Best Albums of 2015
compiled by Hrup Mag team

Liamere <br>“Liamere”


Trip-hop is certainly not the most fashionable of genres, but Ferguson and Malidah of the duo Liamere find ways to make it sound fresh. They appeared on the Slovene alternative scene just this autumn, but with “Liamere” they released one of the undoubtedly best debut albums in the country this year, and it seems like they are here to stay.

Ferguson is the producer of the dark, often even Burial-like song textures, while Malidah takes care of the heartfelt lyrics and the singing. It still sounds like Portishead at times, but I only mean that in a good way. “This is not a love affair,” they sing on album highlight Dust, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself falling hard and fast for the sound of this elusive duo anyway. (Jernej Trebežnik)

♪♫ Listen: “Dust” + album stream

Liamere on Bandcamp, Facebook.

Natriletno Kolobarjenje S Praho <BR>“Natriletno Kolobarjenje S Praho”

Natriletno Kolobarjenje S Praho
“Natriletno Kolobarjenje S Praho”

This debut by the Slovenian singer-songwriter duo could be described as grunge poetry. Sometimes distorted, other times acoustic guitars provide the foundation for the vocals – political and social statements, sometimes even psychedelic stories. From folk poetry to punk, another crucial element are the drums, changing the vibe of the more acoustic parts of the album.

The well-crafted poetry was actually the basis for the band, as the whole project was initiated by Jure Novak when he released his second collection of poems “Stare pesmi” (Old Songs). Definitely one of the best Slovenian singer-songwriter albums of the past years. (Andraž Kajzer)

♪♫ Listen: “Presežna vrednost bivanja” + album stream

Natriletno Kolobarjenje S Praho on Bandcamp, Facebook, www.

Lifecutter <BR>“Siclar”


Slovenia doesn’t have that many electronica-meets-noise musicians, but Domen Učakar aka Lifecutter surely stands out. His debut album “Siclar”, which he wrote, recorded, mixed and mastered all by himself, is composed of sampled industrial pulses, ambient noise, distorted percussion, broken beats and rhythm machines.

Rarely predictable and never monotonous, Učakar skillfully combines different layers of sound, creating a consistent, properly detailed and, most of all, sophisticated piece of dark electronica. While sounding fresh with all the ambient tension building and techno beats, industrial sounds and repetition give the music a vintage feel. Give it a listen. And make it loud! (Tina Hajdinjak)

♪♫ Listen: “Oval Window” + album stream

Lifecutter on Bandcamp, Facebook.

Jardier <BR>“Jardier”


When listening to Jardiers’ eponymous debut, you get the feeling of playful confidence, be it th honest and powerful vocal performance or their rich-yet-simple sound, a deft mixture of modern and classic rock with a pinch of blues and folk influence.

This is a young group of experienced musicians with songs that make it sound easy and effortless, which is something you don’t come up on very often. Definitely a pleasant breath of fresh air for the Slovenian scene, deserving of wider recognition. (Matic Urbanc)

♪♫ Listen: “Core

Jardier on Soundcloud, Facebook, iTunes.

Koala Voice <BR>“Kangaroo’s A Neighbour”

Koala Voice
“Kangaroo’s A Neighbour”

What the voice of a koala sounds like may be a mystery, but it is certainly not as amusing, pleasant, and nowhere near as catchy as the debut record of this playful quartet. Fronted by singer-guitarist Manca Trampuš, the band combines smart songwriting with a clean 70s vibe and just a bit of a jam moment.

Together with a love for upbeat indie hits, the record is a snapshot of sugary sweet, youthful adoration, but with a brooding and thoughtful side bubbling underneath. With formidable live energy, the effortless guitar of Domen Don Holc, and the unbeatable rhythm section of brothers Miha and Tilen Prašnikar, the band can already be seen expanding upon their wide-eyed disco pop with more complex song structures and instrumentation.

But for the time being, this album remains a surprise hit of the Slovenian pop rock scene, charming independent music lovers and an almost mainstream audience alike. (Matej Holc)

♪♫ Listen: “Go, Disco Go” + album stream

Koala Voice on BandcampSoundcloud, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, www.

Wanda & Nova Deviator <BR>“Arp 339”

Wanda & Nova Deviator
“Arp 339”

The electronic duo whips up a dystopian synthetic future, drawing deep on cyberpunk and sci-fi classics while keeping one foot firmly rooted in the club scene. Discovering a new world via thumping bass, broken beats and polyrhythmic IDM glitchery, the two reflect their galactic exploration onto today’s society with a critical voice towards its flaws.

Keeping the people moving under such a weighty burden might not seem the easiest, but a well-versed ear makes sure they know what works on the dancefloor and what doesn’t. “ARP 339” is the sound of the third millennium as it was imagined in the eighties and nineties, freshened up by modernity. (Daniel Sheppard)

♪♫ Listen: “Arp Arp” + album stream

Wanda & Nova Deviator on Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter, www.

Hexenbrutal Trio <BR>“Hexenbrutal Trio”

Hexenbrutal Trio
“Hexenbrutal Trio”

For fans of the original Hexenbrutal, a harsh noise rock duo, this is quite a surprise. Gone are the waves of distorted synths and wild drums, here are a piano, violin and drums with folk, jazz, experimental and post-rock influences instead. Songs from previous albums are rearranged, softened and disguised.

Imagine Dirty Three playing Lightning Bolt. Imagine The Necks playing HEALTH. The idea was launched by legendary radio show Izštekani on Val 202, when Dr. Hexen and Mr. Brutal were joined by multi-instrumentalist Miha Kavaš. This is an amazing instrumental journey, recorded live at the famous MIKK club in Murska Sobota, and an excellent transformation, showcasing the band’s vision and range. (Andraž Kajzer)

♪♫ Listen: “Drumtree” + album stream

Hexenbrutal Trio on Bandcamp,

Ludovik Material <BR>“Model Generation”

Ludovik Material
“Model Generation”

2015 was quite a year for the Slovenian post-punk electro trio. From exciting reviews by music critics – legendary John Robb from Louder Than War even went so far to release the band’s single in the UK – to their second studio effort taking them all over Europe, from club shows in France to festivals, including Rock 4 People, EXIT, INmusic, Liverpool Sound City and Waves.

“Model Generation” comes with a manifesto about current society and with eight songs, ranging from the blasting “Workin’ Ass” and emotional “Failed Plans” to the rocking “Summertime”. With less electronics and more power, this is an album that is hard to describe with one tag, but one thing is for sure – the powerful vocals of Tina Perić are one of the main trumps of this document of our time. (Andraž Kajzer)

♪♫ Listen: “Model Generaion” + album stream

Ludovik Material on Facebook

Nikki Louder <BR>“Trout”

Nikki Louder

Nikki Louder is a Slovenian noise rock band that will punch you straight in the face with its attitude, rawness and directness. No time or excuses for bullshit – that has always been the core belief of the trio.

“Trout” is their fourth studio album, bringing a more technical approach to noise and destruction, especially by the rhythm section. The songs vary from slow post-noise/hardcore to repetitive punk/noise hitters, sometimes even in the same song – like “Para Cargo”, one of the album’s strongest highlights. And don’t miss the introductory “Don’t Believe Your Own Bullshit”, which could easily launch a heavy drone album.

“Trout” was recorded in a one day session and has (like most of the band’s music) a pure live feel – the best way to get the best of the bend. The chef’s pro tip: Consume it rare. Bloody rare. (Blaž Pregelj)

♪♫ Listen: “Para Cargo” + album stream

Nikki Louder on Facebook.

The Canyon Observer <BR>“Fvck”

The Canyon Observer

Marauding across a post-metal wasteland since 2011, The Canyon Observer intrigued with a couple of EPs before releasing the full-fledged beast that is “FVCK”. Crushing riffs, a pummelling rhythm section and vocals exuding anguish, menace and fury – the album blends black metal, doom and sludge into ruthlessly elegant chaos.

Surprisingly, however, it’s not all unbridled brutality, as within the shifting currents lies an enchantingly psychedelic passion. With production that (finally) does the cacophony justice and an unrivalled live performance, “FVCK” is a milestone and the perfect jump-off point for plunging into the nightmarish depths of The Canyon Observer. (Daniel Sheppard)

♪♫ Listen: “Lost in Silence” + album stream

The Canyon Observer on Facebook, Tumblr.

Damir Avdić <BR>“Manjina”

Damir Avdić

Honorable mention:

He might be from Bosnia, but Avdić works and lives in Slovenia. He’s an important part of the Slovenian alternative scene, even though the bureaucratic machinery wants to kick him out.

And this is exactly what “Manjina” sounds like. A distorted guitar, a strong voice, a punk attitude and lyrics exposing incomprehensible society.

♪♫ Listen: “Čuvaj se” + album stream

Damir Avdić on Bandcamp, Facebook.

Olfamož <BR>“Hupam, da ste dobro”

“Hupam, da ste dobro”

Honorable mention:

The ultra-talented experimental lo-fi musician Andrej Fon took it up a notch. Making a record with 12 prominent musicians resulted in an album of many genres, crazy sounds and powerful lyrics.

♪♫ Listen: “Diskocinik” + album stream

Olfamož on Bandcamp.

Your Gay Thoughts <BR>“The Watercolors”

Your Gay Thoughts
“The Watercolors”

Honorable mention:

Post-pop. Future beats. Whatever. “The Watercolors”, as painted by the audio-visual collective, is a smooth, psychedelic, jazzy and groovy album, reflecting the modern progressive electronic sounds of today.

♪♫ Listen: “Among The Lull

Your Gay Thoughts on Soundcloud, Facebook + beehype.