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Albums Of The Year 2019

Rounding off the decade in style, GIG GOER’s staff present to you the Albums Of The Year 2019.

GIG GOER Albums Of The Year 2019

Every year our inboxes are flooded with an enormous amount of new music, and 2019 was no different. To pick your favourites out of the sea of hundreds is always a challenge, yet we allow ourselves to look back at the releases that shaped the past twelve months.

From rock beasts Foals and pop punk favourites Waterparks, to stunning pop extravaganza of Lana Del Rey and Harry Styles, to hip hop queen Lizzo and genre-defying Bring Me The Horizon, the choices are plenty. Taking into consideration some of the most extraordinary debuts we’ve heard this year (Billie Eilish & Sam Fender) as well as glorious returns from music veterans such as Jimmy Eat World and Biffy Clyro, we feel that we expressed a huge variety of styles that stand behind GIG GOER‘s ideals. Presented to you in no particular order, dive into our Albums Of The Year.

Holding Absence – Holding Absence

There has been a lot of debuts this year, but the self-titled album from Holding Absence is undoubtedly one that stands out the most. Showing a maturity well beyond their years, the band guides us to reflect upon our hurt to better understand ourselves and those around us. Centring around the theme of love, the universality of the topic lent itself to a mutual understanding between band and listener that allowed the album to become a method of catharsis for anyone and everyone who simply feels. The depth of emotion explored by the band is exquisitely conveyed in Lucas Woodland’s raw vocals, blistering instrumentals and chill-inducing melodies that will have you feeling much wiser at the end of the album. Finale Wilt has to be one of the band’s most outstanding tracks to date, as it brings what has already been an intense expulsion of emotions to new levels. A seven-minute slow-burner, the track crescendoes towards a tormenting whirlwind of agonising heartbreak, and as crushing drums ricochet off fervent guitars, you’ll feel your every sense heighten as the texture swells. Capturing the unspoken and indescribable, Holding Absence leads listeners on a truly turbulent ride that veers dangerously close to being uncomfortably personal at times, but they’ve managed to use the power of music to its full potential in plugging the gaps where language fails. (Athena Kam)

Lizzo – Cuz I Love You

Lizzo has absolutely taken the world by storm in 2019, with a recent crowning of Entertainer of the Year by Time Magazine. Her third album, Cuz I Love You, was her first in the Billboard 200 and rightfully so. Lizzo possesses an infectious energy that the world desperately needs right now, with tracks like Juice, Soulmate, and Truth Hurts describing subjects like female sexuality, heartbreak and most of all self-love. Lizzo is my queen of 2019. (Anieck van Maaren)

Harry Styles – Fine Line

With his boyband years truly behind him, Harry Styles turns into an artist he’s set out to be on his second solo album, Fine Line. With a striking confidence and musical grace, the record is a wonderfully-engineered compilation of songs that celebrates all things young and in love. It’s not an album that will sweep you off your feet with a first listen. It’s an album that gradually builds up, revealing its secrets one step at a time. Encapsulating the very best pop elements, with a tinge of rock and soul added to the mix, Fine Line dispels any doubts about Harry’s songwriting skills. With a poetic quality to it, summery Watermelon Sugar brings one of the most joyous choruses on the record, whilst Golden is sure to charm you with its swaying, bright instrumentals. From a shimmering bliss that is Cherry to intimate, honest Falling, and staggering vocals in She, Fine Line ticks all the boxes, sending you off to the dance floor and tugging at your heartstrings at the same time. He may not have shown us his full solo potential yet, but with Fine Line Harry Styles surely proves that he’s got a lot to offer. (Kasia Osowiecka)

Biffy Clyro – Balance, Not Symmetry

Originally written as the soundtrack to Jamie Adams’ drama film of the same name, Balance Not Symmetry seemed almost like a side project for Biffy Clyro. The band took a break from their eight albums to surprise-release Balance Not Symmetry, but it may as well have been their official eight. The album switches between energetic bangers, such as Sunrise, sweet ballads, like closing track Adored, and colourful instrumental tracks, such as Yellow and Navy Blue. A variety of musical styles, and Biffy excels in all of them. (Anieck van Maaren)

Foals – Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost Parts I&II

We would’ve been happy with one new album, but of course, Foals had to bless us with two. Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost came four years after 2015’s What Went Down, with parts I and II released seven months apart. Part I showed us a side of Foals we’d never seen before – synths and electronics shining through while Part II was heavier, as promised, almost the yang to the Mercury Prize-nominated Part I’s yin. The quartet somehow manage to perfectly balance the techno-y sounds of Part I’s In Degrees with the raging riffs of Part II’s Black Bull, the albums altogether are an extraordinary showcase of everything they were capable of, and then some. With albums like these, the fact that Foals continue to thrive in the demise of other bands from their era comes as a surprise to exactly no one. (Abigail Shii)

Jimmy Eat World – Surviving

On their awe-inspiring rock-blasting 10th studio album, Jimmy Eat World once again transform their personal experiences into universal values and stories that truly hit home. Both introspective and relatable, Surviving is a rumination on the toils and joys of life as well as a path to finding your truth when you finally choose to let go of the past. Filled with massive rock anthems (All The Way (Stay) & Criminal Energy) and heart-melting moments (One Mil & Delivery), the album thrives on sonic expansion. Finding the band enter an uncharted territory, 555 is a hypnotic slow-burner and truly a stand out track on the record. With 25 years under their belt, Jimmy Eat World have taken bold steps on the course of reinventing themselves. Balancing on the verge of reality and fantasy, Surviving is not only a soul-searching record, it’s also a classic Jimmy Eat World guitar-driven masterpiece that further cements their legacy. Here’s to the next 25 years. (Kasia Osowiecka)


After the successful release of Made An America in 2018, FEVER 333 were back with a vengeance in 2019 to release their newest album STRENGTH IN NUMB333RS. A band not shy of subversion and tackling political and social issues, their opening track starts with vocalist Jason Aalon shouting that there’s a motherfucking fever coming, rolling effortlessly into their most popular track yet, BURN IT. Producing music described as rapcore and trap metal, the album blows you away from start to finish. FEVER 333 are inspiring a generation to focus on what’s important without shying away from taking the necessary actions to achieve those goals. (Anieck van Maaren)

Maggie Rogers – Heard It In A Past Life

When the bassline of Give A Little hits at the opening of Heard It In A Past Life, the listener is immediately transported into a sonic environment that is so uniquely Maggie. Taking ownership of her artistry and fame throughout the past year makes Maggie Roger’s debut such an important musical contribution of 2019. Heard It In A Past Life is an album made for dancing, crying, loving, and anything in between. Maggie’s reflects on whirlwind success in Overnight, love in Burning, and acceptance of her destiny in Back In My Body. Her down-to-earth lyrics allow access into her world and makes us feel emotions alongside her. Despite its January release, Heard It In A Past Life has held onto our hearts all year. Maggie has thrust herself into the lives of so many new fans and we cannot wait to see what 2020 has in store for her. (Morgan Winston)

Grayscale – Nella Vita

Their first few releases may have earned this Philadelphia quintet the label of being a pop-punk band, but Nella Vita shows that they are that and so much more. Chronicling love, loss, sadness, anger, and everything in between, the work is a life-affirming journey that will have you feeling all of the emotions that are tackled in the album, ultimately leaving you on a note of optimism and strength to carry on. From the utterly infectious Baby Blue to the tear-inducing Tommy’s Song, you’ll experience both the highest highs and the lowest lows for a visceral listening experience as you cruise through the album. The band’s ability to invoke such emotion in the listener makes the album a striking piece of work, but they’ve truly out-done themselves in the amount of genre-blending melodies that feature on the album and bringing sounds that are uniquely Grayscale. (Athena Kam)

PUP – Morbid Stuff

Morbid Stuff by PUP is one of those albums with not a single disappointing song. The Canadian punk rock band have been successful for some years now, their most popular release being DVP from their 2016 album The Dream Is Over. However, with self-deprecating lyrical masterpieces like Scorpion Hill and See You At Your Funeral, Morbid Stuff is easily PUP’s best release so far. (Anieck van Maaren)

While She Sleeps – SO WHAT?

Although a cacophony of noises isn’t generally thought of as pleasant or enjoyable, British metalcore band While She Sleeps turns this concept on its head with SO WHAT?. Bringing a whole lot of ruckus and noise, the hypnotising riffs and explosive instrumentals lay the foundation for the band to explore a whole new level of heavy that sees them venturing beyond their comfort zone. Taking sonic risks as they incorporate elements that are not traditionally associated with the genre, the gamble has paid off as the synth-pop elements in THE GUILTY PARTY and all female-choir introduced in I’VE SEEN IT ALL sharpens the visceral element of the album and offers a refreshing take on metalcore. Without losing their identity and the crushingly heavy sound that has helped the band to get to where they are today, While She Sleeps also doesn’t miss out on innovation and forward-thinking to move beyond the traditional constraints of the genre. SO WHAT? excels in how it combines the familiar and the new to generate distinctly familiar music that simultaneously brims with an exciting novelty. (Athena Kam)

YUNGBLUD – the underrated youth

Following up his 2018 debut album 21 Century Liability, YUNGBLUD released a phenomenal EP titled the underrated youth. With a mixture of punk vibes and rap sections all within a rock format, it’s a battle cry for the youth who don’t fit in with the rest of the world, particularly with songs like original me (feat. Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons) and hope for the underrated youth. Coming across as incredibly authentic and genuine, and not caring what people think of him, YUNGBLUD has a very refreshing, unique sound unlike anything else released this year. In parents, he addresses the issues that parents can be very controlling, having very set views on things that aren’t always correct. This song may well have helped a lot of young people who clash with their parents who have homophobic or transphobic views. Overall, it is an EP that tackles very important themes whilst keeping a fun, laid back vibe. (Dani Willgress)


2019 was truly the year of Billie Eilish. The 17-year-old took the music industry by storm with her debut album WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?, writing dark art pop with strong trap influences. Billie’s signature melancholic voice delivers game-changing songs for an artist her age. Billie is the voice of generation Z, often struggling with mental health, as is evident on xanny and listen before i go. An incredible talent who undoubtedly isn’t finished taking over the world yet. (Anieck van Maaren)

SWMRS – Berkeley’s On Fire

Surf punkers SWMRS are known for releasing albums that are perfect from start to finish. Their 2016 debut album Drive North was their first proof of this talent and this year’s Berkeley’s On Fire follows in its footsteps effortlessly. Embracing wider musical influences this time around, the album births some of their greatest work. Lose Lose Lose is extremely high energy, whereas Hellboy spills the tea like no other SWMRS track has done before. They are truly East Bay legends in the making. (Anieck van Maaren)

Waterparks – FANDOM

Following the alphabetical order of their catalogue, the “green era” of Waterparks brings us to FANDOM. Never ones to compromise their vision and shy away from musical experimentation, Waterparks have always done things their own way, and that continues with their third studio album. Jam-packed with references to the band’s history and their previous work, FANDOM is a study on music culture and hypocrisy of fandom culture. Incorporating elements from rock, pop, punk, hip hop, alternative, indie, electronic, and even R&B, the trio blurs the lines between genres of music, defying expectations and challenging themselves in doing so. From rock bangers (Watch What Happens Next and Easy To Hate) to off-kilter pop bops (Dream Boy) and rap-infused [Reboot], it is a highly ambitious and cohesive body of work, with smooth transitions that hint at conceptual aspects of the album. Turbulent is a real game-changer, whilst heartbreaking ballad-like High Definition is, arguably,  the best Waterparks song to date. (Kasia Osowiecka)

Circa Waves – What’s It Like Over There?

It appears these times have changed them now – in a shocking departure from their previous style of pure indie rock, Circa Waves‘ third album What’s It Like Over There? is filled with a softer, somewhat more cinematic sound. Forgetting the defining roles of who-had-to-play-what allowed them to expand and experiment, and a prime example of this is evident in the introduction of the piano, such as in Times Won’t Change Me. It was undeniably a bold move, and it’s not quite T-shirt Weather material, but given how often bands are criticised for making the same album over and over, the Liverpudlian lads should be commended for stepping out of their comfort zone. Having already announced a new double album for 2020, it’s anyone’s guess as to what these boys come up with next. (Abigail Shii)

Sam Fender – Hypersonic Missiles

Sam Fender has certainly gained a huge amount of traction throughout this year, and his debut album Hypersonic Missiles saw him living up to and exceeding all expectations. Unafraid to challenge norms and the political climate of the present, Sam held nothing back in his scathing lyricism. He shows himself to be a rising power and figure of inspiration for those sick of meekly accepting things at face value, all whilst providing a roaring good ride along the way with his enthralling guitar melodies and dulcet vocals. A jack of all trades, there are more tender and vulnerable moments on the album, but it isn’t short of anthemic tunes that easily fill speakers and arenas either, showing Sam’s versatility as an artist and appeal to a wide audience. White Privilege has to be one of the stand-out moments in the album, as it doesn’t try to appear as more than it is and strips back the fancy to a simplistic looping melody, yet features some of the most biting lyrics in the work. Meanwhile, for those after something with more oomph, the searing saxophones in Hypersonic Missiles and You’re Not The Only One will surely leave you content. Sam has truly set the bar to another level with his debut album. (Athena Kam)

Dream State – Primrose Path

Touching upon hard-hitting themes of drug addiction, mental health and the negative effects of social media, Dream State delve into the darkness surrounding their own mind to pull out something beautiful and full of hope on their ground-breaking debut album, Primrose Path. I Feel It Too is particularly raw and emotional, but even then there are still glimmers of hope. It is clear that this album is going to help many fans who are struggling with any of the topics addressed and I’m convinced it will give them some hope when looking towards the future. (Dani Willgress)

Fangclub – Vulture Culture

Dublin grunge band Fangclub have been around for years and they are finally, and rightfully so, starting to gain notoriety across the Irish border. 2019 was a big year for the band, having supported Metallica and the Smashing Pumpkins and releasing their sophomore album Vulture Culture for the world to hear. Opening track Last Time is quiet and sentimental, but as soon as the guitar picks up and the drums kick in for the title track, the guys don’t hit the brakes for the rest of the album. A deeply personal release touching on mental health and addiction, Fangclub have released their best music yet. (Anieck van Maaren)

Lana Del Rey – Norman Fucking Rockwell

Opening with the already iconic words “God damn, man child”, Lana Del Rey immediately sets the tone for Norman Fucking Rockwell. The dream pop queen has never shied away from subjects like tragedy and melancholy, and the same counts for her sixth studio album. A beautiful mix of soft piano ballads (with Happiness is a butterfly as a highlight) and psychedelic rock, the album was rightfully nominated for an Album of the Year Grammy. Lana explores the subjects of dystopian Americana and broken hearts and does so in her own classic style. To quote Mariners Apartment Complex, Lana Del Ray proves she’s no candle in the wind. (Anieck van Maaren)

Machine Gun Kelly – Hotel Diablo

2018 wasn’t easy on Machine Gun Kelly. After the feud with Eminem and all the media backlash that followed, Colson took a step back, channelling his energy into his side movie projects. While we were eagerly awaiting news on his fourth studio album, he announced that he scrapped the whole thing. Starting from scratch and delving deeper than ever before, Hotel Diablo arrived in July 2019, marking a great return from an artist who’s unafraid of facing his inner demons, and who simply doesn’t give a shit what people think or say about him. With every song acting as a door to a different part of his mind, Hotel Diablo is a conceptual album. Whether he addresses his drug addiction problem in catchy Candy or down-tempo 5:3666, or his suicide attempt in slow-burner Glass House, or talks about how he sucks at love (Waste Love), his confessions are always pure and unadulterated. Hollywood Whore and Floor 13 are full of bite and infectious hooks, whilst the hottest collab of Summer 2019, I Think I’m OKAY (feat. Yungblud & Travis Barker) further showcases MGK’s broad range of musical talents and his ability to float between genres with ease. With a knack for poignant storytelling, direct flow and slick wordplay, there’s no doubt that Machine Gun Kelly has already proven himself a versatile rapper with his previous efforts, but Hotel Diablo elevates him to new heights. Birthed from difficult times, the record is an autobiographical body of work that finds MGK dealing with a lot of personal, childhood-related issues (Burning Memories) for the first time. It is dark, raw and brutally honest, and damn is it real. One of the greatest lyricists of his generation, Machine Gun Kelly is the rockstar the world is finally ready for. (Kasia Osowiecka)

Bring Me The Horizon – amo

When the lead single of Bring Me The Horizon’s newest album amo hit in 2018, it was immediately clear that the band had found a genre-bending new sound. Despite having been accused of selling out, going the mainstream route and softening up, the album has been a hit with old and new fans alike. Songs like Medicine prove that BMTH can embrace the electronic pop sound without lowering the volume. A controversial but successful release. (Anieck van Maaren)

Sleeping With Sirens – How It Feels To Be Lost

Sometimes, the key to re-finding the spark that kicked off everything in the first place is to return to your roots and that’s exactly what Sleeping With Sirens did with How It Feels To Be Lost. Despite the danger for the album to slip into a piece of work that sounds exactly like what the band has previously done, the album cleverly evidences the band’s maturity and growth by adding an extra layer of vigour and renewed zeal that clearly contrasts it against anything that was previously done. Bringing back impassioned screams and heavy riffs, it’s charged-up in all the right places and knows exactly how to get the listener equally fired up. Aside from the sonic return, the album also shakes things up as it sees the band opening up more than they have before, to present a brutally honest account of the struggles that have challenged the band. Introspective and personal, Sleeping With Sirens appear to have nailed down their formula for crafting rock music for the soul. (Athena Kam)

Dinosaur Pile-Up – Celebrity Mansions

Dinosaur Pile-Up have been around for over a decade, but 2019 was the year that the grungers unmistakably released their best album yet. Packed with absolutely dirty riffs, Celebrity Mansions opens with Trash Metal Cassette and keeps up the quality throughout the entire record. Back Foot is possibly the trio’s most successful single, only second to 11:11. Definitely a band that deserves more recognition, especially with their extensive touring schedule. Celebrity Mansions is one to play on repeat. (Anieck van Maaren)

Catfish and the Bottlemen – The Balance

If there’s a band that has yet to stray from their signature sound, it’s Catfish and the Bottlemen, for whom consistency has been key. Their third album, The Balance, carries on from 2014’s The Balcony and 2016’s The Ride with a simple graphic black and white cover, single-word track titles, and more of the indie-rock tracks we’ve come to know and love. From the first word of album opener Longshot, “Go”, to the abrupt cut-off in the final track Overlap, the album remains lyrically robust throughout with an abundance of soaring riffs. It’s unlikely that anyone really expected anything else from Catfish and the Bottlemen, because well, basically, they do this all the time. If both deviating from your usual sound and sticking to it draw equal criticism, perhaps they were smart to just do what they do best. (Abigail Shii)

nothing, nowhere. x Travis Barker – BLOODLUST

With his signature genre-crossing style and two studio albums to his name, nothing, nowhere. has already cemented his position as one of the most exciting artists on the scene. Taking this further with his collaborative new EP with Travis BarkerBLOODLUST sees Joe soar even higher as he opens his craft to new sonic possibilities. Never one to hide away from his inner demons, he once again delves into the depths of his mind and soul, exploring life and love in all of its forms through an amalgamation of vibrant textures, innovative techniques, and piercing lyrics. Balancing on the verge of emo-punk and pop sensibilities, and with a perceptive, sharp hip-hop flow, BEAUTIFUL LIFE packs a punch with singalong choruses and dark lyrics, whilst DESTRUCTION showcases Travis’ excellent drum work, adding a dramatic quality to the track. Building up the tension, multi-layered heartbreaking love anthem BACK2YOU feat. blackbear is the stand out track on the EP. Dark and brutally honest, BLOODLUST undeniably marks a step up in nothing, nowhere.’s sound evolution. (Kasia Osowiecka)

Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes – End Of Suffering

Sounding a lot less angry, End Of Suffering is very different to Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes‘ earlier work. Of course, there are still the more punkish, in-your-face songs like Kitty Sucker and Crowbar, but as a whole the album is much lighter. On Anxiety, Frank opens up about his mental health, setting a more reflective tone for the record. With a lot more varying dynamics compared to other Frank Carter And The Rattlesnakes albums, which would usually be heavy all the way through with maybe one slow song, End Of Suffering twists and turns more like a journey, keeping the listener on the edge. (Dani Willgress)

Wallows – Nothing Happens

Drawing on their signature retro aesthetics, Wallows fuse their old school influences with modern elements on their debut album. With a delicate lo-fi feel to it, Nothing Happens is a surge of swirling melodies and sardonic twists which stand testament to their gifted craftsmanship in creating indie hits. Whilst many bands nowadays choose to follow the path of sonic explorations and try to compose music that would be revolutionary in a way, Wallows stick to what they do best, crafting an album that is raw, unapologetic and simply sensational. With a tinge of hopeless romanticising, they explore all stages of infatuation and heartbreak, and remind us how important it is to always stay true to yourself. Wrapped up in sentimental hooks, Are You Bored Yet? (feat. Clairo) is a blissful tune that reveals the band’s tender and vulnerable nature, whilst nostalgic, sun-soaked Sidelines creates one of the most euphoric moments on the record, despite its bitter topic. From experiencing an existential crisis in Treacherous Doctor to championing self-love and being true to yourself (Scrawny), the record is an absolute musical joy. In contrary to its title, a lot happens on this record. With coherency and authenticity lying at its core, Nothing Happens is a coming-of-age story that deals with intricacies of love and hardships of life as well as a feeling of being misunderstood. It’s as intimate as it is bold, and with a glimmer of hope piercing through, there is no doubt that it will strike a chord with many listeners. (Kasia Osowiecka)

MUNA – Saves The World

Two years since the release of their debut album About U, LA-based trio has MUNA hit it out of the park in 2019 with their sophomore effort. Saves The World is full of catchy electronic melodies and stellar cohesiveness, with all of its songs working together to create an enthralling listening experience. Lead singer Katie Gavin carries each song with such emotion and vulnerability, fully supported by the musicianship of her counterparts Naomi McPherson and Josette Maskin. Saves The World is intensely personal and deals with heartbreak, addiction and mortality. Its heaviness is what makes it an essential addition to our musical landscape. MUNA’s fans have come to rely on their music and shows as safe spaces to be their truest selves. It’s Gonna Be Okay Baby hits particularly hard in a live setting, maintaining its place as the last song on the album and the last song in the set. As Gavin’s lilting autotune drifts across the room “it’s gonna be okay” leaves the listener with a comforting assurance that they are not alone in the world. (Morgan Winston)

HalfNoise – Natural Disguise

Proving that drummers are more than just that, Nashville’s Zac Farro of Paramore fame has been busy making waves with his side project, HalfNoise. His latest album, Natural Disguise, was Farro’s first effort at recording and producing a full-length album himself, and what an outcome it was. The funky, disco-esque feel fuelled by fuzzy riffs and lashings of psychedelia transport us back to the 60s and 70s. Each song is as catchy as the last, but Who Could You Be and Moody Disco Blues stand out for being so infectious, they might as well be measles. Fortunately, the album is disease-free and while it’s packed with a sick grooviness, it is in no way detrimental to one’s health, and thus should be enjoyed in all its glory. (Abigail Shii)

The Maine – You Are OK

12 years of The Maine and what a ride it’s been. Never ones to follow the trends or fall into the trap of conformity, the Arizona quintet push their creative boundaries on their seventh studio album, You Are OK. Leaving the nostalgia of their 2017’s Lovely Little Lonely behind, the new era brings in hope, joy and empowerment, as the band sends out the message ‘You Are OK’ across the world. One of the most consistent bands in modern music, they masterfully balance between old and new, creating heartfelt pop rock anthems. From the high-powered opening Slip The Noose and fast-paced Numb Without You to tender, poignant moments (Forevermore & Broken Parts), You Are OK is a celebration of vulnerability and fragility of life as you find yourself on the path to discovering your self-worth. Taking inspiration from the closing track, a nine-minute long masterpiece Flowers On The Grave, let its lyrics be a reminder that “You don’t plan life, you live it / You don’t take love, you give it.” (Kasia Osowiecka)

Nina Nesbitt – The Sun Will Come Up, The Seasons Will Change

Pop songstress Nina Nesbitt demonstrates a remarkable amount of personal growth in her sophomore album The Sun Will Come Up, The Seasons Will Change with a new lens into life, relationships, and other aspects of her personal life that has been previously hidden. Delving into her past with The Moments I’m Missing, and ruminating upon unhealed wounds and hurt in Is It Really Me You’re Missing, it’s a startlingly candid piece of work that sees Nina flourishing as she builds upon the negatives to create something beautiful. Drawing in elements of ‘90s pop with the catchy Loyal To Me, Nina doesn’t compromise on variance in her sound; the album sees her excelling in crafting tracks that will have you dancing along such as Colder, but also tracks like Things I Say When You Sleep that will have you clutching close a box of Kleenex as they touch your heart with their tenderness. Deeply intimate, the album presents a previously unseen side to Nina, and make you love her all the more for it. (Athena Kam)

Indoor Pets – Be Content

Hitting it out of the park with their debut album Be Content, is Kent dirty pop quartet Indoor Pets. Now based in London, the band has been on quite the rollercoaster, but a controversy-sparked name change and stolen gear could hardly hold them back. Frontman and songwriter Jamie Glass’ almost unreal voice cuts through the multitude of striking riffs and booming drums like strawberry jam on clotted cream, and we’re the scones upon which these delectable sounds fall. Lead guitarist James Simpson also has a hand in producing every track on the album, where old favourites such as Teriyaki and Barbiturates find themselves blending in perfectly with the new offerings. It’s fast-paced, hook-filled, and just about revels in self-mockery. If this record is any indication, despite what their lyrics say, Indoor Pets are bound to be constantly progressing at an alarming rate. (Abigail Shii)