Top Albums of 2021

Luka Ardon, Reporter

This year was packed with new music from many different genres and artists. But I will be looking at what I believe were the most talked about albums of 2021 and ranking them. 

The albums I thought had the biggest impact on pop culture were Sour by Olivia Rodrigo, Planet Her by Doja Cat, Donda by Kanye West, Certified Lover Boy by Drake and Montero by Lil Nas X. 

To start, at the bottom of the list is Certified Lover Boy. In my opinion, this album is nothing special. 

The only highlights of the album are “Way 2 Sexy” and “Knife Talk.” All the other songs sound and feel the same. Drake raps about nothing interesting and there is nothing unique about this album. 

The features on this album are either way better than Drake. His album is just filler for the three songs with features that are only listenable because of the guest artist.

 In my opinion, Sour is also very boring. However, I think the biggest highlight is the song “Deja Vu.” The production and unique sound of “Deja Vu” are great. It gives a break from just listening to Rodrigo’s voice because there are no features, but the guitar and drums take a little of the spotlight and it’s great. Not to say the music isn’t good throughout the album; the guitar and drums are the best part of the album but they especially shine through in “Deja Vu.” 

30 is a very interesting album. The listener can hear what the theme of this album is very clearly, which, simply put, is heartbreak. In my opinion, the highlight of this album is “Woman Like Me.” This song is directed towards Adele’s ex-husband and the emotional turmoil of her divorce. 

But most of the other songs are misses for me. I appreciate how professional this album is and how good Adele’s vocals are, but this is just not for me. 

Planet Her is very surprising. There are so many hits on the album like “Woman,” “Payday,” “Get Into It,” “Need to Know,” and “Kiss Me More.” 

These songs are hits for a reason: they are catchy. It’s not a long album and none of the songs are skip-worthy. The hits are all over the album and keep you engaged. 

The only downside is although it is a montage of good songs, there is no overarching theme to the album. So, this album is just good. 

MONTERO was very well done. The album starts off with the song “MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name).” Listeners do not expect the last five songs to be filled with so much emotion. The transition of the songs in the beginning to the end is seamless. 

I believe that the last five songs are the highlights. Lil Nas X proved his musical talent with these songs. And, of course, “MONTERO” and “INDUSTRY BABY” are mega hits. 

This album has it all: the popular hits, songs that prove how great Lil Nas X‘s vocals are and an amazing theme.

Donda, in my opinion, is the best album of the year. It has all the components of an album of the year. It has the mainstream songs like “Off the Grid,” “Hurricane,” “Praise God’’ and “Moon.” It contains a combination of church music and West’s older music. 

West puts so much emotion into this album, which is clearly shown in “24” and “Come to Life.” 

But it has its faults with the unnecessary second parts of songs and some songs that don’t go along with the theme of the album. 

Overall this album is levels above any album of this year that I have listened to.