The 30 Best Albums of 2014

30. Shamir — Northtown EP (Godmode)

Las Vegas singer Shamir Bailey made a grand entrance with his debut EP this past June, proving to be one of 2014’s most promising new artists. He’s currently at work on his debut full-length for XL. Released on Brooklyn upstart label Godmode, Northtown mixes the discount disco luxury of a thrifted leisure suit with house music revivalism, the longing of classic R&B, and vintage country to boot. The real centerpiece here, however, is 19-year-old Shamir’s voice, an androgynous nasal croon that sounds both sour and sweet, masculine and feminine. It’s been a minute since a voice like this has come along. — JM