The Top 30 Tracks of 2015

15. Justin Bieber x JackÜ – “Where Are Ü Now”

Photo by Getty Images

Album: Purpose

This was the song responsible for one of pop-music’s most notable comebacks ever. It truly seemed like mainstream markets and white america had turned their backs on the once beloved Bugatti Biebz, all because he was “acting up” and doing dumb shit that everyone else did as teenagers. Only difference was, everybody’s preteen daughters had posters of him on their walls, and nobody gave a fuck enough to watch everyone else make dumb mistakes in their youthful days. Still, he was facing harsh backlash but finally returned with a feature on the Diplo and Skrillex collaborative project, Jack U. The making of this infectious pop hit is super interesting, as it started as this slow burning piano ballad Bieber had sent over to the electronic producers. Before he knew it, Diplo had manufactured a synth groove and Skrillex had added his incredibly well-stacked 909 drums along with the weirdest beeping, “dolphin sound” that occurs during the drop, which is really just a sample of Justin’s vocals pitched up and distorted beyond audible recognition. The sheer experimental inventiveness at hand with this record as well as it’s ability to be one of the year’s strongest pop-hits was what was so incredibly unique. It also was the undisputed moment where nobody could resist Justin’s talent anymore, and was the beginning of his comeback. – Vikash Dass

14. The Weeknd – “The Hills”

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

Album: Beauty Behind The Madness

We’re still not sure how, but almost overnight The Weeknd saw all his (well deserved) commercial success come almost over night. A cult favorite with his series, The Trilogy, The Weeknd became a household name this year as his singles ‘The Hills’, ‘Can’t Feel My Face’ and ‘Earned It’ all dominated the charts, the first two especially. Perhaps the best of his singles is ‘The Hills’ though, a record where Abel keeps it brutally honest about his intentions. Even if he is a pop star now, Abel doesn’t pretend to be any sort of saint in ‘The Hills’, singing about lifestyle of women, drugs and alcohol. – Dan Garcia

13. Travis Scott – “Antidote”

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

Album: Rodeo

After fans lusted over this infectious song after Travis previewed it live ahead of the release of his debut album, Rodeo, Travis decided to master it and give it out for free on his Soundcloud as a throwaway. What resulted was Rodeo’s real standout single, and what is now a platinum hit. The beat is just so simplistic and so perfect, and Travis never does too much on the record—in fact, he’s actually repeating the exact same melody for the entirety of it, but his delivery and his impressive take on autotune is what makes the world so enamoured with it. It’s equal parts Future and Rae Sremmurd, but the tempo is so groovy and the delivery is so robotic. The melody repeats and rises until the beat breaks as Travis snaps for one of his best verses we’ve ever heard. So much for a throwaway.   – Vikash Dass

12. Adele – “Hello”

Courtesy of YouTube

Album: 25

Fans waited way too long for new music from Adele, something that even she can relate to, as she sent warning shots to Frank Ocean to finally drop his new album. But with all the anticipation building up, many wondered if Adele’s new music could actually live up to all the hype. As another day passed by, could Adele’s next single hold up to the shadow that she casted for herself. Well now we know the answer, as ‘Hello’, Adele’s first single in years, delivered and then some! The ‘Rolling in the Deep’ singer crushed records with her new album, 25, and she has the success of ‘Hello’ to thank for it.  – Dan Garcia

11. Tame Impala – “Cause I’m a Man”

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

Album: Currents

Tame Impala in a lot of ways really set themselves up after dropping a modern-classic in their 2012 opus, Lonerism. It was praised by almost everyone who came into contact with the record, and after dropping silent and touring for some years, they’re return in 2015 was something we were all nervously waiting for. ‘Cause I’m A Man’ was presented to us as the first single off of their psychedelic, brilliant third album Currents, and it was absolutely phenomenal. The album’s motif as a whole was the band dealing with more real and tangible aspects of life, gripping with reality more than ever before. Their previous records were almost this surreal voyeurism, where they were on the outside looking it, but not here. ‘Cause I’m A Man’ is in fact directly addressing a love-interest who had turned sour, at first sounding apologetic and regretful in the verses, all before blaming all their mistakes on their manhood and allowing that to be enough of a reason. It boasts one of the most potent rock hooks you will hear all year, and is honestly the most refreshing and inventive single from that genre in a long time.   – Vikash Dass

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


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