The Best Albums of 2020

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Alexander Braga

2020 was a really bad year. It was one of the worst that we have experienced in our life times, but it was a good year for music artists. Of course many artists who planned on releasing projects in 2020 had to delay those releases or scrap them until this year, but because of quarantines many artists who were not planning on dropping albums did. Because of this though there were many hits, but many misses. So, here is what I objectively think are the best four albums of 2020, in no particular order. 


The first album I wanted to talk about was Alfredo by Freddie Gibbs and The Alchemist. This project is crazy smooth. With the Alchemist’s luxurious beats and Freddie’s rugged Indianapolis native tone, it creates a hard yet refined sound. Tyler the Creator and Rick Ross also appear as features and deliver some of the best verses of the year. Tyler’s verse on “Something to Rap about” transports you to a hazy, warm summer day where you are lounging “on the boat I haven’t bought yet,” as Tyler says in his verse. Music lover Bob Olson raves about Freddie’s sound, “I can’t get enough of Freddie’s big, brawny, babbling voice.” With Alfredo being nominated for rap album of the year at the Grammys, I believe it’s a shoe in to win.


To be honest I have never listened to Phoebe Bridgers before the album Punisher because I always thought she made music for people who whole-heartedly believe in astrology, but I was mistaken. This album is full of emotional, well put together ballads about love, regret, and the future. With minimalistic production and Phoebe’s soft melancholy voice, each song hits. The standout songs on the project would have to be “Graden Song,” “Punisher,” “Chinese Satellite,” and “I Know the End.” Punisher is definitely a must listen. 


After Hours is another addition in the ever so consistent discography of The Weeknd. This project captures The Weeknd’s moody impulses using sleek, ‘80s inspired synth sounds. The content of this album seems reminiscent of The Weeknd’s earlier work, but it’s brought to a higher level by the new sound. The theme of the album is also very interesting. The Weeknd said this when asked about After Hours, “ You can find love, fear, friends, enemies, violence, dancing, sex, demons, angels, loneliness, and togetherness all in the After Hours of the night.” This theme of “After Hours” can be tied directly to the contents of the entire album. The Weeknd ties all these things together into an extremely entertaining and sonically pleasing format. That is why I love it so much. 

Fiona Apple is very weird, and her weirdness is not exempt from Fetch the Bolt Cutters. It is hard to give this album a genre but if I had to try I think it could be categorized as an alternative-rock opera sounding project. My initial thoughts of the album were that the structure of each song was completely unique. With random guitar riffs or loud vocals coming in at seemingly random times, it makes for a fun listening experience. The overarching theme of the album is Fiona’s new found independent spirit. Over the thirteen song project she expresses her independence from relationships, the music industry, and even her own art. The standouts on the album would have to be “Shameika,” “Ladies,” and “I’ve always been too smart for that.” Fiona’s message and the sound of Fetch the Bolt Cutters definitely make it a must listen.