“A Star Is Born Soundtrack,” Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper
Rarely has a movie soundtrack made our Best of list but the vocal prowess and lyrically commanding album featuring Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper for their breakthrough performances and undeniable chemistry in the film “A Star Is Born” made it an obvious choice. “The Shallow” is chill inducing and tracks like, “I’ll Never Love Again,” and “Maybe It’s Time” showcases both Gaga’s and Cooper’s talent.
“Invasion of Privacy,” Cardi B
The pressure was on, would Cardi be able to deliver a killer album after the success of her summer bop, “Bodak Yellow” in 2017 and the answer was a resounding YES. “Invasion of Privacy” proved to the world that Cardi B was a bonafide star with a lot to say. The album has it all, ass-shaking curse fueled rap, ballads that depict heartbreak and an over all good time.
“Dream Wife,” Dream Wife
This London-based and British/Icelandic born punk rock trio Dream Wife embodies girl power with their raw energy and socially conscious lyrics. Dream Wife’s self-titled album was released in early 2018 and still managed to remain a fixture on the Sinister Girlz playlist. Their stand out track, “Somebody” has one of the most appropriately timed and honest lyric, “I am not my body, I am somebody.”
“East Side” Anna Shoemaker
Anna Shoemaker’s debut EP, “East Side” has all the elements of a well-crafted indie pop album; it features fresh vocals, uptempo pop and R&B infused elements. From opening track, “Too High” to “Want Something (Say Something)” there is something for everybody who appreciates strong female vocals.
“L I L A C,” Brent Butler
Ready or not, Brent Butler’s debut solo EP, “L I L A C” has made our best of 2018 list and “baby, we were born to riot!” The hip-hop, genre experimental musician showcases his love for rap and rock in his 8-track release. Stand out tracks include,”Baby, we were born to riot!” and “Selective Memory.”
“Dirty Computer,” Janelle Monáe
Janelle Monáe is an undeniable talent that embodies Black Girl Magic. Her album, “Dirty Computer” mixes R&B and Pop with Hip Hop elements. Stand out tracks include, “Make me feel” and “Django Unchained”
“Dancing Queen,” Cher
After her stint on Mama Mia: Here we go again, and her beautiful rendition of ABBA’s “Fernando” the legendary Cher released a full-length album covering ABBA’s biggest hits titled, “Dancing Queen” The album is a delight from start to finish as her signature sound reinvents the band’s music. Stand out tracks include, “Fernando,”
“We Three Bandits,” (EP) Bandits on The Run
Best Album winners of 2017 graces our list for the second consecutive year with their holiday EP, “We Three Bandits.” The 3-track EP allows each bandit to shine with their own renditions of classics, “Frosty the Snowman,” “Blue Christmas,” and “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home).” Their voices and three-part harmonies are impeccable per usual and will fill you with holiday cheer!
“Moroccan Ballroom” (EP), Katie Toupin
Katie Toupin’s soothing vocals are worth noting in her EP, “Moroccan Ballroom.” With opening ballad, “Danger” and the dance-able “Shake Baby” you can’t go wrong. These five tracks will leave you yearning for more. Keep your eyes out for Katie Toupin she’s a breakout star.
“Southland,” Lindsay Lou
Lindsay Lou’s “Southland” embodies southern comfort. It’s melodic tones with leave you with a warm and fuzzy feelings from album opener, “Roll With Me” to the harmonica driven “The River That I knew” there’s something for everyone.
“To Rise You Gotta Fall,” Nicki Bluhm
“To Rise You Gotta Fall” features the smokey and enticing vocals of Nicki Bluhm. The blend of country and soulful pop suits the California native’s songwriting well. Stand out tracks include, “Battlechain Rose,” and “Starring at the sun.”
“Free Yourself Up,” Lake Street Dive
Within the opening bars of lead off track, “Baby, Don’t Leave Me Alone With My Thoughts” I was hooked. Lake Street Dive is a musical force. The band blends pop and funk beautifully. Stand out track, “Good Kisser” showcases Rachael Price’s vocal abilities beautifully. It is a melodic treat. For these reasons and many more “Free Yourself Up” is our pick for Best Album of 2018
“Come get your honey,” beckons Swedish songstress Robyn. Best known for her infectious melodic beats and unique vocals, “Honey” showcases her signature sound with songs like “Missing U,” and “Ever Again” you simply can’t go wrong.
“The Capital Studios Sessions,” Jeff Goldblum & The Mildred Sitzner Orchestra
Who knew that the brilliant talented character actor, Jeff Goldblum, was an accomplished musician. In his Jazz album, “The Capital Studios Sessions,” the live performances of the orchestra are captured beautifully with Goldblum behind the keys. The album is an unexpected well executed delight. As if I couldn’t love Goldblum any more!