TC’s top 40 albums of 2018

For my 16th consecutive year of reviewing my favorite music, I’m bringing you another curated, eclectic playlist that winds its way through the new tracks and albums I loved. Look back at 2018 with me in this signature special feature.

Like the year before it, 2018 proved to be quite a tumultuous trip in which music was a much-needed escape. In recent years, artists like Phoebe Bridgers, Banks, Adele, and Lights claimed #1 on my year-end music reviews—now it’s time again to share my personal highlights from the past year. As ever, you might discover some music that you missed out on the first time around.

Below, you’ll find a list of many of the year’s other hot tracks sorted by release date, followed by my top 40 albums. Tap or click on any track or album to listen to it on Apple Music and read their editors’ synopsis. Let’s get started!

Tracks


Bruno Mars f/ Cardi B
“Finesse (Remix)”


Skott
“Russian Soul”


Kendrick Lamar f/ SZA
“All The Stars”


Mabel and Not3s
“Fine Line”


Kim Petras
“Heart To Break”


Zedd, Maren Morris, and Grey
“The Middle”


Salt Cathedral
“No Love”


ALMA f/ Tove Styrke
“Good Vibes”


PNAU
“Go Bang”


Flight Facilities f/ Nïka
“Need You”


Madison Beer
“Home With You”


Hook N Sling f/ Lauren Aquilina
“Shoot Down The Sun”


Sofi Tukker
“Benadryl”


Amy Shark
“I Said Hi”


Meg Myers
“Numb”


Clairo
“4EVER”


Jess Glynne
“I’ll Be There”


Bebe Rexha
“I’m A Mess”


Dagny
“That Feeling When”


Sigrid
“High Five”


Childish Gambino
“This Is America”


Frank Turner
“Make America Great Again”


Clean Bandit f/ Demi Lovato
“Solo”


Weezer
“Africa”


Toto
“Hash Pipe”


Uffie
“Drugs”


Shy Martin
“Forget to Forget”


King Princess
“Holy”


Charlotte Lawrence
“Wait Up”


Sara Diamond
“Fool”


Tash
“I Lied”


Nicole Millar
“All My Issues”


Demi Lovato
“Sober”


Billie Eilish
“you should see me in a crown”


The Chainsmokers f/ Emily Warren
“Side Effects”


Santigold
“Run The Road”


City Girls
“I’ll Take Your Man”


Elley Duhé
“Way Down Low”


Robinson
“Don’t Trust Myself”


Juliana Hatfield
“Physical”


Lights
“I Was A Fool”


Lauren Daigle
“Look Up Child”


Nina Nesbitt
“Loyal To Me”


Sheryl Crow f/ Annie Clark
“Wouldn’t Want to Be Like You”


GOLDN
“Break It”


bülow f/ DUCKWRTH
“SAD AND BORED”


Sara Diamond
“Crash”


Mabel
“One Shot”


Dustin Atlas and Erin Bowman
“Fake Ass Friends”


Maty Noyes
“Porn Star”


Nicki Minaj
“Ganja Burn”


Bishop Briggs
“Baby”


The Band Perry
“NOSTALGIA”


AURORA
“Queendom”


Silk City and Dua Lipa
“Electricity”


Sigrid
“Sucker Punch”


Kim Petras
“Close Your Eyes”


Charli XCX and Troye Sivan
“1999”


Halsey
“Without Me”


Little Mix f/ Nicki Minaj
“Woman Like Me”


Cimorelli
“What Kind Of Girl”


Fickle Friends
“Broken Sleep”


Brika
“Karma”


Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper
“Shallow”


Sara Bareilles
“Armor”


Allie X
“Girl Of The Year”


Ellie Goulding and Diplo
“Close To Me”


Lauren Jauregui
“Expectations”


Sabrina Carpenter
“Paris”


Carly Rae Jepsen
“Party For One”


Speedy Ortiz
“DTMFA”


Ariana Grande
“thank u, next”


Maggie Rogers
“Light On”


Adia Victoria
“Dope Queen Blues”


Lastlings
“Deja Vu”


Julia Michaels
“In This Place”


Billie Eilish
“come out and play”


H.E.R.
“Carried Away”


Say Lou Lou
“Ana”


Grimes f/ HANA
“We Appreciate Power”


Lila Drew
“november”


Maggie Lindemann
“Would I”


Sasha Sloan
“Faking It”


JoJo
“Leave (Get Out)”


Mark Ronson f/ Miley Cyrus
“Nothing Breaks Like A Heart”


Melissa Villaseñor
“Dreamin’ You Up”

Top 40 albums

40
Anne-Marie
Speak Your Mind

39
Metric
Art Of Doubt

38
Cardi B
Invasion of Privacy

37
Hinds
I Don’t Run

36
Cat Power
Wanderer

35
Christine and the Queens
Chris

34
Neko Case
Hell-On

33
Hop Along
Bark Your Head Off, Dog

32
Florence & The Machine
High As Hope

31
Kurt Vile
Bottle It In

30
Courtney Barnett
Tell Me How You Really Feel

29
Superorganism

28
Marissa Nadler
For My Crimes

27
First Aid Kit
Ruins

26
Jorja Smith
Lost & Found

25
Phantastic
Ferniture

24
Emily Warren
Quiet Your Mind

23
Soccer Mommy
Clean

22
Mitski
Be The Cowboy

21
Tove Styrke
Sway

20
Alessia Cara
The Pains of Growing

19
Ella Mai

18
Eves Karydas
summerskin

17
The Aces
When My Heart Felt Volcanic

16
Marian Hill
Unusual

15
Kero Kero Bonito
Time ‘n’ Place

14
Robyn
Honey

13
The Beths
Future Me Hates Me

12
Kacey Musgraves
Golden Hour

11
boygenius

10
Snail Mail
Lush

9
Ariana Grande
Sweetener

8
Miya Folick
Premonitions

7
Middle Kids
Lost Friends

6
Janelle Monáe
Dirty Computer

5
Hayley Kiyoko
Expectations

4
Chvrches
Love Is Dead

3
Pale Waves
My Mind Makes Noises

2
Dizzy
Baby Teeth

1
Bishop Briggs
Church of Scars

Summary

The future is female and so is almost every artist on my playlist this year, which reflects my ever-solidifying personal taste in new music more than it speaks any purposeful message about the ongoing state of our world—though I’m sure my subconscious would have something to say about that. In a year that included plenty of returning favorites, it was ultimately a trio of debut albums that topped my list, a testament to the emerging and breakout artists that make discovering new music forever exciting. I can’t wait to hear what the next year will bring.

To hear more about why I chose some of the tracks and albums you saw here, listen to this year’s episode of TC & RED: LIVE. I hope you enjoy these selections as much as I did. Thanks for checking out my top 40 albums of 2018!

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