I will of course be posting a countdown of my favourite reads of the year but music is also a huge part of my life and I thought it would be fun to look back on what have become some of my top albums for 2015. I’ve included one of my favourite tracks from each album in case you would like a taster and so, without further ado, let’s just get started.
- Beneath the Skin – Of Monsters and Men
The first of three Icelandic offerings on my list (seriously though, Iceland’s music scene is on point), Of Monsters and Men are one of the top folk-pop acts around and Beneath the Skin is another showcase of them doing what they do best.
(Just in case anyone is wondering, the guy in this lyric video is an actor, not part of the actual band. They released a whole series of these videos using a different actor for each song.)
- Honeymoon – Lana Del Rey
Months later, I still find myself humming Salvatore and The Blackest Day on a regular basis. Honeymoon had to be in my favourites list for those two tracks alone, and indeed because sometimes, ‘all I hear is Billie Holiday’ too.
- Unguarded – Rae Morris
A distinct voice, beautiful piano melodies and incredibly catchy hooks, I first heard Rae’s track, Skin, and instantly knew she was a potential favourite new artist. Her full album didn’t disappoint.
- Delirium – Ellie Goulding
This is definitely the most dance-pop heavy album from Ellie so far and though ‘chart friendly’ stuff doesn’t tend to grab me very often, this album instantly got stuck in my head, and Goulding’s unique vocals always keep her work feeling fresh. The singer said she wanted to go all out to make an album that would get people dancing, and that she did.
- How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful – Florence + the Machine
HBHBHB saw a new sound and musical style for Florence and crew but it was another set of instantly catchy songs that are at once as beautifully written as they are powerfully delivered.
- 25 – Adele
Needless to say, she did it again. Another album of fantastically relatable and powerful songs. I think it speaks for itself that it’s only been out for a few weeks and already I could sing along to every track word for word (though I wouldn’t inflict that upon the world).
- Ask the Deep – Sóley
Dark, ethereal and immersive, Sóley’s second album is like tumbling into the singer’s dream-world, floating around for a while and emerging all the better for it.
- Vulnicura – Björk
True pain in sonic form, Vulnicura chronicles Björk’s heartbreak and eventual healing following the end of her long-term relationship. The lyrics are her most honest, her string arrangements enchanting and the beats as charismatic as we’ve come to expect from her. If Björk’s previous few albums were explorations of the outer world – the people, politics, nature, science and technology of our times – then this is a bold quest of the self, baring her battered but defiant heart for all to see and hear.
The following clip is an official promo piece that uses a segment of the song, Family, and features gorgeous visuals that perfectly encapsulate the album’s primary themes of both despair and healing.
What were some of your favourite albums this year?