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William Basinski
A Shadow in Time (2017)
/ EXPERIMENTAL

Hurray for the Riff Raff
The Navigator (2017)
/ ROCK

Sorority Noise
You’re Not As _____ As You Think (2017)
/ ROCK

Various Artists
Mono No Aware (2017)
/ ELECTRONIC

Perfume Genius
No Shape (2017)
/ POP/R&B

Slowdive
Slowdive (2017)
/ ROCK

Pile
A Hairshirt of Purpose (2017)
/ ROCK

Ryuichi Sakamoto
async (2017)
/ ELECTRONIC

/ GLOBAL

The xx
I See You (2017)
/ ELECTRONIC

/ POP/R&B

Roger Waters
Is This the Life We Really Want? (2017)
/ ROCK

-SH

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Perfume Genius
“Alan”

Big Thief
“Shark Smile”

The Courtneys
“Lost Boys”

Vagabon
“Cold Apartment”

Jlin
“1%”

Future Islands
“Cave”

HVAD
“Zhao Hua”

GAS
“Narkopop 2”

Pile
“Fingers”

Sorority Noise
“A Portrait Of”

-SH

  1. Cass McCombs
    “I’m a Shoe”

  1. Weyes Blood
    “Used to Be”

  1. M83
    “Solitude”

  1. M83
    “For the Kids” (feat. Susanne Sundfør)

  1. Angel Olsen
    “Sister”

  1. Swans
    “The Glowing Man”

  1. Leonard Cohen
    “Treaty” / “String Reprise / Treaty”

  1. David Bowie
    “I Can’t Give Everything Away”

  1. Radiohead
    “Identikit”

  1. DIIV
    “Dust”

  1. Junior Boys
    “Big Black Coat”

  1. ANOHNI
    “Hopelessness”

  1. Sheer Mag
    “Worth the Tears”

  1. Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds
    “Distant Sky”

  1. Wolf Parade
    “C’est La Vie Way”

  1. Leonard Cohen
    “Leaving the Table”

  1. David Bowie
    “Tis a Pity She Was a Whore”

  1. Blood Orange
    “Augustine”

  1. Radiohead
    “Present Tense”

  1. Mitski
    “Your Best American Girl”

-SH

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  1. DIIV
    Is the Is Are (2016)

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  1. Blood Orange
    Freetown Sound (2016)

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  1. Thee Oh Sees
    A Weird Exits (2016)

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  1. ANOHNI
    HOPELESSNESS (2016)

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  1. Bon Iver
    22, A Million (2016)

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  1. Leonard Cohen
    You Want It Darker (2016)

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  1. Elza Soares
    A Mulher do Fim do Mundo (The Woman at the End of the World) (2016)

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  1. Mitski
    Puberty 2 (2016)

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  1. Radiohead
    A Moon Shaped Pool (2016)

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  1. David Bowie
    Blackstar (2016)

-SH

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  1. Savages
    Adore Life (2016)

 
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  1. Explosions in the Sky
    The Wilderness (2016)

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  1. Seth Bogart
    Seth Bogart (2016)

 
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  1. Tanya Tagaq
    Retribution (2016)

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  1. Mannequin P***y
    Romantic (2016)

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  1. PJ Harvey
    The Hope Six Demolition Project (2016)

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  1. James Blake
    The Colour in Anything (2016)

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  1. Angel Olsen
    MY WOMAN (2016)

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  1. Sheer Mag
    III EP (2016)

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  1. Arca
    Entrañas (2016)

-SH

It’s that time of year, folks…time to recognize the music I’ve loved most over the first half of 2016. Much of the better music this year has seemed a bit more under the radar than usual…but this could likely be a result of comparing this year to last. In the first half of 2015, we had big, noteworthy releases from the likes of Sleater-Kinney, Courtney Barnett, and Sufjan Stevens, just to name a few. For my money, some of the better releases so far this year have been by artists that live in the margins. But don’t get me wrong — for every DIIV or Seth Bogart record that’s gotten its hooks into me, there has been a Radiohead or David Bowie effort right there to match it. Either way, the returns have been splendid, and I’ve enjoyed delving into a lot of good music this year. Highlighted below are some of my favorites.

-SH

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Seth Bogart
Seth Bogart (2016)

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Sheer Mag
III EP (2016)

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PJ Harvey
The Hope Demolition Project (2016)

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Radiohead
A Moon Shaped Pool (2016)

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ANOHNI
Hopelessness (2016)

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Explosions in the Sky
The Wilderness (2016)

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DIIV
Is the Is Are (2016)

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David Bowie
Blackstar (2016)

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James Blake
The Colour in Anything (2016)

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Blood Orange
Freetown Sound (2016)

-SH

ANOHNI
“Hopelessness”

Sheer Mag
“Worth the Tears”

Junior Boys
“Big Black Coat”

Radiohead
“Identikit”

Radiohead
“Present Tense”

DIIV
“Dust”

Wolf Parade
“C’est La Vie Way”

M83
“For the Kids (feat. Susanne Sundfør)” / “Solitude”

Swans
“The Glowing Man”

Blood Orange
“Augustine”

-SH

  1. Dilly Dally
    “Next Gold”

  1. Bjork
    “Stonemilker”

  1. Jim O’Rourke
    “These Hands”

  1. New Order
    “Plastic”

  1. Shamir
    “Make a Scene”

  1. Tame Impala
    “Yes I’m Changing”

  1. Jamie xx
    “Gosh”

  1. Shamir
    “Vegas”

  1. Colleen Green
    “Some People”

  1. Beach House
    “Elegy to the Void”

  1. Tame Impala
    “‘Cause I’m a Man”

  1. Deafheaven
    “Brought to the Water”

  1. Beach House
    “Somewhere Tonight”

  1. Tame Impala
    “Past Life”

  1. Father John Misty
    “The Ideal Husband”

  1. Tame Impala
    “Let It Happen”

  1. Sturgill Simpson
    “The Promise”

  1. Courtney Barnett
    “Small Poppies”

  1. Chris Stapleton
    “Daddy Doesn’t Pray Anymore”

  1. Father John Misty
    “Bored in the USA”

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  1. Sturgill Simpson
    Metamodern Sounds in Country Music (2014)

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  1. Scharpling and Wurster
    Rock, Rot & Rule (1999)

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  1. Nothing
    Guilty of Everything (2014)

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  1. Roxy Music
    Roxy Music (1972)

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  1. Metallica
    Ride the Lightning (1984)