Best synth pop and genre-related albums 2021

Best synth pop and genre-related albums 2021

Amidst the music­al land­scape of 2021, which was marked by sound exper­i­ments, elec­tron­ic vibes and catchy melod­ies, we proudly present our selec­tion of the best synth-pop and genre-related albums. The past year pro­duced a mul­ti­tude of remark­able albums, and at the top of our list this year is once again an icon of the synth pop movement.

We regret that we can­not link to a full review of every album in this list. All the albums that made it here deserve unqual­i­fied atten­tion and recog­ni­tion. Regrettably, it is often the case that artists do not man­age to send us their promo mater­i­als in time. Whether this is a new trend or wheth­er inde­pend­ent artists take pro­mo­tion less ser­i­ously remains spec­u­la­tion. Nonetheless, we hope to be able to write more reviews for you in 2022.

Despite the chal­lenges and uncer­tain­ties due to last year's pan­dem­ic, the synth-pop and genre-related albums of 2021 have once again proven that the music scene is vibrant, diverse and full of cre­ativ­ity. If you haven't yet absorbed some of these albums into your hear­ing, it's high time to be enchanted by the sounds and stor­ies of the past year.

Here are the best albums 2021

10. Cold Connection – Seconds Of Solitude

Cold Connection - Seconds Of Solitude

Release Date: May 17th, 2021
Label: Town And Towers Records
Discogs: Cold Connection – Seconds Of Solitude
Partially sounds like: Depeche Mode, Erasure, Elegant Machinery
Rating: 3.72 ★★★★☆

The album "Seconds of Solitude" by Cold Connection is a synth pop mas­ter­piece that com­bines catchy melod­ies, eth­er­e­al vocals and lush instru­ment­a­tion to cre­ate a truly cap­tiv­at­ing listen­ing exper­i­ence. Standout tracks include the dark "Strange Kind Of Paradise" and the atmo­spher­ic "Trocadero". Overall, "Seconds of Solitude" is a must for any fan of synth pop and elec­tron­ic music. It is an album that is both catchy and atmo­spher­ic and is sure to leave a last­ing impression.

Listen to 'Cold Connection – Seconds Of Solitude'

9. Beyond Border – Awakening

Beyond Border - Awakening

Release Date: December 10th, 2021
Label: Self-Release
Discogs: Beyond Border – Awakening
Partially sounds like: VNV Nation, J:Dead, Assemblage 23
Rating: 3.73 ★★★★☆

Beyond Border's debut album "Awakening" con­tains 13 tracks of catchy, ener­get­ic and melod­ic elec­tro­pop with influ­ences from the 80s and 90s. Highlights include "What Makes The World Go Round", "Pry Open", "Number 23" and "Life In A Purge". Beyond Border deliv­ers a fresh and excit­ing sound that will appeal to fans of synth pop, future pop and electro.

Listen to 'Beyond Border – Awakening'

8. J:Dead – A Complicated Genocide

J:Dead - A Complicated Genocide

Release Date: January 29th, 2021
Label: Infacted Recordings
Discogs: J:Dead – A Complicated Genocide
Partially sounds like: Mesh, Camouflage
Rating: 3.74 ★★★★☆

J:Dead's 'A Complicated Genocide' is a haunt­ing and thought-pro­vok­ing album that delves deep into the com­plex­it­ies of human his­tory and suf­fer­ing. With its power­ful lyr­ics and innov­at­ive sound­scapes, the album invites listen­ers to reflect on the dark­er aspects of our past while push­ing the bound­ar­ies of music­al explor­a­tion. A must-listen for those seek­ing a unique and impact­ful music­al experience.

7. Solar Fake – Enjoy Dystopia

Solar Fake - Enjoy Dystopia

Release Date: February 12th, 2021
Label: Out Of Line
Discogs: Solar Fake – Enjoy Dystopia
Partially sounds like: De/Vision, Mesh
Rating: 3.8 ★★★★☆

Solar Fake's album 'Enjoy Dystopia', explores a dystop­ic, harsh, yet intro­spect­ive world shaped by recent events. The album main­tains Solar Fake's sig­na­ture mix of harsh beats and Synthwave melod­ies with thought-pro­vok­ing lyr­ics. 'At Least We'll Forget' sets the tone, 'This Pretty Life' delves into the impact of drugs, and 'Wish Myself Away' closes with a sense of hope­less­ness. While it may take a few listens to fully appre­ci­ate, 'Enjoy Dystopia' is a com­pel­ling addi­tion for long-time fans and those who appre­ci­ate Solar Fake's unique style.

Read full review of 'Solar Fake – Enjoy Dystopia'

6. Imperative Reaction – Mirror

Imperative Reaction - Mirror

Release Date: January 15th, 2021
Label: Metropolis Records
Discogs: Imperative Reaction – Mirror
Partially sounds like: Faderhead, Icon Of Coil, Assemblage 23
Rating: 3.86 ★★★★☆

Imperative Reaction's long-awaited 7th album 'Mirror' is a tri­umphant return after a dec­ade of anti­cip­a­tion. The album explores themes of self-reflec­tion and inner con­flict through a mix of power­ful EBM beats and intric­ate synth ele­ments. Each track is emo­tion­ally charged, cul­min­at­ing in an intense and intro­spect­ive music­al mas­ter­piece that show­cases the band's evol­u­tion while stay­ing true to its roots. 'Mirror' is a must-listen album that deliv­ers on every front, mak­ing it a mind-blow­ing comeback for Imperative Reaction.

Read full review of 'Imperative Reaction – Mirror'

5. Kat Von D – Love Made Me Do It

Kat Von D - Love Made Me Do It

Release Date: August 27th, 2021
Label: Kartel Music Group
Discogs: Kat Von D – Love Made Me Do It
Partially sounds like: Black Nail Cabaret, Client, Nyxx
Rating: 3.88 ★★★★☆

Kat Von D's debut solo album, 'Love Made Me Do It,' impresses with its emo­tion­al depth and genre diversity. Starting with a bold bal­lad, the album takes listen­ers on a jour­ney through 80s goth, synth-pop, and heart­felt bal­lads. Collaborations with Peter Murphy add depth, while tracks like 'Exorcism' and 'Pretending' shine with nos­tal­gic syn­thwave vibes. Despite the vari­ety, the album main­tains a dark and mel­an­chol­ic atmo­sphere through­out. 'Love Made Me Do It' marks a strong solo debut, leav­ing fans eager for more from Kat Von D in the future.

Read full review of 'Kat Von D – Love Made Me Do It'

4. Formalin – Love And Nihilism

Formalin - Love And Nihilism

Release Date: June 11th, 2021
Label: Razgrom Music
Discogs: Formalin – Love And Nihilism
Partially sounds like: Nine Inch Nails, Scandroid, Marilyn Manson
Rating: 3.9 ★★★★☆

Formalin's 4th album 'Love and Nihilism' impresses with its innov­at­ive blend of Industrial and Metal, bridging a gap for fans of elec­tron­ic music and Metal since the 90s. The album boasts a cohes­ive design and intro­duces a new­found edge thanks to their drum­mer Cosmo. It com­bines clas­sic Metal ele­ments with Electro and Industrial sounds, cre­at­ing a darkly power­ful atmo­sphere that com­ple­ments the intro­spect­ive lyr­ics. 'Love and Nihilism' offers a diverse music­al jour­ney, from the intense 'Tear Down My Prison' to the eth­er­e­al 'Iron Strings,' mak­ing it a must-listen for both Metalheads and Electro enthusiasts.

Read full review of 'Formalin – Love And Nihilism'

3. Glass Spells – Shattered

Glass Spells - Shattered

Release Date: August 6th, 2021
Label: Negative Gain Productions
Discogs: Glass Spells – Shattered
Partially sounds like: Nina, Ladytron, Night Club
Rating: 3.95 ★★★★☆

Glass Spells' 'Shattered' is a mes­mer­iz­ing elec­tro-pop jour­ney that's as edgy as it is infec­tious. With pulsat­ing synths, eth­er­e­al vocals, and catchy hooks, the album deliv­ers a son­ic thrill ride from start to fin­ish. Each track is a pol­ished gem that show­cases the band's mas­tery of their genre. 'Shattered' is a must-listen for any­one crav­ing a blend of retro and mod­ern synth-pop that's impossible to resist.

Listen to 'Glass Spells – Shattered'

2. Piston Damp – Making The World Great Again

Piston Damp - Making The World Great Again

Release Date: June 10st, 2021
Label: Sub Culture Records
Discogs: Piston Damp – Making The World Great Again
Partially sounds like: Apoptygma Berzerk, New Order, And One, Priest
Rating: 4.0 ★★★★☆

Piston Damp's debut album 'Making The World Great Again' is a tri­umphant return to the elec­tron­ic music scene. Filled with nos­tal­gia and innov­a­tion, it chan­nels the spir­it of 'Apoptygma Berzerk' while for­ging its own path. The album deliv­ers a mix of catchy club hits, emo­tion­ally charged tracks, and a glimpse of hope for the future. A must-listen for fans of synth pop and future pop, this album is a test­a­ment to the band's tal­ent and a prom­ise of great things to come.

Read the full review of 'Piston Damp – Making The World Great Again'

1. Gary Numan – Intruder

Gary Numan - Intruder (Album cover)

Release Date: May 21st, 2021
Label: BMG
Discogs: Gary Numan – Intruder
Partially sounds like: Depeche Mode
Rating: 4.09 ★★★★☆

Gary Numan's 18th solo album, "Intruder," fol­lows the suc­cess of "Savage: Songs From A Broken World." It explores a philo­soph­ic­al take on a future apo­ca­lypse and the planet's sur­viv­al by elim­in­at­ing human­ity. The album retains Numan's sig­na­ture sound, with haunt­ing lyr­ics and intric­ate synths­capes. It's a deep, thought-pro­vok­ing, and dark elec­tron­ic jour­ney for dis­cern­ing listen­ers who appre­ci­ate well-pro­duced, mel­an­chol­ic music and pro­found lyr­ics. "Intruder" may not be for cas­u­al listen­ing but offers a com­pel­ling explor­a­tion of altern­ate per­spect­ives on our world.

Read the full review of 'Gary Numan – Intruder'

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Do you think we missed an awesome album in 2021?

Please leave us a line in the com­ment sec­tion below. We are curi­ous about your favour­ite album(s) in 2021.

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