Strange to say of a time of world-historical disruption and catastrophe—when live concerts are beginning to look like relics of the past, touring has ceased completely and indefinitely, and the end of traditional promotional avenues has made it virtually impossible for artists to hype their releases—but 2020 has been one of the best years for Canadian music in memory.

From boundary-pushing R&B to chart-topping indie pop, from new classics from long-time legends to stunning debuts from fresh voices, there’s been such a wealth of amazing albums that when your headphones are on, it’s easy to forget we’re in the middle of a global pandemic. With all that’s been happening, we’ve never needed the sweet relief of great music more badly. So it’s with gratitude that we celebrate our favourite Canadian records of the year so far.