For many of us, 2020 has been a year we will remember forever for all the wrong reasons, but we also have a lot to be grateful for. Because in the worst year of our lifetime, our existences were somehow enriched with the best era of pop music . When we think back on the year of the coronavirus, we will indeed remember the dreadful skin rashes from our masks, the endless Zoom calls and empty city streets, but we will also remember it as the year the world’s most talented female artists gave us their most iconic bodies of work yet. Yes, there were some great male releases, but 2020 was the year that girl power lifted our spirits and kept us dancing as the pandemic ripped our lives and worlds apart. It was like our brightest divas turned into a barrage of superheroes who collectively flew in to save the world from Covid-19 one banging tune after the other. Watch out, Blackpink! The most shocking girl band member exits of all time Not only did the goddesses of pop music continue to outdo themselves, they also tried new things ( Taylor Swift went folk ) and followed their hearts (Miley Cyrus finally did the rock album she craved). And in a time when we faced an uncertain future, it was a welcoming journey back to the 80s and 90s with the likes of Dua Lipa and Lady Gaga. Newbies like Blackpink showed us what they’re made of, and icons like Alanis Morissette reminded us of the reasons we fell in love with them in the first place. It was like quarantine gave the girls a much-needed creativity boost. So without further ado, here are our 15 best albums of 2020 that made the pandemic a little easier to tolerate. 15. Haim’s “Women in Music Pt. III” “Women in Music Pt. III” is the third studio album by American sisters Alana, Danielle and Este Haim, and third time has certainly been the charm. Haim has been consistently good over the years, but 2020 was a highlight for the girls. They’re also up for Album of the Year at the 63rd Grammy Awards, in case you don’t believe this highly reputable list. The world’s top-paid music artists made millions in 2020, defying Covid-19 14. Ariana Grande’s “Positions” Ariana has practically been releasing albums yearly since 2013, so it would’ve been rude of her to not show up for us in 2020. “Positions” is nothing new from miss Grande , but that’s what’s great about it – soothing sounds from a familiar voice during a dark time. 13. Little Mix’s “Confetti” The year 2020 has been bittersweet for the UK’s beloved girl band, Little Mix. They released their sixth album “Confetti” in November to much praise thanks to their slick pop songs, but only a month later, member Jesy Nelson walked out on the band. Fortunately, Perrie, Leigh-Anne and Jade are carrying on as a trio, because this masterpiece cannot be the end of Little Mix. 12. Kesha’s “High Road” When Kesha released “Rainbow” in 2017, it was an emotional affair , right in the middle of her sexual abuse court battle and the height of the #MeToo movement. Now meet the new Kesha. From the Super Mario-infused Birthday Suit to the uplifting Little Bit of Love , “High Road” took Kesha (and our moods) to new heights during the pandemic. She even filmed her own music video at home with her cat, which we could all relate to. Video: Inside Chrissy Teigen and John Legend’s US$24m home, now for sale 11. Kylie Minogue’s “Disco” Fortunately, Australia and Europe’s gay communities were thrown a lifeline during the pandemic when Kween Kylie dropped her 15th album. You’d think after 15 albums Kylie would be stale, but this mix of 1970s and 1980s disco and modern-day electronic dance is the freshest thing we’ve heard all year. How K-pop genius Rain became one of Korea’s richest celebrities 10. Jessie Ware’s “What’s Your Pleasure” English singer-songwriter Jessie Ware has been in business for about a decade, but in recent years it’s been her brilliant podcast “Table Manners” that we loved most about her. Fortunately, 2020 became the year Jessie finally got widespread critical acclaim thanks to her disco banger of a new album, which will transport you straight back to an 80s dance floor (and if it’s your first time, you’re in for a treat). 9. Alicia Keys’ “Alicia” The year 2020 may not have had a lot of soul, but Alicia Keys sure did. Stripping back the album title, her make-up and her sound, Alicia made it clear she was returning to her roots with her seventh album, and boy does it sound good. Perfect Way To Die catered to our more sombre moments, while Time Machine had us stomping our way through the pandemic, and for that we salute you, Alicia. Forget Hollywood beauty standards – these 10 stars are all about body positivity 8. Rina Sawayama’s “Sawayama” While the charts were dominated by voices we know and love, there was also a new name on our Spotify 2020 Wrapped chart this year – Japanese-British singer-songwriter Rina Sawayama. From the moment you hear the bizarre yet brilliant nu metal track STFU! , or overly camp disco bop Comme des Garçons (Like the Boys) , you know there is something very special about this newcomer. After bubbling under for a few years, Rina Sawayama picked the perfect time to introduce us to her first full length record. Elton John also says it’s the best album of the year, so that’s that then. 7. Alanis Morissette’s “Such Pretty Forks in the Road” Alanis Morissette has been consistently good throughout her career, so it’s a pity most people only know the “Jagged Little Pill” era. Her ninth studio album “Such Pretty Forks in the Road” is the Canadian star’s first release in eight years, and it’s the classic, wonderful Alanis we know and love. We hate to say it, but it’s the “Jagged Little Pill Alanis” in all her glory. Sadly, Alanis had to cancel the 25th anniversary tour of her 1995 album this year, but it’s given us more time to appreciate the work of art that is “Such Pretty Forks in the Road.” Covid-19 and K-pop: 7 idols who tested positive 6. Melanie C’s “Melanie C” Sporty Spice Mel C first dropped her critically acclaimed debut album “Northern Star” back in 1999, and since then she’s had a roller coaster of a solo career in between Spice Girls duties. Then, all these years later, she unexpectedly drops the best record of her career and shoots herself straight back into the UK’s top 10 album chart and mainstream success. She sings on Here I Am (official banger, FYI): “They said I was too old, but I’m on fire, I’m on fire!” Indeed you are, Melanie, and you’ve once again spiced up our lives when we needed it the most. 5. Miley Cyrus’ “Plastic Hearts” From Hannah Montana to wrecking baller, Miley Cyrus has undergone many metamorphoses , but in 2020 she found her inner rock star and released “Plastic Hearts” – an instantly classic album that has gained her a new-found respect from critics. While Dua Lipa collab Prisoner instantly became a worldwide hit, it was the tracks with rock legends Stevie Nicks, Joan Jett and Billy Idol that really threw the world off its axis and made us question what era we were living in. Seriously, Stevie Nicks? Could we be any more blessed? Miley Cyrus, Samuel L. Jackson: 10 stars who quit veganism 4. Blackpink’s “The Album” It seems 2020 was always going to be the year of Blackpink, and Jisoo , Rosé , Jennie and Lisa did not let Covid-19 get in the way of their plans. After four years of hits and hype, the biggest girl band in the world finally released its debut album “The Album”, this year. Thanks to songs like How You Like That , Ice Cream and Lovesick Girls , “The Album” is one of the albums of the year, and finally proved to the whole world what Blackpink, and South Korea, is capable of. 3. Dua Lipa’s “Future Nostalgia” As the world went into lockdown, and most new releases were put on hold, Dua Lipa raised eyebrows when she decided to move ahead regardless with the release of disco banger “Future Nostalgia” during the darkest period the world had collectively felt in recent times. Fortunately, the gamble paid off, and we’ll forever remember the album as the soundtrack to our early lockdown days. Not only because we were in shock, but because “Future Nostalgia” is a timeless classic that cemented Dua Lipa as one of the greatest pop stars of our time. When there were no gyms to train in, there was Dua Lipa’s 80s workout-inspired Physical music video. Before Blackpink and Gaga: the 6 biggest K-pop collaborations 2. Taylor Swift’s “Folklore” & “Evermore” While most of us spent our initial weeks of lockdown keeping low key and getting fat, Taylor Swift recorded not one but two of the best low key albums of her career. After 2019’s epic “Lover”, Swifty would’ve been forgiven for taking 2020 off, but instead she became a folk singer and recorded two albums. Just as our quarantine blues seemed to peak, Taylor surprised us with the mesmerising “Folklore” in July. And then again, out of the blue, with “sister album” “Evermore” in December. We are not worthy! Not only did she show us a completely new side of herself, but the Bon Iver collaboration Exile is quite possibly the best ballad of the year, and of her career to date. Respect. Is Taylor Swift’s Betty a future LGBT anthem? 1. Lady Gaga’s “Chromatica” From the moment Lady Gaga came running through the desert from the planet Chromatica in her Stupid Love music video in March, it was like she was here to save us . And oh boy, did she come prepared! Following the success of A Star is Born , all eyes were on Gaga’s return to pop music. What would the queen of reinvention do next? Only the coolest, campest, most vintage but out-of-this-world album we could have ever asked for. And if that’s not enough reason to quarantine with it on loop, it also features Blackpink, Elton John and Ariana Grande ( Rain on Me is the best pop collaboration of modern times – try convince me otherwise). “Chromatica” is not only the critically acclaimed comeback Lady Gaga deserved, it’s also the pop album we needed to get us through the pandemic. While it was frustrating to not be able to dance to it on our favourite dance floors, it transported us to nightclubs in the early 90s, made us want to rave again and even gifted us enough social media memes to last a lifetime (The Chromatica II instrumental will live on our timelines forever). A complete triumph, “Chromatica” brought us a lot of happiness in 2020, and could well be Lady Gaga’s best album to date. We will all dance to it together eventually, even if we have to leave Earth and go live on Chromatica to get away from Covid-19. Want more stories like this? Sign up here . Follow STYLE on Facebook , Instagram , YouTube and Twitter . For more great stories on Korean entertainment, artist profiles and the latest news, visit K-post, SCMP's K-pop hub .