15. “Cheerleader” – OMI

“’Cause I’m the wizard of love, and I got the magic wand”

Like any good graduate of hippie college, I’m totally down with the peaceful dissolution of the misogynist heteropatriarchy. But sometimes gender roles are catchy. And so are trumpets.

14. “Brought to the Water” – Deafheaven (2)

“A multiverse of fuscia and violet surrenders to blackness now”

With their most recent effort New Bermuda, black metal polarizers Deafheaven both acquiesced to and rejected the criticisms brought about by their 2013 masterpiece Sunbather. How is this possible, you ask? Remember, this is a band comfortable balancing two things at once, like how they deftly combine black metal with shoegaze, or like how a couple of years ago when they were both the most exciting thing and literally the worst thing to ever happen to their genre. Though they nod to the sonic styling of their predecessors, the band keeps their poetry and melody, continuing an impressive two-year streak of making otherwise uninterested listeners (like myself) pay attention to metal.

13. “Play Mass” – Sons of Kemet

Jazz doesn’t sell well, which makes it especially curious that artists like Kamasi Washington and Sons of Kemet found some mainstream success in 2015. Of course, when you can groove like Shabaka Hutchings on sax and Theon Cross on tuba, it shouldn’t take long for the world to notice.

12. “Get You Up” – Manganas Garden

“Oh, we can run it better, love”

Off The Wall era Michael Jackson has always played well by virtue of Michael Jackson being pop’s greatest performer, apparently even in the dreary Swedish winter from where Manganas Garden hails.

11. “Say You Won’t” – Brasstracks

Anybody up for a picnic?



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