Kendrick Lamar, Azealia Banks, & Frank Ocean Make TIME’s Top Albums of 2012

Kendrick Lamar

It’s that time of the year again when critics start sharing their favorites from the past 12 months. TIME has compiled a list of their top 10 everything including albums and songs.

Kendrick Lamar’s debut good kid, m.A.A.d city comes in at No. 2, with the magazine proclaiming the 25-year-old as “the most promising artist in hip-hop,” while Frank Ocean’s channel ORANGE and Azealia Banks’ 1991 EP also make the cut.

The top songs chart is more surprising. Nicki Minaj’s “Roman in Moscow” didn’t make her album Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, but it did receive recognition from critics. “This gloriously deranged throwaway encapsulates what’s great about the rapper,” writes TIME.

However, it was Usher who took it to the “Climax” as TIME‘s top song of 2012.

See the full lists below and weigh in with your thoughts.

Top 10 Albums of 2012

1. Fiona Apple, The Idler Wheel…
2. Kendrick Lamar, good kid, m.A.A.d city
3. Frank Ocean, channel ORANGE
4. Dirty Projectors, Swing Lo Magellan
5. Getatchew Mekuria & the Ex & Friends, Y’Anbessaw Tezeta
6. Swans, The Seer
7. Various Artists, Listen, Whitey! The Sounds of Black Power 1967–74
8. The Mountain Goats, Transcendental Youth
9. Azealia Banks, 1991 EP
10. Killer Mike, R.A.P. Music

Top 10 Songs of 2012

1. Usher, “Climax”
2. PSY, “Gangnam Style”
3. Carly Rae Jepsen, “Call Me Maybe”
4. Taylor Swift, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together”
5. Parquet Courts, “Master of My Craft”
6. Skrillex, “Bangarang”
7. Nicki Minaj, “Roman in Moscow”
8. Pussy Riot, “Putin Lights Up the Fires”
9. The Belle Brigade, “No Time to Think”
10. Can, “Graublau”

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71 Comments

  1. UR2FUNNY

    Nicki!!! :)

    [Reply]

  2. Rassie_Schmits

    You know this is bogus when Nicki Minaj’s “Roman in Moscow” makes the list. Not that I care for “Starships”, but I’m surprised that didn’t make the list instead.

    Does Times even know who Azealia is? I was feelin’ her for a second, but now I’m just over her.

    [Reply]

  3. Ana

    The album list is ok but the song list is awful

    [Reply]

    DSTROCK Reply:

    @Ana, But seriously…”Call Me Maybe” and “We Are Never blah blah blah” are probably some of the worst songs put out this year.

    [Reply]

    BrunoBruno Reply:

    @Ana, i feel exactly the same

    [Reply]

    KaramelKisses Reply:

    @Ana, totally agree! ALL credibility was lost when the list included PSY and Carly Rae Jepson!

    [Reply]

    dzodzodo Reply:

    @Ana, machende ako

    [Reply]

  4. freeeeep

    Queen Minaj recognized for a promo single, SLAY!

    [Reply]

  5. #teamminaj

    how and the hell did roman in moscow make the list lmao

    [Reply]

    Vicki Reply:

    @#teamminaj, yeah that’s what I was thinking! It was just a promo but oh well :)

    [Reply]

  6. Pereezy YMCMB MMG

    This Lists are full Of Bullshits
    Tyga’s Careless world is Much Better than Lamar’s Good kid Mad City.
    Iggy Azelea?? Really?? Like, Seriously who tha F**k Bought This Shitty Ep?
    hahahaha!!! F**k This List Imma Make My own

    [Reply]

    #teamminaj Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, right

    [Reply]

    Ya Fav 1ne Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, thats Azealia Bank that not Iggy Azalea lol

    Iggy is the Aussie rapper

    [Reply]

    Pereezy YMCMB MMG Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, I mean Azelea Banks!

    [Reply]

    Yogi Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, Did you really just say Careless World is better than GKMC??… HAHAAHAHHAHAaaa

    [Reply]

    Outspoken Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, BWAHAHA you are smoking. Coming from Someone with YMCMB as their name smh Tygas album was wack! Running around lyin talking about hes from Compton and grew up in the Valley!

    [Reply]

    GTFOH Reply:

    @Pereewzy YMCMB MMG, Nigga? what type of shit you on? Tyga is a fraud just like everyone else on YMCMB.

    [Reply]

  7. THEDON

    Well done Kendrick.. best hiphop/rap album of the year. simple.

    [Reply]

    3Stacks Reply:

    @THEDON, I agree but that will probably be until Trouble Man comes out, we’ll have to wait and see

    [Reply]

  8. #teamminaj

    but kenddricks album is dope though and franks

    [Reply]

  9. Pereezy YMCMB MMG

    Top 10 Albums 2012
    1- Tyga: Careless World
    2- Trey Songz- Chapter V
    3- Elle Varner- Perfectly Imperfect
    4- Rick Ross- God Forgives I don’t
    5- Usher- Lookin’ for My Self
    6- Nicki Minaj- Pink Friday R.R
    7- 2 Chainz- Based In T.R.U Religion
    8- Chris Brown- Fortune
    9- GooD Music- Cruel Summer
    10-Kendrick Lamar- Good Kid Maad City

    [Reply]

    Nicole Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, What are you talking about? Kendrick’s album is the best rap album of this year.. even Birdman & Lil Wayne said so.

    [Reply]

    Truth Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, You put Tyga at number 1? lmfaooooo kill yourself please

    [Reply]

    YMCMB? Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, Nicki’s wack album is 6 and Kendrick’s at 10? your a idiot lmao

    [Reply]

    The Re-Up sold 35k! Poor Dat! Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, DEAD at u putting tyga at number 1! LMAO!

    [Reply]

    anon Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, what a generic and biased list. obviously you dont listen to other music besides Hip Hop and R&B…..
    At least say best “African American albums of 2012″, thats at least more accurate

    [Reply]

    CHILD OF DESTINY Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG,Best hip hop and r&b albums
    1.Trilogy -the weeknd
    2.Good kid M.A.AD city-Kendrick Lamar
    3.Kaleioscope dream-Miguel
    4.Take Care-Drake
    5.Perfecty Imperfect-Elle Varner
    6.Cruel Summer-Good music
    7.Fortune-Chris Brown
    8.Looking for Myself-Usher
    9.Chapter V- Trey Songs
    10.Channel Orange -Frank Ocean

    [Reply]

    nona Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, ratchet, pure and simple

    [Reply]

  10. What!

    Loving the Kendrick album, it has REAL RAP! .. And hopefully Nicki can bring a real hip hop album next year with features from J. Cole & Kendrick Lamar.

    [Reply]

    AllAmerykhanBoy Reply:

    @What!, Thank YOU! I’ve Been Saying That For Weeks Now She Needs To Collaborate With J.Cole & Kendrick Lamar. They Are Who’s Gonna Reign in The Next FeW Years. PLEASEE TWEET That To Nicki. I Really Want That Cole & Kendrick Collab.

    [Reply]

  11. Nicole

    Well done Kendrick. love the album

    [Reply]

  12. Pereezy YMCMB MMG

    Top 10 Songs:
    1-Tyga- Rack City
    2- Elle Varner- Refill
    3- Usher- Numb
    4- Chris Brown- Don’t Judge Me
    5- Kirko Bangz FT French Montana- Walk On Green
    6- Nicki Minaj Ft Chris Brown- By My Side
    7- Keyshia Cole Ft Lil Wayne- Enough of No Love
    8- Kendrick Lamar Ft Drake- Poetic Justice
    9- Rihanna- Diamonds
    10-Kanye West Ft 2 Chainz, Big Sean and M.Ambrosious- The One

    [Reply]

    3Stacks Reply:

    @Pereezy YMCMB MMG, HORRIBLE LIST!!!

    [Reply]

  13. Ayana

    Best comedy pop album = Nicki Minaj

    [Reply]

    LOLatHaters Reply:

    @Ayana, lmao exactly

    [Reply]

    Deaaaaaaaaaad Reply:

    @Ayana,
    LMFAO i just literally laughed out loud!

    [Reply]

    Kasey Reply:

    @Ayana,
    So damn true.

    [Reply]

    MmmHmm Reply:

    @Ayana, LMAO! TOO TRUE!

    [Reply]

  14. Anthony

    These lists are jokes. Seriously they need to make a new one.

    [Reply]

  15. Jerry

    This list is actually a joke, the only thing that was right was Kendrick’s album other than that this list is wack.

    [Reply]

  16. deelee

    best song CLIMAX? bitch please.

    [Reply]

  17. Miszi

    I’m suprised… sadly. Good that Frank made the list though. Fortune & Careless World should’ve too.

    [Reply]

    Pereezy YMCMB MMG Reply:

    @Miszi, Yeah!!! Careless World and Fortune are 2 of the Best albums of 2012. Man Tell them…

    [Reply]

  18. NavyGirl

    The album list is great but the songs list??? is you forreal about the songs lol ass cant wait for Beyonce Lil Kim Missy and them for next year thats gone be the best year

    [Reply]

  19. Realistically

    GUH! You know you want dis DIH! GUH! I am Kendrick. Lamar. AKA Benz is to me just a car.

    [Reply]

  20. DEAD

    Ya’ll Nicki fans stupid as hell. “Yay Nicki recongized for a promo single” that chick is straight fail. 2013 will be Nicki free, cause nobody checking for her no more.

    [Reply]

    #teamminaj Reply:

    @DEAD, nobody checking for her no more but everybody always commenting about her lmao get real

    [Reply]

    Vicki Reply:

    @DEAD, and what about American idol, viva glam, and her clothing line. Yeah she isn’t disappearing so…..

    [Reply]

    AllAmerykhanBoy Reply:

    @Vicki, Pink Friday: The Pink Print 2013.

    [Reply]

    boi.cold Reply:

    @DEAD, So true Nicki is str8 trash. I’m ready for Eve Missy & KIM!

    [Reply]

    AllAmerykhanBoy Reply:

    @boi.cold, Trash or not you’ll still be heaing and seeing more of her in 2013

    [Reply]

  21. sokleva

    Nas- Life is Good, best hip-hop album of the year, Kendrick a very close second

    [Reply]

  22. Morgan

    Not a huge Kendrick fan, but that’s deserved.

    Loved Frank Ocean’s channel ORANGE. LOVED it!!

    [Reply]

  23. Audrey Hepburn

    I sooooooo agree!!!!! Fiona Apple’s album was the best of the year. Her tour was equally amazing. :D

    [Reply]

    Cranberry Reply:

    @Audrey Hepburn, YAS.

    [Reply]

  24. miles

    Gangnam Style, Roman In Moscow, and Call Me Maybe don’t belong in that song list

    Azealia Banks don’t belong in the album list(It was EP not a album)

    [Reply]

  25. miles

    My list(in no order)
    channel ORANGE – Frank Ocean
    good kid, m.a.a.d City – Kendrick Lamar
    Until the Quiet Comes – Flying Lotus
    Dualty – Flying Lotus(Captain Murphy)
    The OF Tape Vol.2 – Odd Future
    1999 – Joey Bad
    Two Eleven – Brandy
    R.E.D. – Ne-Yo
    Kaleidoscope Dream – Miguel
    Elle Varner – Perfectly Imperfect

    Songs:
    Adorn – Miguel
    Climax – Usher
    Oldie – Odd Future
    Super Rich Kids – Frank Ocean(feat. Earl Sweatshirt)
    Chum – Earl Sweatshirt
    Mercy – Kanye, Big Sean, Pusha T, 2 Chainz
    Kilo Kish – Crosstown
    m.A.A.d City – Kendrick Lamar
    Let Me Love You – Ne-Yo
    Survival Tactics – Joey Bad

    [Reply]

  26. dave

    Lot of country folks at time magazine

    [Reply]

  27. Kyle

    I’m SHOCKED Miguel didn’t make it in the top 10 albums list. His album was one of the most well received R&B albums this year. I personally enjoyed it better than Frank Ocean’s debut. I’m surprised Azealia’s EP made it on the list. Even though it contained only 4 tracks, I loved each one of them; especially “1991.”

    [Reply]

  28. Outspoken

    Adorn was the single of the year not Climax

    [Reply]

  29. relly

    A list without Nas’ “Life Is Good” Miguel’s “Kaleidoscope Dream” or at least single”Adorn” and Brandy’s “Two Eleven” is just not a list we can believe in…

    [Reply]

  30. youbmad

    Smh…

    [Reply]

  31. Jade

    Congrats to Frank & Kendrick. I personally don’t give a f*ck the rest. Sorry if I offended anyone. Keep supporting & spreading REAL music.

    [Reply]

  32. Hugh

    Agree with ROMAN in MOSCOW! Why wasn’t that song on the album

    Somebody that i used to know should be #1

    [Reply]

  33. EdgarC

    Did a deaf person make the list?

    [Reply]

  34. QUEEN AZEALIA BANKS IS THE GREATEST FEMALE RAPPER EVER, AND YA'LL N- WITH BAD TASTE WILL DEAL

    LOL @ Time’s picking Queen AB’s 4 track EP as one of the albums of 2012. When will Reflop do that?!

    [Reply]

  35. 3Stacks

    Top 3 Rap Albums of 2012 will be:
    1. Trouble Man – T.I.
    2. Life Is God – Nas
    3. God Kid Maad City – Kendrick Lamar
    ^^^ you can switch them around but those will be the best 3, hands down!

    [Reply]

    Wayne's World Reply:

    @3Stacks, co-sign!

    [Reply]

  36. LBJ

    T.I will have the album of the year

    [Reply]

  37. nothey didnt

    Where’s Miguel and where’s adorn? n roman in moscow…REALLY?

    [Reply]

  38. crazy kat

    roman in moscow was genious if you really listened. Way beter than stupid hoe. It was comedy and theatrical. stupid hoe was just plain stupid and souljah boy influenced.

    I thik this list is too early. Some albms and songs till will be released.

    Azealia banks hasn’t even put out an album. who knew killer mike put out an album.

    Lupe is so slept on.

    [Reply]

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