What's left? Well, apart from the hangover built from three weeks of wine-drinking and the protruding stomach built from three weeks of cheese, thankfully it's now time for the world to return to it's usual musical customs - we're finally free of Slade.
So, what better way to celebrate than to look back at the past year and pick out our favourite albums from the vast list of releases in 2015? Seeing as the JFC team are constantly disagreeing when picking out any sort of playlist, this should at least make for a varied read...
5. CHVRCHES – Every Open Eye
I was nervous pending the release of CHRVCHES second album. Could they top their hit-packed pop-perfection of a debut? They’ve at least run it close. Another LP with barely a bad track on it. It’s only a matter of time until the Scottish trio end up taking over the world.
4. Jamie XX – In Colour
Earlier this year, The Guardian compared Jamie XX to Sam Smith. On this particular occasion, The Guardian can fuck off. In Colour flows from hard-hitting club anthems to brewing instrumentals with a diversity far from Sam Smith’s reach. The production is refined perfection, oozing style, and the hip-hop endeavours are so damn good they leave you desperate for more.
Chicago pianos meet soft vocals, rhythmic synths and melodies more delicious than a pizza and a cry on a hangover. This is probably my most played record of the year – crackling perfection and musical purity in the backbeats with all the kick of Caribou or Bonobo in the loops.
2. Hudson Mohawke – Lantern
Lantern blends hip-hop and R&B with the hounding basslines that put Hud Mo on top of the world. Subtlety is not the strong suit of the Glasgow genius. The album is raw and unchained, with funky-as-hell synths, vocals and melodies, cultured and measured to form a mastery of madness, and executed to perfection.
1. Claptone – Charmer
Claptone’s debut LP is just as mysteriously seductive as the golden mask the Berlin DJ hides behind. The LP flows from funky pop to twisted fervour through pounding basslines and accessible vocals, not wasting a second of album space. I first heard the record some time ago now and haven’t stopped jogging on the spot ever since. Seriously. It’s getting hazardous. Someone please help.
Honourable mentions: Rustie, Major Lazer, Seth Troxler, Four Tet, Purity Ring, Julio Bashmore, Madeon, Bring Me The Horizon
5. Protomartyr - The Agent Intellect
Post-punk being one of my favourite genres, it’s unusual that whenever I hear a band label themselves thus it elicits an eye-roll. However, rather than retreading the ‘sound a bit like Joy Division’ formula, Protomartyr prove their post-punk credentials through acerbic, lyrics; spacious music with jagged guitar; and singing performed with desperate abandon.
4. Oneohtrix Point Never - Garden of Delete
Electronic musician Daniel Lopatin’s previous album R Plus Seven crafted beauty through Philip Glass-influenced, crystalline compositions. In G.O.D, he takes a sledgehammer to them. The horrors of digitally-informed existence live through chaotic, metal and E.D.M. influenced blasts of disjointed data. Lopatin’s balance of beauty and terror are why I loved this album.
3. Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress
Post-rock titans GY!BE’s shortest LP to date, Asunder finally chronicles the 40-minute-plus live piece, appropriately titled Behemoth. This record presents something of a development from their previous album which moved away from the ‘found-sound’ of earlier records, to a more all-encompassing, monolithic, eastern-influenced sound.
2. Bjork - Vulnicura
Intended to document the real-life breakdown of her relationship, Vulnicura presents an interesting dilemma in that the confessional, personal and incredibly raw nature of the lyrics makes for a difficult listen, almost to the point of impossibility. I found the words frank honesty and the music’s relinquishing passion inspirationally pure.
1. Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly
Not only is this entire album beautifully and passionately crafted and performed, but through the departure from typical hip-hop instrumentation into a realm more influenced by jazz and funk, it fundamentally deconstructs the way we think about music in general.