Now is the time of the year when we gaze upon our ‘Album Releases For Your Ears To Look Forward To In 2015‘ post and rage against all of the hard-working musicians who failed to deliver on albums that we, the fans, decided we would quite like.
Release me nigga @FrankOcean.
— Frank Ocean’s Album (@FranksAlbum) March 8, 2015
Whilst the idea of ordering something as highly subjective as ‘best albums of 2015’ into a list seems low key rude, I reserve the right as the longest-serving Pedestrian to put my opinions to paper and be insulted in the FB comment section. ‘Tis the season, after all.
Any recommendations would be most welcome because, with an estimated 7,389,408, 420 people in the world, there may very well be an album that the staff of www.pedestrian.tv are not aware of.
Here are our top albums of 2015 in no particular order:
Tame Impala | Currents
Slowly wafting in and settling over 2015 like the distinctive odour of countless joints raised in celebration at a Tame Impala concert, was Kevin Parker‘s latest offering. ‘Currents‘, more so than earlier albums, embraced synths and and a general pop vibe.
The album is consistently excellent, progressively better with each listen and went riding triumphantly up the charts with a faint ‘fuck trevor’ trailing in its wake.
Christine and the Queens | Christine and the Queens
In 2010, during a stay in the UK, Héloïse Letissier was introduced to some of London’s finest drag queens and they became firm friends. It was through the titular ‘Christine‘ finding her ‘Queens‘ that Letissier gained a deeper understanding of herself (she recently identified herself as pansexual) and her musical abilities.
The U.S. reissue of ‘Christine and the Queens‘ is a synth-pop delight exploring gender identity and delivering 12 beautiful tracks that are both timeless in quality and firmly fixed in the best memories of 2015.
Panda Bear | Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper
Noah Benjamin Lennox continues on his animal odyssey; this time happening across Death and immaculate harmonies likened to California’s very own The Beach Boys. He has once again succeeded in bringing psychedelic experimental pop dreams to life.
Gang of Youths | The Positions
The self-described dad rockers from Sydney have come the fuck through with their debut album. Frontman David Le’aupepe‘s excellent vocals and enjoyable surname, were undoubtedly sent across from Indie/Rock purgatory to deliver what is both a heartfelt ode to relationships past and a brooding blowout for future nights out and rough as guts morning afters.
Kendrick Lamar | To Pimp A Butterfly
Since 2012’s ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city’ Kendrick related expectations have remained high. Whilst the politics that Kendrick explores can, for some, seem far removed from our island life, his expertly crafted work, imbued with a spirit of protest, truly does have universal appeal. The third studio album from the Compton local will no doubt take its rightful place as a defining album of our generation.
Carly Rae Jepsen | E•MO•TION
Speaking of the absolute best albums of our time — I DIDN’T JUST COME HERE TO *DANCE*, ifyouknowhatImean (do you know what I mean?)
~nonahnahnah no nahnah nah~
Despite its criminally low sales number and relative failure, commercially speaking, it can only be described as the perfect pop album. There are few missteps and repeated listenings encourages many steps. With your feet. (Dancing). It’s a great album to cut sick to.
Do heartily recommend embracing the E•MO•TION.
Sufjan Stevens | Carrie & Lowell
Sufjan has charted his formative years and family trips to Oregon spent with Carrie and Lowell — his mother (now deceased) and stepfather, respectively — through a series of ethereal melodies and heartbreaking lyrics. The word ‘masterpiece’ has been bandied around.
Jamie xx | In Colour
Ah Jamie, you’ve done it again! You’ve sampled and produced your way to success! And now there’s gonna be (good times).
GRIMES | Art Angels
It was around the time of ‘Visions‘ that Claire Boucher‘s success began to look like a car chase in which she was trying to outrun her rise to fame and stay true to the person who once attempted a voyage down the Mississippi atop a houseboat. Boucher recently spoke to FADER about having finally been able to shake all of the producers who thought they could better and felt the need to offer their help for the new album.
Her self-imposed exile was successful and the genuine satisfaction borne of a beloved artist delivering on the hype now abounds.
Lower Dens | Escape From Evil
The heart of gold under a seedy, plastic Hollywood exterior.
Justin Bieber | Purpose
As with most v. v. v. large pop acts, this album is more about the package delivered than the talents of the individual musician. The album, as a package, is an undeniably great time destined to turn all who encounter it into a sexy, “~SOOOORRRRY~” mess. A stand-out from his team of collaborators on ‘Purpose‘ was Parris Goebel — the kiwi choreographer and performer who murders every dance floor she happens upon.
Points deducted for truly heinous album art.
Tobias Jesso Jr. | Goon
In the best possible way, ‘Goon’ sounds like the sad, soul-searching part in a Muppets movie. Kermit’s heartbreak is palpable and Tobias’ voice is a goddamn dream.
Young Fathers | White Men Are Black Men Too
Depending on where you are on the internet, the Nigerian/Scottish/Liberian trio fit somewhere under a hip hop, experimental pop or alternative umbrella. Their latest album encompasses all of the above and then some.
Majical Cloudz | Are You Alone
Devon Welsh: The voice of an angel and the stony-faced stare of a serial killer. (With respect).
Seinabo Sey | Pretend
This is the debut album for the Swedish pop virtuoso Seinabo Sey (pronounced “See”), who mixes experimental R&B and what is being described as “future-gospel”. And if that doesn’t sound like the tightest shit, I truly do not know what does.
Purity Ring | another eternity
The soundtrack to a joyous frolic between lily pads.
Beach House | Depression Cherry | Thank Your Lucky Stars
Is it fair to say Victoria Legrand could violently barf a Sriracha flavoured hairball and we would loop the audio and give it 5 stars? Yes.
Is it a cop out to include both on the list? Perhaps.
Still, here we are with 86 minutes of new Beach House and a full heart. Can’t lose.
Honourable EP mentions:
FKA twigs | M3LL155X
Spookyland | Rock and Roll Weakling
Kelela | Hallucinogen
Drake | IF YOU’RE READING THIS IT’S TOO LATE [mixtape]
| Half Free
The Internet | Ego Death
Jazmine Sullivan | Reality Show
Darkstar | Basic Things
Songhoy Blues | Music In Exile
Shamir | Ratchet
Weeknd | Beauty Behind The Madness
Disclosure | Caracal
Selena Gomez | Revival
Major Lazer | Peace Is The Mission
Lana Del Rey | Honeymoon
Adele | 25
Troye Sivan | Blue Neighbourhood
Courtney Barnett | Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
Vince Staples | Summertime ’06
Björk | Vulnicura
Foals | What Went Down
Florence & The Machine – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
Hot Chip | Why Make Sense?
New Order | Music Complete
Thundercats | Where the Giants Roam
Jarryd James | Thirty One
Django Django | Born Under Saturn
The Rubens | Hoops
Janet Jackson | Unbreakable
Natalie Prass | Natalie Prass
One Direction | Made In The A.M.
Mac Demarco | Another One
Holy Holy | When the Storms Would Come