Effective immediately, the new release of Ubuntu, 17.10, aka 'Artful Aardvark' has been released!
This release will be supported for 9 months (until 2018) for Long Term Support, stick with release 16.04, instead.
Official flavors (e.g. Kubuntu) are also released.
See the above release notes for a full list of changes and where you can get a copy.
[Full disclosure: the majority of SoylentNews' servers run Ubuntu 16.04 LTS though we have taken steps towards moving to Gentoo.]
The customized version of GNOME that Ubuntu 17.10 uses is very much in the mould of the (now defunct) Unity desktop, so it won't be to everyone's tastes.
As for crashing and GRUB and unresponsiveness, I have no idea what you're talking about. I've been running Mint KDE for years now without any such trouble. I can't speak to the other DE choices.
I mostly use Cinnamon (which is the "default" choice), and I can vouch that it still has some problems with stability and polish. It (very, very rarely) crashes immediately after login and switches to a "fallback mode". Restarting the cinnamon process sometimes works, sometimes doesn't...
But my biggest complaint is that the tiny popup that appears when you switch to Japanese input blocks everything else, including opening the application menu. Took me weeks to figure out why the menu would seemingly randomly stop working -.- I blamed it on interface freezes, and it looked like a huge responsiveness issue. Not to mention that the popup also tends to hide the one element on the interface that I'm looking at, or floats over the text cursor itself...
Mint MATE is quite stable - if uninspiring. No issues for a decade! Before that, Knoppix was my favorite.
+1 for Knoppix back in the day :)