50 Best Albums of 2017

Taylor Swift clapped back, Kendrick Lamar got personal, Lorde threw a high-concept party and more

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Sheer Mag, 'Need to Feel Your Love'
50
22/50

22. Sheer Mag, 'Need to Feel Your Love'

Having mastered the short form on three airtight EPs in as many years, scrappy Philly punks Sheer Mag finally scaled the album summit with Need to Feel Your Love. Thankfully, they didn't tweak the recipe. Need to Feel Your Love features the same boombox fidelity, garage-metal shred quotient and heavy-duty soul-powered hooks (courtesy of mighty-voiced singer Tina Halladay) that made their prior releases so much fun. What's different here is that the band lets its tender side show, to stunning effect, on tracks like sultry disco strut "Pure Desire" and wistful power-pop nostalgia trip "Milk and Honey." Plus, they're still writing some of the most badass love songs ("Just Can't Get Enough") and stylish protest anthems ("Expect the Bayonet") in contemporary rock. H.S.

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