Holiday Gift Guide: 10 albums that impress


Record shop bin tabs
Bin tabs in a record shop. (Alex Underwood via Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The Current's music director, David Safar, provides this list of go-to albums that could make great holiday gifts for the music lovers in your life. Here's what he has to say:

1. Adele, 25 - "It's the easiest decision you'll make this holiday season. Adele's third album is a no-brainer holiday pick for all ages."

2. Bob Dylan, The Bootleg Series Vol. 12 - The Cutting Edge 1965-1966 - "For the Dylan fan in your circle of family and friends, this edition of Dylan's unreleased material is for the completist and the casual listener. It contains alternate versions and outtakes of some of Dylan's most iconic songs."

3. Kendrick Lamar, To Pimp A Butterfly - "It's the most ambitious album of the year and it's worth sharing."

4. Tame Impala, Currents - "The Aussies didn't deliver the commercial-ready hits like their sophomore, Lonerism, but it's still one of the best rock albums of the year. Pick it up for the person on your list who claims they still prefer the full album to the single."

5. Courtney Barnett, Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I just Sit - "She's the antithesis of pop'ternative."

6. Jamie XX, In Colour - "#Hipster for the holidays."

7. Otis Redding, Otis Blue/Otis Redding Sings Soul - "Before you go all digital and throw out your physical music collection, don't miss this re-issue from Rhino. Five decades after its release, Otis' voice will still warm you up this holiday season."

8. Kamasi Washington, The Epic - "If there's only room for one jazz album in your basket this year, this is the one. Get the vinyl."

9. Holly Herndon, Platform - "Get ready to blow minds this holiday season when you give an unsuspecting music fan the coolest album they missed this year. Holly Herndon is the best experimental electronic music has to offer."

10. Public Enemy, It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back + Fear of a Black Planet - "Tired of hearing the Millennials talk about what's cutting edge in rap music? Def Jam quietly reissued these now-classic albums that shaped the history of rap music. This is your opportunity to teach the kids about where it all started."

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