AllMusic's Best Albums of 2015

AllMusic's Best Albums of 2015

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Alejandro Sanz - Sirope

Alejandro Sanz - Sirope
May 4, 2015
Critic Score
80
1 review

Ashley Monroe - The Blade

July 24, 2015
Critic Score
81
9 reviews
All this makes for a diverse set of songs but the key to Monroe's appeal is that she seems neither showy nor calculating when she expands beyond her classic country roots.

Björk - Vulnicura

January 20, 2015
Critic Score
86
30 reviews

Vulnicura honors her pain and the necessary path through and away from loss with some of her bravest, most challenging, and most engaging music.

Carly Rae Jepsen - E•MO•TION

August 21, 2015
Critic Score
75
22 reviews

An even more consistent album than Kiss, E-MO-TION further defines Jepsen as an equally stylish and earnest pop artist.

Chastity Belt - Time To Go Home

March 23, 2015
Critic Score
75
12 reviews
Depending on what aspect of the band the listener pays the most attention to, Chastity Belt can be either brazenly hilarious or mysterious and moving.

Colleen - Captain of None

April 7, 2015
Critic Score
77
6 reviews
It all makes for a breezy yet powerful expression of independence from an artist who is always true to herself.

Container - LP

June 8, 2015
Critic Score
79
7 reviews
All of Container's recordings are amazing, but this one is his most concentrated burst of energy yet, and it cements his status as one of the most exciting and inventive artists in the underground American electronic music scene, as well as one of the most successful in merging noise with techno.

Courtney Barnett - Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit

March 24, 2015
Critic Score
84
31 reviews

A convincing argument that rock & roll doesn't need reinvention in order to revive itself, Courtney Barnett's full-length debut Sometimes I Sit and Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit. falls into a long, storied rock tradition but never feels beholden to it.

Deerhunter - Fading Frontier

October 16, 2015
Critic Score
82
31 reviews
Musically and emotionally, this is one of Deerhunter's most powerful -- and delicate -- albums.

Destroyer - Poison Season

August 28, 2015
Critic Score
82
26 reviews
At nearly an hour in length, it feels immense, but more so from its unexpectedly cinematic stylings than from playing time -- with rotating, scene-setting arrangements (rock, jazz, chamber music) and beat-poetic narrative vignettes of a gritty reality seemingly from another time, or another mind.

Downtown Boys - Full Communism

Downtown Boys - Full Communism
May 4, 2015
Critic Score
80
5 reviews
You'd have to go back to the MC5 to find a band that combined purposeful rage and passionate rock & roll energy as well as Downtown Boys.

Dr. Dre - Compton: A Soundtrack by Dr. Dre

August 7, 2015
Critic Score
80
26 reviews

This brilliant kaleidoscopic LP, which was recorded in under a year, focuses on the veteran producer's connection to the modern world as it references Eric Garner, frames it with N.W.A.'s history, and decides that little has changed.

Eric Church - Mr. Misunderstood

November 6, 2015
Critic Score
76
4 reviews

Where The Outsiders was designed to dazzle, Mr. Misunderstood is built for the long haul: it settles into the soul, its pleasures immediate but also sustained.

EZTV - Calling Out

EZTV - Calling Out
July 10, 2015
Critic Score
74
9 reviews

Father John Misty - I Love You, Honeybear

February 10, 2015
Critic Score
89
32 reviews

I Love You, Honeybear, despite the occasional double entendre, is as powerful a statement about love in the vacuous, social media-obsessed early 21st century as it is a denouement of the detached hipster charlatan.

Floating Points - Elaenia

November 6, 2015
Critic Score
83
17 reviews

Elaenia is fated to become one of those albums that inspires ritualistic listening parties held by small groups of audiophiles. That shouldn't be held against it.

Ghost - Meliora

August 21, 2015
Critic Score
77
10 reviews

What holds it all together is solid writing that sticks close to stock pop/rock methodology.

Girlpool - Before The World Was Big

June 2, 2015
Critic Score
77
20 reviews
Even more than on their first release, Girlpool feel like a unit, totally locked into each other musically and emotionally, and their stark presentation remains a boon to their risky and appealingly human songs.

Guilty Simpson - Detroit's Son

Guilty Simpson - Detroit's Son
September 11, 2015
Critic Score
68
3 reviews

Hiatus Kaiyote - Choose Your Weapon

May 4, 2015
Critic Score
79
9 reviews
From track to track, one ingenious idea trails another. Vocal melodies and guitar wriggles sneak up and tickle the ears, burbling electronics mingle with spiny acoustic guitars, time signatures abruptly switch and stun.

Jamie xx - In Colour

June 1, 2015
Critic Score
84
33 reviews

As it moves from reflective to engaging and back again, In Colour covers the entire spectrum of Jamie xx's music, delivering flashes of brilliance along the way.

Jazmine Sullivan - Reality Show

January 13, 2015
Critic Score
81
8 reviews

Just as potent and lasting as Fearless and Love Me Back, Reality Show completes one of the most impressive first-three-album runs.

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma - A Year With 13 Moons

February 9, 2015
Critic Score
80
5 reviews

Without words or structures, A Year with 13 Moons translates a wealth of emotional content, achieving the rare feat of communicating pain, loss, yearning, and nostalgia with a noisy sonic palette that few can turn into anything besides confusion and chaos.

John Grant - Grey Tickles, Black Pressure

October 2, 2015
Critic Score
82
18 reviews

At nearly an hour long, Grey Tickles, Black Pressure is a dense, rewarding listen from an artist who's becoming more complex, and more direct, with each album.

Julia Holter - Have You in My Wilderness

September 25, 2015
Critic Score
87
25 reviews

While it's tempting to say Have You in My Wilderness is her most personal music yet, it might be more accurate to say that it's her most approachable: this time, her brilliance demands a lot from her listeners, but also meets them more than halfway.

Kamasi Washington - The Epic

May 5, 2015
Critic Score
83
6 reviews

Holistic in breadth and deep in vision, it provides a way into this music for many, and challenges the cultural conversation about jazz without compromising or pandering.

Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly

March 16, 2015
Critic Score
95
34 reviews

To Pimp a Butterfly is as dark, intense, complicated, and violent as Picasso's Guernica, and should hold the same importance for its genre and the same beauty for its intended audience.

Kurt Vile - b'lieve i'm goin down

September 25, 2015
Critic Score
78
25 reviews

B'lieve I'm Goin Down... is an impeccably arranged album beneath its soothing, sleepy surface, with every element assisting in an illusion of deep, shimmering, and alluring melancholy.

Logic - The Incredible True Story

November 13, 2015
Critic Score
66
5 reviews

This is the album where it all changed, as the one they call Young Sinatra comes into his own and proves his nearly perfect debut was no isolated fluke.

Low Cut Connie - Hi Honey

Low Cut Connie - Hi Honey
April 21, 2015
Critic Score
77
3 reviews

Maddie & Tae - Start Here

Maddie & Tae - Start Here
August 28, 2015
Critic Score
76
6 reviews

They're an unabashed country act, gliding between heartbreak harmonies and punch lines with aplomb, the gilded ease masquerading the careful craft behind these 11 songs, every one of which bears songwriting credits by the duo.

Majical Cloudz - Are You Alone?

October 16, 2015
Critic Score
79
19 reviews

On Are You Alone?, Majical Cloudz pick up where the exceptionally beautiful Impersonator left off two years prior, and issue more sparse arrangements of hypnotic, minor-key electronics under plaintive cries and intimate observations, like a subdued, post-apocalyptic offspring of the Blue Nile.

Matchess - Somnaphoria

Matchess - Somnaphoria
June 23, 2015
Critic Score
80
1 review

Natalie Prass - Natalie Prass

January 27, 2015
Critic Score
83
18 reviews

Natalie Prass is the work of a distinctive new artist with a vision that embraces past and present, merging strength and vulnerability to powerful effect.

Oneohtrix Point Never - Garden of Delete

November 13, 2015
Critic Score
79
24 reviews

The way he transforms different sounds and eras into something nostalgic yet new has always been one of his greatest strengths. He goes one better on Garden of Delete, imbuing these songs with powerful, wide-ranging emotions.

Rabit - Communion

October 30, 2015
Critic Score
79
6 reviews

Rachel Podger - Biber: Rosary Sonatas

Rachel Podger - Biber: Rosary Sonatas
October 16, 2015
Critic Score
100
1 review

Róisín Murphy - Hairless Toys

May 11, 2015
Critic Score
76
12 reviews

Hairless Toys opts for a more personal approach that is so powerful in part because it's so quiet.

Shamir - Ratchet

May 19, 2015
Critic Score
78
22 reviews

Ratchet is a fully realized, entertaining portrait of an artist who knows where he's from and where he's going.

Sick Sad World - Fear and Lies

Sick Sad World - Fear and Lies
April 21, 2015
Critic Score
80
1 review

Sufjan Stevens - Carrie & Lowell

March 31, 2015
Critic Score
90
34 reviews

Carrie & Lowell is the most harrowingly personal work Stevens has offered us to date; it also ranks with his most skillfully crafted albums despite its spartan approach.

The Internet - Ego Death

June 30, 2015
Critic Score
77
8 reviews

One of the best noncommercial R&B albums of 2015, Ego Death is perfectly timed, in sync with -- and distinct from -- other standout releases connected to the thriving L.A. community.

Vince Staples - Summertime '06

June 30, 2015
Critic Score
85
21 reviews

Blowing the promise of his Hell Can Wait EP into an extraordinary double LP, Summertime '06 finds rapper Vince Staples with all the pieces in place.

Original Source: http://www.allmusic.com/year-in-review/2015/allmusic-best-of-2015
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