John Coltrane – Sun Ship

Style: Spiritual Jazz, Avant-Garde Jazz

Vibe: Cathartic, Transcendent, Triumphant, Passionate, Intense, Chaotic, Powerful, Adventure, Searching, Spiritual

Musical Qualities: Collective Improvisation, Dense, Dynamic, Complex, Acoustic, Thematic, Dissonant, Technical

John Carter – Fields

Style: Avant-Garde Jazz, Country-Jazz, Jazz Theater

Vibe: Rural, Historical, Sombre, Resolute, Intertwined, Passionate, Storytelling, Determined, Resolute, Heartfelt, Complex, Theatric, Conceptual

Musical Qualities: Suite, Acoustic, Progressive, Collective Improvisation, Polyphonic, Dynamic, Technical

The Great Concert of Cecil Taylor

Cecil Taylor – Piano; Jimmy Lyons – Alto Sax; Sam Rivers – Tenor & Soprano Sax; Andrew Cyrille – Drums

Style: Free Jazz

Vibe: Transcendent, Dramatic, Kinetic, Intense, Passionate, Driving, Knotty, Complex, Forceful, Cathartic

Musical Qualities: Collective Improvisation, Dense, Atonal, Polyphonic, Polyrhythmic, Free Swing, Dynamic, Acoustic, Live, Fast

Catherine Ribeiro + Alpes – Ame debout

Style: Progressive Folk, Avant-Folk

Vibe: Brooding, Visceral, Witchy, Sombre, Forest, Intense, Driving, Passionate, Rebellious

Musical Qualities: Dynamic, Progressive, Experimental Vocals

Instrumentation: Organ, Electric Guitar, Percussion, Vocals

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

Portishead – Roseland NYC Live

Style: Trip-Hop

Vibe: Noir, Brooding, Sensual, Passionate, Melancholy, Angsty, Sombre, Mysterious, Cinematic, Anxious, Sad, Dark

Musical Qualities: Orchestral, Live, Lush, Dense, Rhythmic, Sampling

David Bowie – Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)

Style: Glam Rock, Art Pop, Funk Rock

Vibe: Sleek, Eccentric, Energetic, Anxious, Grandiose, Urban, Dystopian, Theatric, Playful, Passionate, Futuristic, Manic, Sleazy, Surreal

Musical Qualities: Groovy, Polished, Dense, Catchy, Riffs, Anthemic, Rhythmic

Hermeto Pascoal – Slaves Mass

Style: Jazz Fusion, Avant-Garde Jazz, Baião

Vibe: Warm, Passionate, Spiritual, Eclectic, Groovy, Energetic, Tropical, Psychedelic

Musical Qualities: Improvisation, Percussive, Polyrhythmic, Complex

Keiji Haino, Jim O’Rourke, & Oren Ambarchi – This Dazzling, Genuine “Difference” Now Where Shall It Go?

Style: Free Improvisation, Noise Rock, Free Rock

Vibe: Cathartic, Intense, Suspenseful, Hallucinogenic, Ritualistic, Heavy, Chaotic, Hypnotic, Primal, Energetic

Musical Qualities: Collective Improvisation, Noisy, Dynamic, Atonal, Dissonant, Fuzzy, Repetition

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

mewithoutYou – Brother, Sister

Style: Post-Hardcore, Art Rock, Folk-Influenced

Vibe: Spiritual, Poetic, Angsty, Introspective, Psychedelic, Energetic, Autumnal, Passionate, Sombre

Themes: Existential, Religious (Christian), Personal, Allegory, Symbolic, Philosophical

Musical Qualities: Spoken Word, Shouting, Groovy, Lush, Dense, Dynamic, Progressive

Hendrix – Band of Gypsys

Style: Acid Rock, Electric Blues, Psychedelic Funk, Fuzz-Soul

Vibe: Bluesy, Passionate, Confident, Fuzzy, Nocturnal, Sensual, Stoned, Powerful, Groovy

Musical Qualities: Live Performance, Jams, Raw, Feedback, Technical, Improvisation, Rhythmic

Akron/Family – Set Em Wild, Set Em Free

These guys are my favorite American Rock band. Every album they’ve released explores different sides of rock, folk, experimental and psychedelic music in such a natural, unforced way that my mind usually envisions them jamming by a campfire in the woods. What’s even better is I imagine I’m there with them singing along and worshipping the great creative spirit that inspires their music. There’s such an unpretentious, inclusive sense of community and spirituality in their music that I can’t help but feel welcomed and embraced into the family.

Betty Davis – Betty Davis

Style: Funk

Vibe: Gritty, Sexual, Raw, Powerful, Groovy, Passionate, Aggressive, Heavy, Energetic

Instrumentation: Vocals, Piano, Organ, Backup Singers, Electric Bass, Electric Guitar, Drums, Clavinet, Trumpet, Saxophones (A2)

Spires that in the Sunset Rise – Beasts in the Garden

Style: Free Folk, Psychedelic Electroacoustic Music, Post-Minimalism

Vibe: Forest, Ritualistic, Visceral, Hypnotic, Mystical

Musical Qualities: Loops, Electro-acoustic, Extended Techniques, Suite, Electro-Acoustic, Repetitive

Instrumentation: Flute, Cello, Saxophone, Keyboards, Vocals

Spellling – The Turning Wheel

Style: Progressive Pop, Baroque Pop

Vibe: Epic, Surreal, Haunting, Ethereal, Passionate, Dramatic, Dreamy, Romantic (LP1), Triumphant, Fantasy, Uplifting (LP1), Grandiose, Theatric, Brooding (LP2), Spacey (LP2)

Musical Qualities: Dense, Orchestral, Progressive, Polyphonic, Polished, Melodic, Rhythmic

Media Jeweler – The Sublime Sculpture of Being Alive

Style: Post-Punk, Math Rock, Art Rock

Vibes/Moods: Alienation, Overstimulated, Anxious, Urban, Eccentric, Anthemic, Satirical, Dystopian, Angular, Chaotic, Colorful, Urban, Philosophical, Playful

Musical Qualities: Catchy, Dissonant, Riffs, Dynamic, Dense, Melodic, Rhythmic

Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds – Skeleton Tree

On this mournful offering, Cave’s poetic reflections on loss, longing, and loneliness slowly float down a river of gloomy synth drones, somber strings, and sparse piano. While not exactly uplifting, the album has a sense of peace and beauty that continues up through the repeating final refrain, “and it’s alright now”.

Van Der Graaf Generator – H to He Who Am the Only One

Style: Progressive Rock, Jazz Rock, Symphonic Prog

Vibe: Alienation, Longing, Sentimental, Dramatic, Heartfelt, Cathartic, Introspective, Existential, Theatric, Lonely, Sad, Passionate, Epic

Musical Qualities: Technical, Progressive, Complex, Dynamic, Ballads

Instrumentation: Piano, Organ, Acoustic Guitar, Saxophones (Alto, Tenor, Baritone), Flute, Drums, Tympani, Electric Bass

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

Horace Tapscott & the Pan-Afrikan Peoples Arkestra – The Call

Style: Avant-Garde Big Band, Spiritual Jazz, Vocal Jazz (A2)

Vibe: Spiritual, Communal, Epic, Passionate, Active Listening, Energetic, Religious, Triumphant

Musical Qualities: Polyphonic, Complex, Dense, Acoustic, Thematic, Improvisation, Melodic, Technical, Orchestral

Public Enemy – It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back

Style: Hip-Hop (East Coast, Political, Hardcore)

Vibe: Rebellious, Gritty, Political, Dystopian, Angry, Energetic, Confident, Anxious, Conscious, Urban, Heavy, Passionate

Musical Qualities: Dense, Sampling, Noisy, Rhythmic

The Body & Big | Brave – Leaving None but Small Birds

Style: Psychedelic Folk, Drone Rock

Vibe: Passionate, Hypnotic, Weary, Cathartic, Rootsy, Sorrowful

Musical Qualities: Repetitive, Driving, Droney, Dynamic

Archie Shepp – Attica Blues

Style: Soul-Jazz, Avant-Garde Big Band, Vocal Jazz

Vibe: Conscious, Communal, Political, Passionate, Poetic, Groovy, Lush

Musical Qualities: Suite, Orchestral, Improvisation, Rhythmic, Spoken Word

Björk – Medulla

Style: Art Pop, Experimental Electronic, Trip-Hop

Vibe: Somatic, Primal, Sensual, Passionate, Winter, Ancestral, Complex, Imaginative, Surreal, Heartfelt

Musical Qualities: A’Cappella, Choral Vocals, Experimental Vocals (Throat Singing, Beat Boxing, Manipulated Vocal Production), Studio-as-an-Instrument

The Congos – Heart of the Congos

Style: Roots Reggae, Dub

Vibe: Spiritual, Warm, Apocalyptic, Hypnotic, Groovy, Summer, Tropical, Religious, Passionate, Psychedelic, Peaceful, Soothing, Laid Back, Aquatic

Musical Qualities: Studio-as-an-Instrument, Rhythmic, Melodic, Lo-fi, Slow

Sturgill Simpson – Cuttin Grass – Vol. 2 (Cowboy Arms Sessions)

Style: Progressive Bluegrass, Americana, Singer/Songwriter

Vibe: Energetic, Heartfelt, Rootsy, Communal, Passionate, Sunny, Warm

Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Lyrical, Fast, Technical

Instrumentation: Mandolin, Fiddle, Acoustic Guitar, Percussion, Banjo, Upright Bass

Anderson .Paak – Malibu

Style: Psychedelic Neo-Soul, Dream Funk, West Coast Hip-Hop

Vibe: Romantic, Summer, Playful, Warm, Catchy, Groovy, Sensual, Uplifting, Urban, Warm, Carefree, Dreamy, Joyful

Musical Qualities: Lush, Rhythmic, Polished, Sampling, Melodic

Bill Orcutt – Odds Against Tomorrow

Style: American Primitvism, Ambient Blues, Solo Electric Guitar

Vibe: Meditative, Longing, Spiritual, Pastoral, Loose, Kinetic

Musical Qualities: Improvisation, Dissonance, Instrumental, Sparse

Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson

Style: Jazz-Funk, Soul Jazz

Vibe: Conscious, Empathetic, Passionate, Groovy, Liberation, Political, Energetic, Warm, Bittersweet, Sunny

Musical Qualities: Percussive, Lush, Polished, Rhythmic, Lyrical, Improvised Sections

Vic Chesnutt – At the Cut

Style: Singer/Songwriter, Southern Gothic, Chamber Punk, Slowcore, Folk Rock

Vibe: Depressive, Angsty, Triumphant, Moody, Introspective, Somber, Passionate, Sad, Cathartic

Musical Attributes: Dynamic, Raw

Instrumentation: Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitars, Upright Bass, Violin, Drums

Mourning [A] BLKstar – The Cycle

Style: Avant-Soul, Psychedelic Funk, Trip-Hop

Vibe: Heartfelt, Passionate, Raw, Reflective, Communal, Intimate, Afrofuturism, Nocturnal, Political, Mournful, Eclectic, Powerful

Musical Qualities: Progressive, Groovy, Dynamic, Beats

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

Gil Scott-Heron – Pieces of a Man

Style: Soul Jazz, Singer/Songwriter, Jazz-Funk

Vibe: Conscious, Bittersweet, Political, Uplifting, Sunny, Warm, Urban, Sombre, Poetic, Contemplative, Observant, Passionate, Determined, Confident

Musical Qualities: Groovy, Lush, Spoken Word, Technical

Sélène Saint-Aimé – Mare Undarum

Style: Avant Chamber-Jazz, Vocal Spiritual Jazz

Vibe: Ritualistic, Poetic, Complex, Hypnotic, Nocturnal, Passionate, Mellow

Musical Attributes: Progressive, Thematic Improvisation, Rhythmic, Chamber, Percussive

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

Hiss Golden Messenger – Haw

Style: Country-Soul, Americana, Singer/Songwriter


Vibe: Passionate, Rootsy, Rural, Spiritual, Triumphant, Uplifting, Warm, Contemplative, Introspective

Musical Attributes: Lush, Lyrical

Lyrical Themes: Existential, Christian

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

Pharoah Sanders – Live at the East

Style: Spiritual Jazz, Free Jazz

Vibe: Ritualistic, Spiritual, Triumphant, Uplifting, Warm, Cathartic, Communal, Cosmic, Energetic, Intense, Passionate

Musical Attributes: Collective Improvisation, Acoustic, Live, Polyphonic, Percussive, Multiple Drummers

Rob Mazurek’s Exploding Star Orchestra – Dimensional Stardust

Style: Avant-Garde Jazz, Experimental Big Band

Vibe: Cosmic, Energetic, Passionate, Colorful

Musical Attributes: Complex, Dynamic, Progressive, Suite, Polyrhythmic, Spoken Word

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

Charles Mingus – The Great Concert of Charles Mingus

Format: LPx3

Style: Post-Bop, Avant-Garde Jazz

Vibe: Bombastic, Passionate, Energetic, Intense, Manic, Playful

Musical Attributes: Complex, Dynamic, Live, Improvisation, Acoustic, Instrumental, Polyphonic, Progressive, Rhythmic

David Bowie – Black Star

Style: Art Rock, Jazz-Rock
Vibe: Introspective, Moody, Passionate, Sentimental, Sombre, Conceptual
Musical Attributes: Lyrical, Complex, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Rhythmic, Progressive
Lyrical Themes: Death, Existential, Personal, Reflective

Doug Carn – Spirit of the New Land

Style: Spiritual Jazz, Black Liberation Music, Vocal Jazz

Vibe: Triumphant, Uplifting, Conscious, Groovy, Passionate, Poetic, Cathartic, Spiritual

Musical Attributes: Improvisation, Dynamic, Acoustic, Progressive, Rhythmic, Technical, Melodic, Complex

Erykah Badu – New Amerykah: Part One (4th World War)

Style: Psychedelic Funk, Conscious Hip-Hop, Soul

Vibe: Conscious, Groovy, Retro-Futuristic, Passionate, Philosophical, Political, Psychedelic, Uplifting, Urban, Eclectic

Musical Attributes: Groovy, Rhythmic, Lush, Melodic, Complex, Sampling, Lyrical

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

John Coltrane – Live at the Village Vanguard Again!

Style: Spiritual Jazz, Free Jazz
Vibe: Passionate, Spiritual, Exploratory, Triumphant, 
Musical Attributes: Complex, Modal, Thematic, Acoustic, Live, Improvisation, Dynamic, Instrumental

Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson – Bridges

Style: Soul, Jazz-Funk, Singer-Songwriter

Vibe: Conscious, Groovy, Lush, Lyrical, Passionate, Philosophical, Political, Sunny, Triumphant, Uplifting, Urban, Accessible, Bittersweet, Catchy, Confident

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

Ornette Coleman Double Quintet – Free Jazz

Style: Free Jazz

Vibe: Communal, Bombastic, Complex, Energetic, Passionate, Chaotic

Musical Attributes: Collective Improvisation, Dense, Instrumental, Acoustic, Dynamic, Polyphonic

Irreversible Entanglements – Who Sent You?

Irreversible Entanglements follows up the scathing fire music of their debut with regenerative and ritualistic earth music. “Who Sent You?”, is a record that looks not only to the violent “rhythms of oppression”, past and present, that need to be burnt to the ground, but to a future built from the ashes of these unjust systems. Irreversible Entanglements are simply one of the most powerful bands in existence, building their symbiotic improvisations with fervent passion, hypnotic rhythm, and urgent truths.

Cecil Taylor – Conquistador

Style: Free Jazz
Vibe: Abstract, Energetic, Passionate, Complex
Musical Attributes: Improvisation, Polyphonic, Polyrhythmic, Dissonant, Poly-Free