The Best Of 2015: A Playlist

Hear 20 of the year's hidden treasures…

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A couple of weeks ago, I posted a gigantic list of my favourite albums of 2015. I had a bold plan to revisit it sometime and add a bunch of links to words and music, figuring it would be necessary to gloss some of the less familiar names.

In the event, though, a great weight of Christmas deadlines put paid to that masterplan. In its place, I’ve come up with this: a playlist to showcase 20 of my favourite 2015 albums, with particular emphasis on ones that have mostly sailed under the radar thus far. Inevitably, a bunch of names crop up in list after list at this time of year (I am guilty here too, of course), and I figure that most of you have a decent working idea of what Julia Holter, Kendrick Lamar and Courtney Barnett sound like by now. But what about Soldiers Of Fortune, say? Or Duane Pitre?

Here, then, are some personal picks from this exceptional year. Have a listen, and let me know what you think…

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The Weather Station – Loyalty (Paradise Of Bachelors)

Natural Information Society & Bitchin Bajas – Autoimaginary (Drag City)

The Deslondes – The Deslondes (New West)

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Phil Cook – Southland Mission (Thirty Tigers)

Duane Pitre – Bayou Electric (Important)

Steve Gunn & The Black Twig Pickers – Seasonal Hire (Thrill Jockey)

Soldiers Of Fortune – Early Risers (Mexican Summer)

Nadia Reid – Listen To Formation, Look For The Signs (Scissor Tail/Spunk)

Badbadnotgood & Ghostface Killah – Sour Soul (Lex)

Houndstooth – No News From Home (No Quarter)

Dean McPhee – Fatima’s Hand (Hood Faire)

https://soundcloud.com/deanmcphee/glass-hills

Joan Shelley – Over And Even (No Quarter)

Eleventh Dream Day – Works For Tomorrow (Thrill Jockey)

Áine O’Dwyer – Music For Church Cleaners Vol. I & II (MIE)

Bill MacKay & Ryley Walker – Land Of Plenty (Whistler)

Chris Forsyth & Koen Holtkamp – The Island (Trouble In Mind)

Lou Barlow – Brace The Wave (Domino)

Goran Kajfeš Subtropic Arkestra – The Reason Why Vol 2 (Headspin)

Laura Cannell – Beneath Swooping Talons (Front And Follow)

https://soundcloud.com/frontandfollow/cathedral-of-the-marshes

Byron Westbrook – Precipice (Root Strata)

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