Charles Steinberg (Update Contributor)

  • Best of 2016

    I wouldn’t presume to know the best albums this year, or any other for that matter, since there’s just no way to listen to all of it, not enough time. And even if I had, who am I to really profess what the best is? There is such a fluidity of what music means to people and how significant it is. What makes something the 7th best and not the14th? In many ways it’s relative, and in some it’s categorical. And there are some different criteria for the “best” and your favorite. I will say that these were the albums I enjoyed the most this year, during walks in all weather, and mornings in all moods. These somehow spoke to who I was, at this stage of who I’ll be and some of them only just recently. I’m grateful to those who made them, and hope they will all continue to make them. I am also grateful to Other Music for helping me cultivate a life of listening and finding, of looking into the brush a little further and for inspiring me to share with others. So these are my favorite albums of 2016, and I mean this in every possible sense of the sentiment: I can’t wait to see what’s in store for next year.

    (Not Exactly In Order)

    - A Moon Shaped Pool (XL)
    DAVID BOWIE - Blackstar (ISO/Columbia)
    CAR SEAT HEADREST- Teens of Denial (Matador)
    BON IVER - 22, A Million (Jagjaguwar)
    A TRIBE CALLED QUEST - We Got It from Here - Thank You 4 Your Service (Epic)
    JAMES BLAKE - The Colour in Anything (Polydor)
    PARQUET COURTS - Human Performance (Rough Trade)
    PREOCCUPATIONS - Preoccupations (Jagjaguwar)
    LUKE TEMPLE - A Hand Through the Cellar Door (Secretly Canadian)
    STEVE GUNN - Eyes on the Lines (Matador)
    TIM HECKER - Love Streams (4AD)
    WYE OAK - Tween (Merge)
    DEVENDRA BANHART - Ape in Pink Marble (Nonesuch)
    BIG THIEF - Masterpiece (Saddle Creek)
    UNDERWORLD - Barbara Barbara we face a shining future (Smith Hyde)
    JULIANNA BARWICK - Will (Dead Oceans)
    DIIV - Is the Is Are (Captured Tracks)
    PSYCHIC ILLS - Inner Journey Out (Sacred Bones)
    MARK PRITCHARD - Under the Sun (Warp)
    FRANK OCEAN - Blonde (Boys Don’t Cry)
    MITSKI - Puberty 2 (Dead Oceans)
    LAMBCHOP - Flotus (Merge)
    JENNY HVAL - Blood Bitch (Sacred Bones)
    DEAKIN - Sleep Cycle (Unknown Genre)
    STRANGER THINGS SOUNDTRACK, VOL. 1 - Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein (Lakeshore)
    WEYES BLOOD - Front Row Seat to Earth (Mexican Summer)
    MARK KOZELEK - Mark Kozelek Sings Favorites (Caldo Verde)
    OLAFUR ARNALDS - Island Songs (Mercury KX)
    KING GIZZARD & THE LIZARD WIZARD - Nonagon Infinity (Flightless)
    HUERCO S. - For Those of You Who Have Never (And Also Those Who Have) (Proibito)