2015 in Music

As 2015 comes to a close, we wanted to (as always) look back at the year in music. So with no further ado, here’s The Music Box’s official guide to the best music of 2015.

SONG OF THE YEAR:

Little Mix – Black Magic

Whilst eventually played to death, this song is easily one of the catchiest pop tracks of 2015. A 21st century of ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun’, it’s fierce, fun and memorable. The perfect pop hit.

ALBUM OF THE YEAR:

Carly Rae Jepsen – Emotion

One of the most underrated pop albums from 2015. ‘Emotion’ draws upon 80’s synthpop in a similar way to Taylor Swift on ‘1989’ but with superior production. Every beat is meticulously placed and the focus is more on the songs rather than vocal performance. The entire album contains a naivety lacking from most pop albums and it’s a whole lot of fun from start to finish.

RADIO 1 LIVE LOUNGE OF THE YEAR:

Rixton – Where are U Now (Justin Bieber Cover)

Boyband Rixton transform this jittery EDM hit into a gentle 90’s R&B track with gorgeous chords, lush harmonies and an element of Soul lacking in the original.

BAND OF THE YEAR:

Circa Waves

British Indie-rock band Circa Waves launched onto the scene this year with brilliant single ‘Fossils’. Their début album ‘Young Chasers’ was released in March to positive response and the band have subsequently been touring the world.

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ARTIST OF THE YEAR:

Carly Rae Jepsen

One of the most underrated female pop stars, Carly Rae Jepsen avoids controversy and instead keeps her track record solely focussed on music. Whilst many may be put off by undeniably catchy but somewhat irritating hits ‘Call Me Maybe’ and ‘I Really Like You’, 2015 album ‘Emotion’ demonstrated a new side to Jepsen which resulted in the album’s critical acclaim.

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NEW BAND OF THE YEAR:

Nothing But Thieves

Nothing But Thieves have seemingly sprung from no-where this year with singles ‘Itch’, ‘Trip-Switch’ and ‘Wake Up Call’ all receiving extensive airplay on radio. Their self-titled début album is haunting, eerie and bold, resembling some of Jeff Buckley’s best work.

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NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR:

Shura

Shura has risen to prominence in the last year with huge hit, the Janet Jackson circa 1986 influenced ‘2Shy’ in addition to catchy dance hit ‘White Light’ and the gentle analog driven ‘Touch’. With her highly anticipated début album due in 2016, we are expecting big things from Shura.

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UP & COMING ARTIST OF THE YEAR:

The Japanese House

Amber Bain, better known as The Japanese House has won the admiration of many this year with her spaced-out and hazy material. Aided by The 1975’s Matt Healy & George Daniel in production, The Japanese House’s two EPs have been cinematic, bold and impressive.

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ONE TO WATCH:

Troye Sivan

YouTuber Troye Sivan already had a huge profile before entering the music industry this year. Debut album ‘Blue Neighbourhood’ has been critically acclaimed for its bold and unique sound and sincere lyrical themes.

LIVE ACT OF THE YEAR:

Take That

Take That proved they’ve still got it in a series of triumphant sold-out shoes in various arenas over the UK this year. Featuring a large ensemble of dancers, an abundance of multi-coloured confetti, walls of flame and a flying bike, 2015’s tour proved to be their best yet.

TOP 10 SINGLE RELEASES OF 2015

THE LONG LIST: RADIO 1 LIVE LOUNGE COVERS OF THE YEAR

  • Ella Henderson – Hold Back The River [James Bay Cover]

  • Frances – What Do You Mean [Justin Bieber Cover]

  • George Ezra – I Try [Macy Gray Cover]

  • Imagine Dragons – Blank Space [Taylor Swift Cover]

  • James Bay – FourFiveSeconds [Rihanna, Kanye West & Paul McCartney Cover]

  • James Bay – Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher & Higher [Jackie Wilson Cover]

  • Little Mix – Dance With Somebody [Jason Derulo & Whitney Houston Cover]

  • Mark Ronson – The Giver [Duke Dumont Cover]

  • Nothing But Thieves – Wings [Birdy Cover]

  • Rixton – Where are U Now [Justin Bieber, Skrillex & Diplo Cover]

  • Sam Smith & Disclosure – Hotline Bling [Drake Cover]

THE LONG LIST: ALBUMS OF THE YEAR:

THE LONG LIST: ALBUM TRACKS OF THE YEAR:

  • Adele: When We Were Young, Water Under the Bridge, Love in the Dark, Million Years Ago
  • Ben Haenow: Testify
  • Carly Rae Jepsen: All That, Emotion, Let’s Get Lost, Boy Problems
  • Circa Waves: Deserve This, Good For Me, Stuck in My Teeth,
  • Coldplay: Up & Up, Kaleidoscope
  • Ellie Goulding: Codes, Something in the Way You Move.
  • James Bay: If You Ever Want to be in Love, Scars, Need The Sun To Break
  • James Morrison: Stay Like This
  • Janet Jackson: Broken Hearts Heal, Great Forever, Take Me Away, Shoulda Known Better
  • Justin Bieber: I’ll Show You, Company, No Pressure
  • Markus Feehily: Back To Yours, Love Me Or Leave Me, Only You
  • Matthew Morrison & Laura Michelle Kelly: What You Mean to Me
  • Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds: The Right Stuff
  • Nothing But Thieves: Graveyard Whistling, Honey Whiskey, If I Get High, Lover Please Stay.
  • One Direction: Hey Angel, Love You Goodbye, Long Way Down, Olivia, What A Feeling, I Want to Write…
  • Seal: Love, Padded Cell
  • Tame Impala: Yes I’m Changing
  • Take That: Bird in Your Hand, Will You Be There For Me
  • The 1975: Ugh!, Somebody Else (Live)
  • The Weeknd: Tell Your Friends, Shameless, As You Are
  • Troye Sivan: Youth, Heaven, Fools, Ease
  • Wolf Alice: Your Loves Whore, Swallowtail
  • Years and Years: Memo, Eyes Shut, Ties

THE LONG LIST: SONGS OF THE YEAR:

  • Aqualung ft Lianna La Havas: Eggshells
  • Babyface: We’ve Got Love
  • Birdy & Rhodes: Let It All Go
  • Blonde ft Alex Newell: All Cried Out
  • Carly Rae Jepson: I really like you, Run Away With Me
  • Circa Waves: Fossils, My Love, T-Shirt Weather
  • Coldplay: Adventure of a Lifetime
  • Dimitri Vegas, Like Mike & NeYo: Higher Place
  • Drake: Hotline Bling
  • Ellie Goulding: Army, Love Me Like You Do
  • Fleur East: Sax
  • Flo Rida & Robin Thicke: I Don’t Like It, I Love it
  • Frances: Grow, When It Comes to Us (with Ritual)
  • Galantis:  Peanut Butter Jelly
  • George Ezra: Barcelona
  • Grimes & Bleaches: Entropy
  • James Morrison: Demons
  • Jess Glynne: Hold My Hand
  • Justin Bieber: What Do You Mean?, Where are U Now? (ft Skrillex & Diplo)
  • Iggy Azalea & Jennifer Hudson: Trouble
  • Joe Stone & Montell Jordan: The Party (This is how we do)
  • Lianne La Havas: Unstoppable
  • Little Mix: Black Magic
  • Major Lazer, DJ Snake and MO: Lean on
  • Markus Feehily: Love is a Drug
  • Maroon 5: Sugar
  • Miguel: Coffee
  • Nathan Sykes: Kiss Me Quick
  • Nick Jonas: Jealous, Levels.
  • Nicki Minaj: The Night is Still Young
  • Nothing But Thieves: Trip Switch, Wake Up Call
  • Olly Murs: Beautiful to Me, Kiss Me
  • OMI: Cheerleader
  • Philip George: Wish You Were Mine
  • Rita Ora and Chris Brown: Body On Me
  • Rixton: We All Want The Same Thing
  • Ryan O’Shaughnessy: Fingertips
  • Sam Smith: Lay Me Down
  • Seal: Every Time I’m With You
  • Selena Gomez & A$AP Rocky: Good For You
  • Shura: 2Shy, Love for That (with Mura Masa) White Light.
  • Sigala: Easy Love
  • Snakehips, Tinashe & Chance The Rapper: All My Friends
  • Tame Impala: Cause I’m a Man
  • Take That: Higher than Higher, Let in the Sun
  • Taylor Swift: Style, Wildest Dreams
  • The 1975: Love Me
  • The Japanese House: Cool Blue, Still
  • The Weeknd: I Can’t Feel My Face
  • Tinie Tempah & Jess Glynne:  No Letting Go
  • Tori Kelly: Should’ve Been Us
  • Tove Lo: Moments, Talking Body
  • Troye Sivan: Wild
  • Usher: I Don’t Mind
  • Walk The Moon: Shut up & Dance
  • Wretch 32 ft Anne Marie and PRGRSHN: Alright With Me
  • WSTRN: In2
  • Wolf Alice: Bros, Freazy
  • Years & Years: King
  • Zayn Malik/One Direction: I won’t Mind
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