The 100 best albums of 2015: 80-71

Here’s the third instalment of our rundown of the greatest album releases of 2015 from TeamRock, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer, Prog and Blues…

80. BRUCE SOORD – Bruce Soord (Kscope)
Prog said:Bruce Soord is a captivating album that manages that rare feat of fully engaging the emotions of the listener. New releases regularly attract casual superlatives, yet for once, this is an album deserving of enormous praise. Soord has genuinely created something truly outstanding.”

79. SWAMI JOHN REIS & THE BLIND SHAKE – Modern Surf Classics (Swami)
We said: “In another musician’s hands Modern Surf Classics might come across as a novelty record, but with Rocket From The Crypt frontman John ‘Speedo’ Reis at the helm it never feels that way. It’s a curio for sure but a welcome one, with genuine heart amid its zipping, biting guitar lines. Another strike then for the San Diego Swami.”

78. TIM BOWNESS – Stupid Things That Mean The World (InsideOutMusic)
Prog said:
“While Stupid Things… offers no jarring shocks, operating fundamentally within the same lush and lovely perimeters, it is subtly different to its predecessor, Abandoned Dancehall Dreams. This may not collar you as kinetically as last year’s model, but it’s surely a slow-burning sleeper.”

77. STEVE EARLE & THE DUKES – Terraplane (New West Records)
Classic Rock said:Terraplane is an album of lo-fi blues, dominated by shuffling, homespun rhythms and Earle’s sleepy drawl. The Tennessee Kid is brilliantly peculiar. It’s a spooky, spoken-word retelling of Robert Johnson’s deal with the devil, stuffed full of gothic grotesquery…”

76. WILSON – Right To Rise (Razor & Tie)
Metal Hammer said: “If 2013’s superb Full Blast Fuckery album took everybody by surprise, then expectations are riding high for this follow-up from grease-stained punk metallers Wilson. You can’t imagine a band that sounded so nonchalantly badass would be too bothered by the thought of pleasing people, and Right To Rise is imbued with that ‘live for the moment’ rock’n’roll spirit that made Wilson such a dizzying proposition the first time around. If you like your rock unrefined, you’ll love Wilson – just don’t expect them to love you back.”

75. KEITH RICHARDS – Crosseyed Heart (Virgin EMI)
Blues said:Crosseyed Heart is not only a worthy successor to Talk Is Cheap and Main Offender, but it also has a vitality that you can’t help wishing the Stones had harnessed on a more frequent studio basis in latter years. For a record he’s been dabbling during the gaps between band tours and book deals, it’s utterly energising.”

74. LEON BRIDGES – Coming Home (Columbia)
** Blues said:** “To quote one of the songs here, it appears to be Smooth Sailin’ for this 26-year-old Texan vocalist: an overnight success with instant sell-out gigs and TV slots. Bridges certainly makes all the right noises for a 60s soul throwback. Twistin’ And Groovin’ features Allmanesque slide and Better Man is a perfectly executed and styled ‘65 groove.”

73. DEAFHEAVEN – New Bermuda (Epitaph)
** Metal Hammer said:** “At times the storm subsides and open waters come into full view before the ferocity of San Francisco’s poetic post-black metal assault submerges you in a world of extremes – from the retching vocals to unstoppable blastbeats to deafening shoegaze, this is pain in its purest form.”

72. MERCURY REV – The Light In You (Bella Union)
Prog said: “Quarter of a century after their feral, genre-defying debut Yerself Is Steam, surviving Rev founders Jonathan Donahue and Grasshopper prove theirs is a light that never goes out. They’ve had seven tumultuous years since Snowflake Midnight, but they break cover with an eighth album showcasing all their strengths. It’s layered with detail, as songs that at first glance seem sweet, even simple, unfurl into revelatory shapes.”

71. WE ARE HARLOT – We Are Harlot (Roadrunner)
** Classic Rock said:** “Danny Worsnop used to sing in Asking Alexandria. For anyone over the age of 14, that band were standard bearers for the inexplicably popular ‘metalcore’ movement – a kind of training-bra scene for anyone too old for One Direction but too young for everything else. Thankfully, at the ripe old age of 25, Worsnop has had a road to Damascus moment. We Are Harlot tap into the music of his parents: Mötley Crüe, Def Leppard, Poison. Even more suprisingly, it’s utterly convincing.”