’11 Best R&B Albums: #1 Frank Ocean Nostalgia, Ultra

It almost feels wrong that we didn’t pay for Frank Ocean’s Nostalgia, Ultra. Released for free at the top of the year, Frank turned the tables on traditional R&B and hipster cool. He clipped the Eagles’ wings on “American Wedding” and challenged the status quo on “We All Try”. “Swim Good” was excellent, but then there was “Novacane”. An easy bass and a melodic hook caught everyone’s attention and helped give Def Jam’s red-shirted rookie the push he needed. Ultra magnetic move.

Previously: #5 Marsha Ambrosius Late Nights & Early Mornings l #4 Beyoncé 4 l #3 The Weeknd House Of Balloons l #2 Terius Nash 1977

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50 Comments
  • Awesome

    should of been Take care

  • Brrrrrrrr

    @Awesome NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOPE

  • toad3527

    agreed

  • Stephen

    All 3 Weeknd tapes >>>>>>>> this

  • kareem

    @Awesome
    for real, though! lol

  • RC

    People sleeping on that Strawberry Swing song.

    That was a damn good choice for an opening song considering I heard Novacane first. I was expecting a totally different mixtape just from hearing Novacane.

    I have no problem with this being number 1. It was awesome.

    “When we were kids, we hand painted Strawberries on a Swing.” Just from that opening line, I was like this is a different type dude here.

  • kareem

    weeknd’s a fucking melodramatic drug addict.

  • M.T

    Well deserved, It was a dope album. fav track was “We all Try”.

  • Word

    Agreed. RR got this list right even tho I havent heard that Dream album but this shit was FIRE and by FAR best PROJECT (not just album and mixtapes) I have heard all year.

  • Stephen

    @RC

    I do like that Strawberry Swing. I fuck with Coldplay, and I liked how he flipped it

  • DC Sharpshooter

    Sorry but once again your wrong don’t let the Hov approval fool you, The Weeknd had best R&B album I probably heard in 4 to 5 years… dude is untouchable.

  • RC

    @DC

    Echos Of Silence was a step back in my humble opinion. But his BEST song to date was on that mixtape.

  • D!A!E

    BOOOOO!! this shit sucked…C’mon RapRadar…REALLY?….Fuck that. The only thing you got right was L.A.S.E.R.S. sucked ass….Yall should stop doing this every year or do it right

  • Mr. 3-Times

    New Yorkers gravitated towards this album heavy for some reason. Frank speak to that audience. The Weeknd speaks to the same audience knew The College Drop Out was a classic after 1 listen.

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  • DJ Shyne Tyme

    r and b Album of the year by far..was completely blown away by it..the only reason i dl it in the first place was cause of his connection to OF and i thought the front cover was dope..happy as hell i did tho

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  • cheddar bob, BITCH

    The Weeknd dropped 3 SOLID RnB mixtapes this year. All of them on par with, or better than, Nostalgia.

    RR is just on Frank Oceans dick because he’s cosigned by Hov and Ye. Stop letting politics affect your judgement, B. dot.

  • ItsTheTruth

    Yall sleepin on my nigga Lokz

  • B. Walker

    Not better than Marsha’s or Dream’s shit.

  • King of Diamonds Stripper Pole Sanitizor

    i agree this whole album was dope

  • 2dopeboyz

    What the fuck is this, since abel doesnt pay to promote his music on here its obvious he wont be number 1. Ask 10 niggas what the best r and b albums of 2011 were and all would say hob.

  • Swa

    We All Try was dope except its about homos good song tho. Strawberry Swing is scary! but prolly my favorite and of course American Wedding is just sad.

  • Kemosabi

    This one y’all got right lol

  • jburg

    This album was a masterpiece. Probably the best album of the year. Strawberry Swing was amazing.

  • BIgD

    dope album but not better then house of balloons. that body of work was something else. this was good but HOB just blew my mind from the production to the signing

  • me too

    how did drake not make number one…smh

  • Craddyshaq

    um.. F.A.M.E.

  • Mike

    Nostaligia Ultra is not an album!! its a mixtape. Its a few songs on this MXTAPE where he’s clearly singing over, Coldplay, MGMT, and Mr. Hudson tracks. Every song was not an original song.

  • Semaj is the best rapper alive

    Co-Sign^

    The Weeknd actually had his own original songs, in all 3 of his mixtapes

  • BirdMan

    Fuck this. Drake had the #1 R&B Album of 2011..

    #CanadaDry

  • hands

    VERY WELL DESERVED FIRST PLACE. AMEN

  • Abel

    I like Frank Ocean but any out of The Weeknd’s trilogy was better (in my opinion) but then again those were mixtapes as Im pretty sure this was so I agree with @Mike and @Semaj is the best rapper alive

  • HollyWood

    Politics runs Rap Radar. Time to really find another website this one is getting lame. The Weeknd shitted on Frank Oceans Mixtape. Any of them should have been number 1

  • RK

    Shit that F.A.M.E. Wasn’t on the list, and House of balloons was easily better than this, these lists are corrupt anyways.

  • wow

    Weeknd HOB was better. Not even close…

  • Tedd

    Drake stans out in numbers on these post

  • Beezy

    Weeknd = suicide music

  • kingferg

    THE WEEKND IS WAY BETTER THAN FRANK OCEAN.

  • http://twitter.com/LuminousStory  Lol Omg

    This ain’t your opinion.. Relax. If you want to the weekend as number 1, make your own damn list.

  • music

    Did you miss David Guetta & Usher performing ‘Without You’ on the ellen show?? Check it out here! http://shar.es/WE3Wt

  • wtf

    HOB > nostalgiaultra anyday of the week. Fuck this list

  • lmao

    really stoopid..the whole odd future click are bunch clowns…fuck frank ocean and his mangers

  • Word

    Cosign @Beezy

  • lmao

    cosign @beezy cosign @word everyone needs to stop biting the weekend,

  • Gar

    autotune counts as singing these days lol

  • Cheat

    house of Baloons should be #1 then Dream then Frank Ocean quality list though

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  • Cavin

    Frank Oceans better then the Weeknd and I started listening to the Weeknd first but since I started listening to Frank its been hard to listen to the Weeknd tbh…well deserved…and to whoever said Take Care…lol.