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50 Best Albums of 2023

By Audiomack on

As we wrap up 2023, it's time to look back at the year's standout albums across various genres.

In case you missed it, here’s our list of the 50 Best Songs of 2023 & the official playlist.

Notes:

  1. The albums are listed in alpha order by artist
  2. Selections were based on the taste of our curation and content teams
  3. Your favorite album didn’t make the cut? Let us know on Twitter @audiomack.

Ai Milly — WTDO

Ai Milly and producer Dethwrld teamed up to deliver one of the most anticipated albums of early spring with WTDO, a 10-track project that set the underground ablaze.

Amaarae — Fountain Baby

Ghanaian-American Amaarae’s borderless sophomore album was an ambitious exploration of futurist Afropop that pushed the boundaries of African music.

Asake — Work of Art

Nigerian phenomenon Asake rode the momentum of “2:30” and the GRAMMY-nominated “Amapiano” into his second album in June, a beguiling collection of sweet melodies and choral harmonies backed by ever-present log drums.

Brytiago — Trap Vibes

Brytiago takes a deep dive into the genre that propelled his career to international stardom. On this EP, the Puerto Rican superstar showcases his innovative approach to trap music with notable tracks like “Demon” and “Dame Luz.”

Buju Banton — Born For Greatness

On his 12th studio album, the legendary Buju Banton showcases his various music styles while staying true to his organic sound.

Burna Boy — I Told Them...

The African Giant delivered his seventh studio album, an uber-confident mix of 90s US hip-hop, Afrobeats, and R&B that boasted the GRAMMY-nominated “City Boys.”

Choplife Soundsystem — Chop Life, Vol. 1: Mzansi Chronicles

Mr Eazi and DJ Edu teamed up and tapped a star-studded list of features to create a dance record inspired by sounds from across the African continent.

Chris Stapleton — Higher

On Higher, Chris Stapleton reaffirms his status as one of country music’s greatest stars, showcasing exceptional songwriting that resonates with a broad audience of music lovers.

Davido — Timeless

OBO reasserted his legacy with his long-awaited fourth studio album Timeless, an ambitious, primarily Amapiano record that boasted the ubiquitous single “UNAVAILABLE” with Musa Keys.

Don Toliver — Love Sick

On his most emotionally charged album yet, Houston crooner Don Toliver delves into the complexities of unrequited love against a backdrop of seductive production. Lil Durk, Kali Uchis, Brent Faiyaz, Future, and more lend guest features.

El Alfa — EL REY DEL DEMBOW

It’s no secret that El Alfa has played an important role in the globalization of the Dominican Urban genre Dembow and on EL REY DEL DEMBOW, he officially crowns himself as ‘The King of Dembow.’

Godsmack — Lighting Up The Sky

From the groovy and blistering opener “You and I” to the Black Sabbath-esque vibes of “Let’s Go,” every track delivers, making this album undeniably one of Godsmack’s best.

Gunna — a Gift & a Curse

Gunna’s a Gift & a Curse, featuring the hit “Fukumean,” marks his return home, blending his signature sonics and production.

Jassa Dhillon — VIBIN

Equal parts high energy and introspective, Jassa Dhillon and his top class of producers and features delivered one of the most sonically rich Punjabi projects of the year.

Jessie Ware — That Feels Good!

English singer-songwriter Jessie Ware’s fifth album builds upon the success of her disco-inspired fourth album, leaning into funk and soul to create a vivid disco record faithful to the sound it seeks to pay homage to.

Jim Legxacy — homeless n*gga pop music

South London rapper-producer Jim Legxacy fuses nostalgic samples with shuffling breaks and universal melodies to create a prismatic collection of pop, all recorded while he was homeless.

Jordan Ward — FORWARD

St. Louis native Jordan Ward’s 2023 proved to be not only his breaout year but also the year he helped push the alternative R&B subgenre FORWARD.

Kenyon Dixon — The R&B You Love

GRAMMY-nominated singer-songwriter Kenyon Dixon set off on a mission to reignite the people’s love for R&B, achieving success through a 17-track opus that beautifully pays homage to the genre.

Key Glock — Glockoma 2

Key Glock's Memphis roots shine in this gritty, hard-hitting sequel, brimming with street anthems.

Kiana Ledé — Grudges

On her sophomore album, the Phoenix singer pens her pain into hits as she reflects on some hard truths about self and past trauma that seep into her romantic relationships more often than she’d like.

King Von — Grandson

King Von’s legacy lives on in this posthumous release, echoing his unique storytelling and further cementing his reputation as one of the most influential drill music artists from Chicago.

Lana Del Rey — Did you know that there's a tunnel under Ocean Blvd

Lana Del Rey’s ninth studio album finds her returning to a more stripped-down and intimate sound, carrying emotional weight through its candid lyrics and exploratory storytelling.

Lecrae — Church Clothes 4: Dry Clean Only

Lecrae once again dons his genre-melding, blessing listeners with holy hip-hop communion and transcending rote gospel tropes.

Lil Durk — Almost Healed

Lil Durk is Almost Healed. But there’s still room for improvement. The latest entry in his discography offers an introspective glimpse into his ongoing journey toward inner peace and redemption.

Mora — ESTRELLA

On ESTRELLA, Mora tests himself and his evolution with a diversity of beats and topics and star-studded features such as Arcángel, Dei V, Álvaro Díaz, Saiko, and RaiNao.

Major Lazer & Major League Djz — Piano Republik

Making their long-awaited return after a three-year hiatus, crossover pioneers Major Lazer team up with South African producing duo Major League DJz on a vibrant new album dynamically infused with the blissful rhythms of Amapiano.

Maverick City Music — The Maverick Way Complete

The five-time GRAMMY Award-winning gospel collective unleashes joyous gospel spirit with their latest album, featuring acclaimed artists like Tasha Cobbs Leonard, Noah Schnacky, Bobbi Storm, and other luminaries from the contemporary gospel scene.

Metallica — 72 Seasons

Metallica’s 11th album captures the iconic metal band in fine modern form, delivering their trademark thrashing sound that fans have come to expect over the group’s sprawling 40+ year career.

Mercy Chinwo — Elevated

Mercy Chinwo provides a sanguine soundtrack for listeners searching for spiritual elevation and connection.

Nasty C — I Love It Here

The South African rap icon dropped his fourth album–a polished, trap-dense collection that nods to boom bap, R&B, and Afrobeats.

Nia Archives — Sunrise Bang Ur Head Against Tha Wall

On her second solo EP, UK’s quickly rising Nia Archives leans into her core Jungle sound.

Olamide — Unruly

The Nigerian icon teams up with Rema, BNXN, Ckay, and proteges Fireboy DML and Asake for his blockbuster 10th studio album.

Paramore — This Is Why

Paramore artfully fuses effervescent pop-punk energy with introspective, coming-of-age songwriting that at once highlights their growth as a band, and honors their punk-scene beginnings.

Pastor Mike Jr. — Impossible

Pastor Mike Jr. provides listeners with an uplifting exploration of faith with a soulful collection of songs of worship.

Patoranking — WORLD BEST

The Nigerian dancehall star returns with his fourth album, featuring legends Beenie Man and Popcaan and contemporary African royalty Diamond Platnumz, Kizz Daniel, and Victony.

Phabo — Don't Get Too Cozy

On his sophomore effort, R&B’s rising star Phabo expands on the sonic world first glimpsed on his 2021 Soulquarius debut. Arin Ray, Ambré, Shaé Universe, and Kalan.FrFr lend guest features.

Raf Saperra — Ruff Around The Edges

Raf Saperra carries the torch of UK Punjabi culture with this debut project that effortlessly mixes Punjabi folk themes with garage, afrobeats, and 90s hip-hop aesthetics.

Real Boston Richey — Public Housing, Pt. 2

Public Housing, Pt. 2 establishes the Florida rapper as a top 2023 hip-hop freshman.

Rod Wave — Nostalgia

Rod Wave immerses listeners in vivid tales of love and loss, as he melodically navigates life’s emotional complexities.

Rylo Rodriguez — Been One

On Been One, Rylo Rodriguez braids old-school R&B textures with a fresh rap flair, spinning captivating tales that traverse life’s peaks and valleys with his signature hard-won authenticity.

Sam Gellaitry — UNDER THE ILLUSION

The evolution of Sam Gellaitry continues as he pairs his newfound passion for vocals with his iconic production.

Stonebwoy — 5th Dimension

The Ghanaian dancehall superstar goes beyond the physical and enters a new dimension on his fifth studio album.

Suspect 95 — Société Suspecte

Ivorian rap sensation Suspect 95’s debut album combines UK drill, Coupé-décalé, and Zouglou to produce a Rap Ivoire classic, asserting his place at the head of one of Africa’s richest rap scenes.

Tainy — DATA

Iconic super producer Tainy is on a mission to bring humanity together through songs; DATA features a long list of his most beloved creatives and friends such as Bad Bunny, Daddy Yankee, Skrillex, and more.

Uncle Waffles — ASYLUM

The Audiomack #UpNow alum cemented herself as one of the faces of Amapiano with this album full of deep grooves and hits.

Valiant — 4:14

The emerging Jamaican dancehall artist has confidently left his imprint on the scene, delivering a momentous first statement with his debut mixtape release—a collection showcasing both his artistic vision and towering potential.

Vayb — MAYDAY

Haitian star Vayb proves himself a versatile virtuoso on MAYDAY.

Victoria Monét — JAGUAR II

After years of polishing her pen behind the scenes, Monét fully steps into the spotlight ready to claim her moment as a triple threat with this shimmering 11-track homage to vintage 70s soul.

Warren Zeiders — Pretty Little Poison

On his debut record, Warren Zeiders delivers authentic storytelling through emotional lyrics, solidifying him as one of country music’s most exciting emerging stars.

YTB Fatt — Who Is Fatt (Extended Clip)

The West Memphis fast-rising rapper debuts with classic Southern trap energy on his official introductory project Who Is Fatt.

FeaturesHip HopAfrobeatsR&BLatinPunjabielectronicAmapianoGospelCountrypopRockDancehall

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