The Loud And Quiet top 40 albums of 2017

Our favourite records released this year (voted for by our contributors) - and a reminder of exactly what they are

40. Nadine Shah
Holiday Destination
An alt. rock album inspired by Shah’s documentarian brother that takes on the Calais refugee crisis, the Syrian civil war, the rise of nationalism and mental health issues.
Read Chris Watkeys’ review

39. Jarvis Cocker and Chilly Gonzales
Room 29
(Deutsche Grammophon)
A piano and vocal collaboration conceived at the mythical Chateau Marmont hotel that celebrates the magic of Hollywood’s Golden Age.
Read Stuart Stubbs’ cover feature interview with Jarvis Cocker about the album

38. Ho99o9
United States of Horror
(Toys Have Powers)
The debut noise/rap/punk album from a New Jersey duo who like to get naked.
Read Daniel Dylan Wray’s review

37. Jane Weaver
Modern Kosmology
The sixth album from Manchester’s most cosmic folk singer, who doesn’t make folk music.
Read Stephen Butchard’s review

36. Kite Base
Latent Whispers
(Little Something)
The industrial-pop debut from two bass players (Kendra Frost and Ayse Hassan of Savages) and a drum machine called Alan.
Read Chris Watkeys’ review

35. Baxter Dury
Prince of Tears
An anti-pop breakup album with all the requisite depression, obsession and delusional grandeur that’s given us the immortal line, “I am the sausage man!”
Read Stuart Stubbs’ review

34. Forest Swords
(Ninja Tune)
Matthew Barnes’ hopeful take on these silly times, via field recordings, indistinguishable vocals and clattering electronic beats.
Read Reef Younis’ review

33. Slowdive
(Dead Oceans)
The rarest of things: a reunion album that justifies the return – in this case, 22 years after the press first threw shoegaze under the bus.
Read Daniel Dylan Wray’s review

32. Deerhoof
Move Mountains
(Joyful Noise)
An art-rock-bricolage career highlight from a San Fran band who even get away with covering Bob Marley on their 14th album.
Read Rosie Ramsden’s review

31. Lower Slaughter
What Big Eyes
(Box Records)
A relentless debut album of sludge riffs and screamo vocals, from a band split between Brighton and Glasgow.
Read Max Pilley’s review

30. DUDS
Of a Nature or Degree
(Castle Face)
The dead-eyed post-punk debut from a Manchester band with the stop/start chops of Devo and Pylon.
Check out Hayley Scott’s interview with DUDS

29. Princess Nokia
1992 Deluxe
(Rough Trade)
The New York rapper’s debut album proper, made up of her 2016 mixtape and eight new tracks for fellow skaters and comic book heads.

28. Wand
(Drag City)
A more thought-out psych album from the LA band, where the wig-outs are perfectly placed beside songs that sound like The Beatles.
Read Sam Walton’s review

27. Priests
Nothing Feels Natural
(Sister Polygon)
The D.C. band’s debut album that calls bullshit left, right and centre via fucked-off surf-punk, lost indie-pop, jazz and the odd piano.

26. Iglooghost
Neo Wax Bloom
Seamus Malliagh’s debut album of ADHD, pick’n’mix electronica that soundtracks the absurd story of a gelatinous time-traveling worm named Xiangjiao.
Read Stephan Butchard’s review

25. Arca
Alejandro Ghersi’s first album to feature vocals – sung by himself, like a confessional Gregorian monk adept in claustrophobic electronics.
Read Greg Cochrane’s review

24. Mount Kimbie
Love What Survives
The third album from Kai Campos and Dom Maker – a floating mix of motorik beats and woozy pop with star turns by King Krule, Mica Levi and James Blake.
Read Reef Younis’ review

23. Father John Misty
Pure Comedy
(Bella Union)

Josh Tillman’s Black Mirror of a third album – less ‘Modern Life Is Rubbish’, more, ‘Modern Life is A Complete Waste Of Time’.
Read Stuart Stubbs’ review

22. Kevin Morby
City Music
(Dead Oceans)
A companion piece to last year’s ‘Singing Saw’ LP, taking its cues from Lou Reed and Patti Smith in the city rather than US country music in the wilderness.
Read Chris Watkeys’ review

21. Wesley Gonzalez
Excellent Musician
(Moshi Moshi)
The debut album from the ex-Let’s Wrestle frontman, in which he rejects guitars and plumps for XTC-ish pop performed on a Korg with a saxophone for added coke vibes.
Read Rachel Redfern’s review

20. LCD Soundsystem
American Dream
The album James Murphy promised he’d never make – a rueful and defiant comeback with plenty of nods to his hero and pal David Bowie.
Read Greg Cochrane’s review

19. Clark
Death Peak
Chris Clark’s ninth album – a baffling run of ambient techno, house and noise that doesn’t need to make sense to be as good as it is.
Read Luke Cartledge’s review

18. St. Vincent
Annie Clark’s fifth solo album. Steely and enigmatic, but this time channelling Prince, G-funk and Giorgio Moroder electro-disco.
Read Sam Walton’s review

17. Algiers
The Underside of Power
The second album of distorted protest songs from the Anglo-American gospel punk band.
Read Reef Younis’ review

16. Thundercat
More virtuoso neo-soul bass acrobatics tinted with yacht-rock and hip-hop, featuring, appropriately for a feline, odes to lying around doing nothing very much.
Read Stephen Butchard’s review

15. Chastity Belt
I Used To Spend So Much Time Alone
(Hardly Art)
The Washington band’s third and best album yet, blending lyrical dejection with musical optimism, for that happy/sad feeling inspired by Elliott Smith.
Read Hayley Scott’s review

14. Sleaford Mods
English Tapas
(Rough Trade)
The Nottingham duo’s debut release on Rough Trade, still reminiscent of John Cooper Clark at the tail end of a cheap amphetamine binge, but with better songs.
Read Katie Beswick’s review

13. Alex Cameron
Force Witness
(Secretly Canadian)
A road-pop album of Heart-like melodies and double-take lyrics about shagging, wanting to look like David Beckham and being shat on by an eagle.
Read Rachel Redfern’s review

12. Aldous Harding
The second gothic folk album from the New Zealand artist, whose voice flips between Nico’s deep seduction and Joanna Newsom’s nymph shriek.
Read Susan Darlington’s review

11. Kendrick Lamar
Kendrick’s return to straight-up RAP, following the colossal free-jazz epic of ‘To Pimp A Butterfly’.
Read Stephen Butchard’s review

10. SZA
The much-delayed debut album from the Jersey-born RnB singer who fiercely sings about sexual freedom as well as loneliness in the digital age.

9. Idles
(Balley Records)
The debut LP from the year’s break-out British punk band, who are angry about everything but not too furious to have a bit of a laugh with it.
Read Alex Wisgard’s review

8. Wiki
No Mountains in Manhattan
The old-school hip-hop-referencing debut album from the former Ratking member – a love letter to his beloved hometown.
Read Katie Beswick’s review

7. Lorde
(Virgin EMI)
Lorde’s second pop pop POP album, which articulates the unbearable emotional heaviness of being on the brink of adulthood. Like Taylor Swift with actual feeling.
Read Sam Walton’s review

6. Blanck Mass
World Eater
(Sacred Bones)
Benjamin John Power’s punishing and wordless reaction to the joyless year of 2016. More than noise, something other than post-rock and beyond electronic drone.
Read David Zammitt’s review

5. Vince Staples
Big Fish Theory
(Virgin EMI)
The Compton rapper’s concise second album, inspired in part by UK Garage and Amy Winehouse, with guest spots from Kendrick and Bon Iver.

4. Timber Timbre
Sincerely, Future Pollution
(City Slang)
An inky collection of retro lounge songs played by a bitter ’80s Vegas house band… if Taylor Kirk’s group weren’t Canadian.
Read Derek Robertson’s review

3. Richard Dawson
(Weird World)
The DIY folk master’s mournfully beautiful concept album about life in pre-Medieval Britain and humankind’s inability to fix itself.
Read Fred Mikardo-Greaves’ review

2. Kelly Lee Owens
Kelly Lee Owens
(Smalltown Supersound)
A debut album of subtle techno from a former cancer ward nurse from Wales who also used to play bass in shoegaze band The History of Apple Pie.
Read Reef Younis’ review

1. Protomartyr
Relatives In Descent
The Detroit band’s forth album of British-sounding post-punk, which questions the notion of truth from Trump’s phoney America.
Read Danny Canter’s review, and check out Stuart Stubbs’ cover feature interview with Protomartyr in Detroit