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Frank Ocean, Elle Varner and … SWV?! The 10 best R&B albums of 2012

2012 was the year mainstream R&B became interesting again. Despite the regrettable obsession with pandering to Eurodance trends, and the still-overbearing influence of contemporary hip-hop; this year featured classic vocalists returning to prominence, urban singer-songwriters receiving the kind of acclaim that for the past decade had only been reserved for more middle-of-the-road acts, and creative artists too unbound by convention to be referred to simply as “neo-soul.”

Plus, two beloved acts made unexpected comebacks to critical acclaim and raves from fans.

Which is always nice.

So here are the 10 BEST R&B albums of 2012. Urban contemporary/hip-hop soul/neo soul/whatever else we felt like including…

– stereo williams


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