JAY BOLLER

City Pages music editor

ALBUMS:

1. Lizzo, “Big GRRRL, Small World”

2. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

3. Bruise Violet, “Survival of the Prettiest”

4. Fury Things, “VHS”

5. Mixed Blood Majority, “Insane World”

6. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

7. Murder Shoes, “Daydreaming”

8. Eric Mayson, “Detail”

9. Bobby Raps and Corbin, “Couch Potato”

10. Näive Sense, “Art Failures”

 

JON BREAM

Star Tribune music critic, author of “Dylan: Disc by Disc”

ALBUMS:

1. Erik Koskinen, “Live at the Real-Phonic Radio Hour.”

2. Adam Levy, “Naubinway,”

3. Charlie Parr, , “Stumpjumper.”

4. Mark Lickteig, “Workin’”

5. Belfast Cowboys, “The Upside to the Downslide”

6. Hippo Campus, “South”

7. Sonny Knight & the Lakers, “Do It Live”

8. Irv Williams, “Pinnacle,”

9. Lizzo, “Big Grrrl Small World”

10. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

 

TIM CAMPBELL

Star Tribune senior arts editor

ALBUMS:

1. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

2. Charlie Parr, “Stumpjumper”

3. Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

4. Belfast Cowboys, “The Upside to the Downslide”

5. Mixed Blood Majority, “Insane World”

6. Hippo Campus, “South”

7. BNLX, “Good Light”

8. Dean Granros, Zacc Harris, Chris Bates & Jay Epstein, “Tall Tales”

9. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

10. Fury Things, “VHS”

 

SONGS (not ranked):

Bad Bad Hats, “Midway”

Gramma’s Boyfriend, “Forget the Stones”

Jayanthi Kyle, “Hand in Hand”

Lizzo, “My Skin”

Low, “What Part of Me”

 

LIVE ACTS (not ranked):

Black Market Brass

Bruise Violet

Hippo Campus

Marijuana Deathsquads

Sonny Knight & the Lakers

 

CYN COLLINS

Freelancer, “West Bank Boogie” author and KFAI’s “Spin With Cyn” host

ALBUMS (unranked)

Fury Things, "VHS"

Gospel Machine, "Your Holy Ghost"

Flavor Crystals, "The Shiver of Flavor Crystals"

Magic Castles, "Starflower"

Shadow in the Cracks, "Shadow in the Cracks"

The Blind Shake, "Live in San Francisco"

BNLX, "Good Light"

Chooglin', "Under Two Moons"

Flamin' Ohs, "Here and Now"

Tie: Charlie Parr, "Stumpjumper;" and Erik Koskinen, "Live at the RealPhonic Radio Hour"

 

LIVE ACTS (unranked)

The Blind Shake

Birthday Suits

Babes in Toyland

Eleganza

Tie: Fury Things/The Mighty Mofos/The Boot R&B

 

SONGS (unranked):

Birthday Suits, “Golden Weeks”

Uranium Club, “The Collector”

Alpha Consumer, “In the Age of the Pixel Phone”

Driftwood Pyre, “Man on a Wire”

Tie: BNLX, “I Love You All the Time”

Waveless, “Dark Day”

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “The continuation of numerous new bands forming, performing great live shows and releasing excellent records, along with the scene’s more established local luminaries and tenured artists forming new bands and releasing records, proves the scene is flourishing more than ever. Plus more band reunions and reunion shows of original rock and punk scene bands such as Babes in Toyland, COWS, Lifter Puller, Johnny Rey and the Reaction, Rifle Sport and more — plus local luminaries forming new bands is a sign our great scene is vibrant and thriving as much as, if not more than ever.”

 

PAMELA ESPELAND

MinnPost columnist, freelancer for Star Tribune

ALBUMS:

Peg Carrothers, “Edges of My Mind”

Paul Fonfara, “Seven Secrets of Snow”

José James, “Yesterday I Had the Blues”

Peter Kogan, “Some Monsterful Wonderthing”

Graydon Peterson Quartet, “Duets”

John Raymond, “Foreign Territory”

Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra, “The Thompson Fields”

Irie Sol, “Dred Scott Fitzgerald: A Novella”

Mike Olson, “Six Projects”

Dean Sorenson Sextet, “Colors of the Soul”

 

No. 1 Sign the Minnesota Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “Jazz musicians took care of business. Tireless trumpeter/flumpeter Steve Kenny programmed Friday Night Jazz at the Nicollet and Saturday Night Jazz at the Black Dog, two strong series. Guitarist Zacc Harris ran Jazz at Studio Z, drummer JT Bates brought his Jazz Implosion to Icehouse on Mondays, drummer Mac Santiago featured live jazz at Jazz Central five nights a week, and singer/pianist Andrew Walesch booked the Tuesday night jazz at Crooners.”

 

REED FISCHER

Go 96.3 FM editorial producer (**Reed's list did not count toward the TCCT totals, but we're happy to include it here)

ALBUMS:

1. Low, "Ones and Sixes"

2. Bad Bad Hats, "Psychic Reader"

3. On an On, "And the Wave Has Two Sides"

4. Gramma's Boyfriend, "Perm"

5. Lizzo, "Big GRRRL, Small World"

6. B.O.Y.F., "White Boyfriend"

7. Mystery Date, "New Noir"

8. Fury Things, "VHS"

9. Al Church, "Next Summer"

10. Prof, "Liability:

 

JERARD FAGERBERG

Freelancer, City Pages contributor

ALBUMS:

1) Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

2) Murder Shoes, “Daydreaming”

3) Morly, “In Defense of My Muse”

4) Bruise Violet, “Survival of the Prettiest”

5) Bobby Raps and Corbin, “Couch Potato”

6) Eric Mayson, “Detail”

7) Gospel Machine, “Your Holy Ghost”

8) Low, “Ones and Sixes”

9) Lizzo, “Big Grrrl Small World”

10) Deleter, “Oblique Seasons”

 

SONGS:

1) Bad Bad Hats, “Midway”

2) Daisy Chains, “Bye Babe”

3) On an On, “It’s Not Over”

4) Murder Shoes, “Girls Named Benji”

5) Doomtree, “.38 Airweight”

 

LIVE ACTS:

1) Swimsuit Area

2) GRRRL PRTY

3) Jason Feathers

4) Prof

5) On an On

 

No. 1 Sign the Minnesota Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “20 years of Rhymesayers. What a thing that, in Minneapolis, something as niche as an independent hip-hop label can not only survive but flourish. Slug and co. showed this year that they’re more important to the music here than Prince or Bob Dylan ever were.”

 

JAY GABLER

Digital producer, 89.3 the Current/Minnesota Public Radio

ALBUMS:

1. On An On, “And the Wave Has Two Sides”

2. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

3. Eric Mayson, “Detail”

4. Lizzo, “Big Grrrl Small World”

5. Reina Del Cid, “The Cooling”

6. GRRRL PRTY, “GRRRL PRTY x Bionik”

7. Gospel Machine, “Your Holy Ghost”

8. BdotCroc, “Show & Tell”

9. Villa Rosa, “Lemuria”

10. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

 

SONGS:

1. Reina Del Cid, “This One’s Gonna Hurt”

2. Bad Bad Hats, “Midway”

3. Al Church, “Next to You”

4. Pornonono, “Body Right”

5. Chris Koza, “Radio Wave”

 

LIVE ACTS:

1. GRRRL PRTY

2. Brother Ali

3. Babes in Toyland

4. Eric Mayson

5. Hippo Campus

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “Watching Hippo Campus’s fandom explode. It’s been amazing to see how intensely and emotionally this band’s fans connect with them, and it proves that even in a world where national performers like One Direction and Taylor Swift can conjure massive cross-platform media machines, there’s still room for local artists to connect with audiences — young and old — on a grassroots level with great music, energetic live performances, and pure fun.”

 

LOREN GREEN

Freelancer, City Pages contributor

ALBUMS:

1. Swami John and the Blind Shake, “Modern Surf Classics”

2. Birthday Suits, “Adult Party, “Spin the Bottle”

3. Mixed Blood Majority, “Insane World”

4. Charlie Parr, “Stumpjumper”

5. Lizzo, “Big GRRR, Small World”

 

JARED HEMMING

Minnesota Daily and City Pages contributor, Radio K staffer

ALBUMS (not ranked):

B.O.Y.F, “White Boyfriend”

Straya, “Healthy Steps”

Tungsten, “Digital World”

Ego Death, “Ego Death”

Mrs., “City”

bliss uk, “cassette”

Greg Grease, Born to Lurk, “Forced to Work”

Waveless, “Spirit Island”

Catbath, Strange Relations, Whatever Forever, Daisy Chains and Nervous Breakthroughs, “Split EP”

Warehouse Eyes, “Prisms”

 

SONGS:

1. “Fascinate,” Devata Daun

2. “The Devil,” B.O.Y.F

3. “Temple,” Kitten Forever

4. “City,” Mrs.

5. “The Kiss,” Ego Death

 

LIVE ACTS (not ranked):

Ego Death

Devata Daun

Kitten Forever

Straya

The Nunnery

 

No. 1 Sign the Minnesota Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “Diversity has always been lacking in Minnesota, but this year the music scene cultivated a diverse range of artistry and musical styles that continue to surprise me. When we make our monthly in-house local compilation for rotation at Radio K, I’m stunned by the wide range of sounds I hear on every disc: the muted waves of Devata Daun, the toothy crunch of Kitten Forever, the buttery melodies of Daisy Chains, the focused intent of Strange Relations. The list goes on, but my point is that Minnesota’s music scene gets me more excited every year that I live here and get to experience even an iota of our vibrant scene.”

 

RICH HORTON

and RiftMagazine.com writers:

 

ALBUMS (not ranked):

Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

Matt Latterel, “Phase & Field”

Greycoats, “Adrift”

Katy Vernon, “Present”

Reina Del Cid, “The Cooling”

Greg Grease, “Born To Lurk”

Moon & Pollution, “The Box Borealis”

Mary Bue, “Holy Bones”

Niki Becker, “Reactor”

Warehouse Eyes, “Prism”

 

SONGS (not ranked)

Matt Latterell, “Continental Breakfast”

Bad Bad Hats, “Midway”

Katy Vernon, “Present”

Mixed Blood Majority, “Insane World”

The Persian Leaps, “Dottie, Queen Of The West”

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “There were so many weekends where our event calendar was stocked with album releases and featured shows only to find more stuff coming out and more shows to write about.”

 

CECILIA JOHNSON

Freelancer, City Pages and 89.3 the Current blog contributor

ALBUMS:

1. Lizzo, “Big GRRRL Small World”

2. Bruise Violet, “Survival of the Prettiest”

3. Aero Flynn, “Aero Flynn”

4. Eric Mayson, “Detail”

5. Doomtree, “All Hands”

6. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

7. John Mark Nelson, “I’m Not Afraid”

8. GRRRL PRTY, “GRRRL PRTY x Bionik”

9. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

10. Greycoats, “Adrift”

 

JOE KELLEN

Minnesota Daily arts editor

ALBUMS (not ranked):

Mrs., “City”

Hardcore Crayons, “Zozzled”

Eric Mayson, “Detail”

Straya, “Healthy Steps”

Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

Greg Grease, “Born to Lurk Forced to Work”

Sonny Knight and the Lakers, “Do It Live”

Graydon Peterson Quartet, “Duets”

The Controversial New “Skinny Pill”, “Re: My Plink Plunks”

Murder Shoes, “Daydreaming”

 

ROSS KOEBERL

Radio K (KUOM) program director

ALBUMS:

1. Straya, “Healthy Steps”

2. The Awful Truth, “Lakewater”

3. Strange Relations, “-Centrism”

4. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

5. William Within - “Lost in Writing”

6. B.O.Y.F., “White Boyfriend”

7. Human Kindness, “Not Apathetic”

8. Hardcore Crayons, “Zozzled”

9. Murder Shoes, “Daydreaming”

10. Perfume Monster, “A Slow Drip”

 

SONGS:

1. LOTT, “Parking on the Grass”

2. Har-di-Har, “We Scare Each Other”

3. Perfume Monster, “You Don’t Know a Damn Thing”

4. William Within, “Narrate My Nights”

4. Some Pulp, “True Lies”

 

LIVE ACTS:

1. Whatever Forever

2. Treading North

3. Sister Species

4. Wretch

5. Vats

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “I went to a lot of shows this year that didn’t have any all male four chord third rate guitar rock bands on the bill! It was a year for audacity, for young artists to work collectively towards great musical aspirations. It kept me on my toes all year, and it’s made me feel very fortunate to be a part of that landscape.”

 

KYLE MATTESON

The Growler contributor

ALBUMS:

1. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

2. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

3. Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

4. Lizzo , “Big GRRRL Small World”

5. Kill The Vultures, “Carnelian”

6. Fury Things, “VHS”

7. Frankie Lee, “American Dreamer”

8. Matt Latterell, “Phase and Field”

9. Gospel Machine, “Your Holy Ghost”

10. Carroll, “Caroll”

 

JASON NAGEL

“MN Music” host, Alive & Social Network (iTunes), ex-Go 96.3 FM

ALBUMS:

1. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

2. Adam Levy, "Naubinway"

3. Fury Things, "VHS"

4. Bad Bad Hats, "Psychic Reader"

5. Frankie Lee, "American Dreamer"

6. Dan Israel, "Dan"

7. Rank Strangers, "The Box”

8. On an On, "And the Wave Has Two Sides"

9. Bruise Violet, "Survival of the Prettiest"

10. Hippo Campus, "South"

 

PAT O’BRIEN

Freelancer, City Pages contributor

ALBUMS:

1. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

2. Strange Relations, “-Centrism”

3. Fury Things, “VHS”

4. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

5. Oaks, “Animal Life”

6. The Rope, “Waters Rising”

7. Al Church, “Next Summer”

8. Gramma’s Boyfriend, “Perm”

9. Eric Mayson, “Detail”

10. Greg Grease, “Born to Lurk Forced to Work”

 

SONGS:

1. Fury Things, “Vapors”

2. Low, “Lies”

3. Lizzo, “Humanize”

4. Bad Bad Hats, “Midway”

5. Sonny Knight and the Lakers, “Juicy Lucy”

 

LIVE ACTS:

1. Fury Things

2. Lizzo

3. The 4onthefloor

4. Bad Bad Hats

5. BNLX

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “In years past, it seemed the bills for album release shows consisted of the band releasing said album and two so-so to not great bands. Now, those shows are filled with marquee/buzzy bands across the board, making them can’t-miss affairs. It’s a trend that’s been on the rise for a couple of years and I hope it continues.”

 

JAHNA PÉLOQUIN

Freelancer, Minnesota Monthly style editor, alum of Vita.mn and L’etoile

ALBUMS:

1. Lizzo, “Big Girl, Small World”

2. Prince, “HITNRUN, Phase 2”

3. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

4. Eric Mayson, “Detail”

5. Suzie, “Emotional Distance”

6. B.O.Y.F. (formerly White Boyfriend), “White Boyfriend”

7. GRRRL PRTY, “GRRRL PRTY x Bionik” EP

8. Father You See Queen, “Father You See Queen”

9. Deleter, “Oblique Seasons”

10. Gramma’s Boyfriend, “Perm”

 

SONGS:

1. Suzie, “Coffin in Houston”

2. Lizzo, “My Skin”

3. GRRRL PRTY, “Can I Live”

4. Dizzy Fae, “Color Me Bad”

5. B.O.Y.F., “The Devil”

 

LIVE ACTS:

1. Lizzo

2. GRRRL PRTY

3. Gramma’s Boyfriend

4. The Cactus Blossoms

5. Bruise Violet

 

ROSS RAIHALA

St. Paul Pioneer Press music critic

ALBUMS:

1) Lizzo, “Big GRRRL Small World”

2) Low, “Ones and Sixes”

3) BNLX, “Good Light”

4) Sonny Knight and the Lakers, “Do it Live”

5) Fury Things, “VHS”

6) Katy Vernon, “Present”

7) Bob Dylan, “Shadows in the Night”

8) Hippo Campus, “South”

9) Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

10) Dan Israel, “Dan”

 

SONGS (not ranked):

Bad Bad Hats, “Midway”

Bruise Violet, “Sketchy Jeff”

Hippo Campus, “South”

Hollow Boys, “Someday”

Lizzo, “Humanize”

 

 

CHRIS RIEMENSCHNEIDER

Star Tribune music critic

ALBUMS:

1. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

2. Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

3. Gramma’s Boyfriend, “Perm”

4. Fury Things, “VHS”

5. Mary Bue, “Holy Bones”

6. Charlie Parr, “Stumpjumper”

7. Lizzo, “Big Grrrl, Small World”

8. Mixed Blood Majority, “Insane World”

9. Gospel Machine, “Your Holy Ghost”

10. Strange Relations, “-Centrism”

 

SONGS:

1. Low, “What Part of Me”

2. Hippo Campus, “South”

3. Lizzo, “My Skin”

4. Fury Things, “Bruised Fruit”

5. Bad Bad Hats, “Cruella”

 

LIVE ACTS:

1. Low

2. Atmosphere

3. Hippo Campus

4. Kitten Forever

5. Prof

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “Hippo Campus and GRRRL Prty drew bigger crowds than Insane Clown Posse did headlining First Avenue in 2015. Doomtree sold more tickets at St. Paul’s minor-league ballpark than Matt & Kim and Cold War Kids could muster at Minneapolis’ major-league ballpark. Prof far surpassed Charli XCX at the Cabooze Plaza. And Atmosphere even outsold Mötley Crüe at Target Center earlier this month.”

 

 

MICHAEL RIETMULDER

City Pages staffer and ex-Vita.mn

ALBUMS (not ranked):

Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

Bruise Violet, “Survival of the Prettiest” EP

Doomtree, “All Hands”

False, untitled

Hippo Campus, “South” EP

Lizzo, “Big GRRRL Small World”

Low, “Ones and Sixes”

Eric Mayson, “Detail”

Obsequiae, “Aria of Vernal Tombs”

Strange Relations, “-Centrism”

 

ERICA RIVERA

Freelancer for City Pages and Star Tribune, ex-Vita.mn

ALBUMS (not ranked):

Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

Greycoats, “Adrift”

Guante, “A Love Song, a Death Rattle, a Battle Cry”

Hippo Campus, “South” EP

John Mark Nelson, “I’m Not Afraid”

Lizzo, “Big Grrrl Small World”

Low, “Ones and Sixes”

Muja Messiah, “Angel Blood Soup”

Peter Wolf Crier, “Plum Slump”

Prof, “Liability”

 

No. 1 Sign the Minnesota Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “Minneapolis-based alt-synth outfit Enemy Planes won the Hard Rock Rising international battle of the bands contest in July. They were one of over 13,000 bands that entered and among the six flown to Barcelona to compete in the finals.”

 

DANNY SIGELMAN

Freelancer, City Pages contributor

ALBUMS (not ranked):

Low, “Ones and Sixes”

Dosh and Ghostband, “Def Kith”

Gospel Machine, “Your Holy Ghost”

Powermad, “Infinite”

Sonny Knight and the Lakers, “Do It Live”

International Novelty Gamelon Ensemble, “Metal Phonia”

Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

Kill the Vultures, “Carnelian”

Irv Williams, “Pinnacle”

Flavor Crystals, “Shiver of the Flavor Crystals”

 

No. 1 Sign the Minnesota Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “Look at that variety!”

 

JACK SPENCER

Freelancer, City Pages contributor

SONGS (not ranked)

Tek & Metasota, “Hurry Up and Buy”

Finding Novyon with Allan Kingdom, “Lots”

Bobby Raps, “Planewalker (wuhUwahnMi2dü)”

Greg Grease, “Inherit”

Matt Latterell, “And I’ll Never Let You Go”

Bones and Beeker, “Heartbroken In Love”

Obsequiae, “Autumnal Pyre”

deM atlaS, “DSORDR”

Manchita, “Gettin’ Nasty”

Why Kaliq f/Metasota, “City of Thirst”

 

LIVE ACTS (not ranked):

I Self Devine & Muja Messiah with DJ Just 9, Proper-T, Lady Midnight, J-Hard, and Myke Shevy

Kitten Forever

DJ TIIIIIIIIIIP

Eric Mayson

The Gated Community

 

No. 1 sign Minnesota music scene was alive and well in 2015: “Allan Kingdom’s Grammy nominations are a pretty big sign.”

 

ANDREA SWENSSON

89.3 the Current music reporter and “The Local Show” host

ALBUMS (not ranked):

Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

Strange Relations, “-Centrism”

Kill the Vultures, “Carnelian”

Greg Grease, “Born to Lurk Forced to Work”

Bruise Violet, “Survival of the Prettiest”

Low, “Ones and Sixes”

Lizzo, “Big GRRRL Small World”

Perfume Monster, “A Slow Drip”

Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

Gramma’s Boyfriend, “Perm”

 

SONGS (not ranked):

Lizzo, “My Skin”

Dizzy Fae, “Color Me Bad”

Greg Grease, “Work Song”

Bones and Beeker, “Heartbroken in Love”

Peter Wolf Crier, “Don’t Leave”

 

LIVE ACTS (not ranked):

Sonny Knight and the Lakers

Bruise Violet

Adam Meckler Orchestra

Babes in Toyland

Swimsuit Area

 

ERIK THOMPSON

City Pages staffer, freelancer, 89.3 the Current blog contributor

ALBUMS:

1. Low, “Ones and Sixes”

2. Strange Relations, “-Centrism”

3. Fury Things, “VHS”

4. Bad Bad Hats, “Psychic Reader”

5. Oaks, “Animal Life”

6. The Rope, “Waters Rising”

7. Al Church, “Next Summer”

8. Gramma’s Boyfriend, “Perm”

9. Eric Mayson, “Detail”

10. Greg Grease, “Born to Lurk Forced to Work”

 

SONGS:

1. Fury Things, “Bruised Fruit”

2. Low, “No Comprende”

3. Hippo Campus, “South”

4. Bad Bad Hats, “Midway”

5. Al Church, “Birthday Party”

 

LIVE ACTS:

1. The Blind Shake

2. Low

3. Fury Things

4. Lizzo

5. Hippo Campus

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “It’s no longer a surprise or a shock to see the national/worldwide press and music community embrace and endorse local acts from Minnesota. It’s an expectation. If you aren’t listening to and loving Lizzo, Hippo Campus, Low, etc. ... then it’s your loss, and you’re not really paying attention to what’s happening right now.”

 

YOUA VANG

Freelancer, City Pages contributor

ALBUMS:

10. The Fattenin’ Frogs, “Ribbit Rhythms”

9. Reina del Cid, “The Cooling”

8. Camp Dark, “Nightmare In a Day”

7. Greycoats, “Adrift”

6. Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

5. Gospel Machine, “Your Holy Ghost”

4. Matt Latterell, “Phase & Field”

3. Little Fevers, “Field Trip”

2. Taj Raj, “Night Speech”

1. Peter Wolf Crier, “Plum Slump”

 

SONGS:

5. Sarah Morris, “Brighter”

4. Candid Kid, “Young”

3. Brianna Lane, “In My Bones”

2. Little Fevers, “Apple Tree”

1. Taj Raj, “Your Thief”

 

LIVE ACTS:

5. The New Standards

4. Chris Koza

3. Communist Daughter

2. Gospel Machine

1. Har Mar Superstar

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “From Rhymesayers at Target Center to Lizzo on Colbert, the Twin Cities have stopped being that teenager that is trying to hard to let everyone know they are cool, and finally have realized that they were cool all along.”

 

JIM WALSH

Freelancer, Southwest Journal columnist, author of two books on the Replacements

ALBUMS (not ranked):

Adam Levy, “Naubinway”

Matt Latterell, “Phase and Field”

The Belfast Cowboys, “Upside To The Downslide”

Low, “Ones and Sixes”

Brianna Lane, “The Navigators Club”

Dan Israel, “Dan”

Junior Ranger, “Monster Masks”

Erik Koskinen, “Live at the Real-Phonic Radio Hour”

The April Fools, “The April Fools”

The Frye, “The Best of Hank and Rita: A Barroom Operetta”

 

SONGS (not ranked):

Sarah Streitz, “God Bless The Immigrants”

Frankie Lee, “American Dreamer”

Bruise Violet, “Sketchy Jeff”

John Louis, “Let’s Get Out Of Kingfield”

Mary Bue, “Veal”

 

LIVE ACTS (not ranked):

Whale In the Thames

Bruise Violet

Angie Oase

Kate Lynch and Her Most Excellent Fellows

Belfast Cowboys/St. Dominic’s Trio

 

No. 1 Sign the Music Scene Was Alive and Well in 2015: “I always find projects like this year’s Women’s Foundation Of Minnesota benefit CD and concert “Voice: Words & Songs for Those Who Are Silenced” to be encouraging on a grass-roots level. In this town one person can really make a difference with a single good idea, a lot of passion, and a modicum of organizational chops.”