Music of 2020

I listened to 1,098 albums this year. I know this because I obsessively track all the music I listen to, and I mostly focus on listening to full albums. This is something I’ve been doing for years now, and it’s clear the music train just isn’t going to quit. What I find profound in one year I intentionally listen to a second time the following year. “Profound” is pretty arbitrary, much like a five star scale, and so I’ve limited my analyses of any given album to a binary approach: an album is either profound and exciting or, well, not. Here’s a list, for the curious, of all the albums I identified as profound for this year (out of that 1,098, there’s a total of 322, which includes the unlisted 2004’s Madvillainy in honor of the late MF Doom). The list is in alphabetical order by the artist’s name.

1000 gecs and The Tree of Clues by 100 gecs
Stone Flower by Adam Beyer
songs by Adrianne Lenker
instrumentals by Adrianne Lenker
Live at Home by Advance Bass
7G by AG Cook
Illusions of Shameless Abundance by Against All Logic
NTS Mix by Against All Logic
2017-2019 by Against All Logic
Resonance by Aleksi Perälä
Spectrum (0-7) by Aleksi Perälä
The Diary of Alicia Keys by Alicia Keys
The Angel You Don’t Know by Amaarae
On The Tender Spot Of Every Calloused Moment by Ambrose Akinmusire
Parted Plains by Ami Dang
Hukam by Ami Dang
Uni Sun by Ami Dang
Tearless by Amnesia Scanner
Because of a Flower by Ana Roxanne
~~~ by Ana Roxanne
The Oracle by Angel Bat Dawid
Live by Angel Bat Dawid and Tha Brothahood
FIBS by Anna Meredith
Varmints by Anna Meredith
Let It All In by Arbouretum
@@@@@ by Arca
Kick I by Arca
Shrines by Armand Hammer
Dialectic Soul by Asher Gamedze
III by Auscultation
SIGN by Autechre
PLUS by Autechre
Live Forever by Bartees Strange
Workaround by Beatrice Dillon
Stygian Bough Volume 1 by Bell Witch and Aerial Ruin
Undercurrent by Bellows
Middle Quest by Bergonist
Countless Branches by Bill Fray
Both by Bill Nace
Species by Bing and Ruth
Truck Music by Body Meat
NO by Boris
Down in the Weeds by Bright Eyes
Letter to You by Bruce Springsteen
Le Piano Englouti by Brunhild Ferrari and Jim O’Rourke
Nest by Brutus
Illuminations by Buffy Sainte-Marie
Regresa by Buscabulla
Extinction Level Event 2: The Wrath of God by Busta Rhymes
All Roafs Lead to the Dancefloor by Carl Cox
How I’m Feeling Now by Charli XCX
Collabs 300 by Chris Liebing and Speedy J
Magnet EP by Chris Liebing and Speedy J
Magnet EP 2 by Chris Liebing and Speedy J
La vita nuova by Christine, the Queens
Speed Kills by Chubby and The Gang
Instrumental Relics by Clams Casino
There Existed an Addiction to Blood by clipping.
Visions of Bodies Being Burned by clipping.
Musick to Play in the Dark by Coil
Kemikoski EP by Conoco (Vladislav Delay)
Up In My Head / Phat Si by Cooly G
Pain Olympics by Crack Cloud
Mystic Familiar by Dan Deacon
Well Groomed by Dan Deacon
Apparition Painting by David Toop
Under the Spell of Joy by Death Valley Girls
Desire by Desire Marea
Have We Met by Destroyer
House of Zef by Die Antwoord
Flight Tower by Dirty Projectors
Cartas Na Manga by DJ NIGGA FOX
Noite E Dia by DJ NIGGA FOX
Meu Estilo EP by DJ NIGGA FOX
Melee by Dogleg
DOLO 4 by Dolo Percussion
Presents by Donald Glover
Flamboyant (Deluxe) by Dorian Electra
The Universal Want by Doves
Help by Duval Timothy
Mirrorland by EARTHGANG
The Dream My Bones Dream by Eiko Ishibashi
Music to be Murdered by by Eminem
Mind in Camden by Enchante
Boiler Room by Eomac
Music for 18 Musicians by Erik Hall
Mahler Remixed by Fennesz
Fetch the Bolt Cutters by Fiona Apple
The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do by Fiona Apple
Fools’ Harp Vol. 1 by Fools
Sixteen Oceans by Four Tet
April NTS Set by Four Tet
Likewise by Frances Quinlan
Alfredo by Freddie Gibbs, the Alchemist
Jeremy by G.S. Sultan
Proof by Galcher Lustwerk
The Talkies by Girl Band
Mi Tierra by Gloria Estefan
New Hell by Greet Death
Miss Anthropocene by Grimes
Impenetrable Cerebral Fortress by Gulch
Impenetrable Cerebral Fortress by Gulch
Eno Axis by HC McEntire
Someone New by Helena Deland
Pure Expenditure by Hiro Kone
Love is the Capital by Hiro Kone
Green by Hiroshi Yoshimura
Poom Gems by Hudson Mohawke
Hyperswim by Hyperdub
Annual Flowers in Color by Imaginary Softwoods
Alphaville by Imperial Triumphant
Moonlit Navigation by Inexorum
Fly or Die by Jaimie Branch
the hum of your veiled voie by Jake Muir
Essential Mix by Jamie xx
Dreamsickle by Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit
Eight Gates by Jason Molina
A Written Testimony by Jay Electronica
Act II The Patents of Nobility by Jay Electronica
Both of Us/Are You Down by Jayda G
No Dream by Jeff Rosenstock
AKA (Japanese) by Jennifer Lopez
The Never Story by JID
Vernal Equinox by Jon Hassell
Seeing through Sound (Pentimento Volume 2) by Jon Hassell
Remixes by Jon Hassell
Listening to Pictures (pentimento Volume One) by Jon Hassell
All My Heroes Are Cornballs by JPEGMAFIA
Healing is a Miracle by Julianna Barwick
Cape Cira by K-Lone
Descendants of Cain by Ka
Descendents of Cain by Ka
Respires by Ka Baird
OCEAN by Karol G
I THINK I’M GOOD by Kassa Overall
Old Fashioned Girl by Kat Edmonson
Loom by Katie Gately
It Was Good Until it Wasn’t by Kehlani
Munich 2016 by Keith Jarrett
Inner Song by Kelly Lee Owens
Inner Song by Kelly Lee Owens
6AM by Kelman Duran
MOON CYCLES IV by Kelman Duran
Boiler Room Los Angeles Live Set by Kelman Duran
Ajai by Kenny Segal and Serengeti
Finds You Well by Khotin
Man Alive! by King Krule
Frozen by Klein
Peel by Kmru
Stockholm Marathon Remixes by Kornél Kovács
Nincs EP by Kornél Kovács
Searching for a Pulse/The Worth of the World by La Dispute
Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair by La Dispute
San Cha by La Luz de la Esperanza
The Fifth Season by Lafawndah
Ancestor Boy II by Lafawndah
Song for Our Daughter by Laura Marling
Exhaust by Lee Gamble
Music for Screen Tests by Leif
Flood Dream by Leya
Floaters by Lightning Bug
The Torment of Love by Lightning Bug
Funeral by Lil Wayne
I Let It In and It Took Everything by Loathe
Don’t Shy Away by Loma
Painted by Lucky Daye
2019 by Lucy Dacus
Fountain by Lyra Pramuk
Fountain by Lyra Pramuk
Devendra Banhart by Ma
Circles by Mac Miller
Mach’s Hard Lemonade by Mach-Hommy
Heard It in a Past Life by Maggie Rogers
The Second Death by Marizio Bianchi
The Consuming Flame Open Exercises in Group Form by Matmos
We Insist! by Max Roach
So Tonight That I Might See by Mazzy Star
江戸川乱歩 × Jan Svankmajer by Meitei
Kwaidan by Meitei
Window In by Michael Vallera
Moments by Michael Vincent Waller
Moments by Michael Vincent Waller
Mike Krol is Never Dead: The First Two Records by Mike Krol
Nature EP by Modern Nature
s/t EP by Monokultur
LP by Monokultur
if I don’t let myself be happy now hten when? by More Eaze and Claire Rousay
Grae by Moses Sumney
Let’s Call it a Day by Move D and Benjamin Brunn
Música Esporádica by Música Esporádica
King’s Disease by Nas
Seven Storey Mountain VI by Nate Wooley
Volume Two: Nightshade by Nate Young
Volume Three: Dance of the Weeping Babe by Nate Young
Idiot Prayer Live by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
Cenizas by Nicolas Jaar
Ghosts 6: Locusts by Nine Inch Nails
Fucking Hell by No Home
Self Preservation by No Home
Destroy Me EP by No Home
Coba Coba Remixed by NOVALIMA
Karima by NOVALIMA
Source by Nubya Garcia
Stress Junkie / Mimetic by Oli XL
Pony by Orville Peck
Okoshiyasu!! by Otoboke Beaver
Forever Becoming by Pelican
What We All Come to Need by Pelican
Set my Heart on Fire Immediately by Perfume Genius
pp.nmlk by Pete Namlook and Jochem Paap
Punisher by Phoebe Bridgers
Stranger in the Alps by Phoebe Bridgers
Up All Nite with Prince by Prince
A Broken Clock Is Right Twice A Day by PTU
What You Gonna Do When the Grid Goes Down? by Public Enemy
The Dream Is Over by PUP
Morbid Stuff by PUP
Purple Moonlight Pages by R.A.P. Ferreira
RKC by Rachel K Collier
Bloodline by Raja Kumari
Duo Exchange: Complete Sessions by Rashied Ali & Frank Lowe
Red Tape by Redbait
The Number of Magic by Richard H Kirk
Lettere Animali by Rosso Polare
Face to Phase by rRoxymore
RTJ4 by Run the Jewels
Haunted Painting by Sad13
Where do we go, now? by Saint Abdullah
Satin Doll by Sam Gendel
Comma by Sam Prekop
The Baby by Samia
Sandoz by Sandoz
Untitled [Black Is] by Sault
Untitled [Rise] by Sault
Self-Titled by Seefeel
Rare by Selena Gomez
Shabrang by Sevdaliza
Yes by Shinichi Atobe
forevher by Shura
ISS006 by Skee Mask
Sleep Reaper by Sliten6ix
HIRAETH by Sliten6ix
Murry Street by Sonic Youth
Sonic Nurse by Sonic Youth
Rather Ripped by Sonic Youth
Perspectives Musicales – Live at Cat’s Cradle 2000 by Sonic Youth
Ecumenicals by Sons of Magdalene
Percussive Therapy by Speaker Music
processing intimacy by Speaker Music
Krekc EP by Speedy J
Collabs 400 by Speedy J and George Issakidis
Collabs 401 by Speedy J and George Issakidis
Collabs 200 by Speedy J and Literon
Pantheon of Me by Spellling
Collabs 300 by Sppedy J and Chris Liebing
Collabs 301 by Sppedy J and Chris Liebing
Thrush Metal (Australia Version) by Stella Donnelly
Trnasient Random-Noise Bursts with Announcements by Stereolab
Aporia by Sufjan Stevens
Losing, Linda by Sui Zhen
May You Be Held by Sumac
Oh Yeah? by Sunwatchers
Between No Things by Suso Sáiz & Suzanne Kraft
The Glowing Man by Swans
The Seer by Swans
Free Love by Sylvan Esso
Gold by T. Rex
Radiolove by Tanukichan
Retribution by Tanya Tagaq
Animism by Tanya Tagaq
Dreams Are Not Enough by Telefon Tel Aviv
For James, To Sleep by Telefon Tel Aviv
The Afterlife by The Comet is Coming
Dare/Fascination! by The Human League
Self Titled by The Hundred in the Hands
Love in the Black Stack by The Hundred in the Hands
Queen of All Ears by The Lounge Lizards
No Pain for Cakes by The Lounge Lizards
The Microphones in 2020 by The Microphones
Songs for Pierre Chuvin by The Mountain Goats
Welcome to Passaic by The Mountain Goats
Getting into Knives by The Mountain Goats
Whoop Dee Doo by The Muffs
Please to Meet Me by The Replacements
Shall We Go on Sinning so that Grace May Increase? by The Soft Pink Truth
Regression by Theories
By the Fire by Thurston Moore
Rejoice by Tony Allen and Hugh Masekela
S/T by Topdown Dialectic
Vol 2 by Topdown Dialectic
Soul Trash by Toro y Moi
The Destroyer 1 by TR/ST
The Destroyer 2 by TR/ST
Tumbling Towards a Wall by Ulla Straus
Punish, Honey by Vessel
Rakka by Vladislav Delay
Ripatti 04 by Vladislav Delay
Vantaa by Vladislav Delay
Multila by Vladislav Delay
500-Push-Up by Vladislav Delay Meets Sly And Robbie
Wonderful Hell by War on Women
High Times by Washed Out
Soaring Wayne Phoenix Story the Earth by Wayne Phoenix
Pray for Paris by Westside Gunn
Rough Trade Session by Weyes Blood
Lamentations by William Basinki
Entre Los Dos by Y La Bomba
EP 2 by Yaeji
Welcome to Conceptual Beach by Young Jesus
BLQLYTE by Zeroh
Ten Billion Angels by Zora Jones
Swag Lee is Dead by ZULI
Numbers by ZULI

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