50. Charli XCX - 'Number One Angel'
Release date: March 10
PC Music found their conduit to the mainstream in Charli XCX. The British collective that turned heads with a collection of sugary hyper-pop first collaborated with Charli on 2016's Vroom Vroom EP, and they're behind most of the production on Number 1 Angel. The resultant project is giddy with adrenaline. Charli is up to the task, as are her guests—MØ, Uffie, and cupcakKe make vibrant contributions over bubbly, sticky beats best enjoyed mid-strobe.
Charli has retained the punky mystique that made her such an appealing pop star in the first place, but she's plunging headlong into virtual realities with this album. There are moments when it veers towards sensory overload, but when it works—"Emotional," "Dreamer," or "3AM" are post-pop anthems that act as gateway drugs to the album's heavy stuff—there's nothing else that sounds like Number 1 Angel.—Graham Corrigan