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12.2015 / Top 25 Albums of 2015

My first album list! Not limited to releases in 2015, though. It makes sense that I switch from lone tracks to whole narratives in this year; after all, my own story had to be told in order to make sense of it. I can’t stand anymore fragmentation. Also: I don’t agree with strictly sticking to release dates. Sometimes past music catches up with you, whether you like it or not.

25 – Abra: Rose
catchy, contemporary rnb. its a beyoncé type deal with a little more prince-oomph set in. but mainly its just catchy.

24 – Arthur Russell: Another Thought
a classic for depressed, melancholic moments that are dressed in positivity. if that makes any sense: its for when i’m sad, but i will feel better afterwards.

23 – map.ache: The Golden Age
this, one the other hand, is technical perfection of electronic storytelling.

22 – Leon Bridges: Coming Home
a moment of horror is when you listen to music that could have been a release from 50 years ago. i really enjoy this now, but it’s in fact a 2015 thing. i do feel particularly old, though, and i imagine sitting in an american (of course it’s american) bus on my way through winter to get home for christmas. i guess it’s the season. i guess i don’t have a home anymore.

21 – Justin Bieber: Purpose
but obviously i’m not yet too old to enjoy JB’s perfect release.

20 – Ryan Adams – 1989
or Ryan Adam’s coverversions of Taylor Swifts 1989. i didn’t suspect anything until i hit “shake it off”. i don’t think that ryan adams made the better version, i have just never listened to taylor swift consciously. maybe i will soon enough. maybe i will realize that the real talent is somewhere else. but until then, there’s nothing like riding in the wind with cheesy cover-versions in all-american fashion.

19 – Vince Staples: Summertime ’06
i’m going with all the major magazines and music blogs with this one: the vince staples release was fantastic. it was what i had expected from kendrick lamars “how to pimp a butterfly”, but somehow that never really got thru to me. unfortunately iTunes fucked up the order of the albums tracks so now i have to listen to it with the skits all unorganized and its driving me insane; on the other hand, i can’t just listen to the album differently now, because i have feelings attached to it. i do realize my life consists mostly of hashtag champagneproblems, no need to remind me, thank you.

18 – Nils Frahm: Spaces
seeing nils frahm and jon hopkins on one stage together was intense. i do admit i fell asleep, although i firmly belief that the performance transcended me into another sphere rather than sleep. the victoria OST added to that little nils frahm obsession. this is, more or less, a throwback.

17 – Kurt Vile: b’lieve I’m Going Down
notice something? i’m going back to guitar sounds. more indie-type stuff on this list than hip hop releases, i guess i’m growing up (although a classic cut that didn’t make it onto this list is wu tang clans 8 diagrams, oh god, is it coming to the point where i’m *getting* old school releases?); nothing to say about kurt vile here, i haven’t been into him before but this eastcoast/westcoast niagarafalls grand canyon sound feels intimate and hits home somehow

16 – The Soft Moon: The Soft Moon
almost a lie because i only listen do this album when i can stomach the intensity. but let’s just say those 4 times that i listened to it front to back were powerful.

15 – Massive Attack: Mezzanine
representing my new-found love for british 90s nostalgia and collective rave memories.

14 – Inc.: No World
still on this list and probably my favorite album of all times, i.e. my lifetime. that trickling and tickling of soft, whispered queer rnb just does it for me.

13 – Daughter: If You Leave
this album carried me from london to marrakesh. it is not so much a testament to pop-quality but rather a sound that i can’t scrape off of my mind anymore. it’s too late. it’s now forever 2015, in all it’s clichés.

12 – IVVVO: Occult
i actually believe IVVVO is more of a club sound than headphone sound, but i’ve only heard his album in the private realms of my bedroom. very loudly. it’s usually drenched in a dark mood. his arrangements kind of resemble how i live: in painfully executed structure, but the stress is better than the sinister chaos that would unfold otherwise.

11 – The Internet: Ego Death
apart from Biebs, this list has been pretty dark so far. The Internet break it up with funky songs about break-ups and a heavy bass. love this lyrical girl on girl action.

10 – Traumprinz: Mothercave
the Giegling classic of the Prince. it’s dramatic. it’s a rollercoaster of emotions. i can’t listen to this album in discontinuation, it has to be in exactly the same order, kind of like you would always read a book from the beginning to the end, and i guess this has been a fascinating experience for me.

09 – Vril: Portal
i always thought i wouldn’t understand techno unless its in the holy halls of Berghain, but Vril made me understand that it takes a good soundsystem and a little bit of concentration to get there at home, too. or on the train. God i am really getting old, but i swear his melodic stomping is different. i used this to aggressively run when i was still running regularly. i stopped running due to an injury, then stopped working out. now im depressed. i listen to it when i hate being lazy now. it doesn’t do anything.

08 – Miguel: Wildheart
We are approaching pop again. Wildheart is California Dreaming 2015, LSD tabs, tie-dye shirts and hallucinating about porn shoots. It’s somehow artificial, like a synthesized dream.

you know i write these lists so i can come back to them one day and be like “uh, yeah, i remember this feeling” or something like that, or laugh about myself, or just vaguely hint at what the time, the NOW, felt like… it’s like a journal, but without intimate details. and yet sometimes i think if other people read it they think i must be tripping with those shitty descriptions. and i mean, i don’t even have that much to say about these albums, i’m not even a good writer, but the consistency may hide the flaws. really though, if you’re annoyed, that’s okay; so am I.

07 – Jamie XX: In Colour
Obviously.

06 – Fleetwood Mac: Rumors
everybody knows my life is best imagined as a high school movie soundtrack, and Fleetwood Mac have been delivering since what, 30 years or something? still not getting old.

05 – $UICIDEBOY$: KILL YOURSELF PART X: The Re$urrection $aga
my favorites this year – all their discography, but especially this. cut-your-wrists-satanic-rap shit is exactly the shit i grind on.

04 – Future: Dirty Sprite 2
I used to hate Futures whiney voice. Now he reminds me more of a very sentimental Chewbacca.

03 – John Roberts – Glass Eights
my mom died and this is what listened to when i couldn’t listen to anything else. it was calm enough, and good enough, and deep enough, and unlike other music it didn’t relativize what happened. it just very fittingly underlined it, without drama or outspoken emotions. it was just that.

02 – Bobby Raps & Corbin: Couch Potato
this is the streamlined version of rnb with all the ornaments and decoration stripped away. “we might be gay” is the subtitle of the ep and you can pretty much tell how its supposed to defend itself by wrapping it in irony, but fuck it, when they start singing and rapping, you can hear the rawness of those teenage emotions and suddenly it makes sense and i’m really happy i’m not SUPER old; at least not too old to get it.

01 – Bohren & Der Club of Gore: Sunset Mission
sighs.

go here for mp3s (including some honorable mentions) ; valid for 7 days. i might follow-up with best-tracks, although i’ll probably not comment much on my choices.

(Music)