From thought-provoking lyrics to social-media fueled rap “beefs” to hilarious memes, 2015 was an eventful year for the world music. But even with all the chaos this year, some artists still remembered what was important. It seemed like releasing solid bodies of works became significant again this year. If you’re an avid reader of this site then you are well aware of the fact that music is a focal point, so I felt it was only right to compose a list of some of my favorite CDs/EPs of the year. Be sure to check them out below!
1. “To Pimp A Butterfuly” x Kendrick Lamar
When I first heard this album, I remember saying to myself this is what music was missing. It’s what I call true hip-hop. Every song was thought-provoking and spoke on the emotions several Black people are experiencing across the world. The story telling alone was enough to make this album impeccable, but the 70s “soul vibe” took this body of work to another level. It’s no wonder this album received a Grammy nomination for “album of the year.”
2. “Cheers To The Fall” x Andra Day
Oh how I love Ms. Day! Her music is so soulful, and ground-breaking. I discovered her album while relentless searching the new releases section on Google Music. Her lead single “Forever Mine,” will quickly make her one of your new favorite artist. Day’s album tells the story of what a beautiful disaster love can be.
3. “Dark Sky Paradise” x Big Sean
When this album debuted I wasn’t shocked it quickly shot up to the top of the charts, with “IDFWU,” and “Blessings” being the two lead singles. This album was throughly a wonderful body of work. I love how it showcased the afterthought of what fame is like.
4. “Beauty Behind The Madness” x The Weeknd
Although this was not The Weeknd’s first album, it was his first mainstream effort. As fans we’ve watched several artist lose their “edge” once they become a more mainstream artist, but with The Weeknd this was just not the case. The album had the same amount of darkeness and grunge that his listeners were use to, and didn’t disappoint at all.
5. “Woman” x Jill Scott
If you are a Jill Scott fan it should be no surprise to you that her album landed her on this list. Woman is a boldly told story about the evolution of Scott’s womanhood. This album is soulful, empowering, and intimate.
6. “Amethyst” x Tinashe
Tinashe is one of my fave artist, and her bodies of works never seem to disappoint me. She’s one of those artist that you can just put on and vibe all the way out to. This seven-track ep was effortlessly sexy, and told the story of what it’s like to be a millennial in the crazy world of dating.
7. “TrapSoul” x Bryson Tiller
I featured Tiller at the beginning of this year as one of my “5 Artist To Watch,” and boy was I right. Once Tiller’s debut album “TrapSoul” was released he seemed to just blow up. Everyone, everywhere was listening to his cd. He is such an authentic artist you can’t help but relate to his songs.
8. “Intermission I & II” x Trey Songz
I’ve always been a huge fan of Trey Songz’s music. He’s one of the very few r&b artist that actually stays true to rhythm and blues. Intermission gave Songz’s fans a glimpse into what being in love is like when you’re a star, but was still relatable enough that everyone could see their lives reflected in one of the songs.
9. “Urban Flora” x Alina Baraz & Galimatias
If you’re a fan of my website, then you know that I love the sexy sounds of this duo. This eight-track ep was the epitome of “sensual and sultry.” Alina Baraz & Galimatias music is pure bliss, and will make you feel like you’ve floated away and temporary left earth.
10. “Purpose” x Justin Bieber
I’ve always been a fan of Bieber’s music, but I feel with this album we got a chance to see a different side of the artist. This album is raw, honest, and real. It sheds away any doubt that Bieber is a “real” musician.
11. “You Should Be Here” x Kehlani
Let me start off by saying I LOVE Kehlani. She’s such an authentic musician. What I love most about her music is her straight-forward and raw lyrics. This album tells the story of a young girl trying to make it in the world. It’s relatable, passionate, and breathes some new life into the world of r&b.
12. “Rodeo” x Travis Scott
A buzz surrounding Travis Scott has slowly but surely been happening for a little while now. The same duality he possesses as a musician (Scott is a mega-producer as well as an artist) is very much present on his album, which tells the story of rap industry politics and tales of “cool, rich hipster kids.”
13. “Reality Show” x Jazmine Sullivan
I have always been a fan of Jazmine Sullivan’s tales of love gone wrong, and with this album my fandom grew even stronger. With this album, Sullivan seemed to breathe new life into the age-old story line of life, and it’s ups and downs.
14. “Emotionally Unavailable” x Justine Skye
I’m a huge fan of Justin Skye’s music. Her sound gives you an “old-school” r&b feel, all while discussing topics that millenials can relate to. Emotionally Unavailable takes you on a young girl’s journey of “finding herself.”
15. “DS2” x Future
2015 seemed to be the year of Future. Everywhere I went I seemed to hear someone making some type of reference to his lyrics (just check social media). This album is the epitome of trap music, and tells the story of a person’s transition from “hood rich,” to well “real-life rich.” It’s the perfect turn-up album.
Hope you all enjoyed the list! What was your favorite album of 2015?!
*images provided by Bing Images.