John Book’s Best Albums Of 2016


If you’re looking at the covers for hints or anything, there is one major hint: there is no hip-hop that I considered something worthy of being “my best”. That’s sad, considering all of the music that came out in 2016, especially Moka Only, who came out with an album a month throughout the year.

Another thing that is of interest, perhaps only to me: there’s a lot less albums in my “top” list. In the past, I’ve had everything from 40 to 50 albums a year, I’m sure I had a year where I had a lot more. Then it went down to 20 and now it’s down to ten. Trust me, there is no lack of music out there but a part of me almost wants to say there’s way too much. Then again, some of my favorite artists didn’t release music in 2016. Then again, Neil Young released an album this year and one of my all time favorite bands, Melvins, came out with two albums this year and neither are on this last so have I entered an alternate universe of sorts?

To be honest, I don’t know. I will say this: the following ten albums are those that stood out incredibly for me, getting repeat listens long after I played them for review, did a review, and casually put them on the side. These albums didn’t get a casual push to the side. They are albums that I feel are worth my time, worth the time of the artists, producers, and engineers and it is something I feel you should check out, for they could be worthy of your time. Check a few out or be faithful and buy them all. I did reviews of each one, so click the links and see what I originally thought of each release:

Berlin Soundpainting Orchestra’s “Holothuria” (Aut)
Bloody Knives’ “I Will Cut Your Heart Out For This” (Saint Marie)
Great Lakes’ “Wild Vision” (Loose Trucks)
halfsour’s “Tuesday Night Live” (Jigsaw)
The High Violets’ “Heroes And Halos” (Saint Marie)
Eloisa Manera Ensemble’s “Invisible Cities” (Aut)
Scary Little Friends’ “Silent Revolution” (Randm)
Silent People-s/t (Aut)
Steel Cranes’ “Tango” (Mister White Tights)
VA – Typical Girls (Emotional Rescue)


Does this mean this will be the end of my Best Of lists? No, not yet. Are these choices not enough for you? I’m so used to having an overwhelming amount of albums on my lists that it’s not enough even for me. I want a deeper and arguably better 2016.

With a “Best Of” list involving ten albums, what is my favorite pick of the year? I honestly don’t have one. All of the albums were good but none of them were mindblowing to the point I would be telling anyone and everyone what was incredible. I did not get a chance to listen to every albums released nor did I listen to everything I wanted to so it’s hard to say what went wrong, if anything went wrong. It just seems so… brief? Then again, as always, when the new year comes around, I’ll end up making discoveries I didn’t the year before and come up with things like “well damn, now THAT was a good album.”

This is also something I’ve been waiting for since I began making my Best Of lists years ago but there are no major label releases on here. It’s an all-indie list, it’s major free and this wasn’t intentional, I don’t fear anyone but as I began putting the list together, I realized there was nothing on any Universal, Sony, or Warner Bros. labels. By next year, there may be only two majors for all I know.

This is my list and it does represent my musical interests. I’m honestly saddened there aren’t any hip-hop on this and I don’t want that to be the future, nor is that an indication of the state of hip-hop in 2016, far from it. Nonetheless, my Best Of 2016 list is a Top 10, I present it to you.

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