20 Best Pop Albums of 2016

Rihanna, Gaga, the 1975 and more of the year in hooks

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Tkay Maidza, 'Tkay'
20
15/20

15. Tkay Maidza, 'Tkay'

Australian singer-rapper Tkay Maidza impressed discerning discothequers earlier this year with the Martin Solveig collaboration "Do It Right," but garnered little press for this intelligent debut LP, filled with whirring, densely percussive tracks. She's a better rapper than singer, as evidenced by "Tennies," an ode to tennis shoes, but the winsomeness of her chorus in the M.I.A.-esque "Simulation" should have yielded a hit. The album's standout jam is "Monochrome," in which she revels in her ethnicity and rhyme prowess and tells the rich to fuck off. A.S.

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