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5. "Summer in NYC" by Cate Morse

Presented as a typical collection of pictures taken while interning in New York City, this really goes above and beyond a classic summer album. Here we have shots of her apartment, concerts, and restaurants, but with the darker edge we've come to expect from her photos, resulting in her most successful attempt yet.

Most Valuable Picture: Cate half-smiling on top of a roof in Brooklyn at dusk.

 

4. "colorado" by Duane Lewis

Posted in January during winter break rather than July - October which is usually when the winning albums are released, he wasn't guaranteed a spot in the top 5. Yet, his pictures held their own against the other albums that followed it due to his increased maturity since last year's album, "yellowstone." He could choose any as a cover photo and get at least 75 likes.

MVP: Duane staring wistfully into the distance while on an Aspen ski lift. 

3. "hey ya" by Noel Tanner

This was an understated mix of a lot of different moments. It's the kind of collage one would expect in something titled "sophomore fall" but with the brilliance you'd expect from an album with a long, kind of confusing song lyric. Of course, short lyrics were in for this year. Noel's choice to quote OutKast was brave since it's an old song, but the silliness behind her pictures perfectly matched the tone set by the lyric.

MVP: Noel and several friends looking confused in a football stadium, purposefully wearing gear supporting other sports.

 

2. "Profile Pictures" by Matt Peterson

It's not often we'll select "Profile Pictures" as an album of the year, but once you see Matt's photos (provided you're friends with him since his privacy settings are tight) you'll get our decision. It's exactly what you want in a set of prof pics: photos that show he's attractive, fun, and interesting. It appears like he doesn't care what you think, but that he finds the validation reassuring. Luckily, we're fine with liking all of them.

MVP: Matt wearing a shirt covered with chocolate while holding the piece of cake he dropped on himself, shrugging it off.

 

1. "ELIZABETH" by Elizabeth

This album was a total surprise. There were no statuses/tweets/Instagrams that she went on a trip to France. She just threw it at us at midnight last week, but it worked. If we had to guess, we'd say it broke some kind of record for views within the first three days. This is all anyone is going to talk about for a long time, and it deserves so much more than just a like. We cried due to its magnificence. Flawless.

MVP: ALL OF THEM.