musicOMH's Top 50 Albums of 2015

musicOMH's Top 50 Albums of 2015

Original Source

50. Laura Marling - Short Movie

Laura Marling - Short Movie
March 23, 2015
Singer-Songwriter
Critic Score
80
23 reviews
User Score
77
137 reviews

It’s natural that a musician will want to explore new ideas and influences as their career matures, and Short Movie finds Marling doing just that.

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49. Nadine Shah - Fast Food

Nadine Shah - Fast Food
April 6, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
76
8 reviews
User Score
71
32 reviews

On follow up album Fast Food she draws from a similar musical palette, but the intervening years have helped her sound bolder and more confident (not that she’s ever been particularly lacking in that department).

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48. Titus Andronicus - The Most Lamentable Tragedy

Titus Andronicus - The Most Lamentable Tragedy
July 28, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
82
26 reviews
User Score
77
165 reviews

47. ESKA - ESKA

ESKA - ESKA
April 27, 2015
Critic Score
75
2 reviews
User Score
74
2 reviews

46. Atari Teenage Riot - Reset

Atari Teenage Riot - Reset
March 26, 2014
Critic Score
76
4 reviews
User Score
NR

45. Wrekmeister Harmonies - Night of Your Ascension

Wrekmeister Harmonies - Night of Your Ascension
November 13, 2015
Critic Score
78
5 reviews
User Score
75
1 review

44. Kurt Vile - b'lieve i'm goin down

Kurt Vile - b'lieve i'm goin down
September 25, 2015
Singer-Songwriter
Critic Score
78
24 reviews
User Score
78
249 reviews
While 2013’s effort saw some incredible peaks, Vile’s new album has managed to forge a more consistent collection of songs built around simplicity and a shrugged shoulder approach to lyrics.
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43. Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress

Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress
March 31, 2015
Post-Rock
Critic Score
81
19 reviews
User Score
76
181 reviews

Asunder… is a focused distillation of a composition that is one of the band’s most affecting pieces.

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42. The Shoes - Chemicals

The Shoes - Chemicals
September 25, 2015
Critic Score
80
1 review
User Score
69
8 reviews

41. Beach House - Depression Cherry

Beach House - Depression Cherry
August 28, 2015
Dream Pop
Critic Score
79
29 reviews
User Score
80
471 reviews

Minor nitpicking aside, this is a Beach House record that sounds, above all else, like a Beach House record.

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40. The Spook School - Try To Be Hopeful

The Spook School - Try To Be Hopeful
October 9, 2015
Post-Punk
Critic Score
77
6 reviews
User Score
79
5 reviews

39. Ghostpoet - Shedding Skin

Ghostpoet - Shedding Skin
March 2, 2015
Hip Hop
Critic Score
76
8 reviews
User Score
75
38 reviews

38. Holly Herndon - Platform

Holly Herndon - Platform
May 19, 2015
Art Pop
Critic Score
80
21 reviews
User Score
76
165 reviews

With Platform, her strongest and most reputation enhancing statement to date ... she stands together with Matthew Herbert as a radical, intelligent artist exploring how, as Daniel Barenboim put it, “everything is connected”.

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37. Foals - What Went Down

Foals - What Went Down
August 28, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
75
22 reviews
User Score
75
182 reviews

Indeed it’s hard to see What Went Down as anything other than a third Mercury Prize nomination-in-waiting – these Birds are Perky indeed.

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36. Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Style

Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Style
October 30, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
79
10 reviews
User Score
77
102 reviews
Anyone new to Car Seat Headrest is, quite frankly, in for a jaw-dropping discovery. The quality of Toledo’s songs is gobsmacking; the lyrics are enthralling, the melodies are to die for, the musicianship is raw yet brilliant.
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35. Young Guv - Ripe 4 Luv

Young Guv - Ripe 4 Luv
March 10, 2015
Lo-Fi
Critic Score
76
8 reviews
User Score
73
20 reviews
There’s not an ounce of fat to be found. It might be a little lo-fi in places, but it doesn’t matter, this is the definition of an album that is all-killer-no-filler.
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34. The Maccabees - Marks To Prove It

The Maccabees - Marks To Prove It
July 31, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
72
11 reviews
User Score
71
45 reviews
Big choruses come and go but there is an emptiness right at the heart of The Maccabees’ world, a darkness never fully extinguished.
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33. Roots Manuva - Bleeds

Roots Manuva - Bleeds
October 30, 2015
Hip Hop
Critic Score
81
13 reviews
User Score
77
24 reviews

In the press release for Bleeds, Smith says he called the album so because he is ready to bleed for his art. There is little doubt he has done that here, and that he holds this nation close to his heart – a heart so firmly on his sleeve we can see it there, beating. It’s what makes him so important to British music today.

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32. Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats - Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats - Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats
August 21, 2015
Rock
Critic Score
69
7 reviews
User Score
72
8 reviews

31. Sexwitch - Sexwitch

Sexwitch - Sexwitch
September 25, 2015
Post-Punk
Critic Score
77
14 reviews
User Score
75
39 reviews

Throughout all the songs here, there is a pervading, unsettling sense of the supernatural, as if the music is being used to channel a connection with spirits from beyond the earthly realm, but also an underlying wild sensuality.

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

Courtney Barnett - Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
March 24, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
85
29 reviews
User Score
81
610 reviews

It all means that Sometimes I Sit… is a likeable, enjoyable album rather than a great one. Barnett has written half a masterpiece: let’s hope that, next time round, she can complete the job.

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29. New Order - Music Complete

New Order - Music Complete
September 25, 2015
Alternative Dance
Critic Score
73
20 reviews
User Score
73
91 reviews

It’s the album that New Order fans have been dreaming of for years and it will no doubt be cherished.

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28. East India Youth - Culture of Volume

East India Youth - Culture of Volume
April 7, 2015
Synthpop
Critic Score
76
15 reviews
User Score
70
67 reviews

Ultimately, Culture Of Volume is a masterful return from the East India Youth man, one that manages to provoke a rollercoaster of emotions over its run time.

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27. Grimes - Art Angels

Grimes - Art Angels
November 6, 2015
Art Pop
Critic Score
84
27 reviews
User Score
81
594 reviews
Claire Boucher is very good at making pop music. Strange, esoteric pop music that sounds like something not quite of this world, but which manages to remain totally accessible.
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26. The Libertines - Anthems for Doomed Youth

The Libertines - Anthems for Doomed Youth
September 11, 2015
Garage Rock
Critic Score
68
23 reviews
User Score
70
51 reviews

Anthems For Doomed Youth is a triumphant return; defying pretty much all the odds ... their songwriting prowess has ensured that the decade-long wait between albums has been more than worth it.

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25. Faith No More - Sol Invictus

Faith No More - Sol Invictus
May 19, 2015
Alternative Metal
Critic Score
71
21 reviews
User Score
73
65 reviews

Sol Invictus is not a bad return, but it’s not the greatest thing Faith No More has ever done.

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24. Girl Band - Holding Hands with Jamie

Girl Band - Holding Hands with Jamie
September 25, 2015
Post-Punk
Critic Score
79
22 reviews
User Score
73
53 reviews

Girl Band possess enormous potential and big, big things look to be lying just around the corner for the Dubliners. Whilst this often only remains as potential for this first step, Holding Hands With Jamie is a refreshing change and welcome one-fingered salute to the mundane and safe rock music of today.

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23. Tame Impala - Currents

Tame Impala - Currents
July 17, 2015
Psychedelic Pop
Critic Score
84
30 reviews
User Score
83
867 reviews
It’s just a shame that the undeniable majesty of opener Let It Happen sees the album peak at a high it can never hope to reach for the remainder of its existence.
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22. Jamie xx - In Colour

Jamie xx - In Colour
June 1, 2015
UK Bass
Critic Score
84
31 reviews
User Score
82
727 reviews
This is a cosmopolitan piece of work, a kind of Notting Hill Carnival record, where steel pans, UK garage, soul and funk freely mix, rubbing shoulders on the same dancefloor.
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21. John Grant - Grey Tickles, Black Pressure

John Grant - Grey Tickles, Black Pressure
October 2, 2015
Singer-Songwriter
Critic Score
82
18 reviews
User Score
73
47 reviews

The Grant of 2015 has grown, and found happiness in love ... This version is older, happier maybe – while still possessing the same mordant wit, rich baritone and disarming, even angry honesty – and ready to face the hidden surprises of middle age.

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20. Mbongwana Star - From Kinshasa

Mbongwana Star - From Kinshasa
May 19, 2015
World
Critic Score
90
8 reviews
User Score
77
110 reviews
The result is an album that both draws from the rich musical traditions in Kinshasa and beyond, but also sounds unlike anything else from the region to have reached an international audience.
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19. Benjamin Clementine - At Least For Now

Benjamin Clementine - At Least For Now
January 12, 2015
Singer-Songwriter
Critic Score
70
4 reviews
User Score
80
66 reviews

18. Young Fathers - White Men Are Black Men Too

Young Fathers - White Men Are Black Men Too
April 7, 2015
Hip Hop
Critic Score
81
19 reviews
User Score
78
186 reviews
Young Fathers have ensured, once again, that they are in no danger of being boxed in or categorised by any one genre.
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17. Gaz Coombes - Matador

Gaz Coombes - Matador
January 26, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
78
10 reviews
User Score
75
38 reviews
He is more adventurous still where rhythm, harmony and instrumentation are concerned, and this record channels inspiration from sources as diverse as George Harrison, 13th Floor Elevators even, and Neu!.
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16. Everything Everything - Get To Heaven

Everything Everything - Get To Heaven
June 15, 2015
Progressive Pop
Critic Score
78
13 reviews
User Score
80
180 reviews
Here, then, is musical proof that clever calculations and emotion can mix.
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15. The Charlatans - Modern Nature

The Charlatans - Modern Nature
January 26, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
75
12 reviews
User Score
72
39 reviews

Quite simply stunning, Modern Nature is a must-have.

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14. Lubomyr Melnyk - Rivers and Streams

Lubomyr Melnyk - Rivers and Streams
November 27, 2015
Modern Classical
Critic Score
78
8 reviews
User Score
83
8 reviews

13. Susanne Sundfør - Ten Love Songs

Susanne Sundfør - Ten Love Songs
February 16, 2015
Art Pop
Critic Score
85
5 reviews
User Score
81
169 reviews

Ten Love Songs is an enormously creative, endlessly surprising album. While Sundfør may still be seen as a bit too left-field to break into the mainstream, if you somehow miss this album you’re seriously missing out.

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12. Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly

Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly
March 16, 2015
Hip Hop
Critic Score
94
32 reviews
User Score
89
1194 reviews
Musically, this is vivid, defiantly unpredictable and, if yielded to, completely engaging.
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11. Ezra Furman - Perpetual Motion People

Ezra Furman - Perpetual Motion People
July 10, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
79
15 reviews
User Score
74
48 reviews

verall, Furman has crafted another album to take to your heart: impetuous yet reflective, anarchic but spiritual, nostalgic though always forward thinking.

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10. Low - Ones and Sixes

Low - Ones and Sixes
September 11, 2015
Slowcore
Critic Score
77
21 reviews
User Score
76
59 reviews

It is arguable that Ones And Sixes is their most fully integrated album to date – a richly satisfying and coherent work drawing together many of the different strands of their career so far.

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9. Carly Rae Jepsen - E•MO•TION

Carly Rae Jepsen - E•MO•TION
August 21, 2015
Dance Pop
Critic Score
76
20 reviews
User Score
79
310 reviews

Emotion succeeds on its own terms, arguably remaining truer to the spirit of the era, not to mention Jepsen’s stated aim of taking the time to craft an album rather than rushing to cash in on a YouTube sensation.

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8. Blur - The Magic Whip

Blur - The Magic Whip
April 27, 2015
Alternative Rock
Critic Score
78
29 reviews
User Score
74
246 reviews

The Magic Whip succeeds splendidly in coming across as a comeback album that hasn’t been overthought, flashing a nonchalant dare to any prospective Oasis reunion project.

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7. Julia Holter - Have You in My Wilderness

Julia Holter - Have You in My Wilderness
September 25, 2015
Art Pop
Critic Score
87
24 reviews
User Score
84
418 reviews
This may well be Holter’s most accessible album to date, but it’s this very approachability that renders it all the more intriguing, drawing you in with open arms. Stately and serene, it’s a wilderness that begs to be inhabited for some time, a country you’ll be reluctant to leave.
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6. Wolf Alice - My Love is Cool

Wolf Alice - My Love is Cool
June 22, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
80
18 reviews
User Score
77
145 reviews
It’s as good a debut as you could hope to hear, a fresh injection of pure brilliance and beauty to a genre that is creaking under the weight of mediocrity and a lack of adventurous inventiveness.
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5. Björk - Vulnicura

Björk - Vulnicura
January 20, 2015
Art Pop
Critic Score
86
27 reviews
User Score
82
507 reviews

Vulnicura feels, overall, as if it is one of Björk’s most successful albums, one where she mostly finds sonic strategies that are well matched with her concepts and themes.

Full Review →

4. Joanna Newsom - Divers

Joanna Newsom - Divers
October 23, 2015
Singer-Songwriter
Critic Score
87
30 reviews
User Score
83
233 reviews

In many ways, Newsom’s new record is a distillation of all the differing qualities that have made her albums to date so distinctive, combining the childlike simplicity of The Milk Eyed Mender, the ambitious, almost symphonic arrangements of Ys and the stylistic variations of Have One On Me.

Full Review →

3. Sufjan Stevens - Carrie & Lowell

Sufjan Stevens - Carrie & Lowell
March 31, 2015
Indie Folk
Critic Score
90
31 reviews
User Score
87
913 reviews

Carrie And Lowell is an introspective, deeply thoughtful album but it deftly avoids self-indulgence. It feels like a healing process, not just for its creator, but for its audience too.

Full Review →

2. Sleater-Kinney - No Cities to Love

Sleater-Kinney - No Cities to Love
January 20, 2015
Indie Rock
Critic Score
89
29 reviews
User Score
78
476 reviews

Somehow, from nothing, they’ve pulled off a surprising but oh so welcome return, and this record plays like a triumphant middle finger salute, coolly showing everyone how its done… and writing the first line on a thousand ‘album of the year’ lists before January’s even out.

Full Review →

1. Father John Misty - I Love You, Honeybear

Father John Misty - I Love You, Honeybear
February 10, 2015
Singer-Songwriter
Critic Score
89
30 reviews
User Score
84
724 reviews

It’s the sort of album that even repeated listenings can throw up a myriad of surprises: you never really get to know who the character of Father John Misty is ... but it’s clear that Josh Tillman has slowly turned into one of the most talented songwriters of our age.

Full Review →
Original Source: http://www.musicomh.com/features/lists/musicomhs-top-50-albums-2015

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Check out our 2015 Year End Summary.