Top 100

Vote For Your Top 10 Albums of 2021!

It’s time to make your list and check it twice! Fill out the form below to vote on your Top 10 albums of 2021 to enter to win a new Rega turntable and a $250 gift card to Plan 9 Music in Richmond and Charlottesville! 5 runner ups will also receive a $25 gift card to Plan 9 and a new LP courtesy of WNRN. Voting is open until Friday December 17th at midnight. Then on New Year’s Eve listen in as we compile the results and share our listeners’ Top 100 albums of 2021!

Contest Rules

  • One entry per person.
  • WNRN contest rules apply to the Top 100 of 2021 and can be found here.
  • The guidelines for eligible releases for entry in the Top 100 of 2021 are:
    1. Albums must have been released for sale between 1/1/21 and 11/24/21
    2. Albums must contain a majority of new material. Greatest hits compilations, live discs from a live series, or collections of previously released material are not eligible for inclusion.
    3. Albums must consist of at least 5 tracks for consideration. Singles and EPs are not eligible.
    4. The deadline to submit entries is 11:59pm on Friday, December 17, 2021.

A few other things to keep in mind… We want to know what you think are the best albums of the year, so give us your list – don’t try to predict the outcome or guess what we like the most. We care about what you think, so tell us!

We need you to fill out the required fields in the entry because we are giving away prizes. If we pull your entry as a winner and we cannot determine who the winner is, we will pull another entry. We NEVER sell our database.

The  list consists of about 400 discs released in 2021 that we played as part of WNRN programming. The options are not intended to be comprehensive, so there is also an option to “write-in” an entry. Please search for an album before writing it in to ensure each vote gets counted properly, and please make sure it adheres to the rules outlined above.

Still have questions? Send us an email at Good luck — and thanks for helping create the Top 100 of 2021!

2022-11-18T13:24:14-05:00December 31st, 2021|

Browse our DJs’ Top 10 Albums of 2021!

We asked for your lists so we thought it was only fair we share ours. Check out Top 10 albums of the year lists from our on-air staff below and join us all day on New Year’s Eve as we count down to the #1 album of 2021 as chosen by you our listeners!

Amber Hoback / Music Director / Mid-Day Host

1. Arlo Parks – Collapsed in Sunbeams
2. Lord Huron – Long Lost
3. Dori Freeman – Ten Thousand Roses
4. Modest Mouse – The Golden Casket
5. Parquet Courts – Sympathy For Life
6. Paula Fuga – Rain On Sunday
7. Good Morning – Barnyard
8. Robert Plant & Alison Krauss – Raise The Roof
9. The Marias – Cinema
10. Joy Oladokun – in defense of my own happiness

On Parquet Courts: Another dose of cold brew and this album keep me awake as daylight savings lures me to bed around 4pm. A nice mix of rock, funk, and tempo; I find myself going back to this album when I’m not sure what I want to listen to. It’s become my ‘default’.

Tad Abbey / Assistant Program Director / Afternoon Host

1. The War on Drugs- I Don’t Live Here Anymore
2. Lucy Dacus – Home Video
3. Jon Batiste – We Are
4. Adele -30
5. Billy Strings-Renewal
6. Hiss Golden Messenger- Quietly Blowing It/ Oh Come All Ye Faithful
7. My Morning Jacket – My Morning Jacket
8. Arlo Parks Collapsed in Sunbeams
9. Gov’t Mule- Heavy Load Blues
10. Tedeschi Trucks Band f/ Trey Anastasio – Layla Revisited Live at Lockin’

On Billy Strings: The songwriting of Billy Strings is familiar with tales of love, loss, and life. The arrangement of his music and his talents with a guitar are spectacular. For those moments where only the true prescription is a glass of rye and contemplation, Billy Strings fills the air with your own sense of Renewal.

Desiré Moses / Managing Producer (Hear Together) / Evening Host

1. Japanese Breakfast – Jubilee
2. Strand of Oaks – In Heaven
3. The Weather Station – Ignorance
4. The War on Drugs – I Don’t Live Here Anymore
5. Arlo Parks – Collapsed in Sunbeams
6. Cautious Clay – Deadpan Love
7. Brandi Carlile – In These Silent Days
8. Sleater-Kinney – Path of Wellness
9. Lucy Dacus – Home Video
10. Adele – 30

On Japanese Breakfast: While memoir Crying in H Mart chronicles her relationship with her mother from  adolescence through early adulthood, while caring for her mother as she died of cancer, Jubliee sees Zauner reclaiming a sense of peace and exaltation. On “Paprika,” the album’s opening track (and my personal favorite), Zauner explores the duality of creating art in the public eye across an explosion of horns and strings. The album’s lead single, “Be Sweet,” is a perfect dose of pop goodness that harkens back to the ’80s in all its synth goodness.”

Bob Mosolgo / Morning Host

1. Various – Highway Butterfly: The Songs of Neal Casal
2. Manchester Orchestra – A Million Masks of God
3. Hiss Golden Messenger – Quietly Blowing It
4. John Hiatt and the Jerry Douglas Band – Leftover Feelings
5. Sierra Ferrell – Long Time Coming
6. Los Lobos – Native Sons
7. Leon Bridges – Gold-Diggers Sound
8. James McMurtry – The Horses and the Hounds
9. Kacey Musgraves – Star Crossed
10. Japanese Breakfast – Jubilee

On Highway Butterfly: I don’t usually include tribute releases in my top 10 but I could not let that happen with this one. Besides the wonderful versions of Casal’s songs on the three disk set it served to educate me on an artist that I had previously overlooked. Going back to the originals was a side benefit I had not expected. Add in the support of a good cause in the Neal Casal Foundation and you have even more to love!

Mark Keefe / General Manager / Program Director

1. Arlo Parks – Collapsed In Sunbeams
2. Tedeschi Trucks Band featuring Trey Anastasio – Layla Revisited Live At LOCKN’
3. Christone Kingfish Ingram – 662
4. The War On Drugs – I Don’t Live Here Anymore
5. Gov’t Mule – Heavy Load Blues
6. Hiss Golden Messenger – O Come All Ye Faithful
7. Billy Strings – Renewal
8. Strand Of Oaks – In Heaven
9. Courtney Barnett – Things Take Time, Take Time
10. Cautious Clay – Deadpan Love

On Hiss Golden Messenger: As much as I wanted to list both of HGM’s releases on my top 10, I felt I needed to choose. So, I chose the “holiday” album, not because it’s better, but because I always rejoice when a new holiday album gets released that’s actually GOOD and not just a re-working of the same tunes that get rehashed this time of year. This does have some reworked classics, but Hiss Golden Messenger makes them their own and then contributes a few originals that are a welcome addition to the holiday cannon.

Patrick Coman / Director of Events & Promotions / Weekend Host

1. The War on Drugs – I Don’t Live Here Anymore
2. Japanese Breakfast – Jubilee
3. Courtney Barnett – Things Take Time, Take Time
4. Parker Millsap – The Real Thing
5. Strand of Oaks – In Heaven
6. Sierra Ferrell – Long Time Coming
7. Matthew E. White – K Bay
8. Torres – Thirstier
9. Big Red Machine – How Long Do You Think It’s Gonna Last?
10. Free Union – No Pressure

On Matthew E. White : So good to hear new music from Richmond’s Matthew E. White this year. While the album struck me from first listen, I truly fell in love after our amazing session with MEW at his Spacebomb studios in Richmond. Hearing him talk about the making of the album and watching the songs come together live has only deepened my respect for one of Central VA’s most vibrant musicians.

2021-12-28T15:48:00-05:00December 28th, 2021|

See Our Top 100 Albums of 2020!

Thanks to the 500+ listeners who weighed in with their Top 10 Albums of 2020! We are busy crunching the numbers and preparing to share the results during our annual New Year’s Eve countdown. Tune in all day form 8am-6pm as we unveil the list and we’ll also update this page as the results go live. While there may not have been a lot to love in 2020, artists found a way to inspire us, challenge us, and transport us. Whether it was rock’s old guard burnishing their legacy with great new albums (Dylan! Springsteen!), newer artists who burst onto the scene or broke through in a big way this year, or some Central Virginia’s best homegrown artists releasing excellent records, this list (YOUR list!) is a great snapshot of the diverse and wonderful world of music that carried us through highs and lows of this year. Thanks again and check out the list below!

Top Albums of 2020:

100-81 / 80-61 / 60-41 /40-21 / 20-1

(Full Text List)

2021-02-22T14:35:22-05:00December 30th, 2020|

WNRN’s Top 100 Albums of 2018

Thanks to everyone for voting on the Top Albums of 2018! You can see the full list below

1. Leon Bridges – Good Thing
2. Brandi Carlile – By the Way, I Forgive You
3. Lucy Dacus – Historian
4. Neko Case – Hell-On
5. Tash Sultana – Flow State
6. The Marcus King Band – Carolina Confessions
7. Janelle Monae – Dirty Computer
8. Gold Connections – Popular Fiction
9. Israel Nash – Lifted
10. Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever – Hope Downs
11. Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – Tearing at the Seams
12. Father John Misty – God’s Favorite Customer
13. Shemekia Copeland – America’s Child
14. Courtney Barnett – Tell Me How You Really Feel
15. Angelique Kidjo – Remain In Light
16. Lake Street Dive – Free Yourself Up
17. Mark Knopfler – Down the Road Wherever
18. Middle Kids – Lost Friends
19. Dawes – Passwords
20. Elvis Costello & The Imposters – Look Now
21. Death Cab for Cutie – Thank You for Today
22. Dave Matthews Band – Come Tomorrow
23. Kurt Vile – Bottle It In
24. The Wood Brothers – One Drop of Truth
25. St. Paul & The Broken Bones – Young Sick Camellia
26. Brent Cobb – Providence Canyon
27. Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit – Live at the Ryman
28. Dr. Dog – Critical Equation
29. Amos Lee – No More Darkness, No More Light
30. Anderson East – Encore
31. Lord Huron – Vide Noir
32. Aaron Lee Tasjan – Karma For Cheap
33. Various Artists – Johnny Cash: Forever Words
34. Alejandro Escovedo – The Crossing
35. Charley Crockett – Lonesome as a Shadow
36. The Decemberists – I’ll Be Your Girl
37. Rainbow Kitten Suprise – How To: Friend, Love, Freefall
38. First Aid Kit – Ruins
39. John Prine – The Tree of Forgiveness
40. Sons of Bill – Oh God Ma’am
41. Shakey Graves – Can’t Wake Up
42. Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real – Forget About Georgia
43. Florence + the Machine – High as Hope
44. Strong Water – Bearfoot
45. Ruston Kelly – Dying Star
46. Trampled by Turtles – Life Is Good on the Open Road
47. Free Union – Free Union EP
48. Ziggy Marley – Rebellion Rises
49. boygenius – boygenius EP
50. Gregory Alan Isakov – Evening Machines
51. Rayland Baxter – Wide Awake
52. Rubblebucket – Sun Machine
53. The Record Company – All of This Life
54. Old Crow Medicine Show – Volunteer
55. Jim James – Uniform Distortion
56. River Whyless – Kindness, A Rebel
57. Tom Petty – An American Treasure
58. Caroline Rose – Loner
59. John Hiatt – The Eclipse Sessions
60. David Byrne – American Utopia
61. Hiss Golden Messenger – Virgo Fool
62. Mt. Joy – Mt. Joy
63. Phosphorescent – C’est La Vie
64. Natalie Prass – The Future and the Past
65. Soccer Mommy – Clean
66. Hop Along – Bark Your Head Off, Dog
67. Mumford & Sons – Delta
68. I’m With Her – See You Around
69. Rob Cheatham – Villians and Ghosts
70. Hippo Campus – Bambi
71. King Tuff – The Other
72. Amanda Shires – To the Sunset
73. Kacey Musgraves – Golden Hour
74. Horse Feathers – Appreciation
75. Iron & Wine – Weed Garden
76. MGMT – Little Dark Age
77. The War and Treaty – Healing Tide
78. John Butler Trio – Home
79. Charles Bradley – Black Velvet
80. Calexico – The Thread That Keeps Us
81. Eels – The Deconstruction
82. Sam Lewis – Loversity
83. Villagers – The Art of Pretending to Swim
84. Wild Child – Expectations
85. Tall Heights – Pretty Colors for Your Actions
86. Ray LaMontagne – Part of the Light
87. Caamp – Boys (Side B)
88. Gorillaz – The Now Now
89. Borns – Blue Madonna
90. Sarah White – High Flyer
91. Abso Facto – Thousand Pieces
92. Kamasi Washington – Heaven and Earth
93. Lo Moon – Lo Moon
94. Sleepwalkers – Ages
95. Darlingside – Extralife
96. The Bright Light Social Hour – Missing Something
97. Brazilian Girls – Let’s Make Love
98. The Internet – Hive Mind
99. Mitski – Be the Cowboy
100. Richard Thompson – 13 Rivers

2020-12-30T12:10:21-05:00December 31st, 2018|

WNRN’s Top 100 Albums of 2017

Thanks to everyone for voting on the Top Albums of 2018! As we gear up for the final countdown on New Year’s Eve, we’re revisiting last year’s Top 100 on air throughout the day. You can see the full list and listen to songs from each album on our Spotify playlist below.

  1. The War on Drugs, A Deeper Understanding
  2. Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit, The Nashville Sound
  3. Ryan Adams, Prisoner
  4. Spoon, Hot Thoughts
  5. Father John Misty, Pure Comedy
  6. Beck, Colors
  7. LCD Soundsystem, American Dream
  8. The National, Sleep Well Beast
  9. Fleet Foxes, Crack-Up
  10. Alt-J, Relaxer
  11. Chris Stapleton, From A Room: Volume 1
  12. Kendrick Lamar, DAMN.
  13. Sylvan Esso, What Now
  14. Hiss Golden Messenger, Hallelujah Anyhow
  15. Chicano Batman, Freedom Is Free
  16. St. Vincent, Masseduction
  17. Gov’t Mule, Revolution Come… Revolution Go
  18. Iron and Wine, Beast Epic
  19. Big Thief, Capacity
  20. Margo Price, All American Made
  21. Arcade Fire, Everything Now
  22. JD McPherson, Undividided Heart and Soul
  23. Alvvays, Antisocialites
  24. Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile, Lotta Sea Lice
  25. Deer Tick, Deer Tick Vol. 1
  26. David Wax Museum, Electric Artifacts
  27. Portugal. The Man, Woodstock
  28. Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real, Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real
  29. Dan Auerbach, Waiting on a Song
  30. The xx, I See You
  31. Deer Tick, Deer Tick Vol. 2
  32. Lorde, Melodrama
  33. The New Pornographers, Whiteout Conditions
  34. Chris Robinson Brotherhood, Barefoot in the Head
  35. Chris Stapleton, From A Room: Volume 2
  36. Turnpike Troubadours, A Long Way from Your Heart
  37. Gregg Allman, Southern Blood
  38. Kamasi Washington, Harmony of Difference
  39. David Rawlings, Poor David’s Almanack
  40. Valerie June, The Order of Time
  41. Future Islands, The Far Field
  42. Cold War Kids, L.A. Divine
  43. The Shins, Heartworms
  44. Jack Johnson, All the Light Above It Too
  45. Broken Social Scene, Hug of Thunder
  46. The Lone Bellow, Walk Into a Storm
  47. Aimee Mann, Mental Illness
  48. Maggie Rogers, Now That the Light Is Fading [EP]
  49. Middle Kids, Middle Kids EP
  50. The Steel Wheels, Wild As We Came Here
  51. Laura Marling, Semper Femina
  52. Tyler Childers, Purgatory
  53. Flo Morrissey and Matthew E. White, Gentlewoman, Ruby Man
  54. Phoebe Bridgers, Stranger in the Alps
  55. Steve Earle and the Dukes, So You Wanna Be an Outlaw
  56. Jeb Loy Nichols, Country Hustle
  57. Foo Fighters, Concrete and Gold
  58. Hurray for the Riff Raff, The Navigator
  59. Rhiannon Giddens, Freedom Highway
  60. Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears, Backlash
  61. Old 97’s featuring Brandi Carlile, Graveyard Whistling
  62. Kevin Morby, City Music
  63. Josh Ritter, Gathering
  64. Elbow, Little Fictions
  65. Grizzly Bear, Painted Ruins
  66. Son Volt, Notes of Blue
  67. Queens of the Stone Age, Villains
  68. Billy Strings, Turmoil and Tinfoil
  69. Blitzen Trapper, Wild and Reckless
  70. The Barr Brothers, Queen of the Breakers
  71. U2, Songs of Experience
  72. Radiohead, Ok Computer: OKNOTOK 1997 – 2017
  73. Beach Fossils, Somersault
  74. Sharon Jones and The Dap Kings, Soul of a Woman
  75. The Killers, Wonderful Wonderful
  76. Alison Krauss, Windy City
  77. I’m With Her, Little Lies EP
  78. The Infamous Stringdusters, Laws of Gravity
  79. This is the Kit, Moonshine Freeze
  80. Waxahatchee, Out in the Storm
  81. Strand of Oaks, Hard Love
  82. Tennis, Yours Conditionally
  83. Phoenix, Ti Amo
  84. Scott Miller, Ladies Auxiliary
  85. Depeche Mode, Spirit
  86. Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn, Echo in the Valley
  87. Mavis Staples, If All I Was Was Black
  88. Thundercat, Drunk
  89. Langhorne Slim, Lost at Last Vol. 1
  90. Kendall Street Company, Space for Days
  91. Taj Mahal and Keb Mo, TajMo
  92. Delbert McClinton and Self-Made Men, Prick of the Litter
  93. Electric Guest, Plural
  94. Manchester Orchestra, A Black Mile to the Surface
  95. Anthony Rosano & The Conqueroos, Anthony Rosano & The Conqueroos
  96. Real Estate, In Mind
  97. Chamomile and Whiskey, Sweet Afton
  98. John Moreland, Big Bad Luv
  99. Jessica Lea Mayfield, Sorry Is Gone
  100. Blondie, Pollinator

2020-12-30T12:12:51-05:00December 28th, 2018|