Mental Jukebox: Best of 2015 Countdown (#40-36)

So here are my picks for the Best of 2015…sort of.   Since I had to prepare this list in advance, I cut off eligibility at the end of October – so any song released in the last two months of 2015 wasn’t under consideration for this list (I plan to give those songs the attention they’re due in early 2016). I also eliminated a few songs that were high on the charts in 2015 but that actually came out in early Q4 of 2014 and were featured at that time. So with that said — I’m still second guessing myself and making changes to the order. But if I’m going to get to #1 by the end of the year, it’s time to start the countdown!!

Monday (#40): Foals “Mountain At My Gates”

Originally hailing from Oxford, England circa 2005, the Foals have released four studio albums to date and become a featured festival act. They have won a number of UK awards including “Best Live Act”, “Best Track”, and “Producer of the Year” in 2013. Their newest album, “What Went Down”, has reached Top 10 in six countries so far and provided the band with their highest charting US track to date – “Mountain At My Gates”



 Tuesday (#39):   Circa Waves “T-Shirt Weather”

Circa Waves are a British indie-rock band from Liverpool – (how could I resist)? But do they really have T-shirt weather in Liverpool? My experiences there have mainly involved rain! This song sounds like it was made for sun and surf on the California beaches. Pretty much the perfect summer song. From their debut album “Young Chasers” released in March 2015.


Wednesday (#38):   Phases “I’m In Love With My Life”

This will help get you over the hump! Phases is an indie-pop band from Los Angeles formerly known as JJAMZ, containing members from several other known bands including Rilo Kiley, Bright Eyes, Phantom Planet and more. They’ve been playing live together since 2009, and released their debut album in 2012. The band signed to Warner Bros. in early 2015 and released the single “I’m In Love With My Life” which reached #35 on the Billboard Alternative Charts. I love the way the song kicks off with a grooving bass riff and morphs into a retro-sounding dance pop for the catchy chorus. The band will be joining the BØRNS US tour through the end of 2015. Go see ‘em!




Thursday (#37): Mother Mother “Monkey Tree”

Stepping a bit outside the box here: Mother Mother is a Canadian indie rock band from Vancouver BC. I confess that my first thought on seeing this video was “ABBA on Acid”, and it led me into a lengthy video-watching spree – something I highly recommend as this is a band worth getting to know, and no description I could give in this tiny space would really encapsulate them. The album “Very Good Bad Thing”, released November 2014 in Canada and April 2015 in the US, is their fifth album.




Friday (#36):   Smallpools “Karaoke”

Smallpools is a U.S. based indie pop band that formed in 2013, currently based in Los Angeles after its members relocated from New Jersey, New York and Oregon. After their catchy song “Dreaming” charted at #1 on the Hype Machine and at #23 on the Billboard Alternative charts, they released an EP in 2013. Their debut album “Lovetap!” came out in March 2015 featuring the single “Karaoke”. If you like feel-good power pop with a slice of 80’s throwback synth sound, this is a band you’ll want to check out!



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