All sorts of albums have left the pressing plant over the course of this year. Whether they’ve pushed the boundaries of their genre, surpassed expectations or simply remained beautiful, it’s clear that 2015 has been a great year for musicians and their work. With this in mind, we look back at some of our favourite releases of the year.
Tame Impala – Currents
For me, choosing an album of the year was a toss up of the electronic kind which eventually saw Jamie xx and In Colour come a close second to Tame Impala’s Currents. Although both albums are inherent floorfillers, what tipped Kevin Parker and his latest venture just that bit further for me had to be the complexity of emotion cast into a simplistic and silky delivery. It’s undeniable that Parker manages to engage with almost all aspects of the sonic spectrum, whether it be glittering synths or a mellow buzz as you spiral into Currents’ hallucinatory abyss. Although, beneath the contagious groove of tracks like The Less I Know The Better, there lies a huge breadth of emotion and pain that almost seems impossible to comprehend in an album that on the surface seems so joyous. What’s certainly joyous though is the fact that Tame Impala have finally produced the highly anticipated follow up to their debut Lonerism. Full of thrill, warmth and transcendence, we can perhaps forgive the fact it took almost three years.
Words by William Castile
Wolf Alice – My Love Is Cool
It’s fair to say that, in terms of albums, 2015 did not disappoint. The year has been positively jam packed with debuts, comebacks, and milestones, so it’s understandable why it took so much deliberation to decide on an album of the year. However, my first instinct was Wolf Alice, and it is that first instinct that I kept finding myself coming back at. So, there we have my favourite album of 2015 – the mighty My Love Is Cool. The buzz surrounding this band as we entered the year was deafening, so meeting the expectations for their summer debut was a pretty tall order, but Wolf Alice didn’t just meet these expectations – they surpassed them. It’s the eclecticism present in the album that makes it so brilliant – Wolf Alice combined scuzz with beauty, anthemic grunge with heart-wrenching synths. Each track brought something new, proving the band’s astounding ability to defy genres. Now moving into 2016, I still have this album on repeat on the regular, particularly the epic Your Loves Whore, so thank you Wolf Alice for creating this piece of greatness.
Words by Tabby Green
Grimes – Art Angels
This year Claire Boucher alias Grimes reinvented her sound; stupid people were annoyed and weird about it, everyone else since the release of Art Angels in November has been going about life in a Grimes infatuated bubble. The provocative and angry record puts a new spin on pop music, giving it a profound voice that is so lost in the drivel about kissing stars and not knowing whether to walk left or right dominating the charts at the moment. California, the track she claims to be a homage to Dolly Parton and the Dixie Chicks and concocted whilst extremely inebriated, is ultimate post-modern pop; Boucher’s like a much less shit Meghan Trainer, which the world definitely needs. Grimes is an artist who is not conforming to the pop world, she’s redefining and experimenting within the genre, making her one of the most exciting and modern musicians around . Art Angels is an album which everyone should hear.
Words by Daisy Lester
Foals – What Went Down
With a punch, this album certainly went down through Foals’ hard efforts to produce the perfect collection of tracks. The lyrical aggression and insane riffs are utterly memorable and it’s no surprise that this album, being their fourth one yet, radiates utter brilliance. After initial doubt as to whether the band could top their third album Holy Fire it’s clear that by, not only topping it in my view, What Went Down has seen Foals superceed people’s expectations of them once again. The groovy, relentless and funky riffs of Lonely Hunter, arguably one of the most standout tracks, feel as if there is a rave going on in your head and everyone’s invited. From such intricate sensations to floor filling melodies, these kings of rock have truly mastered the art of rusty fuzz rock ‘n’ roll. So, a big thumbs up to these guys for creating yet another unquestionable musical masterpiece and preserving the sound of good old rock.
Words by Tilly Lewis