. West capable of pulling off the “gospel album with a whole lot of curses.”

radioheadamsp

5. Radiohead – A Moon Shaped Pool (XL Recordings)

With the single “Burn the Witch” Radiohead gave us their closest thing to a John Lennon / big statement single and the rest of the album dripped with a warm, comfortable paranoia.

weezerwhite

6. Weezer – Weezer (Atlantic)

Rivers Cuomo has hit the part of his career where he is perfecting his perfect pop ditty and the fourth self-titled Weezer album (dubbed The White Album) found the band delivering a gorgeous, concise love letter to Los Angeles.

READ MY REVIEW FOR CHICAGOIST

beyonce

7. Beyonce – Lemonade (Columbia)

The concept album of the year found a jilted Beyonce angry and empowered with a batch of eclectic state-of-the-art urban pop and also showed Beyonce’s rock & roll heart.

dinosaur-jr

8. Dinosaur Jr – Give A Glimpse Of What Yer Not (Jagjaguar)

A decade into a once-unlikely reunion continues to bare fruit on this loud, crunchy set full of blazing solos and inter-band communication.

READ MY REVIEW FOR EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE 

chance

9. Chance The Rapper – Coloring Book (Self-Released)

An inspiring, refreshingly positive look at the often-maligned south side of Chicago from one of rap’s most promising new names.

 idkcover

10. The I Don’t Cares – Wild Stab (Dry Wood Records)

Paul Westerberg and Juliana Hatfield join forces to bring on a raucous, fun set of college rock that isn’t far away from either member’s most classic moments. The chemistry between the two singers is undeniable.

READ MY REVIEW FOR EMPTY LIGHTHOUSE

pixieshc

11. The Pixies – Head Carrier (Pixies Music)

Frank Black (now back to his old pseudonym Black Francis) brings us the first true full length with the reunited Pixies. In Kim Deal’s place is the sterling, talented Paz Lenchantin, and the material feels like a true labor of love.

leonardcohen

12. Leonard Cohen – You Want It Darker (Columbia)

Unlike Bowie’s final statement, Mr. Cohen pulled no punches that this was his last album, with every song alluding to death. A super-dark effort from the king of super-dark.

rollingstonesbl

13. The Rolling Stones – Blue & Lonesome (Interscope)

Finding refuge in jamming to the old blues covers that the band enjoyed more than 50 years ago, Blue & Lonesome found the Stones having fun, quickly ripping through these songs with respect and reverence. It’s the funnest thing they’ve released in years.

weeknd

14. The Weeknd – Starboy (Republic)

A mere four years ago, The Weeknd aka Abel Tesfaye was in Canada releasing dark house music, now post-“Can’t Feel My Face” he is trying to become the world’s biggest pop star. This sprawling, eclectic set found him in fine form.

kleenexgirlwonder

15. Kleenex Girl Wonder – The Comedy Album (Reesonable)

As if They Might Be Giants returned with a contemporary sense of pop styles, The Comedy Album found Graham Smith and company stretching out for a gloriously messy double album, trying their hand at everything from EDM to grunge rock.

teenagefanclubhere

16. Teenage Fanclub – Here (Merge)

This Scottish rock band has been quietly refining their sound for the better part of three decades and this latest offering is a lovely, warm addition to their historic catalog.

wilco

17. Wilco – Schmilco (dBpm Records)

A dusky, autumnal collection of strum-along (and hum-along) musings found Jeff Tweedy maturing as a songwriter without the full-band rave ups that Wilco are usually known for.

READ MY REVIEW

neilyoungearth

18. Neil Young + Promise Of The Real – Earth (Reprise)

Neil Young’s live double-album with Promise Of the Real interjected their live recordings with sounds of nature and animals, making it another odd-ball detour in a career of odd-ball detours. The fact that these songs rock so hard in this environment (no pun intended) is a testament to Young’s musical fountain of youth.

metallica

19. Metallica – Hardwired… To Self Destruct (Blackened)

A loud, lumbering double-album, Hardwired caught Metallica doing exactly what they do best with the in-the-pocket crunch of a band that’s been playing together for decades.

blink182

20. Blink-182 – California (BMG)

Blink-182 loses a founding member but return to the catchy, concise skate-rock they established themselves with in the late 90s.

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One thought on “The Official Andy Derer Show “Greatest Albums of 2016” List

Add yours

  1. For my money’s worth, I think The Congos album was very under rated. I think it belongs in the top 20. I guess the stations didn’t think it would appeal to the young people. Had that been released earlier, it would have had at least 6 hits off the album. I think because of the swearing, it also cost them airplay. Oh well, I guess I’m just and old Rock and Roller. I just love that album. Thanks Andy, keep up the good work.com

    Liked by 1 person

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