Without further ado, this is the top 10 Most Played Albums of 2021 here at CJRU. These are albums that we’ve spun on the airwaves and just kept on spinning because we loved them and you just couldn’t get enough.
10. Kiwi Jr. – Cooler Returns
Put together like a thousand-piece puzzle, assembled in flow state Cooler Returns materializes as a gaze into the first few steps of the 2020s. It’s a investigation of recent history buried under the headlines and ancient kings buried under parking lots.
9. Laure Briard – Eu Voo
Laure Briard draws influences from pop, garage rock, bossa nova and psychedelic rock to explore the intensity of emotions, the themes of love, sadness, voyaging, magic and mysticism on Eu Voo.
8. Men I Trust – Untourable Album
With layered synths and rich bass tones, Untourable Album is the perfect late-night album. Its smooth and subtle, with reverb-kissed melodies that are enough to anchor a dreamscaped playlist. With such beautiful keyboards and meticulous guitar melodies, the Untourable Album is one to lose yourself within.
7. TEKE::TEKE – Shirushi
TEKE::TEKE features a shinobue, a Taisho Koto and a trombone and fuzzy guitars to create a reminiscent 1960’s – 70’s psychedelic Japanese soundtracks, while maintaining it’s modern punk sensibilities. Their debut album Shirushi (‘signs of great changes to come’) takes you through a vast array of imagery with themes of identity, spirituality, rebirth and the profound exploration of oneself.
6. SHAD – TAO
TAO simply aligns with where we are as a society and a culture. A critique of social media, capitalism and the meaning of Black excellence, it analyzes truths and misconceptions while offering a hand in unity and hope to overcome the insidious situations we’ve found ourselves in today.
5. Boy Golden – Church of Better Daze
Church of Better Daze, Boy Golden’s debut album, is an inspiration. The harmonies are the collective idea of working together and the lyrics are rules to live by. In 11 tracks, Golden Boy redefines the precedent for collaboration, cannabis and common goals.
4. Jaywood – Some Days
With Some Days, Jaywood has built himself a pool of sounds for him and his fans to eagerly dive into with reckless abandon.
3. Arlo Parks – Collapsed in Sunbeams
Arlo Parks’ music is like a warm hug, from your best friend after your boyfriend just shattered your heart. The songstress is a prodigious writer and with dainty guitar strings and delicate vocals to reinforce her relatable themes, there isn’t a emotions she can’t reach. Collapsed in Sunbeams is a debut where a star is born.
2. HOMESHAKE – Under The Weather
Under the Weather follows Homeshake’s depressing life veering from hazy to moody and instilling a pace that’s as slow as syrup, and from beginning to end. Capturing the gloom of a depressive episode, a dark cloud looms over the album’s entire production.
1. Allison Russell – Outside Child
Montrealer Allison Russell, poet, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, activist and co-founder of Our Native Daughters and Birds of Chicago, unpacks her youth in searing detail throughout Outside Child. Russell infuses her music with both the vibrancy and trauma from her city. The album offers a painful reflection on her childhood while still maintain hope as Russell wades through themes of healing, partnership and motherhood.