The best albums of 2019, first draft

Here are the 20 albums to which I’ve given the most attention in no order, although things get less committed in the last third. The surprise was the vitality of Brooks & Dunn’s self-immortalizing project for which they chose supplicants: Kacey Musgraves doing a “Neon Moon” that exposes its space disco roots, ringers Brett Young and Cody Johnson having their leather jockstrap masculinity tested, and Ashley McBryde demonstrating she’s some singer. I’m still listening to DJ Khaled and Jamila Woods.

1. Ariana Grande – Thank U, Next
2. 2 Chainz – Rap or Go to the League
3. Kehlani – While We Wait
4. Charlotte Adigéry – Zandoli
5. Sharon Van Etten – Remind Me Tomorrow
6. Hama – Houmeissa
7. Nilüfer Yanya – Miss Universe
8. Control Top – Covert Contracts
9. Reba McEntire – Stronger Through the Years
10. Robert Forster – Inferno
11. Brooks & Dunn – Reboot
12. Billie Eilish – When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?
13. Jenny Lewis – On the Line
14. Better Oblivion Community Center – Better Oblivion Community Center
15. The Mountain Goats – In League with Dragons
16. Vampire Weekend – Father of the Bride
17. The National – I Am Easy to Find
18. Tyler, The Creator – IGOR
19. Weyes Blood – Titanic Rising
20. Lizzo – Cuz I Love You

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