2018

Avey Tare – Cows on Hourglass Pond

Style: Psych-Pop, Neo-Psychedelia, Acid Folk

Vibe: Aquatic, Ethereal, Peaceful, Hallucinogenic, Reflective, Hypnotic, Mellow, Surreal, Uplifting, Warm, Existential

Musical Qualities: Catchy, Soft, Melodic, Atmospheric, Vocal Fx, Analogue Recording

Daughters – You Won’t Get What You Want

Style: Industrial Noise Rock, Mathcore-Influenced

Vibe: Misanthropic, Aggressive, Pessimistic, Ominous, Cathartic, Apocalyptic, Powerful, Dark, Nihilistic, Mechanical, Angsty, Dystopian

Musical Qualities: Dissonant, Heavy, Noisy, Dense, Lyrical

Matana Roberts / Pat Thomas – The Truth

Style: Free Jazz

Vibe: Spiritual, Conversational, Searching, Abstract, Intertwined

Musical Qualities: Duo Improvisation, Dynamic, Instrumental, Acoustic, Loose, Live Recording, Repetition, Dissonant, Improvised Minimalism

Joseph Shabason – Anne

Style: New Age, Ambient Jazz, Progressive Electronic

Vibe: Healing, Woozy, Personal, Ethereal, Soothing, Intimate, Hypnotic, Mellow

Musical Qualities: Atmospheric, Spoken Word, Soft, Slow, Electroacoustic, Field Recordings, Studio-as-an-Instrument

Instrumentation: Saxophone (w/ FX), Synthesizers, Piano, Electric Guitar, Percussion, Violin, Trumpet, Flute

Anteloper – Kudu

Style: Cyber-Jazz, Abstract Groove, Avant-Garde Jazz

Vibe: Futuristic, Menacing, Exploratory, Kinetic, Ominous, Spacey, Energetic, Colorful, Surreal, Suspenseful, Adventure

Musical Qualities: Duo Improvisation, Thematic, Instrumental, Electro-Acoustic, Percussive, Rhythmic, Atmospheric

Instrumentation: Trumpet, Drums, Synthesizers, Electronics

Eli Keszler – Stadium

Style: EAI (electroacoustic improvisation), Future Jazz

Vibe: Futuristic, Kinetic, Urban, Abstract, Impressionistic, Meditative, Suspenseful, Mysterious, Complex

Musical Qualities: Percussive, Electroacoustic, Polyrhythmic, Field Recordings, Instrumental, Improvisation (Solo), Odd Time Signatures, Studio-as-an-Instrument

Sons of Kemet – Your Queen Is a Reptile

Style: Afro-Caribbean Jazz, Spiritual Jazz

Vibe: Protest, Political, Intense, Propulsive, Conscious, Energetic, Groovy, Hypnotic, Passionate, Rebellious, Spiritual, Powerful, Tropical, Conceptual

Musical Qualities: Dense, Polyphonic, Rhythmic, Improvisation, Spoken Word, Percussive

Loma – Loma

Style: Art Pop, Ambient Pop

Influences: Chamber-Folk, Trip-Hop, Slowcore, Post-Rock

Vibe: Existential, Introspective, Brooding, Gossamer, Dreamy, Melancholy, Reflective, Moody, Eclectic

Musical Qualities: Lush, Atmospheric, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Lyrical

Kadhja Bonet – Childqueen

Style: Psychedelic Soul, Baroque Pop

Vibe: Elegant, Ethereal, Smooth, Romantic, Warm, Retro, Dramatic, Cosmic

Musical Qualities: Groovy, Lush, Orchestral, Melodic, Polished

Bardo Pond – Volume 8

Style: Free Psych, Space Rock, Jam Band, Shoegaze

Vibe: Adventurous, Communal, Cathartic, Murky, Epic, Psychedelic, Exploratory, Monolithic, Stoned

Musical Qualities: Collective Improvisation, Dynamic, Droney, Atmospheric, Fuzzy, Loose, Riffs

Beak> – >>>

Style: Kosmische-Influenced Experimental Rock, Space Rock

Vibe: Motorik, Ominous, Spacey, Futuristic, Cinematic

Musical Qualities: Progressive, Rhythmic, Atmospheric

Yves Tumor – Safe in the Hands of Love

Style: Art Pop, Neo-Psychedelia, Trip-Hop, Experimental Electronic

Vibe: Nocturnal, Surreal, Introspective, Longing, Alienation, Abstract, Anxious, Dark, Depressive, Eclectic, Love, psychedelic

Natalie Rose Lebrecht – Mandarava Rose

Style: Ambient Pop, Free Folk, New Age

Vibe: Cosmic, Dreamy, Earthy, Ethereal, Lethargic, Meditative, Mystical, Passionate, Ritualistic, Soothing, Spiritual

Musical Attributes: Atmospheric, Droney, Slow

Anna & Elizabeth – The Invisible Comes to Us

The Invisible Comes to Us is a haunting, modern take on Appalachian and Irish folk songs. Beautiful close-harmonies, banjos and acoustic guitars are juxtaposed with droning atmospheres of woodwinds, Moog bass, pump organ, and euphonium. Guest musicians include Jim White on drums and Susan Alcorn on slide guitar.

Lonnie Holley – Mith

Style: Experimental Singer-Songwriter, Soul Blues, Psychedelic Soul

Vibe: Imaginative, Bluesy, Cathartic, Conscious, Cosmic, Spiritual, Heartfelt, Passionate, Psychedelic, Rootsy, Bittersweet, Poetic

Lyrical Themes: Existential, Afro-Futurism, History, Racism, Reflective

Musical Attributes: Atmospheric, Lyrical, Improvisation, Raw, Studio-as-an-Instrument

Instrumentation: Vocals, Piano, Synthesizers, Keyboards, Saxophone, Trombone, Percussion

Anenon – Tongue

Released in 2018 on Friends of Friends Records Format: LP, Clear Vinyl

Tim Hecker – Konoyo

Released in 2018 on Kranky Format: LPx2 Track Notes and Observations A1. This Life (Droney, Climactic, Mournful) Synths slowly dancing around each other in a beautiful sadness, Woozy, pitches bend and release in and out of tune Blooming structure, crescendos into overwhelming climax Disintegrates into a ghostly version of itself with high pitch sounds A2. …

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Young Jesus – The Whole Thing is Just There

The Whole Thing is Just There is another beautiful and life-affirming release from Young Jesus, the second with the current L.A. iteration of the band. Their inter-band chemistry seems stronger than ever, with telepathic improvisations, symbiotic catharses, and a mutual love for each other that is easily felt from a listener’s perspective. The lyrics deal with self-exploration and one’s relationship with the world around them, finding solace in spirituality, existentialism, literature, and the ethos of free jazz. Stylistically the music seems rooted in late-90’s indie rock and emo, with seamless but adventurous detours into post-rock, noisy post-hardcore, and free improvisation. Excited to see where these guys go next.

Julia Holter – Aviary

Released in 2018 on Domino Records Format: LPx2 Includes 12″x12″ glossy lyric and photo booklet Track Listing *A1 – Turn the Light On (Bombastic, Energetic, Cathartic A2 – Whether (Pulsing, Driving, Staccato) *A3 – Chaitius (Ethereal, Atmospheric, Ambient, Progressive) -long floating, atmospheric intro with wordless vocals -becomes jazzy and cosmic as it builds -loose and …

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Meg Baird & Mary Lattimore – Ghost Forests

An ethereal and somewhat haunting dream-folk collaboration between guitarist/singer Meg Baird (Espers, Heron Oblivion), and harpist Mary Lattimore, who’s recorded with Fursaxa, Steve Gunn, and others in addition to her hypnotic solo work.
Highly Recommended for fans of Natural Snow Buildings, Cocteau Twins “Victorialand”, Laraaji, and 60’s British & Scottish Folk music

Yonatan Gat – Universalists

The new album from guitarist Yonatan Gat finds cohesiveness in its sprawling diversity. Stylistically it combines the rawness of garage rock, the thematic improvisation of Free jazz, and the experimental editing of musique concréte with psychedelic production, Arabic and Klezmer scales and surfy tremelo guitars.

Eric Chenaux – Slowly Paradise

Eric Chenaux’s gentle falsetto is the most constant, tangible element on an album characterized by a permanent state of flux. The guitars are warbly and unsteady with their fluctuating tones, volume, and pitch. Yet, despite their experimental nature, they never sound abrasive and, together with some mellow Wurlitzer, create a soft, pillowy environment for Chenaux’s romantic crooning about the nature of love, the moon, and warm nights.

Jon Hopkins – Singularity

Dynamic and uplifting house music characterized by filtered drums and enveloping synth textures. With its driving arpeggiations, danceable 4-on-the-floor grooves, hypnotic build-ups, and soothing ambient tracks, Singularity is extremely well-paced, and it’s most beautiful moments full of sublime wonder.

lojii – lofeye

Categorization and comparison are the least of lojii’s worries, instead prioritizing creative expression and finding spiritual truth and power in this dimly lit dystopia. He delivers his prophetic words with a focused, unwavering determination, while the beats are gritty and nocturnal with their open percussion, eerie synths, and negative space. Don’t miss out on this one.

Ruiners – Typecast

On their debut long-player, the Houston quartet explores apathy, disconnectedness and the loss of relationships through their sludgy post-hardcore.
For fans of These Arms Are Snakes, Drive Like Jehu, Unwound

Ryley Walker – Deafman Glance

Acoustic-shredder/singer-songwriter ventures out of the jazz-inflected folk-rock territory explored by his last few albums to create something that feels fully himself. Deafman Glance is full of angular left turns, complex structures, airy flutes, jazz detours, and psychedelic atmospheres. A balance of great songwriting, jazz musicianship, and experimental/art-rock tendencies. Recommended to fans of Tortoise’s Standards, Tim Buckley’s Starsailor, and King Crimson’s Red. (Click for full review).