The Top 30 Tracks of 2015

25. Disclosure ft. Sam Smith – “Omen”

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration
Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Album: Caracal

The first time ‘Stay With Me’ singer Sam Smith and the production duo Disclosure combined for a hit record, it helped launch Smith’s worldwide success with ‘Latch’. That’s why not a single person was left disappointed when the three decided to get in the studio once again, this time teaming up for ‘Omen’, the lead single from Disclosure’s latest album Caracal. Something about Smith’s majestic vocals over the upbeat tempos of Disclosure makes for an addictive record, and hopfully the guys team up to complete the trilogy in the near future!  – Dan Garcia

24. Earl Sweatshirt – “Grief”

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration
Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Album: I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside

I open the debate: lyrically, there is not a single rap song with the level of conviction and cutthroat wordplay as Earl Sweatshirt’s single ‘Grief’ off his acclaimed album IDLS, IDGO. If your face doesn’t crumple like a sheet of paper when you hear “Fishy n*ggas stick to eatin’ off of hooks/Say you eatin’, but we see you getting cooked”, you have no soul and should be banned from the internet. The beat in itself is twisted and strange in the best possible ways. Frankly, it sounds like the inside of a fucking sewer, and is the grittiest Earl has ever been. It’s slowed down and chopped to the point of no return, and the distorted drums only add to this incredibly low-fi sound. The fuzzy quality of the song only heightens the song’s lyrical quality, as it makes you really listen harder to Earl’s recollection of his plights with relationships, addiction, and rap. It was the perfect inaugural offering to Earl’s insular world he crafted on I Don’t Like Shit, and stands as one of the most incredibly moving time capsule records we’ve heard this year.  – Vikash Dass

23. Florence + The Machine – “Ship To Wreck”

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration
Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Album: How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful

Like the unpredictability of extreme weather, ‘Ship To Wreck’ is a thunderous cry of instability. A tambourine mimics the shakiness of Florence’s mental state and a rhythmic guitar and steady drum snaps represent the resentment occupied in a pre-chorus and chorus that embody her self-destructive tendencies in relationships. Using the treacherous ocean and the predators below its surface as metaphors for her and her lover paint a poetically dark picture. – Evan Vogel

22. Big Sean ft. Drake & Kanye West – “Blessings”

Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration
Photo by Dan Garcia/The Early Registration

Album: Dark Sky Paradise

Where it’s the version with or without Kanye West (although Ye has our favorite verse), Big Sean’s Drake and Mr. West assisted record ‘Blessings’ is Sean’s standout record from his latest LP, Dark Sky Paradise. We’re all blessed one way or another, and Sean shows us how he is blessed, while also showing us why we are blessed to have Sean and his always impressive verses in rap music today. And if Riley Curry had it her way, this song would be at the top of our list!  – Dan Garcia

21. Grimes – “Flesh Without Blood”

Photo by Emily Korn

Album: Art Angels

Incredibly forward yet current sounding production is the heart and soul of what is likely the year’s most sonically interesting album, Art Angels. If there were one song that I had to pick as the best pop record of the year, it would undoubtedly be ‘Flesh Without Blood’. Saturated in more style than her wardrobe, the diverse instrumentation includes standard drums and guitar riffs that juggle various tempos erupting into her ethereal voice come the chorus. A song about friendship, ambiguously substitutable for one about love. Therein lies its beauty. – Evan Vogel

ALBUMS 30-26 25-21 / 20-16 / 15-11 / 10-6 / 5-1


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