The Roar staff presents: Best Albums of 2017

In no particular order, The Roar staff is giving you the best albums of 2017.

Dua Lipa by Dua Lipa: The debut album of breakthrough artist soars through pop culture as the singer/songwriter knows her place in the industry. With singles such as “Blow Your Mind (Mwah)” and “New Rules” taking over radio stations, it is no surprise that Lipa had a great 2017. Dark pop is the theme of the entire album with gems like “IDGAF” and “Hotter Than Hell” in which Lipa describes her downsides in past relationships.  

Melodrama by Lorde – This album makes heartbreak and growing pains sound like a triumph. It’s poignant, raw, and is backed by great instrumentation. There are lots of huge beats, elegant strings, and, of course, Lorde’s stellar vocals. Not to mention it’s all very catchy as well. It’s a party album, but also a breakup album. Melodrama embraces all the impulsiveness and emotionality of being young, which ironically makes Lorde seem all the wiser, and makes the album something truly special. (written by: Nazareth :^)

Crack Up by Fleet Foxes: With this album, Fleet Foxes challenges listeners’ expectations and adds new somber tones to their brand of folk. Its intricacies are beautifully arranged and layered, rewardingly revealing themselves with each listen. Crack Up is an artful effort that showcases the endless versatility and virtuosity of the band’s craft. – Patricia Cárdenas

Landmark by Hippo Campus This album demands attention in the indie rock genre. Of all the amazing albums that 2017 had to offer, I kept returning to Landmark the most. The album features lyrics that are as lighthearted as they are thought-provoking from a talented vocalist, crisp melodies, and guitar work and a drummer who lays down refreshingly creative beats to keep heads bobbing. The result is what I can only describe as the American little brother of Bombay Bicycle Club. Hippo Campus has developed a sound that nurtures feelings of comfort, but also an adventure – like a camping trip for your head. – Nathanael Cameron

The Amulet by Circa Survive: Elaborating on their already unique new wave post-hardcore sound, Circa Survive brings a breath of fresh air with complicated melodies over simple instrumentals. The Amulet is a perfect example of a band that has matured into their own sound with a balanced amount of ambiance and powerful screams. It’s haunting and encapsulating, a great soundtrack to 2017. This album is the epitome everything that Circa Survive has been working toward. – Melanie Cruz

After Laughter by Paramore: After Laughter added a new layer to a band that’s been around for over 10 years. Their comeback brought tears through catchy melodies over instrumentals anyone can dance to. With this album, Paramore brought a modern twist to an 80s synth and owned it. Their lyrics were provocative, heartbreaking and vulnerable, Fake Happy and Idle Worship being two examples of this – Melanie Cruz

Take Me Apart by Kelela: Imagine the lovechild between Björk and Janet Jackson, this is Kelela. Her first studio album, Take Me Apart, successfully integrates elements of experimental pop and R&B. Take Me Apart unites the physical and the emotional. We are immersed in the intricacies of her romanticism and exploration of sexuality. With her unapologetic confidence, this record puts Kelela at the forefront, as a power figure for feminism in today’s music.  (Emily Afre)

We Can Die Happy EP by Tennis: Tennis has yet to fail us with their latest release, We Can Die Happy. The husband and wife duo create indie pop that allows the 1970s to be relevant again. Don’t let Tennis fool you – underneath the feel-good melodies, lies the emotional depth and intimacy of two individuals caught between the threshold of the pleasures and anxieties of love. (Emily Afre)

“CTRL” by SZA: This long-awaited debut album of alt-R&B songstress SZA displays her ability to take her bad romantic experiences and make them seem cinematic. SZA’s unique vocal delivery, hard-hitting lyrics and enchanting instrumentals make this album stand out from today’s music. With this album SZA gives listeners a look into what goes on in the mind of someone in their twenties dealing with heartbreak, expressing their sexuality, and finding personal growth as well as self-love. The was SZA sings about her hurt, she earns the title of millennial Mary J. Blige. (Alhi Leconte)

“This Old Dog” by Mac DeMarco: Mac’s latest album showcases the young artist’s talent for songwriting. “This Old Dog” sounds different than other albums by Mac, as it features more acoustic guitar and less overburdening guitar effects. The albums sound is crisp and fresh while still maintaining that jangly, slacker feel. Mac’s “slacker” attitude can be seen in his lyrics, always opting for a simplistic approach and taking into consideration common sentiments (“My Old Man”). Much of his lyrics are simple in nature but fit beautifully with the music which shows that Mac is 100% in control of his own sound.  The album is serious (for Mac standards) and introspective, those who know about his troubled relationship with his father will especially enjoy this album. (Felipe Zuniga)

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