From Taylor Swift's attempt to dupe the New York Times with Reputation to the many memes birthed by Kendrick Lamar's viral DAMN., the album covers we've seen in 2017 are just as memorable as the music behind them. Below, check out the album art that struck us the most this year -- for better, or for worse.
Lorde, ‘Melodrama’: BEST
Released: June 16
Brooklyn-based artist Sam McKinniss nails this blue-lit portrait of Lorde, which perfectly communicates the intimacy and coming-of-age storyline of Melodrama with its hazy twilight hues and bedside setting.
Lil Yachty, ‘Teenage Emotions’: BEST
Released: May 26
Lil Yachty lives up to his legacy as the “king of the teens” -- all teens -- in this inclusive cover designed by Mihailo Andic, which portrays a gay couple kissing, a woman with vitiligo and high school-aged kids of seemingy every skin color and ethnicity.
Arca, ‘Arca’: WORST
Released: April 7
The cover of Arca’s self-titled album is hardly without artistic merit, but we’d be lying if we said this close-up, teethy, outright otherworldly face wasn’t tough to stomach every time we want to listen to “Desafío."
Harry Styles, ‘Harry Styles’: BEST
Released: May 12
One tattooed, shirtless Harry Styles, one bathtub of pink water and a dash of unicorn glitter make the perfect recipe for this gorgeous album cover -- the One Directioner’s first as a solo act.
Kendrick Lamar, ‘DAMN.’: BEST
Kendrick’s theatrically glum expression coupled with the album’s angry-red, caps-locked title made this cover both meme-able and memorable.
Pitbull, ‘Greatest Hits’: WORST
Released: Dec. 1
Whether you're a die-hard fan or not, we're pretty sure everyone can agree: One Pitbull is enough for this world. Five versions of the bald-headed Mr. Worldwide make this cover a bit over-the-top -- but then again, so is Pitbull.
Kehlani, ‘SweetSexySavage’: BEST
Released: January 27
Creative directed by superduperbrick and photographed by James McCloud with creative design and packaging by Stix, Mark Gierl, Samm McAlear and Bryan Rivera, this sunset-hued album cover depicts Kehlani as the glossy angel that she is, glowing in front of pink clouds and covered in gold glitter.
Drake, ‘More Life’: BEST
Released: March 18
If you thought Drake was stylish, get a load of his dad. Drake's father Dennis Graham sports a magnificent mustache and bowtie in this classy cover for More Life, which is actually a vintage photograph of the elder Graham, taken in the '70s.
Taylor Swift, 'Reputation': WORST
Released: Nov. 10
Taylor Swift made her return to the spotlight this year with the ultimately well-received Reputation, a pop treasure we even included in our Best Albums of 2017 roundup. Too bad Swift's initial album announcement was overshadowed by the dreadfulness of its New York Times-themed cover art, which inspired countless memes upon its release.
Tyler, the Creator, ‘Flower Boy’: BEST
Released: July 21
Eric White brings Tyler, the Creator’s Flower Boy to life with this surreal cover, depicting the rapper surrounded by enormous bees and sunflowers in an orange-hued hillside wonderland.
Migos, ‘Culture’: BEST
Released: Jan. 27
Migos enlisted Italian graphic designer Stole “Moab” Stojmenov for this trippy collage, which combines classic archetypes like doves, roses and fire with shout-outs to the rap trio’s native Atlanta and a red Lamborghini.
The Killers, ‘Wonderful Wonderful’: WORST
Released: Sept. 22
The Killers abandoned their usual pixelated logo and vintage feel for the cover art of 2017 output Wonderful Wonderful, but the result -- a bright image of a hand thrusting a conch shell to the sky -- is more fitting for the lobby of a beachside motel.
Mura Masa, ‘Mura Masa’: BEST
Released: July 14
The Grammy-nominated art for Mura Masa's self-titled debut album is as creative as the music behind it, interspersing an angled photo of electronic mastermind Alex Crossan with rows of text in the vein of Kanye West's 2016 LP The Lifeof Pablo.
JAY-Z, ‘4:44’: BEST
Released: June 30
There are few album covers in 2017 as iconic -- and simple -- as JAY-Z’s lauded 4:44. Here, Jay pairs his album title with only a pastel beige background and the words "THIS IS HIS 13TH STUDIO ALBUM," proving the rap veteran truly needs no further introduction.
Katy Perry, ‘Witness’: WORST
Released: June 9
The freaky alien theme of Katy Perry's Witness art is a sharp contrast to the softly-lit sunflower fields that covered the pop star's 2013 Prism. While we have to give the singer props for trying something bold, the artwork is just a tad too horrifying for our taste.
Future, ‘HNDRXX’: BEST
Released: Feb. 24
Future looks like a classy, well-dressed ghost in the grainy cover art for HNDRXX, the Atlanta rapper's spontaneous sixth studio album.
Charli XCX, ‘Number 1 Angel’: BEST
Released: March 10
Swooning yet? Charli XCX looks like an absolute queen in this lush, crimson-flooded album cover, standing tall in point-toe stillettos with a white rose in hand.
LCD Soundsystem, ‘American Dream’: WORST
Released: Sept. 1
The sparse cover art for LCD Soundsystem's American Dream -- which looks like it could have been concocted using a stock photo and some toying with Microsoft Word -- just doesn't do the Grammy-nominated album justice.
Vince Staples, ‘Big Fish Theory’: BEST
Released: June 23
Vince Staples thrusts fans inside the metaphorical "fishbowl" around which Big Fish Theory is based with this clever album cover, where we come face-to-face with a frightened-looking guppy.
Daniel Caesar, ‘Freudian’: BEST
Released: Aug. 25
The art accompanying Daniel Caesar's debut album Freudian is as stunning as the music itself, depicting the artist climbing uphill a steep structure as piercing sunlight spotlights his ascent.
Eminem, ‘Revival’: WORST
Released: Dec. 15
Eminem facepalms in shame behind the American flag on this album cover, which is provocative but undeniably cringeworthy all the same.
The National, ‘Sleep Well Beast’: BEST
Released: Sept. 8
The National's latest offering was put together from an old farmhouse in Hudson Valley, New York belonging to guitarist/songwriter Aaron Dessner -- presumably the same barn reflected in this dim-lit album cover, which is up for a Grammy for best recording package.
SZA, ‘Ctrl’: BEST
Released: June 9
SZA lounges in a garden against a wall of discarded PC monitors for the cover of Ctrl, a tongue-in-cheek reference to the album's theme of navigating life and love in the digital-obsessed age.
Father John Misty, ‘Pure Comedy’: BEST
Released: April 7
Cartoonist Edward Steed proves the perfect artistic match for the sardonic humor of Father John Misty's Pure Comedy. Look closely: this sprawling, Grammy-nominated design is a twisty game of "I Spy," poking fun at everything from wedding rituals to sporting events.
G-Eazy, ‘The Beautiful & Damned’: WORST
Released: Dec. 15
Is Oakland rapper G-Eazy releasing a new album, or confessing to a crime? With this eerie, blood-spattered cover art, the answer could go either way.