Look, the absurdity of writing yet another intro to an Album(s) of the Year list isn't exactly lost on me. If you're a purveyor of music review sites, you've undoubtedly already skipped over a fair share in the interest of checking out the actual content. We all had a very tough year, but as a consolation prize, 2021 presented a veritable bevy of good (and indeed great) music. Etcetera, etcetera. Let's leave it at that.
In terms of format, this list is purely unranked. While previous years counted down to #1, that generally arbitrary structure simply doesn't demonstrate the way I enjoy music. It's also not an effective or accurate way to make recommendations. I'm also significantly less concerned about genre as in the past--I listen to a lot of different stuff, and if I'm writing a list, it should probably reflect that reality instead of projecting a false image of metal exclusivity. So be prepared for a little eclecticism.
I hope there's something herein that catches your ear. If so, please support the artists in any way you are able. And lastly, thank you for your readership! You're the best. Yes, you.
Greetings, dear reader. It's listmas 'round these parts, which can only mean one thing: a reflection on the music that has defined our collective and personal year. After the success of our collaborative mid-year list, we decided to run a similarly community-oriented extravaganza to sum up 2021 as a whole.
It's a different approach, but we like it. The era of ranked tier lists is over. The era of non-exhaustive AOTY smorgasbord hath begun.
This list is a collaborative effort, with ten distinct music writers, musicians, and fans lending a few words. My personal collection o' favorites will follow later this week. Hopefully the variety of perspectives results in a list containing at least one or two releases that speak to you! This, of course, is far from exhaustive--indeed, every single one of ye could undoubtedly highlight a vast number of deserving albums not appearing here. Please feel free to leave a comment with a recommendation or two. As mentioned back in June of this year, list season is a great time to show the musicians that we know and love a little well-deserved support, and if you wanna shout someone out, this is as good a time as any.
And, lest it be forgot: a massive thank you is in order to everyone who contributed words to this endeavor. As always, we couldn't have done it without ye!
Enough chit-chat. Let's dive in.
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that wakes us from slumber. Written by a highfalutin peasantry.