15 Great Albums You Didn't Hear in 2016

Rolling Stone critics choose LPs that flew under the radar

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Princess Nokia, '1992'
15
13/15

Princess Nokia, '1992'

Share this mixtape with a powerful girl in your life – and fork over your lunch money, too. Nuyorican MC Princess Nokia is not just a Calvin Klein model, a black feminist crusader and a D.I.Y. evangelist: She is the future. The Spanish Harlem native evolved from anime cyber-fairy to earth mother in her eclectic 2014 debut, Metallic Butterfly. She then served vintage Donna Summer goodness in last year's Honeysuckle. Now Nokia goes full New York underground in her unrelenting mixtape, 1992 – her Sailor Moon cosplay gloves are off this round, and she's not holding back punches. In "Tomboy" she wears a schoolyard taunt like a badge of honor; in "Brujas," Nokia taps into the mysticism garnered from her Yoruban and Taíno roots to cast a level-hundred curse on all her haters and oppressors with a fire-spitting incantation: "Don't you fuck with my energy." We wouldn't dare. Suzy Exposito

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