Vinyl music records lined up on a wall 2023

25 Best Music Albums You Can’t Miss Released in 2023

With 2023 coming to a close, we’ve been reflecting on our albums of the year and have put together this unbeatable list of the best albums that were released in 2023.

1. Lana Del Rey – Did You Know That There’s a Tunnel Under Ocean Blvd

This nostalgic and cinematic album is the ninth studio album from Lana Del Ray (is it just us, or was her first album, Sirens, just released yesterday?!). It explores themes of love, loss and escapism and was released to critical acclaim. It followed the release of the title track (Did You Know That There’s a Tunnel Under Ocean Blvd) and A&W, which was the second single released from the album.

2. Olivia Rodrigo – GUTS

GUTS is the second album released by Olivia Rodrigo, following her huge success with SOUR. This album is another confessional, cathartic album, solidifying this as her unique sound, and sees her deal with heartbreak, fame, and growing up. Its lead single, Vampire, reached number 1 in the US and several other countries.

3. Fuse – Everything but the Girl

This new album is an epic collaboration between British indie rockers Everything but the Girl (Tracey Thorn & Ben Watt) and electronic producer Andrew Watt, featuring guest vocals from Lady Gaga, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, and former Fuse bassist Bill Wyman.

4. Rolling Stones – Hackney Diamonds

This album is a return to form for the legendary rock band, featuring contributions from Sir Elton John, Lady Gaga, Sir Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder and former Stones bassist Bill Wyman. The album is a collection of original songs inspired by their experiences in London’s East End. The opening track, Angry, was nominated for a Grammy.

5. Taylor Swift – Speak Now (Taylor’s Version)

If you don’t know what’s been going on with Taylor Swift and her re-recording of all of her studio albums… where have you been?! Speak Now is the re-recorded version of Swift’s fourth album, featuring 20 new songs that reflect on her personal and professional journey since the original release in 2010. Yes, this girl has been working hard!

6. Billy Woods – Maps

Maps is a follow-up to Woods’ critically acclaimed debut album Bloom (2018), featuring collaborations with Kenny Segal on production. The album also features a number of guest appearances including Elucid, Danny Brown, Aesop Rock and Quelle Chris.

7. Troye Sivan – Something to Give Each Other

Something to Give Each Other is the latest album from Troye Sivan, showcasing his versatility as a singer-songwriter and producer, exploring themes of identity, sexuality, community, and sisterhood. This mature and adventurous album is the third album from the Australian singer, and we hope there are many more to come!

8. Sufjan Stevens – Javelin

Javelin by Sufjan Stevens is an epic and personal album that deals with his spiritual journey through music. Stevens created this, his tenth album, mostly from his home studio with collaborations from close friends, and that shines through in the authenticity of his music.

9. Wednesday – Rat Saw God

Rat Saw God by Wednesday is an ambitious and experimental fifth album. This indie rock album was released following much anticipation after the release of their first single from this album, Chosen to Deserve, three months earlier.

10. Caroline Polachek – Desire, I Want to Turn Into You

A confident and sonically varied fourth album that celebrates Polachek’s love for someone who inspires her to become a better person. It was nominated for a Grammy Award this year and features incredible guest appearances from Grimes and Dido.

11. Danny Brown – Quaranta

This is the sixth solo album by American rapper and singer Danny Brown, released on November 19, 2023. The album features guest appearances from Kassa Overall, Bruiser Wolf and others. The album explores themes of addiction, recovery, love, and death, with Brown’s signature dark humour and experimental production.

12. Jason Isbell – Weathervanes

This is the ninth studio album by American singer-songwriter Jason Isbell (and the sixth with his backing band the 400 Unit), released on June 12, 2023. The album was produced entirely by Isbell himself, who also co-wrote all the songs. The album is a return to Isbell’s roots of Americana music, with influences from folk, country, rock, and soul.

13. Foo Fighters – But Here We Are

But Here We Are is the eleventh studio album by American rock band Foo Fighters, released on June 1, 2023. The album was recorded by Dave Grohl after the death of his longtime drummer Taylor Hawkins in a car accident in 2022. Grohl recruited Joshua Freese to replace Hawkins as his live drummer for the tour supporting the album.

14. Miley Cyrus – Endless Summer Vacation

Endless Summer Vacation was home to the feminist anthem of last summer and a true achievement for Miley Cyrus. You can read our music writer, Megan, give her full review of Endless Summer Vacation here.

15. Alicia Bognanno (AKA Bully) – Lucky for You

This is the fourth studio album by American musician Alicia Bognanno, released on June 2nd, 2023. The album was produced by J.T. Daly. The title refers to Alicia’s gratitude for her life after losing her beloved dog Mezzi during the early stages of recording, which shines through the song “Days Move Slow”, a heart wrenching anthem detailing her grief.

16. Yves Tumor – Brand New Couch

Brand New Couch is a dazzling and daring fourth album that showcases Yves Tumor’s mastery of experimental music, blending rock, psychedelia, and electronica into a sonic collage of textures, emotions, and surprises. The title refers to a metaphor for Yves Tumor’s musical journey which involves changing his style and identity over time.

17. Ice Spice – Like…?

Like…? is a refreshing and upbeat pop album that explores the themes of love, friendship, and self-discovery with catchy hooks and clever lyrics.

18. Jake Wesley Rogers – Love

Singer-songwriter Jake Wesley Rogers has been hailed as the ‘Gen Z Elton John’, and it’s not hard to see why. As well as amazing musicality and lyricism that creates depth and emotion that hits you right in the feels, his outfit choices are glorious… read Megan’s full EP review of Love here.

19. Zach Bryan – Zach Bryan

(No, that’s not a typo) Zach Bryan is a self-titled album that showcases the singer-songwriter’s versatility and charisma, blending country, rock, and soul influences in his songs. The album was released on August 24, 2023, to critical success.

20. Soft Machine – Other Doors

Other Doors is a jazz-rock album that features British rock band Soft Machine’s signature sound of intricate guitar work, atmospheric keyboards, and groovy jazz rhythms, as well as some experimental tracks that push the boundaries of their genre. This is the band’s twelfth album since they formed in 1966!

21. Yo La Tengo – This Stupid World

This Stupid World is the seventeenth album by American indie rock band Yo La Tengo. Released on February 10, 2023, it features a glorious blend of squalling guitars and introspective ballads that reflects the band’s maturity and wisdom, while retaining their quirky charm and sense of humour. This album was recorded and produced by the band themselves during the Covid-19 lockdowns between 2020 and 2022.

22. Jessie Ware – That! Feels Good!

That! Feels Good! is a disco/pop-dance album that demonstrates the singer’s growth as an artist and a person, delivering soulful vocals, smooth production, and honest lyrics over various genres that give the vibes of a 70s dance club. It’s Jessie Ware’s fifth album, released in April 2023.

23. Paramore – Re: This Is Why

Re: This Is Why is a reworked version of Paramore’s sixth album, This Is Why, containing remixes and rewritten versions of original songs, in collaboration with invited artists including Foals, Wet Leg and Julien Baker. The album also features a bonus track called “Re: This Is Why (Acoustic)”, which was recorded live at the Troubadour in Los Angeles.

24. Kali Uchis – Red Moon in Venus

Released on March 3rd 2023, Red Moon in Venus is the third studio album by Colombian-American singer Kali Uchis. Her music blends English and Spanish languages as effortlessly as she blends Latin roots with her psychedelic sound. 

25. Boygenius – The Record

The Record is the debut full-length album by the indie rock supergroup consisting of Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus. The album was released on March 31, 2023 to critical acclaim, co-produced by Catherine Marks and Mike Mogis. The album features 12 tracks that showcase the three songwriters’ distinctive indie voices, styles and themes.

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