This article originally appeared on Noisey UK.
“Back in the day,” your dad will begin. Your dad, closing his eyes for a moment as the smell of a freshly printed magazine wafts into his memory. “Back in the day, you had to read about a record”—records, he calls them—“in the Melody Marker and places before buying it. You had no idea if it was going to be crap or not until after you’d bought it.”
Thankfully, we don’t live in those dark, horrible times anymore. 2015 was the year of thinkpiece politics, poptimism, and the Bieberssance. Every minute of every hour, people tooted their #hottake horn on anything from To Pimp a Butterfly to the “Why You Always Lying” video, and the landscape of music criticism has broadened way, way outside the remit of actual critics.
Today the best place to go for music criticism isn’t the monthlies, the broadsheets or even Noisey.com—the best place is Amazon where hundreds of strangers will have already summarized a record for you in two sentences or—if you’re lucky—a single word.
So, since ‘tis the season of reflection, we decided to see what the Amazon reviews section had to say about music in 2015. Is Adele’s return a return to form? Are people impressed with Mumford & Son’s foray into leather jacket wearing? Did James Bay deserve that Critic’s Choice award? Here’s what everyday people internet really think about some of this year’s biggest albums.
Adele - 25
Adele should invest in some happy pills as she is an absolute misery in this album.
Same old songs about lost love and depressing heartache… move on for heavens sake! be happy! take up a hobby ( tending an allotment is very rewarding as is writing Haiku poetry )
Her voice is good as always however she really needs to cheer the hell up! :/
Well, my Mrs bought this & played it while we listened . When it finished I put B52's on & my Mrs said "bloody hell this has cheered me up!" We both sang along to 'good stuff' 'roam' 'rock lobster' 'Love shack' etc etc. I know what we'd rather listen to - enough said zzzzzzzzzzzz
Pretentious rubbish. I hope her next one is 75 and I'll be long gone.
Coldplay - A Head Full of Dreams
ONCE AGAIN ABSOLUTE RUBBISH I SHOULD HAVE LEARNT FROM LAST TIME JUST GAVE AMAZON £9.99 FOR ABSOLUTLY NOTHING NO MUSIC DOWNLOAD AGAIN
Kendrick Lamar - To Pimp a Butterfly
MOST OVERRATED ALBUM OF THE YEAR!!!!!!!!!! Beats are pure garbage! Lyrically he's decent but his voice is wack juice! There so many MCS out today who are hig age and make much BETTER music and it's REAL Hip Hop Music NOT THIS CA CA!
THE SHEEP WILL KEEP FOLLOWING THIS RADIO GARBAGE!
This is Rolling Stones album of the year??!! This is crap, nothing but m....r f....r and most other words you use to get your mouth washed out for saying. I can not accept that more music buyers around the world have bought this poor excuse of music than any other album. It's too bad.
Poor. Imagine the same cover with white people and a black president lying on the ground. Oh the riots that would ensue!! Double standards much???
Justin Bieber - Purpose
Am I the ONLY one who notices the upside down cross on his stomach?
Has the whole human race lost the ability to analyze and dissect whats in front of them?
There's another to the right of him.
And who is he praying to?
You tell me how a person as talentless as Bieber,becomes one of the biggest superstars of our time?
You tell me where his fame and fortune comes from.
Old the older women where I work blast this all day long. There is somethng out of place about their fascination with this Canadian Squiggy Gone Wild. Having heard it (by fault) over our corporate loudspeakers, I can tell you that this recording has been squashed flat with special effects such as pitch adjustment, auto-tuning, de-essing, and everything it takes to make a stray alley cat howling after a battle with a mother racoon sound like a teenager howling from battle with hormones. It is not as bad as say Lil wayne, but then I get why Lil Wayne does what he does. Bieber, on the other had seens to be a Wanna-Be in SO MANY WAYS.......he's quickly becoming the male Miley Cyrus. Really, son? Is THAT who you wanna-be now? First Usher, then Snoop Dogg, and now Miley? And what's with the upside down crucifix on his little tummy and all the Illuminati Symbols? Is his next wanna-be leap Beyonce??? Well, at least she puts out...good urban music...not this pre-pubsecent caterwalling stuff that apparently attracts post-menopausal women like flies to a dung heap! This is a waste of your money, ladies. I suggest you try some Otis Redding instead.
The Weeknd - Beauty Behind the Madness
Not really my cup of tea!
I orderd this for my son. I don't listen to this stuff.
Mainly here to express my disgust with that horrible bad sounding cant feel my face song. Why did that song ever get made? Its horrible every radio station plays it my stupid roommate plays it all the time. ITS A BAD SONG!! ITS HONESTLY THE WORST SONG EVER MADE. Give this talentless, nails on chalkboard so-called artist a skip.
Meghan Trainor - Title
Only like the one song I heard while inTarget.
I bought this for my 13 year old. I was very upset to see the warning on the cover of "coarse language and/or themes." If that had been in the initial information on the Amazon site (as something similar is for Katie Perry) I would not have bought it. It is hard enough to deal with foul language without my appearing to condone it with the music I have bought.
To add insult to injury, the sticky label warning is under the cellophane packaging so I cannot pull it off. So I either have to open the packaging - not ideal for a present, or draw attention to the problem.....
The music may be great but I am not at all happy.
Mumford & Sons - Wilder Mind
God I wanted to love this album. I love Mumford and Sons. Like seen them a dozen times, listen to their albums every day love them. But simply put, this album is garbage. It's mind numbing trying to figure out what the thought process was making this album.
In my lifetime I can think of three bands that changed their sound to the drastic level that Mumford and Sons has on this album. The first was DMB. Dave abandoned his acoustic guitar on Everyday but the vibe felt the same with the violin and sax carrying the album. John Mayer went folky/country on his latest album but fortunately he is so talented the album is nothing but a joy to listen to. And then of course we have Garth Brooks who gave up his country sound to become Chris Gaines in an awful debacle of awkward rock music.
Unfortunately this Mumford and Sons album is on that Garth Brooks/Chris Gaines level. I don't care that they dropped their banjo (although God did I love it). I do care that they dropped their signature folky sound. Their is no creativity or passion that I've grown accustomed to from two amazing Mumford and Sons albums. I don't hear any echoes of their music that I love on here. This honestly could have been written and performed by a good college band. It lacks so much. It's a very sad day for a very big fan.
Based on this album the only festival Mumford and Sons will be playing this year is Snoozefest.
Drake - If You're Reading This, It's Too Late
My boy kept telling me i got to listen to this album.I regret that i did.And i feel bad for the youth that actually look up to this guy.You cant learn nothing from a drake album at all.When i was growing up i had tupac,wu,nas,biggie and so on.me being 34 now i defintely cant rock with drake with his teeny bopper little girl pop music.Ill stick with my vinnie paz,ill bill,and zcarface cds.
Am I missing something, please kill your self
James Bay - The Chaos and the Calm
My daughter enjoyed the cd.