We’re right at the end of the year, and a really good time to look back at the albums that completely rocked in 2015. It’s been a strange and lopsided year actually with majority of the good albums coming later in the year.
We counted over 30 albums that were released by Nigerian artists from December 2014 to November 2015, but we’re here ranking the best 10. From RnB to Hip-Hop, Afro Pop to Alternative. These are the best Nigerian albums of 2015. From spaceships to indestructible nations and down to collectiv stories that touch.
10Burna Boy – On A Spaceship
Release Date: November 26th, 2015
Although the album is barely a few weeks old, it’s still considered by many to be one of the better albums of 2015. Burna stuck to the style that gave him a lot of fame on this project, On A Spaceship. However you could definitely hear the maturity in his choice of sounds. The album has some of everything, and you can really find more than enough party joints on there. Interestingly some of the singles released this year didn’t make the album, which might not be such a bad thing.
Stand out tracks: Single ft. WizKid, and On A Very Good Day which features Wande Coal.
9IllBliss – #Powerful
Release Date: Jun 12th, 2015
Riding on the wave of his 2014 hit singles, WTF and Bank Alert, IllBliss dropped his 3rd studio album, and made one thing clear, he’s not hear for everybody. Illy has found a way to create his own cult following in the music industry, and for good reason.
#Powerful is everything illBliss is about these days; Making mature music that your father can listen to and enjoy. In a year when there’s a lot of rappers spewing a bunch of incomprehensible jargon, Illy is putting stuff person fit digest well. No need of calculator or dictionary when listening to #Powerful. It’s clear and to the point.
Stand out tracks; WTF, Bank Alert, Idiche, Powerful.
8Reminisce – Baba Hafusa
Release Date: April 30th, 2015
Reminisce dropped arguably the most anticiapated hip-hop album of the year; It comes with being one of the hottest rappers of the year. Maybe the hype was so much that folks expected heaven and earth, and on that front it was a bit disappointing. However when you let the dust settle, and go back and listen once again, it’s still a very good album.
Baba Hafusa had some of everything in it. From the street hip-hop, to the raunchy, love and gbedu music. Reminisce showed to us on this album that he cane stay consistent, and be a household name in Nigeria for the long haul.
Stand out track: Local Rappers, Otiya, Grind ft. Sojay.
7Chocolate City – TICBN
Release Date: April 30th, 2015
You can say it was a way for Chocolate City to announce their new and improved squad under new label boss, MI Abaga. The album is a very well put together compilation made up of 15 tracks and the 13 artists signed to the label. So that came out to be an average of 1 song per artist which makes it even better quality. Every song had a different dimension, and kept the album fresh.
Now although the album was not really marketed properly, and didn’t get a lot of buzz initially, it’s still a very good album, and one you can still listen to in the next couple of years.
Stand out tracks: 3 Mainland Bridge, Suite 99
6Runtown – Ghetto University
Release Date: November 23rd, 2015
Runtown’s debut album, Ghetto University turned out to be a very good one. You might have expected it with the kind of 2014 he had; Galladro, Domot and Baby Answer. The album also reached out to outside shores by featuring DJ Khaled and Walshy Fire on the album, and both features turned out very good.
Runtown’s Ghetto University is one of the few albums in Nigeria that you can slot in for a party and jam pretty much all through out. The beats, production, composition are all great.
Stand out tracks: Bend Down Pause, Tuwo Shinkafa
5Seyi Shay – Seyi or Shay
Release Date: November 13th, 2015
Another debut album hitting this list, Seyi Shay completely gave a middle finger to all her doubters with this stellar album, Seyi or Shay. The album is arguably the best afro pop album this year, and has everything you’d want in a pop album. The lyrics, arrangement, production, diversity in genres, features are all very well put together, making it an album that will go well in Seyi Shay’s musical history.
Stand out tracks: Right Now, The Mic, TINA
4Naeto C – Day 1
Release Date: August 18th, 2015
By the beginning of 2014, a lot of critics had written off Naeto C as a “had it once upon a time” rapper, but then he dropped one of dopest hip-hop albums on 2015 with Day 1. Is it a mixtape? is it an album? Do we care? The bottom line is that Day 1 is a super dope hip-hop project, and you’d be hard pressed to find much better in 2015. In a year when a lot of the bigger name rap acts dropped less than impressive projects, Naeto C came in like a thief in the night to deliver this sweet project filled with dope samples, trap beats, and stinging bars.
3Darey – Naked
Release Date: October 13th, 2015
If you haven’t listened to Darey’s latest album, Naked, then you’re really missing out on some really good music. Over the past decade, Darey has matured astronomically in his music, and this album is the epitome of that maturity. From the traditional drum patterns in Asiko Laiye to the more high-life feel or Orekelewa, the album is an album that doesn’t conform to what the industry is most popular for.
Stand out tracks: Asiko Laiye, Delilah, Lie To You
Release Date: October 2nd, 2015
The Collectiv3 is arguably the most beautifully composed body of work in Nigeria this year. The team consisting of Kid Konnect, Funbi, Poe, SDC, Temi Dollface, and IKON brought about what they think Nigerian music should sound like. It’s far from your traditional commercial music, but if there’s an evergreen album on this list, this is it. Think The Dreamer Project, Asa, etc.
Musically the album breaks nigerian musical boundaries, and even if it’s not the big commercial success it’s supposed to be, it’s the sort of album that could win a grammy if all things were equal.
Stand out tracks: Forbidden Fruit, Sexy Bitch, Shey Bai
1Falz – Stories That Touch
Release Date: November 16th, 2015
At the beginning of 2015, if you mentioned to most critics that Falz would have the best album of the year, you’d probably get strong cold stares. But alas, here we are at the end of the year, and Falz’s Stories That Touch is our official best album of the year.
Musically it’s a great album, the production is top notch, it’s entertaining, and lyrically it’s solid in every aspect. Quite honestly this album put a lot of other hip-hop artists in Nigeria to shame. These peeps gotta go do some homework now.
Stand out tracks: Workaholic, Chardonnay Music, Soft Work