Robbie Basho – Visions of the Country

Style: American Primitivism, Singer/Songwriter, Folk, Raga
Vibe: Mystical, Nature, Open, Passionate, Pastoral, Peaceful, Airy, Contemplative, Earthy, Impressionistic, Meditative, Morning, Spring, Spiritual,
Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Indian-Influenced, Sparse, Technical

Sunburned Hand of the Man — The Trickle-Down Theory of Lord Knows What

Style: Free-Psych, Ritual Folk, New Weird Americana

Vibe: Ceremonial, Communal, Hallucinogenic, Mysterious, Amorphous, Earthy, Cathartic, Primal, Murky, Ritualistic, Surreal

Musical Qualities: Collective Improvisation, Lo-fi, Free-Form, Atmospheric, Dissonant, Group Vocals, Repetitive, Chants, Percussive

Collie Ryan – The Hour is Now

Style: Folk, Singer/Songwriter

Vibe: Mystical, Nature, Soothing, Mellow, Tender, Flowing, Forest, Peaceful, Morning, Earthy, Intimate

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Sparse, Simple, Lyrical, Soft, Melodic, Solo

Dennis Wise – Wize Music

Style: Innervisionary, Psychedelic Tape Music, Ambient Dub, Future Folk, Experimental, New Age

Vibe: Alien, Mystical, Woozy, Nocturnal, Exploratory

Musical Qualities: Collage, Loops, Electro-acoustic, Percussive, Dub Fx, Dissonance

Helena Espvall & Masaki Batoh

On this self-titled collaboration, acid folk luminaries Helena Espvall (Espers) and Masaki Batoh (Ghost) create mysterious and earthy interpretations of traditional Medieval, Swedish, Japanese, and Finnish folk songs, plus a Son House cover, an original, and a handful of free improvisations.

Gratien Midonet – A Cosmic Poet from Martinique 1979-1989

Style: Cosmic Folk, Caribbean Folk

Vibe: Mystical, Tropical, Poetic, Cosmic, Earthy, Ecletic, Intertwined, Groovy, Spiritual

Musical Qualities: Percussive, Polyrhythmic, Repetitive, Dense, Technical, Polished

Instrumentation: Keyboards, Acoustic Guitar, Percussion, Vocals, Electric Bass

Pelt – Reticence / Resistance

Style: Psychedelic Drone, Free Folk

Vibe: Ritualistic, Hypnotic, Cathartic, Earthy, Psychedelic, Communal

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Drone, Improvisation, Live, Dissonant, Instrumental, Dynamic

Instrumentation: Piano, Fiddle, Harmonium, Gong, Bells, Singing Bowl, Percussion, Banjo

Holden – The Inheritors

Style: Progressive Electronic, IDM, Microhouse

Vibe: Ancient, Tribal, Ritualistic, Pagan, Brooding, Mythic, Cold, Visceral, Mechanical, Hypnotic, Driving, Epic, Focused, Mysterious, Mystical, Patient, Powerful, Suspenseful, Earthy

Musical Qualities: Repetitive, Distorted, Heavy, Rhythmic, Percussive, Loops, Dissonant, Dense, Instrumental, Pulse, Noisy, Progressive, Field Recordings, Sampling

Instrumentation: Bodhrán (Irish Frame Drum), Synthesizers, Drum Machine, Saxophone, Organ, Chanting, Melodeon (Pump Organ), Electric Guitar, Electric Bass, Xylophone, Live Electronics

Fletcher Tucker – Unlit Trail

Style: Ritual Folk, Drone

Vibe: Ancient, Forest, Meditative, Ritualistic, Intimate, Devotional, Earthy, Nature, Autumnal, Contemplative

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Field Recordings, Drone, Atmospheric, Sparse, Suite

Don Cherry – Om Shanti Om

Style: Ecstatic Folk-Jazz, Devotionals

Vibe: Communal, Spiritual, Ritualistic, Uplifting, Earthy, Intertwined, Mystical, Religious, Warm

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Chants, Collective Improvisation, Percussive

Earthforce – Earthforce

Released in 2021 on Lion Productions Recorded 1977, Archival Release Format: LP, includes 12-page 12″ booklet Style: British Folk, Psych … More

Sarah Louise – Earth Bow

Style: Free Folk, Cosmic Appalachia, Ambient Folk, Healing Music

Vibe: hypnotic, amorphous, confident, cosmic, dreamy, earthy, ethereal, existential, exploratory, forest, warm, spiritual, spontaneous, soothing, psychedelic, passionate, nature, meditative, hallucinogenic

Musical Qualities: Suite, Electro-Acoustic, Studio-as-an-instrument, Loops, Home Recording, Progressive, Field Recordings

Between – And the Waters Opened

Style: Psychedelic Chamber Music, Kosmische Musik, Ritual-Folk, Global Fusion

Vibe: Spiritual, Meditative, Communal, Psychedelic, Earthy, Forest, Ritualistic, Tribal

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Atmospheric, Chamber, Droney, Raga, Percussive, Chants

Instrumentation: Oboe, Keyboards, Conga, Acoustic Guitar, Bamboo Flute

Christian Scott Atunde Adjuah – Ancestral Recall

Style: Organic Beat Music, Spiritual Jazz, Cybernetic Jazz, Progressive Jazz

Vibe: Ritualistic, Triumphant, Poetic, Tribal, Afro-Futurism, Epic, Moody, Earthy

Musical Qualities: Beats, Structured Improvisation, Polyrhythmic, Progressive, Percussive

Airto – Seeds on the Ground

Style: Psychedelic Samba-Jazz

Vibe: Warm, Earthy, Breezy, Psychedelic, Romantic

Musical Qualities: Groovy, Percussive, Polyrhythmic, Collective Improvisation, Technical

75 Dollar Bill – Live at Tubby’s

Style: Psychedelic Jazz, Jam Band, Post-Minimalism, Free Rock

Influences: Tishoumaren, Free Jazz, Kosmische Musik, Minimalism

Vibe: Hypnotic, Communal, Psychedelic, Earthy

Musical Attributes: Collective Thematic Improvisation, Live, Loose, Microtonal, Odd Time Signatures, Repetitive, Percussive

Sam Amidon – The Following Mountain

Style: New Weird Americana, Post-Modern Appalachia, Jazz-Folk

Vibe: Autumnal, Earthy, Imaginative, Lush, Morning, Peaceful, Rootsy, Rustic, Warm, Contemplative

Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Melodic, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Improvisation, Progressive, Lyrical

Instrumentation: Fiddle, Drums, Banjo, Vocals, Percussion, Saxophone, Acoustic Guitar, Drum Machine, Percussion, Electric Bass, Organ Synthesizers, Flute

Collaborators: Leo Abrahams, Shahzad Ismaily, Sam Gendel,
Milford Graves, Chris Vatalaro, James Sultan

Pharoah Sanders – Wisdom Through Music

Style: Spiritual Jazz



Vibe: Joyful, Passionate, Spiritual, Uplifting, Warm, Love, Colorful, Communal, Cosmic, Earthy, Energetic, Groovy



Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Chants, Africa-Influenced, India-Influenced, Improvisation, Polyrhythmic, Percussive

Tarentel – Ghetto Beats on the Surface of the Sun (#1)

Style: Drone, Experimental Rock, Post-Rock



Vibe: Murky, Meandering, Exploratory, Nocturnal, Mysterious, Psychedelic, Earthy, Nature



Musical Attributes: Droney, Noisy, Instrumental, Headphone Album

Pelt – Pearls from the River

Style: Ritual Folk, Dhrupad, Free Folk

Vibe: Meditative, Mysterious, Psychedelic, Spiritual, Earthy, Hypnotic

Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Drone, Improvisation, Instrumental, Repetitive, Raga

Osamu Kitajima – Benzaiten

Style: Progressive Acid-Folk, Ritual-Folk, Psych-Rock



Moods: Sombre, Earthy, Ritualistic, Psychedelic, Brooding, Exploratory, Mysterious, Spiritual



Musical Attributes: Progressive, Acoustic, Percussive, Rhythmic, Complex, Dynamic



Joshua Abrams – Natural Information

Style: Psychedelic Trance Music, Avant-Jazz, Creative Music, Post-Minimalism

Influences: Gnawa, Spiritual Jazz, Raga, Kosmische Musik

Vibe: Earthy, Hypnotic, Meditative, Cosmic, Psychedelic, Ritualistic, Spiritual, Tribal

Musical Attributes: Polyrhythmic, Acoustic, Minimalistic, Improvisation, Percussive, Instrumental

Josh Abrams & Natural Information Society

Style: Psychedelic Jazz, Creative Music, Post-Minimalism

Influences: Gnawa, Kosmische Music, Spiritual Jazz, Minimalism

Vibe: Earthy, Hypnotic, Exploratory, Mysterious, Ritualistic, Psychedelic

Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Improvisation, Minimalistic, Percussive, Polyrhythmic

Ka Baird – Sapropelic Picnic

Style: Psychedelic Minimalism, Post-Minimalism, Ritual Folk

Vibe: Ritualistic, Hallucinogenic, Hypnotic, Earthy, Primal, Psychedelic, Spiritual

Musical Attributes: Electro-Acoustic, Loops, Minimalistic, Sampling

Instrumentation: Manipulated Vocals, Flute, Synthesizer (Moog), Drum Samples, Vibraphone

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

Spires that in the Sunset Rise – Psychic Oscillations [Review]

Psychedelic electro-acoustics and earthy minimalism from long-running avant-folk group Spires that in the Sunset Rise. The multi-instrumentalist duo of Ka Baird and Taralie Peterson ritualistically loop and layer a hypnotic tapestry of pre-verbal vocalizations, upright bass, flute, saxophone, synth, and autoharp, running each instrument through trippy stereo delays, visually represented by the two minute-apart clocks next to each other on the album cover. While not as witchy or jarring as the their early releases, Psychic Oscillations finds the band as entrancing as ever.

Damon Locks’ Black Monument Ensemble

Style: Creative Music, Black Liberation Music, Avant-Garde Jazz

Vibe: Communal, Triumphant, Conscious, Earthy, Futuristic, Passionate, Political, Rebellious, Theatric

Musical Attributes: Improvisation, Spoken Word, Suite, Percussive, Progressive, Live, Group Vocals

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.

Pharoah Sanders – Village of the Pharoahs

Style: Spiritual Jazz, Free Jazz
Vibe: Communal, Earthy, Energetic, Hypnotic, Intense, Loose, Mystical, Passionate, Spiritual, Tribal, Uplifting, Warm, Dance
Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Complex, Collective Improvisation, Percussive, Dense, Thematic, Suite

James Holden & the Animal Spirits – The Animal Spirits

These communal sound rituals express a digital-era longing to reconnect to the Earth. The grooves here are circular and ceremonial, not rooted to any specific musical traditions but borrowing from many, including cosmic jazz, kosmische musik and undoubtedly inspired by Holden’s collaboration with legendary Gnawa musician Maleem Mahmoud Ghania. Drums and percussion ground the proceedings while muscular sequencer and fiery saxophone arpeggiations hypnotically intertwine.  The sounds of fluttering recorder and modular synthesizer swirl through the air like offerings to the cosmos. 

Recommended for fans of The Comet is Coming, Tonto’s Exploding Head Band, Maleem Mahmoud Ghania & Pharoah Sander’s Trance of Seven Colors, Natural Information Society, Colin Stetson

Mike and Lal Waterson – Bright Phoebus

Style: British Folk, Country-Influenced
Vibe: Contemplative, Earthy, Introspective, Melancholy, Rootsy, Rural, Storytelling
Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Vocal Harmonies, Lyrical, Melodic, Simple, Sparse

Third Ear Band – Alchemy

Style: Free Folk, Chamber Music, Progressive Folk

Vibe: Ritualistic, Hypnotic, Earthy, Tribal, Nature, Meditative, Medieval, Exploratory

Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Improvisation, Instrumental, Minimalistic

Instrumentation: Oboe, Violin, Viola, Recorder, Percussion (Tabla, Drums, Chimes), Cello

Brian Eno – Ambient 4: On Land

Style: Ambient, Progressive Electronic

Vibe: Suspenseful, Desert, Desolate, Earthy, Mysterious, Eerie, Ethereal, Contemplative, Lonely, Impressionistic

Musical Qualities: Atmospheric, Instrumental, Analogue, Abstract

Tarentel – The Order of Things

The Order of Things takes you on a strange journey, starting off with a long ambient song built around field recordings, light acoustic guitar and some weird drones in the background. Highly recommended if you’re a fan of experimental post-rock, drone, or music that doesn’t like to be easily categorized.


Creative Construction Company – CCC

Featuring some of Chicago’s finest musicians and founding members of the AACM, (Muhal Richard Abrams, Anthony Braxton, Leroy Jenkins, Richard Davis, Wadada Leo Smith, and Steve McCall), this 36 minute spontaneous composition doesn’t focus on soloing or instrumental technicality or rambunctious improvisIng, but creating and progressing an initially suspenseful, mysterious mood through focused, cohesive movements, with new sounds, moods, and melodies around every corner. Most of the musicians here play multiple instruments to sustain a versatile color palette.

Exuma – Exuma

Exuma’s first album is a powerful and ritualistic masterpiece of spiritual folk from the Bahamas. Exuma, the Obeah Man, is a master storyteller and preacher, sharing visions, myths, and prayers. His expressive, soulful voice takes on many tones as he delivers his musical sermons, from smooth to raspy, soft to confident. A group of singers, percussionists, whistlers, and toads join him and his acoustic guitar, making me imagine them all circled around a large fire in communal worship and grateful that they let us listeners in on it.