Continuing on with Rock Sins look back at the last twelve months, today it’s the turn of one of our long term contributors, Sam Dignon, to offer opinions on the best music from 2015 along with one or two things that maybe, in Sam’s opinion, weren’t quite so good! Over to you Sam!
1) Album of the year: While She Sleeps – Brainwashed
It’s not really secret that While She Sleeps are one of my favourite bands. However there was a lot of uncertainty leading up to the release of Brainwashed. Mainly due to it being their comeback after Loz Taylor’s throat surgery. Fortunately when the album came out it immediately became clear there was nothing to worry about. For me Brainwashed was easily the album of 2015 as While She Sleeps just took everything they’d done before to the next level. The album is heavier than before but still packed with huge vocal hooks. But it’s the riffs that stand out most this time round, the title track in particular features what has to be the best riff of 2015.
Counterparts – Tragedy Will Find Us
Senses Fail – Pull The Thorns From Your Heart
Parkway Drive – Sure
2) Song of the year: Creeper – The Honeymoon Suite
This was a tough category to pick but in the end I had to go for the song that surprised me the most. Creeper’s first EP clearly showed a lot of potential but on their second EP Creeper delivered one of the biggest songs of 2015. The Honeymoon Suite is so brilliant it is hard to believe it’s from a band with only 2 EP’s. Easily the standout moment of The Callous Heart EP, The Honeymoon Suite just confirms that Creeper are destined for bigger things. They are easily one of the most exciting new bands around right now.
Crossfaith ft Benji Webb – Wildfire
While She Sleeps – Brainwashed
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – Juggernaut
3) Video of the year: Parkway Drive – Vice Grip
The video for Vice Grip is the kind of thing that only Parkway Drive would do. Starting with them playing in the desert the video progresses to a fantastic sequence of the band skydiving before landing to play in front of fans and surrounded by fire. It’s a lot of fun and looks brilliant. The highlight has to be Winston McCall screaming “One life, One shot, Give it all you’ve got” before leaping out of a plane.
While She Sleeps – Brainwashed
Stick To Your Guns – Nothing You Can Do To Me
4) Gig of the year: Refused @ Electric Ballroom, 2/12/15
Whilst Refused’s comeback album wasn’t as brilliant as people had hoped it would be, there is no denying that they are still one of the best live bands ever. Whilst the high points of the set were all older songs, the newer material certainly gains something more when played live so there was never a single low point in the set. It’s the kind of set that completely flew by it was so brilliant. And when they started New Noise it was easily the best moment of any gig I went to in 2015.
While She Sleeps and Cancer Bats – Manchester Ritz and London Forum
Counterparts – The Underworld
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – The Borderline
5) Festival set of the year: Every Time I Die @ Download Festival
Every Time I Die have a reputation for insane shows and their set at Download festival was no different. From the moment they started with Underwater Bimbos From Outer Space the entire tent erupted into chaos. It really is difficult to put into words how insane this set was but ETID just blew every other band at Download away.
The Ghost Inside – Impericon Festival
Thrice – Hevy Festival
Against Me – Reading Festival
While She Sleeps – Reading Festival
6) Most disappointing album of the year: Bring Me The Horizon – That’s The Spirit
That’s The Spirit definitely wasn’t the worst album of 2015, it does have some good moments. The biggest problem with this album is that the last 3 BMTH albums before it were all 9/10’s for me, whereas That’s The Spirit ends up just being very mediocre. BMTH might have experimented with their sound but the end result is them sounding less original than they did before. The albums biggest sin is that it’s just boring. Despite all this the album received a huge amount of praise and it’s hard to see why. It’s just a bland rock album with not a single interesting quality.
Trivium – Silence In The Snow
Iron Maiden – The Book Of Souls
7) Best debut album: Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – Blossom
Frank Carter going back to his punk roots was always an exciting idea but I don’t think many people expected the end results to be this good. Opening song Juggernaut sets the tone perfectly but the album is packed with brilliant songs. Whilst Frank is certainly the centrepiece of the album, the backing band do not disappoint, the riffs are particularly great.
8) Band of the year: While She Sleeps
While She Sleeps were contenders for nearly every category here so it won’t be surprising that they were my band of 2015. Brainwashed was better than every album released this year. Their co-headline tour with Cancer Bats was brilliant and the final date at The Forum in London saw While She Sleeps make a real statement for being the UK’s best band. They also played several great festival sets with the Reading set being a particular highlight. They might have had to rebuild after a quiet 2014 but While She Sleeps more than bounced back. What’s most exciting is that the best is yet to come from While She Sleeps.
If you’d like to catch up with the verdicts handed out by other members of the Rock Sins Team in their 2015 End Of Year Awards, the links to do so are below: