Maybe it’s just me but the annual album countdown for 2016 seems to have been a particularly hard to compile – no one standout, but very high quality releases overall and especially at the top end.

Though we always say, anything in the bottom half could easily crop up in the top 20 if the poll was taken again tomorrow, it’s just dependent on where our mood takes us, (the tie for #1 emphasising that better than anything!) So, best see the list as a pointer, should you need it, for 50 (ok, 51!) releases that are all worthy of investigation.

= 1. Emma PollockIn Search of Harperfield (Chemikal Underground)

= 1. DTHPDLThe Future (Song, By Toad)

3. Yip ManBraw Power (Armellodie)

4. Mt. DoubtIn Awe of Nothing (Scottish Fiction)

5. De RosaWeem (Rock Action)

6. Plume of FeathersPlume of Feathers (Tourist Info)
6. Adam StaffordTaser Revelations (Song, By Toad)
7. The Filthy Tongues Jacob’s Ladder (Blokshok)
8. Hifi Sean Ft. (Plastique)
9. Thee Alex11/11 Is The Simulator’s Code (Bandcamp)
10. Kid CanaveralFaulty Inner Dialogue (Lost Map)

11. Rick RedbeardAwake Unto (Chemikal Underground)
12. Children of Leir Children of Leir (self-released)
13. Second Hand Marching Band / Beni Hemm HemmFaults (self-released)
14. Teenage FanclubHere (Pema)
15. Book GroupThe Great Indoors (Sportsfan)

16. MogwaiAtomic (Rock Action)
17. American WrestlersGoodbye Terrible Youth (Fat Possum)
18. Casio MTBRetro Techno … (Floppy)
19. Owen McAulayThe Eye of The Heart (Sans Culottes)
20. EtteHomemade Lemonade (Olive Grove)

21. Randolph’s Leap Cowardly Deeds (Olive Grove)
22. The Cosmic DeadRainbowhead (Blackest Rainbow)
23. In CirclesRipples(
24. Andrew HowieScars Are Like A Beacon (Autoclave)
25. Alun WoodwardMusic From Battle Mountain (Chemikal Underground)

26. StonethrowerSwells/Repells (Make That A Take)
27. The TwistettesJit The Jive (Traffic Cone)
28. The Pictish TrailFuture Echoes (Lost Map)
29. El Hombre TrajeadoFast Diagonal (Chemikal Underground)
30. RitterskampSo Far (Wise Witch)

31. Virgin of the BirdsSecret Kids (Song, by Toad)
32. Lomond CampbellBlack River Promise (Triassic Tusk)
33. The Vivians Chamber Studio Demos (self-released)
34. Errant BoyErrant Boy (Errant Media)
35. Fiona Soe Paing Alien Lullabies (Black Lantern)

36. Sunshine SocialReduce to Dust (Electric Honey)
37. Poison SistersBabes Never Die (Fat Cat)
39. Sacre NoirNothing Falls Apart (SSS)
40. Mouse Eat MouseToxic Tails (self-released)

41. The Eastern SwellOne Day, A Flood (Stereogram)
42. Sand A Sleeper, Just Awake (Vineland)
43. RM HubbertTelling the Trees (Chemikal Underground)
44. BatteriesThe Finishing Line (Do Yourself In)
45. C DuncanThe Midnight Sun (FatCat)

46. DropkickBalance The Light (Rock Indiana)
47. Plastic Animals Pictures From The Blackout (Song, By Toad)
48. Southern Tenant Folk UnionJoin Forces (Johnny Rock)
49. Malcolm Middleton Summer of ’13 (Nude)
= 50. Just Joans / GUMS / Hector CollectorsTriple EP (Unpop)
= 50. Tuff LoveResort (Lost Map)

E&OE: What it says. The trial of getting all the links etc above has probably meant that some details are incorrect. More importantly, I’m bound to have forgotten some album or other, so if your favourite is missing then best just assume that rather than it being (IMO) rubbish, it simply got overlooked, perhaps by just being so good everyone was dazzled by its brilliance or it had become so much a part of our lives that it was hiding in plain sight.