The Best Albums of 2008

While predominantly focusing on R&B music during this time, Beyoncé also ventured into a pop sound with her third studio album I Am… Sasha Fierce in 2008, producing the top-ten singles “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It) (#1), “If I Were a Boy (#3), “Halo” (#5), and “Sweet Dreams” (#10). The album and its accompanying songs went on to win five Grammy Awards, helping Beyoncé set a record for the most Grammy Awards won by a female artist in one night. Lady Gaga . Lady Gaga took the latter part of the decade by storm and revived the electronic influence of pop music that had not been prominent since 2000. Her debut album, The Fame (2008), reached number-one in Canada, Austria, Germany, United Kingdom and Ireland and topped the Billboard Top Electronic Albums chart. Its first two singles, “Just Dance” and “Poker Face”, became international number-one hits, topping the Hot 100 in the United States as well as other countries. Here are all of 2008 albums ranked.

Relive the music of one of the best years of rock and roll. Click below and listen to the songs of the year 2008!

10. Only By The Night (Kings Of Leon)

“Kings of Leon’s best album mixes and combines the weird garage guitar rawness of their earlier work with the radio-friendly melody rock of their future work. It combines beautifully and seamlessly that I thought they were going to be an excellent band for a long time to come.”

9. Microcastle (Deerhunter)

“The aura of sounds and psychedelic atmospheres that are created by Bradford Cox and the gang just utterly encapsulates you from the very first listen. Whilst the middle-section of the album loses a little strength, the end picks up to a very strong finish.”

8. Dear Science (TV On The Radio)

“There is a very satisfying slow build to the opening track, Halfway Home, which ends in a cacophonic crescendo. I am also a fan of the more contemplative tracks; Stork and Owl with its strings accompaniment, and Family Tree with its piano. Both fit seamlessly in amongst the more typically upbeat tracks on the album.”

See more: Kings of Leon Albums Ranked

7. 808s & Heartbreak (Kanye West)

“Kanye played a big part in the sound of modern hip hop/r&b and this album was the key. The mixing across the album is really great as if he suddenly got the ability to mix for stereo.. it’s hard to explain. It’s similar in ways to the way a lot of early 80s albums were mixed for hi-fi, very wide and sparse.”

6. The Seldom Seen Kid (Elbow)

“Elbow has always been a bit arty, but they give this aspect of their music a full flourish on this album. It is a great album but just suffers a little from being a little too earnest in places. It’s not that music shouldn’t be heartfelt – it should – it’s just that sometimes it can seem a little forced.”

5. Deathconsciousness (Have A Nice Life)

“Well crafted album. It’s amazing the number of styles they have in the mix, without placing quality in jeopardy. I can hear hints of Radiohead, Nine Inch Nails, Sigur Ros, Joy Division, Yo La Tengo, and even My Bloody Valentine, adding up to a one-of-a-kind, very dark and droney atmosphere.”

4. Third (Portishead)

“Their best release. Far from the dark trip hop of their 90s work, this album delves into dark atmospheres and claustrophobic electronics. Every song (except the one ukulele number) is wrought with nervous energy almost to the point of breaking. Challenging yet rewarding.”

See more: Vampire Weekend Albums Ranked

3. Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends (Coldplay)

“Best Coldplay for me. So much creative energy. There is a certain magic that this record has that just isn’t found anywhere else in their discography. It feels as though they knew this was going to be their last great album so the ambition was high and you can hear so much passion with every minute. “

2. Vampire Weekend (Vampire Weekend)

“This album in indie gold. The melodies on this album are masterclass. The mixes are great, and the beats are infectious. I was obsessed with the beat in Mansard Roof for weeks, I still have fun slapping it out with my hands.”

1. Fleet Foxes (Fleet Foxes)

“This is folk done well. Folk needs to be poetic, harmonious, and above all have musicianship that can transcend the lyric when there is nothing more that can be said by the poet. Fleet Foxes achieve this and then some. The composition of their work is evolving with their newer releases but this album was just such an incredibly complete set of catchy tunes and enigmatic lyrics and really came along just when I needed something to stretch beyond my discovery of the more mellow Iron and Wine style of folk.”