Some people think that nobody listens to albums any more. Those people are wrong. Now that artists can collaborate in seconds across the world, create music on their phones and get people listening to it without any need for the media, the practice of spotting patterns and trends in the music scene gets more futile with every passing year. But there’s one thing that our list of the year’s best albums does prove, and it’s this: despite the successive revolutions wrought by downloads and streaming, the 67-year-old LP format is still inspiring musicians.
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This year brought us career-high comebacks from long-serving artists, genuinely great debuts from the new generation and a brace of incredible second and third albums by younger artists establishing themselves as the icons of the future. Every single one of our Top 50 albums of the year is worth listening to all the way through in the right order, as the artist intended. Okay, except maybe the Miley Cyrus album. Anyway, here it is – our end-of-year countdown of the 50 best albums of 2015.