Following the success of our top 10 albums of 2014, this year we asked you to nominate your favourite albums from 2015, then vote for your favourite from the shortlist.
Now the results are in, and I can reveal Kettle Mag’s top 10 albums of 2015. But who will snatch the crown away from last year’s number 1 Taylor Swift? Read on to find out!
10. Wiped Out! by The Neighbourhood
Wiped Out! was rock quintet The Neighbourhood’s sophomore album. Released in October, the album was met by rather mixed reviews, including a glowing review from Jamie Doherty. Unsurprising, considering the popularity of the first album and the similarity to The 1975. Unlike The 1975, however, Wiped Out! brings The Neighbourhood away from that almost boyband style of following, and instead looks to refine their own sound.
9. Young Chasers by Circa Waves
Our number 9 this year goes to Liverpool’s own Circa Waves. Young Chasers was the indie-rock quartet’s debut album, released back in March and reviewed by film editor Emily Murray. It can’t be said that this is a ground-breaking album, yet it’s still a fun and enjoyable listen nonetheless. And better news still – it’s even better live!
8. Drones by Muse[video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UqLRqzTp6Rk]
It’s pretty safe to say that Muse have one of the biggest followings of any rock band in the industry at the moment. Drones is their 7th album, released in June. Rebecca Parker reviewed the album, telling us why it’s arguably one of their best yet.
7. Marks To Prove It by The Maccabees
Fans of The Maccabees had to wait three years for this album before it was finally released in July, following their last offering, 2012’s Given To The Wild. Beauty editor Renate O’Connor reviewed the album, and Sally Eccleston had the pleasure of reviewing the band live for Kettle. It’s a continuation on the band’s usual indie theme, nothing new, but enough to satisfy Maccabees fans.
6. Positive Songs for Negative People by Frank Turner
Laura Brown reviewed Positive Songs for Negative People, singer-songwriter Frank Turner’s sixth studio album back when it was released in August. This latest punk-folk album shows that he has no signs of slowing down, and it’s just as good as ever. We also interviewed Turner on the release of Positive Songs for Negative People.
5. Happy People by Peace[video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnYG2EOFEDU]
Coming in at the halfway spot this year is Happy People. This was indie-rockers Peace’s second album, released way back in February. Happy People showed us that Peace do have a more mature side, yet thankfully they still haven’t fully repressed that youthful vibe that defines the band. Rebecca Marrow reviewed the album.
4. In Colour by Jamie xx
In Colour was the debut album from former xx member Jamie xx. It was released in May to plenty of hype, with fans of The xx hoping to see how he would fare without the band. Luckily for him, the album was met with critical acclaim, was Grammy nominated, and was also nominated for the 2015 Mercury Prize. As said by one of our voters:
“I’ve never heard such an eclectic yet cohesive album. ‘Loud Places’ is by far my standout track of the year.”
3. Beauty Behind The Madness by The Weeknd[video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzTuBuRdAyA]
The Weeknd’s second studio album Beauty Behind The Madness guides us into our top 3. Released in August, it featured an extensive list of guest appearances from artists including Ed Sheeran, Labrinth and Lana Del Rey, and was reviewed by Scott Wilson.
2. 25 by Adele[video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQHsXMglC9A]
Lots of you may have expected Adele to be number 1 – I know I did. Released in November, 25 marked Adele’s return to the music industry after taking several years out. 25 has been massively successful, as Tayler Finnegan outlined in her recent article, but who managed to stop the unstoppable Adele?
1. Chaos And The Calm by James Bay[video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mqiH0ZSkM9I]
You can’t deny that 2015 has been a phenomenal year for breakout artist James Bay. The man with the hat has gone from strength to strength over the past year, with his success riding on debut album Chaos And The Calm, released in March, and reviewed by me. Plus the album also sounds great live, which is almost as important! This was one of the most popular albums of the year, and won our poll by a massive 38% majority. I’m sure you’ll agree that it’s a worthy number 1 in Kettle Mag’s top 10 albums of 2015!
With all the great nominees this year, I can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store for the music world. Happy new year, Kettlers!
Do you agree with our top 10? Let us know in the comments below.