Guest Lists: Kieran McGuinness (Delorentos) 10 Best albums of 2015

Formed in 2005, Dublin based quartet Delorentos wasted no time in establishing themselves as one of the best live bands in the country. Since then, they have gone on from strength to strength, building up a loyal and strong fan-base over here while honing their craft as songwriters. Their 2012 album ‘Little Sparks’ won the Choice Music Award for Best Irish Album and they have been nominated for a string of other awards down through the years. Guitarist and vocalist Kieran McGuinness took some time out to  share ten of his music highlights from the last 12 months.


1.  Matador – Gaz Coombes

Probably my favourite album of the year, an interesting, mature, classic album which is full of ideas and cool sounds. Sounds like a album that was poured over. This is the album that I talk to people about when I’m at one of those terrible parties where they only play Adele and talk about Donald Trump.


2. Darling Arithmetic – Villagers

Conor O’Brien is very good at music-ing, and this is a further show of music-ing deadliness. The song ‘Hot Scary Summer’ is for me, a career high. I often thought that there was a bit of a wall between him and his music at times, like he was kinda playing a character in his songs, but on this album it is as he has shed those protective clothes and he is standing naked playing his songs to the listener. Which would probably be weird. But aren’t all great artists prone to nudity? Shouldn’t we all just get naked now?


3. This Chemical Sea – Jape

I often think that Richie Egan, Mr J.Ape, is one of those artists who should be way, way bigger than he is. I’m sure people with massive beards and tiny hats might have issue with that, but as well as a keen ear for sounds, he knows how to write hooks and memorable moments. This is slightly less radio friendly perhaps than previous albums, but that’s radio’s fault, not Jape’s.


4. In Colour – Jamie xx

This album is very like the XX in places, but a bit more joyful. “Loud places” is an absolute banger, which I would never say in real life but seems appropriate here. Listen to this album on headphones on the bus and nod your head off.


5. Patterns – Anderson

His voice at first might seem affected, but his style quickly grows on you, as does the simple heartfelt songs within. His previous band were all guts and snarls and great tunes, but this is a more mature, simple affair and all the better for it.


6. Holding Hands With Jamie – Girl Band

Girl Band have always been really good, but something stepped up a level on this album, and it’s great. It’s full of odd musical choices that stir you and grab you. This is the kinda album that everyone should be talking about. Kinda sounds like the Fall during an episode being remixed by someone who loves hammers and power tools. And if that doesn’t sound amazing then you are wrong. There are loads and loads of great Irish albums this year, but this is more unusual and more great.


7. Sometimes I Just Sit and  Think – Courtney Barnett

I like this album, i think. Sometimes i hate it, I’ve definitely thought it was terrible and amazing during the same listen. I’d love to see it live, she makes it sound so easy. Maybe because it sounds so playful and effortless at times it makes me resentful. Am i really that shallow? perhaps i need a lie down.


8. Carrie & Lowell – Sufjan Stevens

When Sufjan is at his best he is literally one of my favourite artists. When he’s not he’s a pain in the arse. But this album is such a return to form, emotional, deep, captivating. It’s also naked, but in a sad way. Even the instruments and chords on this album are melancholy. Just thinking about the album makes me want to call my parents.


9. Depression Cherry – Beach House

Right from the start of the album it’s clear you’re in a classic Beach House album – that is to say, all Beach House albums sound similar and takes a lot of listens to get down into the songs. As soon as the tinny electro drums come in you can sit back and relax. I’m not sure what it is about Beach House, but they are one of the few bands that draw you in and submerge you in an album. I’ve noticed that a lot of the albums I’ve chosen are mature, solo, and melancholy. What does that say about my year? I dunno. I should put in some speed punk or something.


10. Coming Home – Leon Bridges

Authentic, powerful 60’s style blues… this is a great album. and upbeat! And sometimes sad. But mostly happy!