If there’s one word to sum up my feelings about music that was released in 2015 it would be “surprised.” I was constantly surprised by new directions, new releases, new best hits and so, so much more this year. I found myself enjoying and celebrating music from some of my favorite artists and discovering new ones. Overall, I’m happy to finish off the year with a hand full of new favorite albums, and I can’t wait to see what 2016 brings.
10. Title Fight – Hyperview
9. CHVRCHES – Every Open Eye
8. Fidlar – Too
7. Desaparecidos – Payola
6. Adele – 25
Although it wasn’t necessarily a favorite among all Citizen fans, Everybody Is Going To Heaven was an album that displayed more introspective themes and sounds and showed the band in a new light. Throughout the album, Citizen constantly pushes itself and the expectations of its listeners, making it a standout and must-listen for 2015.
Beauty Behind The Madness brought a sinisterly-sexy edge to pop music this year. Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, aka The Weeknd, reached mainstream success with this album, and he definitely deserves it. The Weeknd is dominating the radio right now, and, unlike every other top 40 hit, I’m not sick of him yet. We’ll see what the coming year brings, but I’m expecting big, big things from him.
Plain and simple: Courtney Barnett’s Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit is awesome. Barnett draws listeners into her world with masterful, immersive songwriting that’s filled with attention to detail. An album like Barnett’s isn’t one that would typically receive praise from those outside her genre. However, with a plethora of Grammy nominations under her belt for the year, it’s clear that others are also taking notice of her talent.
Drake had tough competition this year as there were obviously a handful of really, really great rap albums released (Kendrick Lamar and J.Cole, just to name a couple). “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late” is essentially a homage to Drake’s hometown and life in Toronto, and a successful one at that. It’s the type of album that you can play on repeat over and over again, picking up more details as you go along and learn the words to each song.
Coated in sarcasm and subtle jabs at the quintessential American dream, Father John Misty gets honest about love and life in I Love You, Honeybear. Every single song on this album is a hit, but “Chateau Lobby #4 (In C For Two Virgins),” “True Affection,” “I Love You, Honeybear,” and “Bored In The USA” are certainly standouts. I Love You, Honeybear is the kind of album that’s insanely enjoyable and appropriate for any and every moment of your life, and if you haven’t listened to it yet then do so ASAP.
Most Anticipated: Basement