20 Best Pop Albums of 2015

The year in hooks, from One Direction to Fifth Harmony

Carly Rae Jepsen, 'Emotion'
20
7/20

7. Carly Rae Jepsen, 'Emotion'

On Emotion, Carly Rae Jepsen moves past 2012's still-stuck-in-your-head "Call Me Maybe" in a way that solidifies her as not only one of the strongest pop writers of her generation but also one of the most compelling pop stars of the moment. Her second album revels in neon-lit 1985 textures, filled to the brim with long night-drive soundtracks and lyrical pining that broaches the debate of what is more intense: crushing hard or being crushed. Even when tackling heartbreak, Jepsen serves as a beam of light and a sister-in-arms. Plus, the Sia-assisted "Boy Problems" was a criminally overlooked addition to a year of songs about phone calls. B.S.

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