The records that grabbed me this year were ones that did their thing expertly and firmly all the way through, whether it was the 2000s-baby-doing-'90s-babymakin' R&B of Tink, the serial-killer-soundtrack drone of Terence Hannum, or the blunted sadness of Isaiah Rashad, just to name a few in my top 10. And plenty of the other ones below were cohesive and successful on their own terms and on those terms only, really. This isn't easy stuff to enter from outside, not because they're "difficult" but because they're concentrated bursts of whatever it is that each of these artist does, you know? I imagine there is something here you'll like or at least discover. I also should add that my favorite record to come out this year is a queer country record from 1973, Lavender Country's self-titled album, reissued thanks to Paradise of Bachelors. It does not make my list because it is not from 2014, so consider it at like No. 0 or something. As for singles: just songs that are fun in a way that doesn't make me feel dirty, or makes me feel dirty in the right way (no such thing as "guilty pleasures" around here, folks), or just sent a chill down my spine when I listen to them.