The 40 Best Albums of 2015: Part Two – 30 to 21

We continue our countdown of best albums of the year, as voted by the AU review’s contributors… If you want to look back at the first ten on the list, head HERE.


30. Justin Bieber – Purpose

“This was a surprising one for me. There seems to still be a stigma around vibing on this kid’s music but I can’t deny that “Purpose” was a solid release from pop’s former enfant terrible. Bieber’s move in linking up with Diplo and Skrillex earlier in the year indicated he was moving in a different direction and the album has only solidified that Justin has been moving in some interesting circles that a wider demographic of music fan. “Sorry”, “Love Yourself” and “No Sense” are great highlights, while “I’ll Show You” shows him get candid without tearing his heart out over Selena Gomez like the majority of the album is devoted to. Usher is somewhere rubbing his hands together in smug glee.” – Sosefina Fuamoli


29. Falls – Omaha

“The Sydney duo went above and beyond with their stunning debut LP. When those strings kick in, and their beautiful voices soar… well, I’ll let you experience that for yourself. There is nothing not to love about one of the best Australian records of the Year – recorded in the US city of the same name…” – Larry Heath


28. Holy Holy – When The Storms Would Come

“Holy Holy may feel old before their time, but it has helped them to write a record that feels timeless. There is no desire to follow current trends, Carroll and Dawson have been there before. Let’s hope that it means that they intend to hang around a while longer for this is a promising debut that suggests at the ability to create something truly great in the future.” – Michael Lean


27. The Hard Aches – Pheromones

“The Hard Aches have absolutely killed it this year, they’ve been touring relentlessly, and have put so much work into getting this much awaited album finally out into the world. Definitely my favourite release of 2015.” – Elliot Oakes


26. The Wombats – Glitterbug

Another brilliant album from The Wombats. Catchy, perfect to singalong to, can’t fault any of the tracks.” – Mairead Bilton-Gough


25. Tobias Jesso Jr. – Goon

It is a powerful, soulful and emotional debut LP. Barren landscapes of distant, confronting piano complement stark lyrics of death, love and aspirstions. “Hollywood”, hit-single “How Could You Babe” and “Cant Stop Thinking About You” emit Billy Joel vibes that make for emotional listening. ” – Lachlan Mitchell


24. Purity Ring – Another Eternity

This album just sounds huge, and it sounds like what all pop music should be. The combination of perfectly crafted beats and synths from producer Corin Roddick and the clean and beautiful vocals from singer Megan James are all pulled together with unbelievably full sounding and clear mixing, make this the sort of album I have to listen to start to finish every time.” – Aidan Hogg


23. Beach House – Depression Cherry

Beach House didn’t make a huge departure from their last album “Bloom” in this release, but I feel like if they did, they wouldn’t sound like themselves. Their incredibly simple, yet original setup of combo organs and old synths with looping drum machines and distant drum kits sits underneath the new addition of more distorted guitars.” – Aidan Hogg


22. City Calm Down – In A Restless House

“As a debut album, “In a Restless House” had a lot riding on it more than others this year, in that we’d been waiting quite a while for City Calm Down to release such a collection of material. And the result? Totally worth the wait. A great demonstration of their matured sense of songwriting and a thread of gorgeously dark indie pop woven throughout has made “In a Restless House” one of the standout records of the year and such a solid addition to the band’s body of work.” – Sosefina Fuamoli


21. The Wonder Years – No Closer To Heaven

The Wonder Years have out done themselves with this layered, raw, emotional opus that delves into such heavy subjects as suicide, gun control, and the death of the American middle class. It’s an almost perfect album, and it would be my number one if Hamilton hadn’t been released about a month after.” – Ruby Niemann

Stay tuned to the AU as we continue the countdown…


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Larry Heath

Founding Editor and Publisher of the AU review. Currently based in Toronto, Canada. You can follow him on Twitter @larry_heath or on Instagram @larryheath.