My Top 10 Albums of 2015
A long time ago before I dove head first into the world of beauty blogging, music (and before that, Friends) was the main thing I liked to talk about on the Internet. At the end of each year, I would round up my top ten favourite albums on my LiveJournal and in 2015, I've decided to welcome this to my blog in an effort to incorporate more lifestyle content here. Music is still (and always will be) something near and dear to my heart and having gone to many gigs this year, now living in a city where my favourite bands actually tour, I guess that sort of reignited the spark for music I've always had.
I don't know about you, but I really enjoy getting to know bloggers beyond their favourite beauty products, even if I don't necessarily have the same things in common with them. I think it's really cool to read about the things people are passionate about and make them up as a whole person, so I hope you can all take something from this post and perhaps even make some great musical discoveries of your own like I've done this year!
10. GEMS - Kill the One You Love
When I first discovered GEMS and their song, Scars, sometime during the beginning of the year, they only had an EP out and the wait for their first full-length album felt like forever. Kill the One You Love, their debut LP, was then released in October and it was definitely worth the wait. Reminiscent of Cocteau Twins and early Madonna, it's full of catchy '80s-sounding pop tunes and I already can't wait for more new stuff from them. GEMS are still relatively unknown, but I can see big, big things happening for this American duo.
9. Purity Ring - Another Eternity
I have to be honest and say that I was slightly disappointed by Another Eternity upon first listen. After absolutely obsessing over their debut album, Shrines, back in 2012, I guess I wanted more of the same, though their sophomore release took on a more dubstep/EDM approach, which isn't my kind of thing at all. All this changed, however, back in July when I went to their Splendour in the Grass sideshow and was completely blown away by their performance. Megan James' soft, childlike vocals juxtapose nicely with those deep bass notes and though it's still no Shrines, Another Eternity is still very much appreciated.
8. Tame Impala - Currents
Tame Impala are the biggest band to come out of Australia right now and I couldn't be prouder of my fellow Perthlings. Their 2012 release, Lonerism, catapulted them into international fame and now headlining festivals all around the world, it's hard to believe this is the same band I saw back in 2008 during an afternoon set at Southbound with only about fifty other people! I had high expectations for this year's release and although Kevin Parker takes his music in a slightly new direction here, Currents still has that psychedelic sound that I just love and that's so authentically Tame Impala. Let It Happen is definitely one of the biggest hits to come out of 2015, but 'Cause I'm a Man is my favourite!
7. Foals - What Went Down
It's crazy to think how much Foals have evolved since their song, Hummer, was featured in the Skins Secret Party all the way back in 2007. From fun, indie dance punk, they've become this incredibly epic-sounding rock band and I've loved them every step of the way. What Went Down further proves that Foals just keep getting bigger and better; the album ending in the drawn out, A Knife in the Ocean, which has the most out of this world chorus and is by far my favourite song. I can imagine hearing their new stuff live being totally off the hook!
6. CHVRCHES - Every Open Eye
CHVRCHES' debut LP, The Bones of What You Believe, was a killer of an album and made me feel so powerful while I was going through a breakup at the time. The Scottish three-piece came back stronger than ever with Every Open Eye and there are just as many infectious synthpop tunes in the second release as there are in the first. They'll be back Down Under next year to play at St. Jerome's Laneway Festival across the country, so hopefully I get to see these guys live again because they're so much fun. And not going to lie, I have a slight girl-crush on Lauren Mayberry.
5. Jamie xx - In Colour
Jamie xx has been sporadically releasing singles over the past few years and in 2015, finally got his shit together with a full-length album. I feel like I had been waiting forever for this! In Colour was definitely worth the wait though and while his solo stuff is quite different to that of The xx, I really love the UK garage elements to his electronic music. In his debut album, Jamie xx gets his bandmates to collaborate on a few tracks too, my favourite being Loud Places with Romy Madley Croft. Jamie xx will be in the country next month and I'm so looking forward to seeing him live for the first time. It's going to be insane!
4. Grimes - Art Angels
I didn’t always get the hype over Grimes, to be honest. I just didn’t really think much of her music, but the more I kept hearing Oblivion played everywhere, the more it grew on me and soon enough, I became obsessed with her whole album, Visions. Her second album, Art Angels, came out shortly after I properly got into Grimes and I have to say, I think I like it even more. In her sophomore album, the Canadian singer/producer also known as Claire Boucher, combines all her influences and references the music she grew up on to create something entirely of her known. Upon watching the mini-documentary for FADER and learning about the making of Art Angels, I have so much respect for Grimes as an artist and she is definitely one of my favourite women in music right now.
3. Beach House - Depression Cherry
A lot of people say that all of Beach House's music sounds the same, but to me, that's definitely not a bad thing at all. Teen Dream, their 2010 release, is perhaps one of my favourite albums of all time and after Bloom in 2012, Beach House have returned this year with even more lush dream pop music in Depression Cherry. Victoria Legrand's deep vocals combined with those hazy keyboards, the album evokes a somewhat moody feeling and is the perfect music to be alone with your thoughts and chill out to. A couple of months later, Beach House surprised us with yet another album in 2015, Thank Your Lucky Stars, though I definitely prefer the former. I got my housemate and I tickets to see them in February for their St. Jerome's Laneway sideshow and I cannot wait!
2. Alpine - Yuck
I first saw Alpine live back in February when the Melbourne band played a free show as part of the NGV Summer Sundays at the National Gallery of Victoria. They debuted their new stuff and from the very first song they opened with (Come On, which is also the first track to play on the album), I just knew I was going to love their second release. Just like the first LP, Yuck is sugary sweet and playful, yet something you could very easily chill out to on a Sunday afternoon. Alpine are fronted by not one, but awesome women; Phoebe Baker and Lou James' softly sung vocals working so harmoniously together. I love supporting local, homegrown talent and if you fancy yourself some dreamy indie pop, you can't go past Alpine.
1. Tamaryn - Cranekiss
Moody, ethereal and hauntingly beautiful all at the same time, Tamaryn's, Cranekiss, is dream pop at its finest. If you couldn't tell already, I have a bit of thing for the dream pop genre. Tamaryn's third LP, behind The Waves and Tender New Signs, is said to be "a love letter to all the music that she and her collaborators hold dear" and I can definitely hear the likes of Cocteau Twins, Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine coming through. It feels very much like a throwback to the shimmering sounds of the '80s and '90s and draws in heavily on the shoegaze genre, which I absolutely adore too. It's hard to form coherent sentences that truly express how I feel about this album, but all I can say is that it fills up my heart with so much love. Cranekiss is not only my favourite album of 2015, but one of my favourites of all time. From start to finish, this is what I call pure perfection.
Non-LP releases I enjoyed from 2015
1. Yumi Zouma - EP II 2. Japanese Wallpaper - Japanese Wallpaper EP 3. FKA twigs - M3LL155X EP 4. Toro y Moi - Samantha Mixtape
What was your favourite music of 2015?