Love

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma – A Year With 13 Moons

Distorted ghosts of past love and futures lost haunt the spaces between these woozy, blown-out guitar loops and the fragmented rhythms of decaying drums machines. Occasional bursts of noise tear through the sedating static of bittersweet nostalgia.

Joan Shelley – Over and Even

Style: Folk, Singer/Songwriter

Vibe: Morning, Reflective, Soothing, Gentle, Bittersweet, Warm, Mellow, Contemplative

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Lush, Soft, Vocal Harmonies, Melodic, Sparse, Polished Production

Instrumentation: Fingerstyle Acoustic Guitar, Banjo, Piano, Harmonium, Glockenspiel, Keyboards

P.G. Six – Slightly Sorry

Style: Loner Folk, Weird Americana, Folk Rock, Singer Songwriter

Vibe: Peaceful, Melancholy, Reflective, Romantic, Gentle, Rustic, Warm, Autumnal, Bittersweet, Breezy, Contemplative, Lethargic, Mellow, Intertwined

Musical Qualities: Soft, Lush, Lyrical, Vocal Harmonies, Acoustic, Atmospheric

Bert Jansch – Birthday Blues

Style: Chamber Folk, British Folk, Acoustic Blues, Jazz-Folk

Vibe: Breezy, Mellow, Contemplative, Autumnal, Uplifting, Melancholy, Warm, Joyful, Love, Intertwined, Reflective, Poetic

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Melodic, Lush, Rootsy, Bluesy, Chamber Arrangements

Instrumentation: Acoustic Guitar, Upright Bass, Flute, Saxophone, Harmonica

Leonard Cohen – New Skin for the Old Ceremony

Style: Singer/Songwriter, Chamber Folk

Vibe: Poetic, Bittersweet, Conversational, Sexual, Dry Humor, Brooding, Melancholy, Longing, Tender, Introspective, Breakup

Musical Qualities: Lush, Lyrical, Groovy, Dynamic

Instrumentation: Electric Bass, Piano, Acoustic Guitar, Backup Vocalists, Trombone, Jaw Harp, Woodwinds, Strings, Banjo, Mandolin, Trumpet, Drums, Percussion, Keyboards

Neko Case – Furnace Room Lullaby

Style: Alt-Country, Americana, Singer/Songwriter

Vibe: Bittersweet, Warm, Angsty, Rustic, Heartfelt, Confident, Passionate, Twangy, Love, Breakup, Reflective, Sentimental, Lush, Rootsy

Instrumentation: Electric & Acoustic Guitar, Lap Steel & Pedal Steel Slide Guitars, Fiddle, Electric & Upright Basses, Drums, Vocal Harmonies, Banjo, Mandolin, Organ, Accordion

Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy – Beware

Style: Singer/Songwriter, Americana, Loner Folk, Slowcore-Country

Vibes: Contemplative, Bittersweet, Warm, Loner, Mellow, Uplifting, Love, Break-up, Intimate, Heartfelt, Playful, Soothing, Intertwined

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Lush, Lyrical, Vocal Harmonies

Beverly Glenn-Copeland

Style: Jazz-Folk, Singer/Songwriter

Vibe: Haunting, Passionate, Forest, Ethereal, Melancholy, Contemplative, Love, Lush

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Progressive, Improvisation

Todd Rundgren – A Wizard, a True Star

Style: Neo-Psychedelia, Prog-Pop, Psychedelic Soul, Art Rock

Vibe: Triumphant, Colorful, Longing, Utopian, Eccentric, Futuristic, Joyful, Love, Manic, Playful, Psychedelic, Surreal, Uplifting,

Musical Qualities: Suite, Eclectic, Melodic, Dense Arrangements, Studio-as-an-Instrument

John Martyn – Inside Out

Style: Jazz-Folk, Singer-Songwriter, Psychedelic Folk-Rock

Vibe: Romantic, Warm, Cryptic, Reflective, Passionate, Heartfelt, Lethargic, Stoned, Sunny

Musical Qualities: Lyrical, Melodic, Improvisation

Roy Harper – Valentine

Released in 1974 Chrysalis Pressing (US, 1978) Format: LP Style: Psychedelic Chamber Folk, Singer/Songwriter, Progressive Folk Vibe: Romantic, Floating, Heartfelt, Introspective, Psychedelic, Intimate, Contemplative, Dreamy, Elegant, Mellow, Morning, Peaceful, Airy Musical Qualities: Vocal Harmonies, Acoustic, Sparse, Lush, Progressive, Lyrical, Melodic

Kadhja Bonet – Childqueen

Style: Psychedelic Soul, Baroque Pop

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

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

Tom Rapp – Sunforest

Style: Folk-Pop, Singer/Songwriter, Chamber Folk, Progressive Folk

Vibe: Uplifting, Contemplative, Breezy, Bright, Sunny, Warm, Soft

Musical Attributes: Lush, Polished, Acoustic, Lyrical, Session Players

Papa M – Whatever, Mortal

Style: Singer/Songwriter, Slowcore, Americana

Vibe: Apathetic, Bittersweet, Breakup, Contemplative, Depressive, Humorous, Intimate, Lethargic, Loner, Love, Melancholy, Mellow, Moody, Personal, Rootsy

Musical Attributes: Acoustic, Sparse, Simple

Wendy Eisenberg – Auto

Style: Progressive-Pop, Avant-Songwriter, Jazz-Rock, Math-Pop

Vibe: Whispery, Angular, Intimate, Heartfelt, Cerebral, Reflective, Love / Breakup, Restrained, Introspective, Contemplative, Anxious, Loner

Musical Qualities: Odd Time Signatures, Jazz-Influenced, Technical, Dynamic, Lyrical

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

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

J Dilla – Donuts

Style: Instrumental Hip-Hop, Plunderphonics

Vibe: Bittersweet, Groovy, Heartfelt, Love, Warm, Lush

Musical Attributes: Sampling, Vignettes, Loops, Sound Collage, Rhythmic, Repetitive

Tricky – Maxinquaye

Style: Trip-Hop, U.K. Hip-Hop
Vibe: Dark, Nocturnal, Sexual, Surreal, Eclectic, Introspective, Love
Musical Attributes: Sampling, Beats, Rhythmic, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Lyrical

Albert Ayler – New Grass

One can only imagine how Ayler bringing more commercial styles like R&B, Rock, and Gospel into his avant-garde music messed with critics and fans alike when it came out—the way it looked like commercial pandering to the Free Jazz listeners but was probably still too weird for new listeners. It helps to remember that Ayler came from R&B and went straight to the Free Spiritual Jazz of the early 60s, making Jazz critics highly skeptical skeptical by not climbing the bebop ranks like Coltrane before plunging into freedom. On New Grass, Ayler really started to synthesize the spiritual elements of many forms of Great Black Music, making more accessible music not as a way of selling out, but a way of sharing his beautiful spiritual message and sound with a wider audience. Plus this thing has Bernard Purdie on drums so of course it slaps.
If you dig this LP, I think he succeeded in this sound direction even more on his following albums Love Cry and Music is the Healing Force of the Universe. Albert Ayler was a pure soul that left this world too soon, grateful for the gifts of music and wisdom he left behind.

Jamila Woods – Heavn

Style: Soul, Art Pop

Vibe: Confident, Heartfelt, Introspective, Colorful, Triumphant, Uplifting, Urban, Loner

Lyrical Themes: Conscious, Poetic, Political, Personal, Black Pride, Love, Feminist

Musical Attributes: Groovy, Lush, Headphone Album, Polished, Catchy, Technical

Warpaint – The Fool

Style: Dream Pop, Psych Rock

Vibe: Dreamy, Groovy, Psychedelic, Ethereal, Sensual, Love, Nocturnal

Alex G – Beach Music

Listening to Alex G, one might imagine a young alien sitting alone in his martian bedroom baring his angsty, teenage confessions to his 4-track tape recorder. Yet, at the core of his music, underneath layers of psychedelic guitars, weird pitch-shifted vocals, and occasional lo-fi hiss, lies some genius pop songs that feel simultaneously adolescent and mature.

Recommended for fans of lo-fi experimentation and bedroom pop. Alex seems to pull influences from all over and channel them through his own unique personality and penchant for odd, psychedelic production. Recalls Elliot Smith’s loner acoustic songwriting and drum machines pulled from 80?s pop songs; there’s even a fucked up jazz piano ballad thrown into the mix.

Four Tet – Pause

Style: Glitch-Folk, IDM

Vibe: Autumnal, Peaceful, Warm, Uplifting, Nature, Love

Musical Attributes: Electro-Acoustic, Sampling, Melodic, Repetitive

The Sea Ensemble – We Move Together

An obscure release from the great creative label ESP-Disk, containing exploratory, mysterious and playful improvisations from The Sea Ensemble—the husband/wife duo of Zusaan Fasteau and Donald Rafael Garrett. While they are both trained musicians and multi-instrumentalists, an uninhibited childish spirit permeates this release, as can be seen in Donald’s crude but visionary cover drawing; Yet the recording also feels imbued with ancient wisdom, as heard in their primal and instinctive vocalizations throughout the album

James Blake – The Colour in Anything

Released in 2016 on Polydor Records Format: LPx2 Style: Modern Soul, Future Garage, Art Pop Vibe: Sad, Heartfelt, Reflective, Lonely, Intimate, Futuristic Musical Attributes: Lyrical, Digital, Melodic, Beats, Ballads Themes: Breakup, Love, Personal  

Portishead – Portishead

Style: Trip-Hop

Vibe: Noir, Nocturnal, Sad, Dark, Witchy, Sinister, Depressive, Angsty, Anxious, Sombre, Introspective

Instrumentation: Vocals, Turntables, Sampling, Guitar, Keyboards, Synth, Drums

Caribou – Andorra

Style: Psychedelic Pop

Vibe: Sunny, Warm, Romantic, Retro, Spring, Breezy

Musical Attributes: Melodic, Lush, Polished, Electronic Production, Catchy, Lyrical

Pearls Before Swine – Balaklava

Released in 1968 on ESP-Disk Format: LP Style: Chamber Folk, Psych Folk Vibe: Peaceful, Mellow, Psychedelic Themes: War, Nature, Love Instrumentation: Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, Strings, Flute, Banjo, Keyboards, Bass, French Horn

Arca – Arca

Released in 2017 on XL Recordings Format: LP Overview By introducing heartfelt vocals into her (often) harsh environments of contorted glitch-pop, Venezuelan producer Arca reaches near-claustrophobic levels of intimacy.

Yo La Tengo – Fade [Deluxe Edition]

Released in 2013 on Matador Records Format: LP + 7″ The bonus 7″ features covers of Todd Rundgren’s “I Saw the Light” and Times New Viking’s “Move to California”

The Incredible String Band – Wee Tam

Released on Elektra in 1968 Format: LP Track Notes A1 – Jobs Tears (Uplifting, Morning, Spiritual) “Stranger than that we’re alive” A2 – Puppies  (Peaceful, Sitar, Bowed Gimbri, Morning) “Music is so much less than what you are” A3 – Beyond the See (Instrumental featuring organ, harpsichord, whistle, and bowed gimbri A4 – The Yellow Snake …

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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.

Poliça – United Crushers

The brooding, atmospheric synth-pop of Poliça’s third LP finds Channy Leaneagh’s passionate vocals once again supported by prominent bass grooves, driving dual drummers, and occasional string and horn arrangements, all mapped into intricate, quantized webs of programmed beats and synthesizers by co-leader/producer Ryan Olsen. Lyrically, the album centers around themes of isolation, fading love, and as well as more political topics such as police violence.

For fans of Portishead, The Knife