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Frank ocean jun16

Frank Ocean's Best Tracks

04 July 2016, 12:17

Frank Ocean's finally released his new albums Endless and Blonde, so it seems like the right time to look back on what came before.

The long-awaited follow ups to 2012's channel ORANGE have been talked about for years, and despite a bunch of teasing, Frank left us a bit clueless as to what we might be able to expect. Yung Lean, SebastiAn, James Blake, KOHH, Playboi Carti, Beyoncé, Kendrick Lamar, Austin Feinstein, André 3000, and Kim Burrell all make appearances, with other "contributors" including The Beatles, Elliott Smith, Gang Of Four, Brian Eno, and David Bowie. There's a magazine with poetry from Tyler, The Creator and Kanye West. It's a lot to take in, and we're all still raking through the releases to and detangle the cryptic clues.

Frank's a master at features, with Beyoncé's "Superpower", Watch The Throne cut "No Church In The Wild", "She" with Tyler, The Creator, and loads more sticking out in our minds - but Frank's top guest verses is a whole 'nother thing, and picking a top 10, 15, or 20 of solo Frank is basically impossible as it is. He rarely puts a toe wrong, and channel ORANGE could fill all of the spaces with ease, but we're gluttons for punishment so have spent the day trying anyway. Get reacquainted with - or, if you're late to the party, take a crash course in - Frank's art below.


Frank's magnus opus. It transcends genre, morphing from one style to the next in a heartbeat without skewing the mood. This is more R&B opera than big radio hit, but it's solid gold from start to finish.


This one-off demo appeared briefly towards the end of 2014. Psychedelic production merges with Frank's erratic coo for something heady and raw; a diamond in the rough, but a diamond nonetheless.

Pink Matter

It's a slow build, beginning life as an atmospheric sketch before evolving into a nebulous masterpiece with funky-as-hell bass and one of André 3000's finest verses since OutKast.


Tricky Stewart's production has certainly helped make this a standout moment in Frank's career, but it's the New Orleans native's vocal vortex of sex and drugs leading the way.

Swim Good

Whether it's a window into Frank's mind or a well-woven narrative is still up for debate, but its quality isn't. Frank's best track? Some would say so; it's definitely up there.


Nature Feels

This paean to fucking is one of his sweatiest, most red-lit cuts, with Frank cooing across MGMT's "Electric Feel" - it's Prince-esque in its directness, and thoroughly excellent.

Thinkin Bout You

It's the ultimate ode to unrequited love and one of this generation's quintessential R&B tracks. One of Frank's finest moments.


This appears on Odd Future's The OF Tape Vol. 2 as a lovelorn beacon between bouts of high-octane hip-hop from Tyler & Co.. It's subdued and tender with a spotlight on the heart stitched to Frank's sleeve.

Acura Integurl

A touching track with gorgeous piano and strong falsetto. It was one of the first of Frank's tracks to get an official video - a strange choice perhaps, given that it was never released properly.

Bad Religion

It's a rare song that stops you in your tracks every damn time it starts, but this is for sure one of them. Shivers from start to finish.

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