Musical Monday is a feature where I talk about musicals, songs, make bookish playlists and feature authors to make bookish playlists for their own books.
YAY, MY FAVORITE TOPIC: MUSIC. This is my final music recap post for the year. Tonight I’m going to list and talk about my favorite albums of the year! I’ve also added Spotify links to almost all of them (coughs), so check those out! This list will be in NO particular order (though I did list my first favorite and my second favorite and I mention what my third favorite is, as well as one that’s in my top five, but other than THAT), no order. Let’s get started!
Carly Rae Jepsen – Emotion
Yes, okay, when I heard Call Me Maybe, I was like “Who is this girl? What is this song? I wish it’d go away.” as I’m sure a lot of you did as well. 😉 Well let me just be the first to say, I’M SORRY, CARLY, PLEASE FORGIVE ME. Do NOT let that one song put you off of this album or her debut (which is amazing) for that matter. One song does not represent an artist. Say it with me: One song does not represent an artist. Okay, good. This album is just super relatable and popish and I adore it so, so much. Listen to it and get your life.
Favorite Songs: Let’s Get Lost, Making The Most of The Night, Boy Problems, I Didn’t Just Come Here To Dance and Favorite Colour.
Hilary Duff – Breathe In. Breathe Out.
I know. You’re all super surprised to see this album on the list. I’m sure my previous post totally dedicated to this album gave no clues that it was a favorite. This was one of my biggest surprises of the year. I don’t know what I was expecting from Hilary, but this was amazing. The first half is an upbeat pop sound then the second half is more laid back and folkish. The song Tattoo reminds me a ridiculous amount of Lyla and Riggins from Friday Night Lights.
Favorite Songs: Confetti, Breathe In Breathe Out, More Than A Memory and Tattoo.
Marianas Trench – Astoria
Ah, one Canadian band that did not let me down this year. This album was astounding. It was inspired by The Goonies and is a soundtrack of sorts for the movie. It’s kinda genius really. It really has a movie feeling to it with it’s sweeping soundscapes it has. It’s very concept album-ish, which I adore.
Favorite Songs: Astoria, Yesterday, and Wildfire.
Grimes – Art Angels
When I heard Grimes had a new album coming out, I sort of set it aside in the back of my mind. I remember vaguely of her former albums and didn’t think anything new would be done. So you can imagine my shock when this album came out and reached the top three for my favorite albums of the year. Grimes combines electronica with video games and manga/anime inspiration. It’s amazing. There’s also a song criticizing record labels, which is always good stuff, called California. That took some getting used to, but I now really like it. It’s a pop album through and through. One of the best this year.
Favorite Songs: laughing and not being normal, World Princess Part II, and Life In The Vivid Dream.
Troye Sivan – Blue Neighbourhood
I loved Troye’s previous EP, Wild, which the first six songs from Blue Neighbourhood are taken from. An on-going theme in the album is this person dealing with his feelings for his boyfriend. I think it’s really interesting in how openly gay the writing for the album is. I mean, it does go either way, but as Troye is gay, it’s refreshing to see that ‘showcase’ (for lack of better term) in a full album. One of the small problems with the album is that a lot of the songs are mellow and have very similar sounding, but other than that, it’s great.
Favorite Songs: Talk Me Down, Fools, and Youth.
I’ll admit that I have to be in a certain mood to listen to this album, but that’s because it’s not in one of my usual genres of choice. It’s dance/electronic music. It features The Weeknd, Sam Smith, Lorde, and others.
Favorite Song: Magnets
Beach House – Depression Cherry
This is such a pretty album. I love how mellow it is. Dare I say? I think it’d be perfect on Gilmore Girls, maybe for the four new movies they’ll be making? 🙂
Favorite Songs: PPP, Beyond Love, and Space Song.
Unfortunately, this album isn’t available streaming anywhere online. 😦 I never really listened to Adele’s first two albums, though I own both (somewhere…). When I heard she was coming out with a new album though, of course I had to give it a listen. Give My Love (To Your New Lover) took a few plays to get used to since it’s such a different sound from her ballads. It’s very Taylor Swift-ish with the snakiness, in my opinion.
Favorite Songs: When We Were Young, All I Ask, and Million Years Ago.
Alessia Cara Know-It-All
This album caught me by surprise. I went and bought this on a limb after finding it had been released a week earlier than I’d thought. This is Alessia’s debut album, previously she had an EP called Four Pink Walls, which I never heard. It’s a very youthful album, much like Troye’s in term of subject matter, there’s a lot of high school subject in it, which I like.
Favorite Songs: Seventeen, River Of Tears, and Scars To Your Beautiful
Melanie Martinez Cry Baby
Another concept album! I adore this album, it reminds me of Marina and The Diamond’s Electra Heart. It also makes me think of Emilie Autumn in terms of the songwriting and titles (Training Wheels, Tag You’re It, etc.), they’re all very kid-ish.This concept album revolves around a girl dealing with her family who looks perfect on the outside. It deals with other topics such as love, sexual assault, plastic surgery, etc. It’s really interesting.
Favorite Songs: Dollhouse, Sippy Cup, Soap, and Pity Party.
Maria Mena Growing Pains
One of my new favorite singer/songwriters. This is a great album. It’s really cohesive throughout the entire thing and some songs are a bit similar melodically, but I think that’s okay. Maria had wrote this song as she was going through a hard divorce and it just really shows that in the album. Even if I hadn’t read about her going through the divorce, I would be able to tell this was real life inspired. The album goes from being upset about her choices to eventually coming full circle and knowing it was the right decision. It’s beautiful.
Favorite Songs: I Don’t Wanna See You With Her, Not Sober, and Where I Come From.
a-ha Cast In Steel
The only reason I ever gave this album a chance was because I was intrigued at this 80s band (that I never previously listened to) was making an album in 2015. I heard an album sample on Popjustice.com and that sealed the deal for me. I bought it on it’s release date, listened to it and fell in love. This is a lovely album and has gotten me through quite a bit. I love how mellow it is.
Favorite Songs: Cast In Steel, Living At The End of The World and She’s Humming A Tune.
Chvrches Every Open Eye
This is such an upbeat album, I had it on replay for several days. It’s in the top five of my favorite albums. I loved all three of the singles they put out for it, Leave A Trace, Never Ending Circles and Clearest Blue.
Favorite Songs: Never Ending Circles, Keep You On My Side, Afterglow and Make Them Gold.
I have loved these guys since I first heard their song “Dreaming” in The Vampire Diaries. Their album was one of my most anticipated of the year. I fell in love with their song Karaoke immediately. That song got a lot of play out of me, but I had the album on repeat a lot.
Favorite Songs: Dreaming, Killer Whales, and Karaoke.
Marina and The Diamonds Froot
Since Marina’s last album was a concept album, it was interesting to hear her have just an album of ‘regular’ songs. I could relate to a lot of the songs on this album. It was a lot more “quiet” with it’s meanings and in terms of sound, which I really loved. I don’t like it more than Electra Heart though, but it’s still really good.
Favorite Songs: Happy, Forget and I’m A Ruin.
Breaking Benjamin Dark Before Dawn
Of course they made my list. A bit late though, ha. Anyway, I fell in love with “Failure” immediately, as well as “Angels Fall”, their final single, “Defeated” took some getting used to though. The first song on the album is more of intro and the last song is an intro. It was interesting to go into this album having already heard the first (Dark) and last (Dawn) “real” songs on the album (Failure and Defeated). I would have liked to not have the songs placed that way, but they make sense. I didn’t immediately like this album a lot, so it took some growing, but now it’s clearly one of my favorites. This album brought me straight back to high school, it was insane. Their sound is very much the same as their previous albums (which I highly recommend) and while that would turn some people off, I loved it. It’s such a nice album.
Favorite Songs: Failure, Breaking The Silence, Close To Heaven, and Never Again.
Allie X CollXtion 1 EP
I discovered Allie X pretty recently due to random browsing on Popjustice.com. This is actually just an EP, but it is really good. Dare I say her sound and album kind of remind me of Madonna? Quite a bit really. I think it’s the song style, it reminds me of Madonna’s album Ray of Light. She is due to have CollXtion 2 out next year, which I am really excited for.
Favorite Song: Never Enough
Hailee Steinfeld Haiz EP
How gorgeous is that album cover? I am seriously just so in love with it. It really fits the mood of Carly Rae Jepsen’s album, actually. I wish Hailee would take up a more night time club vibe (don’t let that scare you) in her debut album, which I think is to come out in the new year? Crossing fingers.
Favorite Song: Hell No’s and Headphones
Favorite Songs: ALL OF THEM. I mean, did you expect another answer? 😉
I had to add this album, of course. It’d be horrible if I didn’t, especially since it’s overtaken all my other musical listening to. . .
So, what do you think? Have you listened to any of these albums? If you haven’t, you absolutely must, especially Carly’s, Hilary’s, Grimes’ and HAMILTON. Hamilton is a MUST. It’s actually an order. 😉 What albums have you really liked this year? Did any of them make my list?