Definitely call it a comeback… These are the greatest returns to the spotlight of 2015.
Well, naturally. Adele Laurie Blue Adkins smashed 2015 with the kind of colossal comeback only matched by the return of Star Wars. Millions of albums sold, one mega-tour announced and a quick trawl of the biggest TV shows in the world. That’s how you do a comeback, innit.
Jeff Lynne’s Electric Light Orchestra have been chomping at the bit since 2012, but it was this year that saw the legendary prog-poppers make a full return, releasing their ‘Alone In The Universe’ album – their first since 2001’s Zoom. They also managed to sell out more O2 Arena dates than Adele.
The Stone Roses
The Stone Roses didn’t even play in 2015, but the announcement of a run of dates similar to 2012’s celebratory Heaton Park shows was enough to warrant their inclusion in this list. They play Etihad Stadium in June 2016 before headlining T In The Park in July.
After a series of cryptic social media messages, shoegazers turned Britpoppers Lush announced their plans to reform and play a run of shows in 2016. “We’ve been away for ages and ages, but we’re really excited to announce that we’re finally ready to reform as Lush,” wrote the band, who hadn’t played since the suicide of drummer Chris Acland in 1996.
Early 1990s shoegaze icons Ride spent 2015 on the comeback trail, kicking off their live return at Coachella Festival in California and following it with US and UK tours – with Mark Gardner sporting a ludicrous fedora throughout.
Ok, ok, so the king of saucy soul released his first album in 14 years – ‘Black Messiah’ – at the tail end of 2014, but it wasn’t until 2015 that he took that bad boy of a record on the road. Kicking off in February, the Second Coming tour comprised 57 dates and saw him killing it nightly with his band The Vanguard.
Original 1980s punk rockers The Replacements have been doing the comeback thing since 2012, but it took until 2015 for the Minneapolis pop miracle workers to come to the UK. Their shows at Camden’s Roundhouse were heralded as a triumph, and they promptly called time on their reunion not long after.
1990s rock’s most furious, news of an L7 documentary in the works (called Pretend We’re Dead, of course) also brought with it a handful of shows for Donita Sparks, Jennifer Finch and co. The California quartet proved they were as angry as ever at the gigs. Here’s to many more.
Remember these guys? After a handful of 2014 shows, including Hyde Park and Ally Pally, The Libertines went full steam ahead with their reunion in 2015, releasing their first album since 2004’s self-titled effort. ‘Anthems For Doomed Youth’ proved the lads were as rowdy as ever.
After a low-key half decade, Missy started the year with a guest spot during Katy Perry’s halftime Super Bowl show – in which she managed to blow the headliner off the stage with a medley of her hits. Rap’s finest also put out her first single in ages, ‘WTF (Where They From)’, with Pharrell Williams. Still no sign of her eagerly awaited 7th album, however…
Sure, only two of the original members are involved – Kele Okereke and Russell Lissack – but Bloc Party are very much back, following fears they’d split for good. The indie champs release their fifth album ‘Hymns’ at the start of 2016, and a run of shows in late 2015 proved it’ll be one worth looking out for.
Releasing their last album, ‘Radlands’, back in 2012, Eel Pie Island’s very own Mystery Jets slowly but surely crept back into public consciousness in late 2015, playing their new album ‘Curve Of The Earth’ (set for release in early 2016) in full at London’s ICA.
One of the surprise smashes of the year, 20 years after the release of Supergrass’s genius debut ‘I Should Coco’, their frontman released the mighty ‘Matador’. Nominated for the Mercury Prize it was testament to 20 years in the industry.
A former member of funk-punk new ravers Late Of The Pier – who split in 2010 – Sam Eastgate (now Sam Dust) returned in a revelatory new guise this year, as LA Priest. His debut album ‘Inji’ was a bonkers investigation into the fringes of disco.
New Order’s first proper album since 2005 came in the shape of the guest-packed ‘Music Complete’. Iggy Pop, La Roux and Brandon Flowers all featured on this heavy-duty return to form, which also saw them roping in The Chemical Brothers’ Tom Rowlands on production duties.
Another dance act who’d all but vanished from public view, Leftfield came back from a 16 year break to release ‘Alternative Light Source’, with help from members of Polica, Sleaford Mods and TV On The Radio.
Following her split from Bush’s Gavin Rossdale, Gwen’s first musical move was to release a break-up song, called ‘Used To Love You’. Zing. That’ll teach you for shagging the nanny, Gav.
After calling a hiatus back in 2007, many thought things were over for riot grrrl survivors Sleater Kinney, but at the tail-end of 2014 the trio announced plans for their first album since 2005’s ‘The Woods’. ‘No Cities To Love’ brought with it a tour and some of the most electrifying shows of 2015.
Babes in Toyland
Fronted by Kat Bjelland, grunge screamers Babes in Toyland burned out acrimoniously at the end of last century. After not seeing each other for 15 years, the West Coast trio decided to get together for a victory lap of the US and Europe in 2015.
Announcing Alice Glass’ departure from the industrial disco duo in 2014, Crystal Castles returned in 2015, with Ethan Kath joined by a mystery new vocalist, Edith Frances, airing the songs ‘Decide’ and ‘Frail’. A new album is apparently in the works.