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The Good, The Bad, The Banned, The Sad, The Surreal, Top Rap vs. Hip-Hop Metaphor of the Year + more in Best of 2015 Hip-Hop

Posted by Billyjam, January 19, 2016 11:59am | Post a Comment
 Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2015

Among all the top ten hip-hop albums in 2015 that caught my ear was Tone Tank's late in the year cassette release ONE-OFFs & ONE-UPMANSHIPs via indie Brooklyn label Modern Shark. It's the super-gifted Brooklyn emcee's first release in five years. The wait was worth it for what the longtime NY hop-hop artist considers his first official solo album. Complimenting Tone's unique flow and always engaging storytelling hip-hop style is a well-chosen array of mic and production collaborators. These include SerengetiCool Calm Pete, Kool A.D., Edan, Victor Vic, J Howells Werthman, and his longtime production partner Scott Thorough.  Other 2015 albums that made my top list included UK poet/emcee Kate Tempest's Bad Place For A Good Time (Big Dada), Knxwledge's Hud Dreems (Stones Throw), and Blackalicious's Imani, Vol. I (Black Mines). Their first album in a decade, it was also released in an instrumental LP version. 

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Pretty Good Year: Kelly's Best of 2015 picks...

Posted by Kells, January 9, 2016 04:49pm | Post a Comment
It seems like 2015 came to a close less than a little more than a week ago...wait, didn't it? Where does the time go? It came and went in another trip around the sun, with the seasons fully cycled and another twelve-month accumulation of art, music, and enjoyment to show for the passage. Listed below are the leaders of the pack where the year in my ears is, er, was concerned. These the repeat-listen flat plastic friends stuck with me thru thick and thin. Oh, and there's a book thrown in the mix as well! Did you dig any of these selections?


Jessica Pratt
- On your Own Love Again
(Drag City)


There's always one or three endlessly flip-able records that never quite stay filed away, maintaining rather an easy reach in the rotation pile nearby the home hi-fi. Jessica Pratt's sophomore offering On Your Own Love Again is one such record. Built in part of nearly inaudible ambient street sounds indicating a subtle genesis rooted in home-recordings, the layered, spacial delivery of Pratt's soft-plucked folk edged in opaque psychedelia eddies and billows in a cosmos of mellow zones, at times reaching near-exotic levels of effect, but ever retaining a familiar quality. Here and there accompanying lyrics seem to reveal something of the singer-songwriter's personal inspirations, but these revelations are islands in a stream of vocal stylings, lilting like tendrils through a tapestry of rhythmic strums, droning, hums, and filigree. A muted monument of home-spun, dyed-in-the-wool California by way of the Milky Way sound, Jessica Pratt may be compared to many a laudable singer-songwriter forebear, but she is most definitely in a league of her own.



Leland
- A Self-Taught, Decathlon Hard Rock Musician (Stoned Circle)

Sounding like what I imagine to be Ariel Pink's ideal funeral shuffle, there is no limit to the number of times I can listen to Leland Yoshitsu's "I've Got Some Happiness"—it's a nodding rock hallucination comfortably lodged in it's own should'a would'a could'a laze, but so striking and real. Originally appearing on his ultra-rare 1976 self-funded, self-titled debut album, as well as on the equally rare 1978 reissue of said debut titled This is My World, this life-lending track and many other unequivocal druggy rippers, are now freely repeatable on this remastered expanded re-reissue what also includes the raw and unbridled Live At Mabuhay Gardens, S.F.circa 1979. Extensive liner notes and bonus photos of this psychedelic superhero abound! Not a 100% new release, but the title alone gives it a free pass re: best of 2015.




Mondo Drag - Mondo Drag
(Riding Easy Records)

If you're a high fantasy rock band, this is the kind of album cover that will most likely rivet the record shop RPG set with enough curiosity to guarantee at least a cursory listen. Of course, you'd better have the "No Quarter" meets "Highway Star" chops to back artwork like this up. Not only does Mondo Drag deliver on this their 2nd release, they've also already cut a killer debut and a third gunning to drop in February. This self-titled dank nugg is chock full of heavy desert mysticism, stratospheric psych appeal, gypsy crystal visions, pounding progressive allusions, pillars of riffage, smokey fluted corridors echoing pinwheeled guitarmonies, and a jingle-jangle bag of percussive holding. It could be a bit more demonic, but I like it just the way it is; otherworldly and titanic.


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Amoeba Hollywood's Top 50 Sellers of 2015

Posted by Amoebite, January 6, 2016 02:33pm | Post a Comment

amoeba hollywood best sellers of 2015

Amoeba Hollywood shoppers had diverse tastes in 2015, snapping up popular albums by Adele, Lana Del Rey and Taylor Swift as well as critical favorites by Sufjan Stevens, Kamasi Washington and Beach House in equal measure, plus those essential records that never go out of style. Check out the year's top sellers below.

1.  Tame ImpalaCurrents

tame impala currents lpTame Impala's third album was a critical and commercial triumph. It's both as a fascinating headphones album for production junkies and as a set of immaculate psych-pop songs that feels endlessly giving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.  Adele25

adele 25 lpAdele's third album was a across-the-board hit with people of all ages. With pipes like Aretha and insightful lyrics, she’s our premiere pop chronicler of relationships and breakups.

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Top 30 Hip-Hop 2015 Hit Albums

Posted by Billyjam, December 27, 2015 07:47pm | Post a Comment

With its number one album being the critically acclaimed Kendrick Lamar modern classic To Pimp a Butterfly, this Top 30 Hip-Hop Hit Albums in 2015 list is one of three Amoeblog hip-hop year-end lists. This list's results are compiled by drawing from various sales figures of the year's top-selling albums, while also taking into consideration overall critical response. The factors included are first week sales on the Billboard Top 100 chart, overall sales at Amoeba, plus Metacritic ratings. A lot of the time, both sales figures and critical ratings are equal, but on some occasions they were not (hence why some albums might rate higher on this chart than lists based solely on sales). Still, overall the Top 30 that made the list is reflective of the most commercially well-received albums in 2015. With a few exceptions and regardless of the order, this top 30 includes most of the top 30 best-selling albums of the year. Exceptions would include Dom Kennedy's By Dom Kennedy and Drake & Future What a Time to Be Alive because both 2015 albums were digital only and unavailable through Amoeba. The list is also reflective of a lot of the artists whose album tracks received major radio airplay in 2015.

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Best of 2015 Picks From The Hollywood Electronic Staff

Posted by Oliver / Matt / Jordan, December 24, 2015 11:07am | Post a Comment

Deepchord

CHRIS

Deepchord - Ultraviolet Music (Soma)

Petre Inspirescu - Vin Ploile (Mule)

Grad U - Redscale 07 (Redscale)

Gigi Masin - Wind (Bear On The Moon Records)

William Basinski - The Deluge (Temporary Residence)

Steve Hauschildt - Where All Is Fled (Kranky)

Celldod

KYLE

Psychick Warriors Ov Gaia - 1989 (Sacred Summits)

Civil Duty - Civil Duty (The Corner)

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