TRIGGER WARNING: 2015 Year in Review — The Farce Reawakens contains irony, sarcasm, swearing, humour (hopefully), derision, insomnia, guilt trips, gaslighting, mansplaining, manspreading, Mansionair and a Man of the Year. There will be victim blaming. If you don’t like it’s your own fault. There will be fat shaming. I am going to retell an obscure Dagwood Dog anecdote. There will be no safe spaces, pretty faces, saving graces or pocket aces. There will be Loud Places. Everyday you must check your privilege. I have male privilege. I have white privilege. I have cisgendered privilege. I have urban privilege. I have private school privilege. I have high IQ privilege. I have able-bodied privilege. I have lush, full head of hair privilege. I have not being a ginger privilege. I have long, divine eyelashes that people often mistake for being extensions privilege. I have a great taste in music privilege. I have great eyesight well into my mid-30s privilege. I have generally good health privilege (I get the occasional cold but otherwise…). I have a robust sense of humour privilege.
Hello Jedi Knights and Emo First Orderers! Welcome to 2015 Year in Review — The Farce Reawakens! It’s been two years since the last brilliant instalment of this august journal of repute and I have had literally no-one asking for its return. Sitting with me here at Year in Review HQ are JJ Abrams, Axl Rose, Malcolm Turnbull, JK Rowling, Justin Bieber and Steven Avery from HBO’s Making a Murderer: all people well versed in reboots, remakes, rejuvenations and returns (even if Avery’s was simply to return to prison). Looking in wistfully through the viewing glass are Tony Abbott, George Lucas, Michael Clarke, Mark Latham, Mitt Romney and Hugh Jackman: where did it all go wrong? Oh no! Hugh Jackman is now performing a jazz lounge routine, which is one of my triggers, and George Lucas has taken a bite out of Michael Clarke — does he ever stop eating? — I would take some Xanex but Mark Latham has thrown them away and asked me to just try and not have a serious anxiety disorder, and is that Kevin Andrews? — no wait it’s just the devil — he’s come to light to some bushfires as punishment for allowing gay marriage. Turns out Eric Abetz was right all along! That reminds me of my favourite joke of 2015: why can’t Erica’s husband afford groceries? Because Eric Abetz! This became very absurd very quickly.
Did anyone else think Star Wars 7 was really gay? Not gay as in lame but gay as in homosexual? Like all the Oscar Wilde-esque comedies of errors between the orphan woman who learns and masters the full extent of the Force in like 20 minutes and the African American stormtrooper who broke free of a lifetime’s worth of social and psychological programming because a bloodied hand was draped across his visor? And then there’s those two robots mincing around the Galaxy and Indiana Jones has been fucking that sasquatch since the mother from Catastrophe kicked him out. Spoilers by the way. And what was with Luke now living on the island from The Magician? I seriously did not know Star Wars existed in the same universe as Game of Thrones. There were so many swipe edits I thought I was watching a film based on Tinder, while the alien from Girls’ emo fringe was almost as good as that singer from that band I liked in the mid-2000s.
It can be hard to give a definitive ranking of the top grossing films of 2015 on New Year’s Eve because money earned in the new year counts for the year of release. For example, any moneys Star Wars makes into 2016 still count towards its 2015 figure, meaning it won’t even be included on 2016 lists. The official top film of 2014 was American Sniper, even though it grossed the vast majority of its $350m during 2015. I would love to give you an easily digestible (I told you there would be fat shaming) chart that accurately reflected Australian film viewing habits through 2015 but instead here is the US Box Office Top 10 of the 2015:
- Dinosaur reboot with irritating kids — $652m
- Remake of A New Hope with more merchandise — $571m
- Sequel to that incomprehensible film with aliens, gods and Jeremy Renner being wasted — $459m
- Outside In — $356m
- Furious that Paul Walker can’t die again — $353m
- Onions — $336m
- The Hunger Strike: Please Stop Making These Films — $267m
- Maaarrtttt Daaaammmooon — $225m
- Srsly guys who sees a film about Cinderella? — $201m
- High concept ad for Rolex, Sony and Heineken — $196m
And here are my Top 34 Films of 2015 (I pretty much liked them all — something has to come last):
34. Theory Of Everything (Hawking comes across as an arsehole)
33. Paper Towns (Fairly decent soundtrack)
32. Everest (White middle aged men using ‘summit’ as a verb)
31. The Imitation Game (I appreciated the crossword scenes)
30. Birdman Or (The Unexpected Virtue Of Ignorance) (Still have no clue)
29. Ted 2 (That’s right, I preferred Ted 2 to Birdman)
28. Death Of A Gentleman (Cricket doco)
27. Me And Earl And The Dying Girl (Much better than the book)
26. Iris (Some funny moments)
25. Foxcatcher (“What if I told you there are some demons that can’t be wrestled?”)
24. The Intern (I actually paid $20 to see this film)
23. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Did I mention the swipe edits?)
22. Mr Holmes (Would love to see Sir Ian nominated for a Sir Oscar)
21. Selma (A fellow cinemagoer made a point of saying “those were the days” during the harrowing first scene of this film. Some people really do live and breathe cliches)
20. Inherent Vice (I have read the book!)
19. The Martian (One of the best films ever made about the PR industry)
18. Far From The Madding Crowd (I’ve read this book too!)
17. Bridge Of Spies (Some nice retrocool Cold War imagery)
16. In The Heart Of The Sea (I like films about the sea)
15. American Sniper (Bradley Cooper!)
14. Whiplash (This would be close to #1 if there were no jazz)
13. Pitch Perfect 2 (Found it very hard not to sing along in the cinema)
12. Straight Outta Compton (I’ve been to Compton so I know exactly why they wanted to get straight outta there)
11. It Follows (and It does)
10. Macbeth (Is this an Oscar I see before me?)
9. Jurassic World (Even with those irritating kids)
8. Amy (Documentary filmmaking at its finest)
7. Legend (Tom Hardy is sublime)
6. Sicario (Breakout hit that deserves all the plaudits)
5. Holding The Man (Defiant, unapologetic, heartbreaking)
4. Wild (Best backpack scene of 2015)
3. Spectre (I loved every second of it)
2. Trainwreck (Major lulz)
1. The End Of The Tour (Watch it with your best friend)
In my special endy year mega podcast, I was joined by my mate Pete to chat films and he nominated the following as his favourites: Amy, Jurassic World, Trainwreck, Ex Machina, It Follows, Dope — and his #1 film of 2015 — Mad Max: Fury Road.
For the year ahead, the films I am most looking forward to seeing are: The Hateful Eight, Spotlight, The Revenant, Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them, Now You See Me 2, Triple 9, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot and Connor4Real. I am cautiously optimistic about Suicide Squad. Pete had a good line about Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. It was something along the lines of, “for years now Zack Snyder has made good trailers for bad films; now he can’t even make a good trailer”.
Judicious readers may have noticed that I have used the word ‘film’ 19 times so far and ‘movie’ not once. That is because ‘film’ is for gentlemen who sail around the Horn while ‘movie’ is for those who go through Panama Canal like a filthy Democrat. That is very obscure BoJack Horseman joke! But seriously: ‘movie’ is low cultured. Use ‘film’ for the artwork and ‘pictures’ for the place you watch them.
What We Still Call Television Even Though We Watch It On Our Macs And iPads
Only shows I like make the TV rankings — it’s not like films where I just throw ’em all in — so I am tacitly even recommending #41, which has already been cancelled, obviously.
41. About A Boy
40. Media Watch
38. Casual Vacancy
37. Fresh Off The Boat
36. The Fall
35. The Walking Dead
34. Penny Dreadful
32. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
31. Scream (2015)
30. Making A Murderer
29. You’re The Worst
27. Modern Family
26. The Knick
25. Brooklyn Nine-Nine
24. Family Guy
23. Parks And Recreation
21. Mr Robot
20. Survivor: Worlds Apart
17. Last Week Tonight With John Oliver
16. Silicon Valley
15. Difficult People
14. True Detective
13. Red Oaks
12. The Jinx
11. Broad City
10. Inside Amy Schumer
9. BoJack Horseman
7. Game Of Thrones
6. Master Of None
5. Survivor: Cambodia
4. Mad Men
3. South Park
1. The League
And joining me to gibber about TV for the #P100 was Dan. His picks for the best TV of 2015 were: Mad Men, Catastrophe, The Leftovers, Master Of None, Togetherness, Mr Robot, Red Oaks, Bojack Horseman, Unreal, Danger 5, The Checkout, Last Week Tonight With John Oliver, Broad City, The Late Show With Colbert & The Colbert Report, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Casual.
Should you listen to the #P100, my epic 6-part audio review of 2015, which includes all 100 songs in the Top 100 plus interviews about Rockclimbing, Film, TV, Memes, Sport and News, plus many more besides? Truth be told it’s perhaps for the superfans only but if you really cared about me you would. I told you there would be guilt trips.
Something different this year! Instead of just a cynical comment to go with the ranked News event, I have included a link to a piece of journalism excellence to go with my cynical comment. The journalism is not necessarily from 2015 (one is from 1516) but chosen because it best complements the happenstance in question.
I was variously described as a “lunatic”, “some giant nerd” and “Rain Man”.
Gives new meaning to the term ‘porkbarrelling’.
The moral of this story is never try to eat healthy.
That Josh Duggar is such a loser.
I *loved* how Turnbull trolled her by catching PT to Geelong and then how she voted against Abbott even after he tried to stay loyal to her!
The most golden of all gold snafus.
“While ever there is inequality, none of us are free” — Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter.
America doesn’t even care about soccer and yet here they are cleaning it up for us. What a country!
Je suis Patrick
Capital punishment shames us all.
One of many, many, far too many, shootings that could be on here but I chose this because it embodied a lot of the racial politics prevalent through 2015.
The scary thing is Trump is nowhere near the worst of that field.
He waited and waited, bided his time, suffered setback after setback but was resolute and committed, and eventually the middle-aged heterosexual cisgendered rich white man got what he wanted. Heartwarming stuff.
Truth be told I still don’t particularly care for the Eagles of Death Metal.
Or maybe he’s seeing things that aren’t there? Maybe he’s just being crazy? He brings it all on himself. I warned you there would be gaslighting.
The 2015 Man of the Year is Adam Goodes. I thought that dance was fantastic. In my 2015 cast of pods I was joined by my dear friend Jerome to chat News in 2015 and he was originally going to give his Man of the Year award to — and I am being serious here — Mike Baird, but I managed to talk him out of it and he gave it to me instead.
Unlike test matches against the West Indies, the Year in Review never gets any shorter, does it? 2,211 words already! Here are my Top 15 Sporting Moments in 2015. I was joined by my copodder Paul for this bit and, what the heck, have a table!
|15||Kansas City Royals beats the Toronto Blue Jays to win the World Series||Leicester City’s amazing ride in the Premier League|
|14||Ireland qualifies for Euro2016, beating Germany along the way||Success of the Big Bash League and the Women’s Big Bash League|
|13||New Zealand beats Australia to win an admittedly very entertaining 2015 Rugby World Cup||The AFL Season: Goodes drama, Essendon controversy, Hawthorn threepeat|
|12||Serena Williams wins 3.71 / 4 of the tennis Grand Slam||IAAF debacle exposes Russian doping|
|11||North Queensland Cowboys wins NRL GF in Golden Point after last gasp try||NRL Grand Final ending with match-winning kick hitting the upright|
|10||Golden State Warriors overcomes the Cleveland Cavaliers to win the NBA Finals||Matthew Dellavedova becomes a star during the NBA Finals|
|9||Usain Bolt wins the 100m and 200m double at the World Championships in China||Michelle Payne wins the Melbourne Cup on Prince of Penzance|
|8||Australia wins 2015 Netball World Cup||Richie Benaud dies|
|7||Michelle Payne wins the Melbourne Cup on Prince of Penzance||Sepp Blatter booted from FIFA|
|6||New England wins Super Bowl with thrilling last play intercept||Jason Day wins the US PGA Championship|
|5||Jarryd Hayne makes it, to some extent, in the NFL||Jarryd Hayne’s NFL adventure|
|4||Jason Day wins the 2015 US PGA Championship||Australia loses the Ashes|
|3||Arsenal thumps Villa 4-0 to win retain the FA Challenge Cup||Australia is the runner up in the 2015 Rugby World Cup|
|2||Australia wins 2015 Cricket World Cup||Australia wins 2015 Cricket World Cup|
|1||Australia wins 2015 Asian Cup||Australia wins 2015 Asian Cup|
Some of the my favourite crazier moments from the world of sport in 2015 included Bangladesh beating England in the Cricket World Cup, Diego Costa throwing his bib at Jose Mourinho during Tottenham v Chelsea, Left Shark stealing our hearts during the Super Bowl XLIX halftime show, Drake being blamed for Serena Williams not winning the US Open, me going for a run, incredible moments in cricket stat building, Stuart Broad’s face during the Trent Bridge Massacre, Darren Lehmann tweeting for football tickets shortly thereafter, American Pharaoh winning the Triple Crown and, how could we forget, Mick Fanning being attacked by a shark during a competition in South Africa.
The 2015 Sportsman of the Year is Steve Waugh.
For the year ahead, I am looking forward to the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio (ie that fortnight every four years when I care about sailing), the European Football Championships in France (go Ireland!) and the World T20 in India (Dhoni!).
The 2015 Woman of the Year is Michelle Payne. I loved that she got the job done in sparkling fashion and then when the mics were in front of her she did not miss. I really admire opportunism. I invited a dear friend of mine with a Phd in gender politics or similar to offer her thoughts on the year in the Battle of the Sexes and to nominate her own Woman of the Year but she did not get back to me.
Stop The Press! My friend Hannah has written in to reveal her Woman of the Year is Kristen Stewart. “I thought long and hard about it,” she reports.
Is this any good? It’s 1:30am on New Year’s Eve and here I am tapping and listing away and I can’t help but think that this is all just garbage, that there was a reason I stopped doing this, that it’s all just for nothing. Sometimes I feel like I am at war with myself. In that way I am a lot like Mr Robot, except with only half the intelligence and twice the drug problem. At other times I feel like Robin Williams, except without all the success and talent. Just once I’d like someone to give me a big hug, look me in the eyes and say, “Patrick, quit while you’re behind”.
Young or old: celebrity deaths are a shock
Like Leonard Nimoy, who played a great Spock
So now we reflect on those in the mortuary
Such as Roger Rees, he played Lord John Marbury
Omar Sharif finally came to grief
Ben E King will no longer sing
Sam Simon produced his last Simpsons
Rowdy Roddy Piper now has limp guns
Jimmy Hill had a big chin, and gave us 3 points for a win
Christopher Lee was a Bond villain, and 30 years later Saruman
At running and politics, Ron Clarke was a winner
Terry Pratchett was a bestselling disc spinner
Yogi Berra had a great name
About Günter Grass you could say the same
John Forbes Nash Junior won a Fields medal
Cilla Black and Freddie Thompson are now in hell
BB King liked the colour blue
Jonah Lomu preferred all black
We said goodbye to Lee Kuan Yew
And Jules Bianchi drove off the track
James Horner wrote My Heart Will Go On
Richie Benaud bowled his last wrong ‘un
Jackie Collins loved a good scandal
The drugs finally caught up with Scott Weiland
Death stalked Ruth Rendell
Toffees farewelled Howard Kendall
Colleen McCullough was never dull-a
Maureen O’Hara was ever the star-a
Wes Craven scared us to the last
And for Malcolm Fraser we now wear our pants at half mast.
Bonus late breaking heroic couplet!
Stevie Wright was an Easybeat that was not beat easy
Lemmy Kilmister was in Motörhead and very sleazy
How many Colonel’s Services Awards did you win in 2015? Ever been out on the town having a few drinks and, even though you started the night with the best intentions of a salad or a grilled fish supper, find yourself eating multiple pieces of fried chicken, several Zinger burgers, a large chips with that powdered chicken salt, potato and gravy and 600 million Kentucky nuggets? That’s essentially how you win a Colonel’s Services Award. You probably want to limit your reception of this honour to one per quarter. Regular readers will know I have a particular affinity for KFC, even if the Australian iteration can’t match South Africa’s for sheer condiment selection. One of my best friends from school is named Damien and he lives near me and I occasionally go to his place to watch Survivor and eat KFC and that’s probably when I am happiest. Far too much of my life is spent pondering the hows and whys of fried chicken. When I was at uni I won a public speaking competition and a significant part of my speech, which otherwise concerned serious geopolitical dilemmas, was about fried chicken.
A little known nutritional fact about me is that I have a strict one Dagwood Dog per calendar year consumption rule. A Dagwood Dog is a hotdog frankfurt on a stick that has been slathered in batter and then deep fried, so it is obviously disgustingly delicious. After eating one you feel an unusual mixture of euphoria and shame, like when you have a wet dream on an aeroplane. I consumed my 2014 Dagwood Dog on New Year’s Eve at the Falls Festival at Marion Bay in Tasmania and then, in a rare treat, my 2015 edition the very next day, meaning I enjoyed thentofore unheard of back-to-back Dagwood Dog Days. I was as happy as a lazy giraffe in a low growth forest. But, of course, those Dog Days were, comme on dit, soon over, and I have been condemned to a full 12 months sans Dagwood Dog. So when you’re thinking of all the things you’re looking forward to in the New Year — career change, marriage, impending childbirth — spare a thought for those of us with real problems.
(People who don’t know me think I make up these vignettes. I really am this eccentric. I am bit like Shia LaBeouf, except without all the Sia music videos and X-Files guest starring.)
For my birthday this year, my dear friends organised a surprise party at SoCal in Neutral Bay, and it was amazing! Thanks guys: the birthday churros was splendiferous! On a roadtrip down the Sapphire Coast I enjoyed several pieces of grilled fish, which I like to enjoy with Tabasco sauce. The chilled lobster tail at Kingsley’s is always a winner, as is the New York strip at the Bridge Street Garage. 2015 saw me invent the PopeSteak, which is a steak you eat on Good Friday and then tweet a picture of to the Pope. My punishment for this is not being able to eat burgers anymore because Sydney is obsessed with brioche buns. While in Italy I enjoyed heavenly lemon sorbet on the Spanish Steps and a scrumptious Napoli pizza between summiting Mount Vesuvius and plummeting Pompeii. My Mum makes the most amazing chicken dish: it’s a breast piece on the bone that she bakes until it’s golden and succulent, and then it’s served with broccoli, carrots, peas, beans and roasted potato. These were all great food options from 2015.
In April I went to a conference in Malta and after completely dominating the journalism component, I found a bar by the beach at St Julians to watch the Premier League on TV and tweet one of my patented ARIA Chart updates. For nourishment, I ordered a pizza and a Carlsberg and it was no Malteaser, it was a Maltdeliverer!
Here it is, the 2015 Food of the Year:
And while we’re in the tedious habit of embedding tweets, here’s the reason this page takes so long to load…
The Top 15 Tweets of 2015
An honourable mention to my puddy Paul who sent this on 30 December 2014…
And here are my Top 15 Tweets of 2015!
Aside from these 31 crackers, I want to pay special tribute to this effort. With 71,293 and counting, it’s the most retweeted effort by someone who has had me over to their place for dinner:
In a year when the 1976 Olympic Men’s Decathlon Gold Medallist went to bed a bloke and woke up a woman it is easy to forget some of the more idiosyncratic behaviour by famous people but buckle up buckaroos because I dug deep to recall some of the more amusing moments. Johnny Depp smuggled Pistol and Boo into Australia; Kanye West announced he will run for president; Donald Trump is running for president; Daniel Johns fell over drunk and was hospitalised; Shia LeBeouf continued his weird schtick, which is either a very public nervous breakdown or high concept performance art; Russell Crowe chucked a tanty over an airline not letting his kids take hoverboards on a flight; Charlie Sheen revealed he was HIV positive (look, I don’t believe in virus shaming but I also don’t think a loser like him should receive plaudits for opening up about his HIV status considering how many people he has put at risk, either directly or indirectly); Jamie Packer and Mariah Carey started dating (‘Creamlover’ would be my headline); Justin Bieber continued to do his thing; Zayn Malik threw some shade on 1D; Ray Hadley lost the plot when his boy Tony was thrown out and had that sook at Scott Morrison; Drake, Meek Mill, Nicki Minaj and Taylor Swift all had run-ins of varying degrees of tedium; Ed Sheeran got that lion tattoo; Cara Delevingne, whose appeal I do not understand, seemed to be everywhere; John Oliver showed his penis to Edward Snowden; Bill Cosby got entangled in a case of he said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said/she said; Elliphant went off at Australian music fans. By their normally high standards, I thought Miley Cyrus, Lindsay Lohan, Joaquin Phoenix, Britney Spears, Gary Busey, Brad and Angelina, Mel Gibson and Nicolas Cage had disappointingly quiet years.
The year started with me on fleek. I was dominating work and play with my bingethinking and the unlocking of organic achievables, which is one of my squad goals, left me feeling thirsty. But soon after I failed fast after ignoring the low hanging fruit and trying to boil the ocean, leaving me in a state of funemployment. I tried to growth hack and socialise the issue, crowdsourcing several ideas for passion projects and, on level playing fields, I could have workshopped a dial shift to isolate a window outside my box. I would love to report that I spent most of the time Netflix and chilling but, alas, it was mostly spent mansplaining sexual politics and manspreading in the sharing economy, which is like Uber, but for Uber. There was nowhere near enough manscaping. The frightbats won’t be happy to absorb this but I was unable to crack the paradigm through the spring quarter, swiping left on too many contactless opportunities: it was a shaming period and I felt ghosted by the baes, daddies, dads, feminazis, meninists, transgendered, transphobic, transparent and Transylvanians encountered during my journey. Eventually I uncovered a safe space for me to check my privilege and after playing phone tag with my lifecoach we eventually touched base and I am now fundamentally positively inclined to unseal the envelope on the 2015 Word of the Year: microaggression. I warned you there would be irony.
It’s hard to read books as they come out. Unlike films or music, one tends to find an author and consume their oeuvre in a glorious literary bacchanalia. Books I read and loved in 2015 included: Inherent Vice (Thomas Pynchon), The Secret History (Donna Tartt), Dead Europe (Christos Tsiolkas), Girlfriend In A Coma (Douglas Coupland), Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself (David Lipsky), The Stranger’s Child (Allan Hollinghurst) and The Buddha Of Suburbia (Hanif Kureishi).
My favourite book that I read in 2015 was Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. It was long and challenging and it’s a bit of cliche for me to heap praise on it but I like to think I’ve proven myself an independent thinker enough to be granted this one concession. Pro tip: make sure you read the End Notes as you go.
My friend Meg was invited to chat about Books and other faves in 2015 but our schedules couldn’t align. She sent in this message:
“There were a couple of standouts in reading for me this year. Mostly getting deep into the oeuvre of Anglo-Irish author Elizabeth Bowen, who is amazing! Also, since Serial blew up at the end of last year (not a book exactly but still a narrative form), it’s been all about true crime (The Jinx, Making A Murderer), so I’ve returned to classics of the genre and have been reading and absolutely loving In Cold Blood.
“In terms of new words, I think FOMO and Netflix and Chill are good ones of this year. The more personal one is the ‘on piracy’ thing — you know — as if piracy were a channel or provider like HBO or Netflix. Try to make this catch on!
“My favourite in music probably was when you showed me all those Sia songs. I’m much more interested in video clips now!”
All those embedded tweets affects the integrity of the word count but apparently we are now up to 7,007. I tapped out most of this on at home on New Year’s Eve in two spells: from around midnight to 2am and from around 10am to sometime shortly in the future. I do enjoy writing it and I hope anyone stupid enough to have this far has enjoyed reading it. The goal of this is always to entertain and amuse. It certainly is not to offend or upset. If you feel I have transgressed, please check your irony.
Hottest 100 Votes
This year I am only voting for songs with female vocalists. It’s a small but sincere gesture.
If you have come this far and you’re loving the flow I’ve been laying down, you might want to read more Patrick. In addition to my seminal post forecasting the Hottest 100, there was also my anti-#Tay4Hottest100 yarn from earlier in the year. I went to the Falls Festival in Marion Bay and tapped out this tome, mercilessly skewered Foxtel in this pomo review, tapped out a short film lampooning Australian sports fans and I completed the #GrandSalami. I currently host a weekly 90s Nostalgia Hour and cohost a cricket podcast.
In days of yore I would give this award to the music video that most sexually objectified women. It was meant as a stinging piece of social commentary but I would obviously never do that again. I won’t embed them all because that would make this page even slower to load, but the honourable mentions go to:
And My Fave Music Video of 2015:
I saw the following gigs through the erstwhile year (including Falls over the 2014-15 calendar switchover period):
Falls Festival at Marion Bay (Client Liaison, Salt-n-Pepa, Alison Wonderland, BADBADNOTGOOD, Glass Animals, Bluejuice, Violet Swells, Kim Churchill, Wolf Alice, Milky Chance, Ásgeir, Cold War Kids, Alt-J, Presets, Todd Terje, DMAs, Sticky Fingers, Cloud Control, George Ezra, John Butler Trio, La Roux, Empire Of The Sun)
Blur & Jamie T at the Qantas Credit Union Arena
Wolf Alice & Bad//Dreems at the Oxford Art Factory
Everything Everything & Urban Cone at The Metro
Wombats & Circa Waves at The Hordern Pavilion
Megan Washington & Montaigne at The Metro
Nina at a conference facility in Malta (thanks IFA)
Lamb at The Enmore Theatre
SAFIA & Boo Seeka at The Factory Theatre
Eagles at Allphones Arena
Alt-J & Ásgeir at the Qantas Credit Union Arena
Angus & Julia Stone at a church in Newtown (thanks Samsung)
I am going to go with Blur as my fave gig of the year. I had waited a long time to see them and they really delivered.
There were no gamechangers through 2015. No album demanded to be listened to, nor did any band come along and reveal themselves to be *the* one to watch in the years ahead. If anything, it was the year that several bands confirmed that they were not the next Radiohead or Gomez or even Coldplay. I really enjoyed records by Maccabees, Wombats, Foals, Everything Everything and CHVRCHES but I couldn’t help but feel that I was hearing more of the same — same being good — and not enough of that rare, flighty quinella of difference and excellence. Some solo males unleashed outstanding contributions to the audio canon: Father John Misty, Daniel Johns, Jamie xx, Mac Demarco, Sufjan Stevens, Drake, Troye Sivan and Ben Lee all had their moments. Courtney Barnett and Florence repped the female of the species with aplomb, though 2015 was not a scratch on the output of interesting solo women in 2014 (think FKA Twigs, St Vincent, Banks, Sia, Lana Del Rey, Taylor Swift and Lily Allen). The current trend of production impresarios working with a clutch of diverse singers to ravel an album — some more coherently than others — continued apace. Major Lazer, Skrillex & Diplo, Disclosure, Claptone, Mark Ronson and Madeon all punched out fine work. I’m not the world’s biggest rap/hip-hip fan but I liked Fetty Wap, Kendrick Lamar and Drake & Future’s LPs, though clearly not as much as other people. Raury’s LP was my fave of the genre. When it comes to dudes playing guitars, it was a good year for Tame Impala, Half Moon Run, Beach Slang, Fall Out Boy and Gang Of Youths. Blur released another outstanding album — that’s 7 for 7 as a fourpiece — and The Decemberists retained their boringly high levels of consistency. Modest Mouse did what Modest Mouse does. Promising debuts were dropped by Genghar, City Calm Down and Little May. I was disappointed by Jarryd James. All in all, I’m fairly sure my #1 is the best album of 2015 and I’m also pleased to report that I’ve shared seeing this band live with three of my best friends, in three different cities, in three very different states of mind.
15. Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit – Courtney Barnett
14. If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late – Drake
13. Get To Heaven – Everything Everything
12. The Magic Whip – Blur
11. American Beauty/American Psycho – Fall Out Boy
10. What Went Down – Foals
9. In A Restless House – City Calm Down
8. Every Open Eye – CHVRCHES
7. Talk – Daniel Johns
6. Marks To Prove It – Maccabees
5. Currents – Tame Impala
4. The Positions – Gang Of Youths
3. Strangers To Ourselves – Modest Mouse
2. I Love You, Honeybear – Father John Misty
1. My Love Is Cool – Wolf Alice
That’s about it for 2015. As far as years go I wouldn’t call it my best ever but it had its moments and it ended quite well. 2016, here we come!
Top 100 Songs of 2015
100. Go Out – Blur
99. Bad Art & Weirdo Ideas – Beach Slang
98. Do It Again – Pia Mia, Chris Brown & Tyga
97. You Were Right – RÜFÜS
96. Home – Little May
95. WILD – Troye Sivan
94. Kamikaze – MØ
93. Embracing Me – SAFIA
92. Love Yourself – Justin Bieber
91. Ocean Drive – Duke Dumont
90. Freazy – Wolf Alice
89. Aerial Love – Daniel Johns
88. Dead Inside – Muse
87. Good For You – Selena Gomez & A$AP Rocky
86. Walk With Me – Cosmo’s Midnight & Kučka
85. Coyotes – Modest Mouse
84. Nightlight – Silversun Pickups
83. Adventure Of A Lifetime – Coldplay
82. What Do You Mean? – Justin Bieber
81. I’d Be Lost – Sarah Blasko
80. Wildest Dreams – Taylor Swift
79. Alive – Sia
78. The Children Came Back – Briggs, Gurrumul & Dewayne Everettsmith
77. Great Summer – Vance Joy
76. Keep That Letter Safe – Highasakite
75. Black Magic – Little Mix
74. Snow – San Cisco
73. Lay It All On Me – Rudimental & Ed Sheeran
72. Sugar – Maroon 5
71. Irresistible – Fall Out Boy
70. Retro [ROUGH] – Childish Gambino
69. Soapy Water – Wolf Alice
68. Sentimental And Monday – Holy Holy
67. Nevermind (Main Title Theme From HBO’s True Detective Season 2) – Leonard Cohen
66. Electrical – Eves The Behavior
65. You Cannot Call For Love Like A Dog – Holy Holy
64. Friends – Raury & Tom Morello
63. Speak Easy – Mansionair
62. Broken Cash Machine – Modern Baseball
61. Multi-Love – Unknown Mortal Orchestra
60. Hostage – Sia
59. Give Me A Try – Wombats
58. Another World – Royal Headache
57. Twilight Driving – Methyl Ethel
56. Feeling OK – Best Coast
55. Go Quietly – Cold War Kids
54. Lay Down – DMAs
53. Deception Bay – Boo Seeka
52. Pedestrian At Best – Courtney Barnett
51. The Buzz – Hermitude, Mataya & Young Tapz
50. For Tonight (Live Forever) – Delta Riggs
49. What Kind Of Man – Florence + The Machine
48. Clearest Blue – CHVRCHES
47. Emoticons – Wombats
46. Lifted Up (1985) – Passion Pit
45. Gunga Din – Libertines
44. Shine – Years & Years
43. RIP 2 My Youth – Neighbourhood
42. Marks To Prove It – Maccabees
41. Someone New – Hozier
40. Greek Tragedy – Wombats
39. The Gospel Of John Hurt – Alt-J
38. Turn On The Light – Jamie T
37. Devil’s Whisper – Raury
36. Ship To Wreck – Florence + The Machine
35. Loud Places – Jamie xx & Romy
34. Silk – Wolf Alice
33. Stonefist – HEALTH
32. Hotline Bling – Drake
31. Hotel Anywhere – Cold War Kids
30. Counting Sheep – SAFIA
29. Ansel – Modest Mouse
28. Rabbit Run – City Calm Down
27. Do You Remember – Jarryd James
26. Distant Past – Everything Everything
25. Restraint & Release – Gang Of Youths
24. TV – Eves The Behavior
23. Firestone – Kygo & Conrad Sewell
22. Forces – Japanese Wallpaper & Airling
21. Where Are Ü Now – Diplo, Skrillex & Justin Bieber
20. Chateau Lobby #4 (In C For Two Virgins) – Father John Misty
19. Flesh Without Blood – Grimes
18. Ditmas – Mumford & Sons
17. Lean On – Major Lazer, DJ Snake & MØ
16. Mountain At My Gates – Foals
15. Downtown – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Eric Nally, Melle Mel, Kool Moe Dee & Grandmaster Kaz
14. Let It Happen – Tame Impala
13. King Kunta – Kendrick Lamar
12. Pretty Pimpin – Kurt Vile
11. Trap Queen – Fetty Wap
10. Long Loud Hours – Urthboy & Bertie Blackman
9. Regret – Everything Everything
8. Should Have Known Better – Sufjan Stevens
7. The Ground Walks, With Time In A Box – Modest Mouse
6. Leave A Trace – CHVRCHES
5. Hoops – Rubens
4. What Went Down – Foals
3. Magnolia – Gang Of Youths
2. Let It Go – James Bay
1. First – Cold War Kids
Cheated and lied, broken so bad, you made a vow: never get mad.