Mark Steele - Albums Of The Year 2015

by Mark Steele Rating: Release Date:

Happy People by Peace

What I like on this album their second, is that they masterfully brandish in one hand sounds from a whole lot of great 80s/90s groups like U2, INXS, The Happy Mondays, Primal Scream. Then in the other hand grasp great pop song writing with a message of self-expression typical of a generation getting to grips with identity and meaning.

The Magic Whip by Blur

This a nice mature album from Mr Albarn and company. Each track sounds like a snapshot throughout their career placed in a box with some new sounds, closed, shaken and opened again to provide something for everyone.

Choose Your Weapon by Hiatus Kaiyote

I first heard this enigmatic mesmerising future soul collective from Melbourne, Australia in December and began thinking the musical benchmark of inventiveness has been raised to a new level. It was like discovering Jamiroquai, Erykah Badu, and The Roots again. Totally, Mind blowing arrangements and a liquid finesse in the song production.

Everybody’s Coming Down by The Good Life

Tim Kasher also of Cursive brings us an album in which I heard Elements of Bowie, Roxy Music, Weezer, Talking Heads, Beck, in this album and with guitars in effect keeps us wrapped up in a post- hardcore expressive parcel.

What Went Down by Foals

I had never heard of these guys before and after hearing them, well in particular this album, it struck me of how refreshing to hear a heart-on-sleeve UK band give it some and pen truly organic transcendent rock. Yannis Philippakis has an innate emotional vocal mastery and strength with this band though these well-crafted songs. The previous two albums need a visit.

Honeymoon by Lana Del Rey

Chapter three of the Lana Del Rey story and the musical listening experience enclosed within this album again draws you in even further. Well to be honest, I only connected her as the same singer on ‘Born To Die’ in July by catching ‘Summertime Sadness’  from the 'Ultraviolence' album in my local Coffee Shop (Thanks Coffee Junction) and was hooked on the hypnotic ‘West Coast’ for a couple of months. Hearing this third offering including 'Music to watch boys to' and 'High by the beach' made me to sit up and listen again. This is another ornate orchestral and lyrically captivating ocean to dive into.

Many Moons by Martin Courtney

Many Moons has an inviting cohesiveness, and it certainly advances optimistically from the last Real Estate album, Atlas. The distinctive key elements for me are the elaborate orchestration, the familiar reverb of Real Estate has been removed in order to filter through as a simply effective and economical layered sound sphere.

Services by Tempers

It is fair to say that the band Tempers are a shimmering dark aural entity coloured purple and black with gold sparks, their debut album ‘Services’ heaves with industrial tendencies; they are emotionally provocative, and like a gothic predator stealthily wanting to reach out and take all who will wholeheartedly step out of the solitary corner and embrace their swirling otherworldly presence. That is me included.

Horse Dance by Josefin Öhrn + The Liberation

An impressive full length debut album that opens many inter-dimensional portals. Psychedelia has a new visionary Stoner Queen and she shall hopefully lead The Liberation into many unchartered territories with their subsequent offerings.

Days of Yesteryear by Mystic Braves

An opened time capsule of mid-1960s pop psychedelia and with the LA collective’s third album full of great riffs and melodies from the era, it is hard not to get up and get groovy to these ambassadors known for their exquisite Haight-Ashbury vibes. Please turn on. Definitely tune in. But do not drop out.

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