Best Albums of 2015 (First Half)

It’s hard for me to believe that it’s only a couple of weeks until the mid-point of 2015, and that a mere six months from now, I’ll compile and publish my 24th annual Albums of the Year list. Yeesh, where does the time go?!? As has been my June practice in recent years, I offer the following interim list of twelve new records that have most rocked my world since the preceding January. Several of these discs will likely be contenders for “Album of the Year” honors come December. The list is in alphabetical order by artist, and album titles link to sample songs to help you explore. Happy listening!

Bop English — Constant Bop

Death Grips — The Powers That B: Jenny Death

Eternal Summers — Gold and Stone

The Fall — Sub-Lingual Tablet

Girlpool Before the World Was Big

Lightning Bolt — Fantasy Empire

Napalm Death — Apex Predator — Easy Meat

Panda Bear — Panda Bear Meets the Grim Reaper

Kate Pierson — Guitars and Microphones

Public Service Broadcasting — The Race for Space

Shriekback — Without Real String or Fish

Wire — Wire

11 thoughts on “Best Albums of 2015 (First Half)

  1. I’ve been meaning to check out Kate Pierson’s disc — thanks for the reminder.

    Agreed on the Napalm Death — the new one is fantastic. A rare case where a band is getting better as they age. And that Lightning Bolt…hoo boy..

    The albums from 2015 that have been getting the most spins to date in my car/office/home:

    Sleater Kinney – No Cities to Love
    Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I just Sit.
    Cloakroom – Further Out
    Screaming Females – Rose Mountain
    Lightning Bolt – Fantasy Empire
    Napalm Death – Apex Predator – Easy Meat
    Sufjan Stevens – Carrie and Lowell

    And for some reason I completely missed Mogwai when they first came out, so I’ve been exploring their back catalog over the last month. So, a goodly portion of my listening in 2015 has been old stuff that is new to me.

  2. Man 24th annual? I just started last year haha! Started doing a top 50 last year, been working hard for this years. Anyways nice list. I like the range, definitely you’ve listened to all the different flavors 2015 has to offer. I got a few I would like to recommend, my favorites so far.
    Hop Along – Painted Shut
    Sleater-Kinney – No Cities to Love
    Drenge – Undertow
    Jamie xx – In Colour
    Sufjan Stevens- Carrie and Lowell
    Courtney Barnett -Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Somestimes I Just Sit
    Hiatus Kaiyote – Choose Your Weapon
    Check those out if your interested. Hop Along is my favorite so far by far and you should def get Sleater Kinney like you said in the above comment. Also if your into heavy stuff like Napalm Death I found some newcomers called Maruta this month. Really great stuff in my opinion! Keep rocking!

    • Time flies when you’re rockin’ out, I guess!!!

      Okay, both of you recommended Courtney Barnett and Sleater-Kinney, so I feel out of the loop now.

      Of course, both of you also recommended Surfan Stevens, and I know I don’t like him!!

      You’ve goth given me some good new things to investigate, thanks!

      • The missus is a big fan of Sufjan, so i took her to see him at the Palace Theater for her birthday. I have to give him props — I went in less-than enthused and left with a new show on my top-10 of all time list. So, my affection for his newest LP is probably colored, in part, by that amazing show.

        That said, the new album is a pretty powerful collection of songs focusing on the death of his mother and the attendant emotional fallout. It is devoid of the forced quirkiness I find he has a tendency to fall back upon in a lot of his work. Worth at least a listen — it is not his typical fare.

  3. I can understand someone not being a Sufjan Stevens fan lol. What albums are you most excited to hear the second half of the year?

    • Hmmm . . . new Sleaford Mods and Tame Impala come to mind, among things to be released relatively soon. New Public Image Ltd and Nile are both due later in the summer/early fall. I thought PiL’s last album was spectacular, so hopefully they can repeat. I think David Gilmour is supposed to have something new this year, but he moves very slowly with his releases these days, so that could just be rumor and/or slip into 2016 (or beyond!) . . .

    • Before I knew of Courtney Barnett, she played a $10 show at Upstate Concert Hall last fall that I hear was amazing but sparely attended. Still kicking myself for that one!

  4. I’ve been very impressed with 2015 when it comes to music. I have five albums from this year so far:

    Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp a Butterfly
    Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell
    Blur – The Magic Whip
    Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
    Jamie xx – In Colour

    I wonder what great music awaits us in the second half of the year?

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