‘I bet you start loving me, soon as I start loving someone else’ is one of the year’s most memorable hooks, but it’s the twinges of sadness throughout I Bet that make it one of Ciara’s best midtempos. Her very public breakup with Future just months after the birth of their child makes I Bet such a statement of a record. Seeing it come painfully close to being her first UK hit in a decade was about as heartbreaking as the song itself.
Can’t Deny My Love is such an obvious ‘Sam’ record this highlight from Brandon’s surprisingly brilliant second solo album. Flickers of 80s rock and a chorus that demands you pay attention, it was the best Haim single we never got in 2015.
How has it taken so long for Coldplay to release a full on disco record? Adventure of a Lifetime is a shot of pure fun that manages to stand alongside songs like A Sky Full of Stars and Charlie Brown as an electric, uplifting song. It’s a standout from A Head Full of Dreams and I’m very excited to see the group perform it next year.
The first of many country records to make my list in 2015 and one from a brand new act. Burning House recalls the likes of The House That Built Me and If I Die Young and makes one hell of a first impression. The piercing vocal only makes this even more of a memorable record.
I hadn’t heard a single song from Lianne La Havas before this year and I have the What’s New section of Apple Music to thank for discovering this gem of a pop song. The layers of building brass and piano that build up to one of the year’s best middle eights makes for a song that takes you on a real journey. It was enough to bring Lianne La Havas to my attention, and given how breathtakingly good the rest of album Blood was I am eternally grateful to What You Don’t Do for this.
Big vocal? Check. Dramatic thudding drums? Check. Thrilling narrative? Check. Little Toy Guns is Carrie Underwood by numbers and is all the better for it.
Yes, your eyes do not deceive you. There is a One Direction song on my end of year list. This isn’t totally down to the fact the song is pretty much identical to a certain Taylor Swift single that may or may not feature later in this list, but it definitely helps. Perfect is hands down the best thing that One Direction have released, even if every performance has been done by 4 lads who look like they haven’t slept in about 3 years.
Ella Eyre released a number of killer tracks in 2015, all of which appear on her excellent debut album Feline, but Together is definitely the best of the bunch. The follow-up to my #1 song of 2014, Comeback, this is a much more straightforward dance record. It’s that massive vocal that puts Ella Eyre ahead of the pack though, she elevates every song she is on to this euphoric place that gets me every time.
Oh Kanye, what happened to your 2015? Thinking back to the moment this song was debuted at The Brit Awards, to a room of shocked faces and Ant & Dec not knowing quite how to react, it was one of a series of ‘Kanye moments’ that should have made this the year of Yeezy again. With no album in sight though and nothing new released since All Day the momentum was all but destroyed. All Day is still one hell of an event of a song though.
It wouldn’t be an end of year list without my favourite country trio now would it? This surprise duet with tour-mate Hunter Hayes plays to their strengths; a soaring chorus, tight harmonies but wonderfully simple from start to finish. Where It All Begins totally deserved to be a bigger crossover hit than it was.
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