As everyone else is just digesting the 2016 year-end lists, I'm just finally getting around to putting my 2015 lists out there. While I'm intentionally running a bit late (I prefer to actually wait until the calendar flips and I want to make my way through everything, not just what I've heard before an arbitrary deadline), it's never this intentionally late.
But here we are. Writing in retrospect, here in the waning days of 2016, 2015 seemed like a goddamn golden age by comparison. The world had it's problems, but the future didn't yet feel as bleak as it does now. Still, 2015 was a pretty decent year for me personally, if one that found me in a bit of a holding pattern. Same ongoing project at work that started in March of 2013, so nothing's really changed there. Still spending as much time as I can with my wonderfully curious and sharp son, enjoying how he looks at the world.
In terms of music, I can't say that there were any really overarching themes in my listening. I continued chasing further down many of the same rabbit holes I've enjoyed - the various strands of the metal family tree, stoner rock, with occasional forays into jazz. Otherwise just pulling what I liked from rock, indie rock, hip-hop, R&B and countless other genres. I've continued to slip further away from hip-hop and radio pop. This isn't anything intentional, I'd love to keep being impressed with what I hear, but when Drake is still held up as the paragon of interesting hip-hop AND R&B, well, no thanks.
Over the next few posts you'll see much of the same as past years as I present my favorite EPs, reissues/compilations, live albums, tracks and albums. But before we fully get started, here's a look at the past...
Albums of the Year:
2003: Outkast - Speakerboxx/The Love Below
2004: Modest Mouse - Good News for People Who Love Bad News
2005: Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
2006: Mastodon - Blood Mountain
2007: Battles - Mirrored
2008: Erykah Badu - New Amerykah Part One (4th World War)
2009: The Flaming Lips - Embryonic
2010: Janelle Monae - The ArchAndroid
2011: Fucked Up - David Comes To Life
2012: Goat - World Music
2013: Steven Wilson - The Raven That Refused To Sing (and Other Stories)
2014: D'Angelo and the Vanguard - Black Messiah
Singles of the Year:
2003: "Hey Ya" - Outkast
2004: "Take Me Out" - Franz Ferdinand
2005: "Since U Been Gone" - Kelly Clarkson
2006: "When You Were Young" - The Killers
2007: "Stronger" - Kanye West
2008: "Time To Pretend" - MGMT
2009: "My Girls" - Animal Collective
2010: "Fuck You" - Cee-Lo Green
2011: "Super Bass" - Nicki Minaj
2012: "Bad Religion" - Frank Ocean
2013: "The Wire" - Haim
2014: "i" - Kendrick Lamar