28 Nov The best music albums of 2021 (for now)
How far away are the times when practically all singers and best music groups planned their careers around the records they were publishing. In the era of single singles and instant collaborations, the way of taking the temperature of success or of advances towards new artistic territories has become a liquid process, more linked to the visualizations, the streams, or the size of the letter in festival posters. However, in Esquire we maintain that passion, perhaps vintage, what are you going to do, to listen to a complete album by the musician or the band you follow. That hour (being generous, that the majority Lacanian under 40 minutes) of immersion in the creative depth until that moment unknown. If it can be with the CD or the vinyl in hand, better, that there is life beyond Spotify or on YouTube.
In these strange coordinates, we propose a radically eclectic ranking of the best music albums of 2021, more emotional than music-loving, in which there is room for those that for us are the highest quality albums of the year and also others that enjoy special relevance for different reasons. reasons, not just artistic. The order is consistent with our algorithm of personal taste and our geographic radar, hence there is a lot of Spanish music, but it is also a clear provocation for us to insult you rebutéis in the networks. We will be very attentive to your proposals because it is a live list that will be dancing until the last day of 2021, to the sound of record news and your opinions.
Best music albums 2021: ‘Puta’, by Zahara
Whoever has followed Zahara’s career for years can no longer be happy/scared at what he has done in Puta. The album is a suicidal journey to that radical contradiction of the pop artist with one foot in the mainstream. Who slits her chest to show what has rotted her inside since she was just a child. A milestone in Spanish music that will try to be silenced by the blindness of those who despise everything that smells like criticism of the heteropatriarchy. But which will resonate for many years in any human being with the ability and daring to look in the mirror and ask certain questions. With some less convincing hip-hop excess, in a group that screams that we are facing a historic album.
Best albums 2021: ‘Chemtrails Over The Country Club’ and ‘Blue Banisters’, by Lana del Rey
Like Taylor Swift did in 2020, Lana del Rey has scored two wonderful albums in the same year. Since that extraordinary Norman Fucking Rockwell. The New York interior artist and Californian facade, an icon of another way of being a star, of another form of feminism, is in that sweet and magical spot where whatever she writes sounds brilliant and inspiring. The history of music reminds us that such fluid bursts of creativity last as long as they last. They come, they go and they don’t usually come back. That is why this is the year to listen to Lana’s records non-stop. Because the land is in a melodic meadow after smoking through the head. Because her atmospheric sound and her hypnotic voice flirt with the light and the dark. With the vintage and the current. With a depth and a light appearance that sounds better on her than on anyone else.
Best albums 2021: ‘El madrileño’, by C. Tangana
What to say that has not already been said about the most talked-about album of the year in Spain and abroad. C. Tangana already has its Malquerer, his global cover letter, his manifesto of the urban Kinki. And rooted that they already copy and will copy so many and so many during the next years. We will see how time resolves the pertinent debate about the macho essence or not of his proposal … Meanwhile, tiritititi, tiritititi …
Best albums 2021: ‘Clamor’, by María Arnal and Marcel Bagés
We approached María Arnal and Marcel Bagés with a bit of prejudice. Perhaps due to the suspicion that they wanted to sell us a new Sílvia Pérez Cruz with a Barna-cool packaging. Only suitable for hipsters who live in a fuet advertisement. What a clumsy perception. The second album of this duo is of hypnotic beauty. An experiment that mixes electronics and traditional music. Square and monastery, as if the scientists/bishops were Rosalía and Bjork, hand in hand. An album to listen to with your eyes closed and your senses overwhelmed.
Best music albums 2021: ‘Montero’, by Lil Nas X
It is the true revolution of the year. Beyond the satanic scandals with Nike through or his exciting performances. The powerful thing about his media explosion is that his world numbers, such as Montero (Call Me By Your Name) or Industry Baby. Sound like an urban-pop hit while they vindicate with a very fresh impudence their status as a gay black man. Who thinks that this is nothing new, to look to see if there has been any other case in history.
Best albums 2021: ‘South in the valley’, by Quique González
Who writes considers that Bob Dylan is the Yankee Quique González, so what am I going to tell you. Well, if you have followed its evolution, you already know the level of creative honesty in which it has moved for years. From those Kamikazes in love who was riddled with bullets back in 2003. To point out something more specific about this South in the valley. It is a more contemplative album than the last ones. A road movie riding through emotional landscapes that undress whoever looks at them more than who sings them.
Best albums 2021: ‘Carnage’, by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis
The fruit of a collective catastrophe. This is how the leader of The Bad Seeds describes this tremendous album that has been scored at fourth hands with Warren Ellis. A sort of musical apocalypse in which Nick Cave’s Old Testament voice sings recites. And thunders on bases marked by electronics and synthesizers. The perfect soundtrack for the extinction of an era.
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