Here’s my top 10 of everything from 2015 (Just for you Ben…and the pedantic guy who always points out which albums/films didn’t come out this year)
Top 10 Albums (I Heard For The First Time) in 2015
Alone At The Microphone (David Bazan)
Safety Fifth (Mucca Pazza)
Bazan Monthly Volume 1 (David Bazan)
LYA (Mucca Pazza)
Aeon: Peace To The Puzzle (Scorzayzee)
It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back (Public Enemy) – Chuck D is the Dad I never had
Mezmerize (System Of A Down)
Live At The Academy (The Band)
Plays Well Together (Mucca Pazza)
Motown Gold (Various Artists)
Top 10 New Films (I Saw For The First Time) in 2015
Mad Max: Fury Road
Grand Budapest Hotel
Avengers: Age Of Ultron
Tomorrowland is nowhere near as bad as everyone says. Some people just don’t like a positive message I guess. Ant-Man, Locke and Home were also good (though Home‘s musical ‘score’ almost amounts to a Rhianna commercial every 15 minutes). Paddington and Pixels were in the ‘expected them to suck but they were actually well done and a lot of fun’ category.
It’s too early to call Star Wars: The Force Awakens, even though I’ve seen it twice, but I can say it and Fury Road both had compelling and fully realised female heroes which threw Jurassic World‘s dated “serves you right for trying to have a career instead of children and wear high heels in the jungle” sub-text into sharp relief. Which is ironic as JW writer/director Colin Trevorrow is lined up to take charge of SW ep 9. I’ve got a bad feeling about this.
I’ve got Ex_Machina but haven’t watched it yet. Ditto for Inside Out. Pixar is like the girl who broke my heart (by dating all those sequels) and I just haven’t been able to forgive her yet.
Top 10 Old Films (I Finally Got Round To Seeing For The First Time) in 2015
I also enjoyed the big dumb comedy of Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story.
With Inherent Vice, There Will Be Blood and Grand Budapest Hotel it was a good year for the Andersons. I also saw Moonrise Kingdom and The Royal Tennenbaums which were good but didn’t make the cut, and bought Magnolia, Punch Drunk Love and The Master but haven’t watched them yet.
Top 10 Books (I Read For The First Time) in 2015
Team of Rivals (Doris Kearns Goodwin)
War And Peace
A Tale Of Two Cities
1983 (David Peace) – the finale of the Red Riding quartet, not a George Orwell prequel
Fascinating Rhythm: The Collaboration of George and Ira Gershwin (Deena Ruth Rosenberg)
Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World (Haruki Murakami)
Words Without Music: A Memoir (Philip Glass) – great though I still prefer the film Glass: A Portrait Of Philip In Twelve Parts
Steal Like An Artist
A Farewell To Arms
Love May Fail
The 10 Best Songs I Wrote In 2015 (In No Particular Order)
Kiss Me Beneath The Mistletoe
Faster (Than The Speed Of Light)
Tonight (with Harry Verity)
The Architects Of Our Unhappiness
Where Did The Time Go? (with Liz Frencham)
If You Screw Up (with Hamilton Poolhall)
Christ Will Come Again (with Steven Wesley Guiles)
Polishing A Turd
The Best TV I Saw In 2015
Jonathan Strange And Mr Norrell
Agents Of Shield Season 1 (got S2 haven’t watched it all yet)
Dr Who Season 9 (finally got stories worthy of Capaldi’s acting)
Best Gig Of 2015
The Most Ugly Child headline set at the Idolin’s album launch laid waste to the venue like a bunch of carnival folk who turn up uninvited at your cousin’s wedding and get everyone drunk, pregnant or fighting. Ably support by Lisa De Ville.