Our former sister publication Village Voice released its annual Pazz & Jop music critics' poll today, and to the surprise of exactly zero people, Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly was voted best album of 2015. This would normally be the part where I'd write something snarky about how predictable and susceptible to group-think music critics are, but the truth is, I agree with them — as did many of L.A. Weekly's other music writers, which is why TPAB topped our list, too.
Three other L.A.-based artists' albums cracked Pazz & Jop's top 10: Grimes came in at No. 4 for Art Angels, Vince Staples at No. 7 for Summertime '06, and Kamasi Washington at No. 8 for The Epic. Father John Misty, at No. 10 for I Love You, Honeybear, used to live in L.A. but relocated to New Orleans about a year ago, so fuck that guy. (Kidding! We still love you, Father John. Despite its title, I Love You, Honeybear is great.)
Kendrick also had two songs in the top 10 of the poll's best singles tally: “King Kunta” at No. 2 and “Alright” at No. 4. Drake's “Hotline Bling” was named best single of the year.
To see all of this year's Pazz & Jop results and read several fine, thought-provoking essays about What It All Means, go to www.villagevoice.com.