Drank the Lemonade

Poisoning 2016’s well of albums

How can one drink the Lemonade if they can't find a lemonade stand?

No artist-fleecing Spotify, not on copyright-infringing YouTube, non-sales-tax-paying Amazon doesn't stream it, and there remained but one single solitary CD in the new bin at Waterloo Records earlier this month: Isn't the idea to disseminate creativity? Some surfing app called Tidal apparently owns proprietary rights to the album (and maybe its origin Texan), so that disc from the corner of Sixth and Lamar gouged one particular pop culture curio for almost $20 – the reason consumers stopped paying for music in the first place!

Will Beyoncé become the first superstar to only license her music rather than sell it? That day looms, not that anyone beyond vinyl fanatics and baby boomers with in-dash CD players in their retromobiles even care. A renowned bard preceding Nobel Prize-bait Bob Dylan birthed a proverb, "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned," and Lemonade poisoned the well thematically and perhaps even vocationally.

What other infidel slayer could usurp the entire hip-hop kingdom (Danny Brown, Childish Gambino, Anderson Paak, Solange, Vince Staples, even sovereign-turned-jester Kanye West)? Although country's revival proved itself at ACL Fest 2016 in the run of Margo Price, Kacey Musgraves, Chris Stapleton, and the original outlaw himself, Willie Nelson, the heyday of Highwaymen and Loretta Lynns still sits at the starting gate in terms contemporary masterpieces and crossover influence. And what about this new trend, walk-off albums?

David Bowie, Leonard Cohen, mortality doesn't absolve y'all from answering for cataclysmic precedents!

Death wrestled 2016 to the ground from the top on down. The fall of the Roman Empire came home to roost on the most powerful nation on Earth, and the soundtrack fiddled as the planet burned. You want it dark, millennial goths?

Have some Lemonade.

Top 10 National

1) Beyoncé, Lemonade (Parkwood/Columbia)

2) David Bowie, Blackstar (Columbia)

3) Frank Ocean, Blond (Boys Don't Cry)

4) A Tribe Called Quest, We Got It From Here... Thank You 4 Your Service (Epic)

5) Margo Price, Midwest Farmer's Daughter (Third Man)

6) Leonard Cohen, You Want It Darker (Columbia)

7) Rolling Stones, Lonesome & Blue (Interscope)

8) Oranssi Pazuzu, Värähtelijä (20 Buck Spin)

9) Doyle Bramhall II, Rich Man (Concord)

10) Loretta Lynn, Full Circle (Legacy)

Top 10 National Addendum

1) Prince, Sign O' the Times (Warner Bros.) 1987

2) Merle Haggard, Down Every Road (1962-1994) (Capitol) 1996

3) Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Miss Sharon Jones (Daptone) 2016

4) Ralph Stanley & the Clinch Mountain Boys, Bound to Ride (Rebel) 1991

5) Guy Clark, My Favorite Picture of You (Dualtone) 2013

6) Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Brain Salad Surgery (Manticore) 1973

7) Earth, Wind & Fire, Greatest Hits (Legacy) 1988

8) Blowfly, 77 Rusty Trombones (Saustex) 2016

9) Jefferson Airplane, Takes Off (RCA) 1966

10) Leon Russell (Shelter) 1970

Top 10 Austin

1) Shearwater, Jet Plane and Oxbow (Sub Pop)

2) Quin Galavis, My Life in Steel and Concrete (Super Secret)

3) Hayes Carll, Lovers and Leavers (Hwy 87/Thirty Tigers)

4) Bonnie Bishop, Ain't Who I Was (Plan BB)

5) Paul Cauthen, My Gospel (Lightning Rod)

6) Survive, RR7349 (Relapse)

7) My Jerusalem, A Little Death (Washington Square)

8) Magna Carda, Cirqlation

9) Brownout Presents Brown Sabbath Vol. II (Ubiquity)

10) Explosions in the Sky, The Wilderness (Temporary Residence)

Top 10 Austin Honorable Mentions

1) Gloves INTL (GTZ)

2) A Giant Dog, Pile (Merge)

3) White Denim, Stiff (Downtown)

4) Matthew Logan Vasquez, Solicitor Returns

5) A. Sinclair, Get Out of the City (Dangerbird)

6) Money Chicha, Echo en Mexico (Vampisoul)

7) Javier Escovedo, Kicked Out of Eden (Saustex)

8) Michael Fracasso, Here Come the Savages (Blue Door)

9) Tele Novella, House of Souls (Yellow Year)

10) Boyfrndz, Impulse (Brutal Panda)

Top 10 Austin Vinyl

1) Stranger Things, Vol. 1 (Lakeshore)

2) Stranger Things, Vol. 2 (Lakeshore)

3) James Arthur's Manhunt, Digital Clubbing (12XU)

4) Riverboat Gamblers, Massive Fraud (End Sounds)

5) Duel, Fears of the Dead (Heavy Psych Sounds)

6) Skeleton, I Hate, I Skate flexi (Super Secret)

7) Cherubs, Fist in the Air (Brutal Panda)

8) Troller, Graphic (Holodeck)

9) Meet Your Death (12XU)

10) San Saba County, Fifth

Top 10 Locals You Missed

1) Willie Nelson, Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin (Legacy)

2) Rick Broussard's Two Hoots & a Holler, Time Has Shown Me

3) The Midnight Stroll, Heartbreak Bugaloo

4) Altamesa, The Long Ride Home

5) Bonnie Whitmore & Her Band, Fuck With Sad Girls

6) Adam Torres, Pearls to Swine (Fat Possum)

7) All ATX Vol. 4: Low Down Violet Crown

8) Los Jazz Vatos, El Jefe (Lounge Side)

9) Charlie Faye & the Fayettes

10) Bill Carter, Innocent Victims & Evil Companions (Forty Below)

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Top 10s 2016, Beyoncé, David Bowie, Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan

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