Year-End Lists

Notable, browsable lists of the year's best music, movies, books, and TV shows. End-of-year lists are fingerprints; aggregate statistics are smudges. Therefore, no tallies. Follow the link for each list to see essential commentary from its authors, at the source.

Month: December, 2015

David Orr: 10 Best Poetry Books of 2015

David Orr: 10 Best Poetry Books of 2015 (as published by The New York Times)

  • The Last Two Seconds – Mary Jo Bang
  • Turning into Dwelling – Christopher Gilbert
  • Prodigal: New and Selected Poems, 1976 to 2014 – Linda Gregerson
  • A Stranger’s Mirror: New and Selected Poems, 1994-2014 – Marilyn Hacker
  • Far-Fetched – Devin Johnston
  • Syllabus of Errors – Troy Jollimore
  • Voyage of the Sable Venus: and Other Poems – Robin Coste Lewis
  • Bright Dead Things – Ada Limón
  • Oracle – Cate Marvin
  • Mistaking Each Other for Ghosts – Lawrence Raab

Jonathan Rosenbaum: Top 5 Films of 2015

Son of Saul - László Nemes

Jonathan Rosenbaum: Top 5 Films of 2015 (as submitted to La Internacional Cinéfila poll)

  1. Son of Saul – László Nemes
  2. Jauja – Lisandro Alonso
  3. Ex Machina – Alex Garland
  4. I, Dalio (or the Rules of the Game) – Mark Rappaport
  5. Journey to the West – Tsai Ming-liang

La Internacional Cinéfila Poll: 7 Best Films of 2015

Cemetery of Splendour - Apichatpong Weerasethakul

Roger Koza’s La Internacional Cinéfila poll: 7 Best Films of 2015 (as voted by over 125 critics, programmers, and filmmakers)

  1. Cemetery of Splendour – Apichatpong Weerasethakul
  2. The Assassin – Hou Hsiao-Hsien
  3. Arabian Nights – Miguel Gomes
  4. [tie] Homeland (Iraq Year Zero) – Abbas Fahdel
  5. Right Now, Wrong Then – Hong Sang-soo
  6. Mountains May Depart – Jia Zhang-ke
  7. [tie] Mad Max: Fury Road – George Miller

Magnet: Top 25 Albums of 2015

Magnet Magazine: Top 25 Albums of 2015

  1. Wilco – Star Wars
  2. Alabama Shakes – Sound & Color
  3. Father John Misty – I Love You, Honeybear
  4. Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
  5. Royal Headache – High
  6. Joanna Newsom – Divers
  7. The Libertines – Anthems For Doomed Youth
  8. Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell
  9. Deafheaven – New Bermuda
  10. Carly Rae Jepsen – E•MO•TION
  11. Low – Ones and Sixes
  12. Sleater-Kinney – No Cities To Love
  13. Ricked Wicky – Swimmer to a Liquid Armchair
  14. Jim O’Rourke – Simple Songs
  15. Blur – The Magic Whip
  16. Richard Hawley – Hollow Meadows
  17. Screaming Females – Rose Mountain
  18. Destroyer – Poison Season
  19. Godspeed You! Black Emperor – Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress
  20. Meg Baird – Don’t Weigh Down the Light
  21. Kurt Vile – B’lieve I’m Goin Down…
  22. Björk – Vulnicura
  23. Belle and Sebastian – Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance
  24. Jason Isbell – Something More Than Free
  25. Chastity Belt – Time to Go Home

Tiny Mix Tapes: Favorite 50 Music Releases of 2015

Arca - Mutant

Tiny Mix Tapes: Favorite 50 Music Releases of 2015

  1. Arca – Mutant
  2. Young Thug – Barter 6
  3. James Ferraro – Skid Row
  4. Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp A Butterfly
  5. Oneohtrix Point Never – Garden of Delete
  6. Elysia Crampton – American Drift
  7. Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell
  8. Future – DS2
  9. Björk – Vulnicura
  10. Sophie – Product
  11. Julia Holter – Have You In My Wilderness
  12. Beat Detectives – Boogie Chillen/The Hills of Cypress
  13. Sicko Mobb – Super Saiyan Vol. 2
  14. Drake – If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late
  15. Joanna Newsom – Divers
  16. Container – LP [2015]
  17. Ahnnu – Perception
  18. Lil Ugly Mane – Third Side of Tape
  19. Smurphy – A Shapeless Pool of Lovely Pale Colours Suspended in the Darkness
  20. Dawn Richard – Blackheart
  21. D/P/I – Ad Hocc
  22. Helen – The Original Faces
  23. Jenny Hval – Apocalypse, Girl
  24. Cloud Rat – Qliphoth
  25. Matana Roberts – Coin Coin Chapter Three: River Run Thee
  26. various artists – Fourth World Magazine Vol. 2 – Pinhead In Fantasia
  27. M.E.S.H. – Piteous Gate
  28. Prurient – Frozen Niagara Falls
  29. Carly Rae Jepsen – E•MO•TION
  30. U.S. Girls – Half Free
  31. Grimes – Art Angels
  32. Giant Claw – Deep Thoughts
  33. Rabit & Chino Amobi – The Great Game: Freedom From Mental Poisoning
  34. Eartheater – RIP Chrysalis
  35. Holly Herndon – Platform
  36. Lolina – RELAXIN’ with Lolina
  37. Autre Ne Veut – Age Of Transparency
  38. Amnesia Scanner – AS Angels Rig Hook
  39. ZS – Xe
  40. Chicklette – Unfaithful
  41. DJ Nigga Fox – Noite e Dia
  42. Ben Zimmerman – The Baltika Years
  43. Food Court – Food Court
  44. D’Angelo and The Vanguard – Black Messiah
  45. Jlin – Dark Energy
  46. Dr. Yen Lo – Days With Dr. Yen Lo
  47. Seth Graham – No.00 in Clean Life
  48. Liturgy – The Ark Work
  49. Jefre Cantu-Ledesma – A Year With 13 Moons
  50. Lotic – Agitations

Quietus: Top 100 Albums of 2015

The Quietus: Top 100 Albums of 2015

  1. Jlin – Dark Energy
  2. Stara Rzeka – Zamknęły się oczy ziemi
  3. Mbongwana Star – From Kinshasa
  4. Carter Tutti Void – F (X)
  5. Matana Roberts – Coin Coin Chapter Three: River Run Thee
  6. East India Youth – Culture of Volume
  7. Eek! – Kahraba
  8. Oneohtrix Point Never – Garden of Delete
  9. New Order – Music Complete
  10. Holly Herndon – Platform
  11. Circuit Des Yeux – In Plain Speech
  12. Elysia Crampton – American Drift
  13. The Inward Circles – Belated Movements for an Unsanctioned Exhumation August 1st 1984
  14. Helm – Olympic Mess
  15. Jam City – Dream a Garden
  16. Jenny Hval – Apocalypse, Girl
  17. Teeth of the Sea – Highly Deadly Black Tarantula
  18. King Midas Sound & Fennesz – Edition 1
  19. Sunn O))) – Kannon
  20. Laura Cannell – Beneath Swooping Talons
  21. Hawthonn – Hawthonn
  22. Gnod – Infinity Machines
  23. WIDT – POINT#03
  24. Jerusalem in My Heart – If He Dies, If If If If If If
  25. Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell
  26. Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba – Ba Power
  27. Kurt Vile – B’lieve I’m Goin Down…
  28. Hey Colossus – Radio Static High
  29. RP Boo – Fingers, Bank Pads & Shoe Prints
  30. My Disco – Severe
  31. Enya – Dark Sky Island
  32. One More Grain – Grain Fever
  33. Chrononautz – Noments
  34. Julia Holter – Have You In My Wilderness
  35. DJ Richard – Grind
  36. Karin Park – Apocalypse Pop
  37. Księżyc – Rabbit Eclipse
  38. Prurient – Frozen Niagara Falls
  39. Membranes – Dark Matter / Dark Energy
  40. Mika Vainio & franck vigroux – Peau froide, léger soleil
  41. Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe & Ariel Kalma – FRKWYS, Vol. 12 – We Know Each Other Somehow
  42. The Eccentronic Research Council – Johnny Rocket, Narcissist & Music Machine…I’m Your Biggest Fan
  43. Arca – Mutant
  44. Kerridge – Always Offended Never Ashamed
  45. LoneLady – Hinterland
  46. Owiny Sigoma Band – Nyanza
  47. M.E.S.H. – Piteous Gate
  48. Jaakko Eino Kalevi – Jaakko Eino Kalevi
  49. Russell Haswell – As Sure As Night Follows Day
  50. Björk – Vulnicura
  51. Rabit – Communion
  52. The Soft Moon – Deeper
  53. Future – DS2
  54. Eric Chenaux – Skullsplitter
  55. Gnaw Their Tongues – Abyss of Longing Throats
  56. Imaginary Forces – Low Key Movements
  57. Colleen – Captain of None
  58. Wire – Wire
  59. Levon Vincent – Levon Vincent
  60. FIS – The Blue Quicksand Is Going Now
  61. Meatraffle – Hi Fi Classics
  62. Anthony Child – Electronic Recordings from Maui Jungle, Vol. 1
  63. Algiers – Algiers
  64. Shapednoise – Different Selves
  65. Oren Ambarchi & Jim O’Rourke – Behold
  66. Leif – Taraxacum
  67. Melechesh – Enki
  68. Pearson Sound – Pearson Sound
  69. Torres – Sprinter
  70. Consumer Electronics – Dollhouse Songs
  71. Jme – Integrity
  72. Rupert Clervaux & Beatrice Dillon – Studies I-XVII for Samplers and Percussion
  73. Vince Staples – Summertime ’06
  74. Ian William Craig – Cradle for the Wanting
  75. Container – LP
  76. Bad Guys – Bad Guynaecology
  77. Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp A Butterfly
  78. Broken English Club – Suburban Hunting
  79. Joey Anderson – Invisible Switch
  80. Shit & Shine – 54 Synth-Brass, 38 Metal Guitar, 65 Cathedral
  81. Dawn Richard – Blackheart
  82. Cornered Yet Climbing Featuring Kelly Jayne Jones – Fevered Realities
  83. Master Musicians of Bukkake – Further West Quad Cult
  84. The Charlatans – Modern Nature
  85. Terakaft – Alone (Ténéré)
  86. Milo – So the Flies Don’t Come
  87. Paper Dollhouse – Aeonflower
  88. Claude Speeed – Sun Czar Temple
  89. Real Lies – Real Life
  90. Jute Gyte – Ship of Theseus
  91. John Foxx – London Overgrown
  92. Lightning Bolt – Fantasy Empire
  93. The Necks – Vertigo
  94. Roots Manuva – Bleeds
  95. Rizan Said – King of Keyboard
  96. Guapo – Obscure Knowledge
  97. Checkpoint 303 – The Iqrit files
  98. Eugene The Oceanographer – The Tigers Of Mount Paektu
  99. RSS Boys – Hddn
  100. Pissgrave – Suicide Euphoria

M. Leary: 24 Favorite Films of 2015

Li’l Quinquin - Bruno Dumont

M. Leary: 24 Favorite Films of 2015 (as posted to Medium)

  1. Li’l Quinquin – Bruno Dumont
  2. Horse Money – Pedro Costa
  3. Experimenter – Michael Almereyda
  4. Hard to Be a God – Aleksey German
  5. Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem – Ronit Elkabetz and Shlomi Elkabetz
  6. Mad Max: Fury Road – George Miller
  7. Jauja – Lisandro Alonso
  8. Phoenix – Christian Petzold
  9. Man from Reno – Dave Boyle
  10. Mississippi Grind – Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden

Other films that could have just as easily made it on this list

  • About Elly – Asghar Farhadi
  • The Assassin – Hou Hsiao-Hsien
  • Black Coal, Thin Ice – Diao Yinan
  • The Kindergarten Teacher – Nadav Lapid
  • Listen to Me Marlon – Stevan Riley
  • Love & Mercy – Bill Pohlad
  • The Mend – John Magary
  • Mustang – Deniz Gamze Ergüven
  • Paddington – Paul King
  • Queen of Earth – Alex Ross Perry
  • Results – Andrew Bujalski
  • Something, Anything – Paul Harrill
  • Timbuktu – Abderrahmane Sissako
  • World of Tomorrow – Don Hertzfeldt

Melissa Anderson: 19 Best Movies of 2015

Carol - Todd Haynes

Melissa Anderson: 19 Best Movies of 2015 (as published by The Village Voice)

  1. Carol – Todd Haynes
  2. Clouds of Sils Maria – Olivier Assayas
  3. Phoenix – Christian Petzold
  4. Mad Max: Fury Road – George Miller
  5. Saint Laurent – Bertrand Bonello
  6. In Jackson Heights – Frederick Wiseman
  7. The Assassin – Hou Hsiao-Hsien
  8. 45 Years – Andrew Haigh
  9. The Wonders – Alice Rohrwacher
  10. Heaven Knows What – Ben Safdie and Joshua Safdie

Honorable mentions, in alphabetical order

  • Amour fou – Jessica Hausner
  • Amy – Asif Kapadia
  • Anomalisa – Charlie Kaufman & Duke Johnson
  • Court – Chaitanya Tamhane
  • The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq – Guillaume Nicloux
  • The Princess of France – Matías Piñeiro
  • The Royal Road – Jenni Olson
  • Spy – Paul Feig
  • Timbuktu – Abderrahmane Sissako

Jonathon Sturgeon: 8 Best Poetry Books of 2015

Jonathon Sturgeon: 8 Best Poetry Books of 2015 (as published by Flavorwire)

  • I Must Be Living Twice: New and Selected Poems 1975 – 2014 – Eileen Myles
  • From the New World: Poems 1976-2014 – Jorie Graham
  • Heaven – Rowan Ricardo Phillips
  • Selected Later Poems – C.K. Williams
  • Voyage of the Sable Venus: and Other Poems – Robin Coste Lewis
  • The Last Two Seconds – Mary Jo Bang
  • Black Cat Bone – John Burnside
  • Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude – Ross Gay

David L. Ulin: Top 10 Books of 2015

David L. Ulin: Top 10 Books of 2015 (as published by the Los Angeles Times)

  • Between the World and Me – Ta-Nehisi Coates
  • The Brothers: The Road to an American Tragedy – Masha Gessen
  • Eventually Everything Connects – Loris Lora
  • Honeydew: Stories – Edith Pearlman
  • Killing and Dying – Adrian Tomine
  • The Meursault Investigation – Kamel Daoud
  • M Train – Patti Smith
  • The Odd Woman and the City: A Memoir – Vivian Gornick
  • Then Comes Marriage: United States V. Windsor and the Defeat of DOMA – Roberta Kaplan with Lisa Dickey
  • Wide Awake: Poets of Los Angeles and Beyond – Suzanne Lummis