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25 records from 2015 we'd rather not hear again

We listen to brilliant records day in, day out. But we also listen to many that are, um, less good. Indeed, some are so bad that we couldn't even bring ourselves to stock them (hello The Zombies) but mostly these come in the form of big releases which are not assessed critically by an increasingly supine music press. Anyway, given that we don't have any fucks to give about advertising revenues, etc. here they are: the records that let us down most this year. Oh, and before the internet police descend please remember it's just our daft opinion, so please don't get too upset.
Please note that this promotion officially ended on Wednesday December 9th 2015. Any discounted items may now have returned to full price, and other items may no longer be available at all. If you missed out on this promotion then sign up for our email alerts so that you stand a better chance of not missing out on the next one.
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!!! (chk chk chk)
As If

!!! (or chk chk chk if you were hoping to say their name out loud) have another tight collection of indie-dance jams, although actually, if you ask me, plenty of these tracks sound like full on 12” club platters. These New Yorkers know what’s up. As If thus comes highly recommended for those who like to move. On Warp Records.

Azure Blue
Beneath The Hill I Smell The Sea

‘Beneath The Hill I Smell The Sea’ is the final album release in the trilogy that began with ‘Rule Of Thirds’ from Azure Blue, the brainchild of Stockholm’s Tobias Isaksson (Laurel Music, Irene). Following in the rich, analogue dreams of the first two records, Azure Blue’s own production skills have added aesthetic elements of dance and hip hop as well as a sharper overall sound.

Best Coast
California Nights

Just as the summer starts to rear it’s head in 2015, Best Coast return with a third album. The subject matter remains much the same (California! Summer! Hanging out!), as does the music, but the production values on California Nights are a notable leap up. It’s a catchy, lovely sound, and this is the fullest version of it so far.

Breast Massage
Heavy Metal

Kicking off with a really dirty amp-hum is a great way to reel me in to a record like this, and the rest of Heavy Metal, the A-side of this 7” from the boldly-named Breast Massage, does not disappoint. A few buckets of scuzz have been emptied all over this tune, and it sounds great. Part of the Too Pure Singles Club.

Cinerama
Valentina

Cinerama, aka the band of Wedding Present guitarist David Gedge, are here with a somehow familiar new release. That is because Valentina represents Gedge’s fulfilled ambition to completely rework his other band’s said-same album in orchestral, cinematic style, sans indie-rock guitars. LP and CD on Scopitones.

Editors
In Dream

This is The Editors fifth studio album, ‘In Dream’ and their second release featuring the ‘new’ line up of the band with founding members Tom Smith, Russell Leetch and Ed Lay being joined by Justin Lockey and Elliott Williams. Following two years of intensive world tours, the five piece has taken a step away from the straighter, rock aesthetic of albums like ‘The Weight Of Your Love’ and has moved towards a more electro pop inspired sound, reminiscent of their third album ‘In This Light And On This Evening’. Slowdive's Rachel Goswell guests. 

FFS (Franz Ferdinand & Sparks)
FFS

Definitely not enough of this kind of thing happening these days: a totally implausible collaboration between Franz Ferdinand and Sparks, excellently titled FFS. The self-titled album brings us something more than just a blend of Franz’s indie-rock and Sparks camp-pop: this has plenty of both, but ends up as something fresh. CD or double LP, including special indies-only red vinyl edition!

Guided By Voices
Suitcase 4: Captain Kangaroo Won The War

You would think, due to Guided By Voices' prolific release schedule, that they wouldn’t have held anything back. However, they have: Suitcase 4: Captain Kangaroo Won The War is the fourth instalment of 100 rarities and previously unreleased tracks spread over 4 CDs. Limited edition too…..don’t miss out! There is also a vinyl version available

Hot Chip
Why Make Sense?

There is very little known about the music on Why Make Sense? the new album from indie/electronica act Hot Chip but what is known is that every sleeve for every copy on CD or vinyl will be subtly different due to a never-before-used printing technique. Hot Chip fans will be delighted! The album was produced by the band and Mark Ralph in London and Oxfordshire.

Houndmouth
Little Neon Limelight

Not a metal band but in fact catchy pop at its finest, Houndmouth have released another eleven track album for anybody who loves to bob their head to a sturdy beat with some polyphonic vocals thrown in. Little Neon Limelight sees the Indiana quartet continue on its path of unpretentious and terribly pleasant pop songs.

Hudson Mohawke
Lantern

Pretty much the uncrowned king of saturation, Hudson Mohawke is infamous for his lush beats and the dirty drops released under TNGHT. His newest album takes him back from his adventures as a featured producer to a solo artist, inviting his friends to participate in his own project. Lantern will treat us to Hudson Mohawke’s own special tastes.

John Grant
Grey Tickles, Black Pressure

Following collaborations with the likes of Sinead O’Connor, Goldfrapp and Elton John, as well as sell-out European show and a recent US tour with the Pixies, ‘Grey Tickles, Black Pressure’ is Brit award winner John Grant’s third album release. The tone of the record is heavy with Grant’s dark humour and features an eclectic mix of ecstatic electro-pop, rich, cinematic ballads and desolate synthscapes.

Kitty, Daisy & Lewis
Kitty, Daisy & Lewis The Third

Winsome middle class siblings Kitty, Daisy and Lewis reappear for a third album of laid back old timey organic grooves. If lead single "Baby Bye Bye" sounded just a little too close to Mike Read's "UKIP Calypso" then the lyrics chart a more lovelorn territory that should help get it onto an advert before the summers out. Produced by Mick Jones of The Clash.  

New Order
Music Complete

And just like that, a brand new New Order album! Music Complete is their first since 2013, and is notable for a complete lack of Peter Hook, who grumped his way out of the band a while back. A fresh, Mute-worthy sound, wrapped up in a typical Peter Saville sleeve! Available on double LP (only black vinyl now) and CD!

Passion Pit
Kindred

Happy-go-dancy indie rockers Passion Pit are finally back with a new album. Kindred is filled to the brim with high pitched vocals, joyful synthesizers and extremely energetic beats that carry the whole thing. Here’s hoping the album is up to the same level as 2009’s Manners. We are ready for amazing things to happen.

Public Image Limited
Double Trouble

The first single from Public Image Limited’s latest album, What The World Needs Now..., Double Trouble could be mistaken as a Sleaford Mods single as it kicks off, with Lydon delivering his classically cheeky and bruising vocals. It then descends into a punky dance song with a driving riff and even though it’s playing from a 10” vinyl, you get the sense of Lydon being one of the world’s best performers, as he undoubtedly is.    10” vinyl single backed with Betty Page and non album song, Turkey Tits.

Public Service Broadcasting
The Race For Space

Second album of history footage-plundering workouts from Public Service Broadcasting. They are like the anti-hauntology. On The Race For Space the theme is the space race, though the players retain their Wrigglesworth and Willgoose monikers. Has this thing got legs? Find out on vinyl, limited indies-only vinyl, or compact disc.

Ryan Adams
1989

Ryan Adams has covered Taylor Swift’s album, 1989 in full. Yes - you heard me right. Ryan Adams made some wonderful, soulful alt. country with his band Whiskeytown and as a solo artist. This is seems to be a bit of an odd one though - can he turn the music of a country pop princess into alt. country gold? Probably.

Simon Love
It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time

Simon Love used to make music with his band, The Loves, but now he loves alone. It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time is a homage to seventies-soft-rock-pop records, and consequently is slightly epic. Guests include DJ Emperor Rosko, A Little Orchestra and none other than Stewart Lee! On Fortuna Pop.

Summer Camp
Bad Love (single)

Bad Love is the title track and first single to be taken from the new album by indie-poppers Summer Camp. Lyrically it deals with the anxieties of a burgeoning relationship told in the way of a classic ‘80s John Hughes film. Musically, it’s a catchy piece of guitar-driven, synth drenched, melodic indie-pop.

Tame Impala
Currents

Having made two of the finest albums to be released in the last decade in 'Innerspeaker' and 'Lonerism',  Tame Impala are threatening to turn themselves into a pastiche of pretty much what everybody else is doing -- if early teasers from this album are to be believed. Synths have replaced guitars and production values are at times influenced solely by 'Bouncing Off the Satellites' era the B52s. Still, everyone likes the '80's so this could be the future-retro pop album that propels Kevin Parker to superstardom whilst fans of his earlier Beatlesey psych moves weep into their kaftans. Waiting for the whole thing before passing judgement could be a good option at this stage. Certainly whatever emerges will be mighty tuneful. 

The Bohicas
The Making Of

Essex boys The Bohicas hit upon a mix of Led Zepplin, Queens of the Stone Age and The Arctic Monkeys, bringing catchy and fuzzy riffs, vocal hooks that will earwurm their way in and ruin your day for the considerable future. Their debut album, and it’s avaiable on 12” with bonus 7”, just the 12” and CD from Domino.

The Sonics
This Is The Sonics

New (!) album from The Sonics. Although The Sonics are more or less intrinsically a band of the 60’s, they are of course now back together, and have freshly recorded This Is The Sonics. It sounds like The Sonics, obviously, but then so do lots of other bands, and if anyone deserves to it’s them right? On Revox.

The Tallest Man on Earth
Dark Bird Is Home

Fourth album from acoustic troubadour The Tallest Man On Earth. On Dark Bird Is Home the Swedish Dylan-voiced songwriter Kristian Matsson brings a welcome touch of Springsteenian/David Brent chord structuring to his palette, whilst retaining that soft, heartfelt tenderness for which he is known and often loved. Out on Ltd coloured vinyl LP, vinyl LP and CD from Dead Oceans.

Toro Y Moi
What For?

With a background in punk bands, South Carolinian producer/ singer songwriter Chaz Bundick began making bedroom music under the name Toro Y Moi in 2001 and went on to pioneer the sludgy electronic sound that pre-empted chillwave. ‘What For?’ was recorded during an intermission from working on a record for his dance project Les Sins, and is a new direction for this musical adventurer, exploring lose themes of love and nature in a way that is intentionally vague and beautiful.