KSPU Top 5 Albums, 2015: Logan Pendergrass

So much music! Such little time! Here are some of the albums I've been bopping my head to in 2015. There are a ton of great ones out there that didn't make it on this list, but I trust you've already found em: check out these not-oft listened to ones that I'm a big fan of. I hope they'll keep you entertained. I saved the best ones for last. <3

-KSPU Webmaster LP

Csay Csay by Little People.

It's been a joy to watch and listen to producer Laurent Clerc become more and more skilled as the years go by. Csay Csay is only a three-track release, but the production on it is so clean and jammin' that you ought to give it a shot. Deviating a bit from his usually relaxing downtempo jams, Clerc takes the listener on an introspective adventure that isn't afraid to get a little loud and mathematical. If you have an IDM inclination you'll love jamming alongside this one.

 

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2.0 by Big Data

French house inspiration is incredibly apparent in this in this American feature-filled power house by producer Alan Wilkis. Fat synth sounds and heavily produced instrumentals riffs will keep you nodding to every dense track. Pay special attention to Dangerous, Big Data's biggest single from last year (still good), and The Glow, a hazy vocal-heavy romp.

<I°_°I> (Robot) by Caravan Palace

Caravan Palace, the band nobody knows they needed ,came out with another electroswing superhit this year. While their previous albums, Caravan Palace (2008) and Panic (2012) contained many similar sounding songs, <I°_°I> sizzles all over the place, showcasing a more modern taste while keeping the same classic early-to-mid-century sounding samples that Caravan Palace is known for. Check out Midnight on <I°_°I>; if the remixed 1920's jazz doesn't get you doing the Charleston, the banging kick-and-snap beat will have you wiggling involuntarily.

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The Beyond / Where Giants Roam by Stephen Bruner aka Thundercat

Thundercat's new 16 minute sweet treat of a record is a tour-de-force from start to finish, and features massive names like FlyLo, Herbie Hancock, Mono/poly, and more. Featuring some of the best sounds on the modern jazz landscape, Stephen Bruner (a featured contributor to Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp A Butterfly) creates an emotional, thick, and electrically analog-sounding funk jazz emotional rollercoaster that will take you on a journey. Seriously. This album is short but fantastic. As of writing this, I realized this has definitely got to be in my top three albums of all time. Don't miss my favorite track, Them Changes, feat. FlyLo and Kamasi Washington. Recognize the funky drums? They're straight off of the Isley Brothers track, Footsteps in the Dark. Dope.

Sour Soul by BadBadNotGood

Oh, what a wonderful year for jazz hip-hop. Rumor has it that BadBadNotGood began as an experimental school project, and the trio was told they'd never amount to anything. That clearly was not true.

There are two things you need to know about this album: One, it's got Ghostface Killah on basically every track. Two, it's exceptional. The swirling analog production will scoop you up, and the wavering guitar tones engender a wild-west feeling. Sour Soul really does exist in the wild west of jazz hip-hop, which I think is only going to get bigger and more badass. Did I mention MF DOOM makes an appearance on my favorite track? Check out Ray Gun, a bouncing jazz progression with a haunting organ riff in the background.