Apple Music 100 Best Albums

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Golden Hour

Kacey Musgraves


Ethereal country that stretched and reimagined the genre’s possibilities.

No one saw it coming: not even Kacey Musgraves—just look at the “surprise face” meme that went viral after she won the Grammy for Album of the Year for Golden Hour. It was a passion project dedicated to fresh love, made with a new production team (Ian Fitchuk and Daniel Tashian) and a little bit of LSD, and partly recorded above Sheryl Crow’s horse barn. But it was a passion project that exploded Kacey Musgraves from critically adored artist into global superstar.

Golden Hour is a masterpiece of ethereal country pop—psychedelic at times, disco-forward at others, and all held together by Musgraves’ wit and poignant vocal delivery. “Slow Burn,” in its minor-key opening strums, sends her earliest acoustic inclinations through a kaleidoscope of new sounds, while “Space Cowboy” is a perfect, wandering country ballad. And the album’s closer, “Rainbow,” is a timeless offering of comfort to queer youth that affirms Musgraves’ commitment to the community. In her hands, country music would stretch the imagination, and everyone was invited to come along for the ride.