Can – Live in Stuttgart 1975

Style: Free Rock, Inner Space Music, Krautrock, Kosmsiche

Vibe: Adventurous, Epic, Exploratory, Mysterious, Hypnotic, Groovy, Psychedelic, Nocturnal, Meditative

Musical Qualities: Collective Improvisation, Repetitive, Live, Rhythmic, Atmospheric

Spirit of the Beehive – Entertainment, Death

Style: Noise Pop, Glitch Pop, Neo-Psychedelia, Hyper Dream Pop, Shoegaze

Vibe: Disorienting, Woozy, Messy, Dreamy, Futuristic, Chaotic, Surreal, Dystopian, Cryptic, Alienation, Bittersweet, Colorful, Energetic, Washy, Urban,

Musical Qualities: Noisy, Dense, Catchy, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Vocal Manipulation, Suite, Melodic, Progressive

Fly Pan Am – Frontera

Style: Post-Rock, Dance Score, Experimental Rock

Influences: Krautrock, IDM, Industrial, Drone

Vibe: Dystopian, Motorik, Mechanical, Ominous, Paranoid, Gloomy, Cold, Suspenseful

Musical Qualities: Driving, Repetitive, Rhythmic, Atmospheric, Droney

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

Circuit Des Yeux – -io

Style: Neoclassical Darkwave, Symphonic Rock, Singer-Songwriter

Moods/Vibe: Cathartic, Brooding, Sombre, Mystical, Epic, Ominous, Motorik, Spiritual, Cinematic, Powerful, Mourning, Funereal

Musical Qualities: Orchestral, Driving, Lush, Dense

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

Fly Pan Am – Sédatifs en fréquences et sillons

Style: Post-Rock, Experimental Rock, Tape Music, Drone

Vibe: Deconstructed, Hypnotic, Meandering, Stark, Motorik, Abstract, Urban

Musical Qualities: Instrumental, Pulse, Loops, Minimalistic, Repetitive, Drone, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Field Recordings, Noise

King Crimson – Beat

Style: Art Rock, Progressive Pop

Vibe: Anxious, Eccentric, Romantic, Cerebral, Complex, Catchy, Bombastic, Dramatic, Surreal, Slick, Intertwined

Musical Qualities: Polyphonic, Uncommon Time Signatures, Polished, Progressive, Technical, Rhythmic

Neil Young – On the Beach

Style: Singer/Songwriter, Ditch Americana, Country Rock, Folk Rock

Moods: Loner, Introspective, Melancholy, Alienation, Bittersweet, Apocalyptic, Depressive, Lonely, Sombre, Rebellious

Hawkwind – Warrior on the Edge of Time

Style: Space Rock, Heavy Psych, Prog

Vibes: Epic, Triumphant, Apocalyptic, Driving, Fuzzy, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Psychedelic, Riffs, Spacey

King Crimson – Islands

Style: Progressive Rock, Jazz-Rock, Chamber Music

Vibe: Pastoral, Mythical, Mysterious, Epic, Bombastic, Mellow, Aquatic, Dreamy

Musical Qualities: Dynamic, Progressive, Complex, Improvisation, Uncommon Time Signatures

Instrumentation: Electric Guitar, Mellotron, Saxophones, Flute, Piano, Drums, Electric Bass, Upright Bass, Cornet, Oboe

King Crimson – Three of a Perfect Pair

Style: Art Rock, Prog, Experimental Rock, Progressive Pop

Vibe: Anxious, Angular, Cerebral, Mechanical, Catchy, Ominous, Philosophical, Suspenseful, Dystopian, Urban, Confident

Musical Attributes: Complex, Uncommon Time Signatures, Polyrhythmic, Polished, Progressive, Technical

Brainticket – Celestial Ocean

Style: Kosmische Musik, Prog, Space Rock, Progressive Electronic

Vibe: Cosmic, Ethereal, Aquatic, Groovy, Exploratory, Hypnotic, Meditative, Hallucinogenic, Spiritual, Futuristic

Musical Qualities: Progressive, Suite, Raga, Headphone Album, Raga, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Dense

Lyrics: Conceptual, Egyptian Book of the Dead, Spiritual, Philosophical

Horse Lords – Interventions

Style: Experimental Rock, Totalism, Math Rock, Tishoumaren-Influenced

Vibe: Anxious, Complex, Energetic, Exploratory, Hypnotic, Disorienting

Musical Qualities: Instrumental, Microtonal, Odd Time Signatures, Percussive, Polyrhythmic, Repetitive, Minimalistic, Technical, Drones, Glitchy, Dissonant

Mogwai – Rave Tapes

Style: Post-Rock, Space Rock, Electronic-Rock, Kosmische-Influenced

Vibe: Futuristic, Nocturnal, Mechanical, Focused, Cinematic, Restrained

Musical Qualities: Instrumental, Dynamic, Pulse, Studio-as-an-Instrument

Hawkwind – Hall of the Mountain Grill

Style: Space Rock, Stoner-Prog, Heavy Psych

Vibe: Rebellious, Heavy, Driving, Spacey, Sci-Fi, Triumphant, Confident, Psychedelic

Musical Qualities: Fuzzy, Riffs, Progressive

Elizabeth Cotten – Folksongs and Instrumentals with Guitar

Style: Appalachian Folk, Folk Blues, American Primitive Guitar



Vibe: Bittersweet, Rural, Spiritual, Intimate, Pastoral, Warm, Rootsy



Musical Attributes: Acoustic Fingerstyle, Solo Performance, Sparse, Technical

Slint – Spiderland

Style: Post-Rock, Math Rock, Post-Hardcore, Slowcore

Vibe: Angsty, Angular, Cold, Heavy, Impressionistic, Suspenseful

Lyrical Themes: Alienation, Existential, Poetic, Storytelling

Musical Attributes: Dynamic, Slow, Dissonant, Raw, Repetitive

Decolonize Your Mind Society – A Courteous Invitation to an Uninhabited Anabatic Prism

Style: Psychedelic Rock, Free Rock, Jam Band, Tishoumaren-Influenced

Vibe: Groovy, Hypnotic, Colorful, Ritualistic, Communal, Psychedelic

Musical Attributes: Microtonal (Just Intonation), Improvisation (Collective), Instrumental, Progressive, Repetitive, Rhythmic, Thematic

Klyfta – Cosmic Pilgrimage: The Klyfta Tapes (1972-1975)

This lost slab of mythical prog doesn’t shy away from indulging in the retro pleasures of instrumental psych-jammage and triumphant jazz-rock. The atmospheric guitar, spacey Moog, and Hammond organ playing are both epic and economical, nary a note wasted. Philip Grondahl’s violin playing on the opening track is especially heroic, recalling the flights of Jean-Luc Ponty or Mahavishnu’s Jerry Goodman. Despite their collective starward gaze, Klyfta remains firmly grounded by the tightness of the rhythm section. Aside from the explosive entropy of the first track (beginning with Anders Strand’s expansive upright bass solo), the grooves focus on repetitive momentum with unwavering determination.

Omar Rodriguez Lopez – Old Money

Style: Psych / Prog / Experimental Rock

Vibe: Bombastic, Hallucinogenic, Chaotic, Energetic, Psychedelic

Musical Attributes: Progressive, Dense, Complex, Rhythmic, Riffs, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Technical, Odd Time Signatures

Yves Tumor – Heaven to a Tortured Mind

Style: Art Rock, Trip-Hop, Neo-Psychedelia, Hypnagogic Pop

Vibe: Nocturnal, Romantic, Dramatic, Eclectic, Energetic, Imaginative, Love, Sexual, Surreal, Woozy, Elegant

Musical Attributes: Polished, Progressive, Catchy, Dense, Rhythmic, Lush

The Mars Volta – Amputechture

Style: Progressive Rock, Experimental Rock

Vibe: Epic, Psychedelic, Chaotic, Bombastic, Cerebral, Complex, Cryptic, Energetic, Ominous, Intense

Musical Attributes: Dense, Polyphonic, Technical, Odd Time Signatures, Headphone Album, Studio-as-an-Instrument, Progressive

This Heat – Deceit

Originally released in 1981 on Rough Trade Modern Classics Reissue (2016) Format: LP

King Crimson – In the Court of the Crimson King

Released in 1969 on Atlantic Format: LP Pressing quality: While this album is a masterpiece, these early pressings/masters sound a … More

Holy Sons – In the Garden

After 20+ years of using his introspective songwriting as a playground for psychedelic lo-fi experimentation, underdog hero Emil Amos hands the production reins to John Angello (Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr.) for his most polished album yet, capturing the best aspects of 70’s rock classics without ever feeling cliché. The hi-fi analogue production brings a newfound clarity and depth that allows Amos’ songwriting and instrumental performances to bloom; the choruses are anthemic, the atmospheres are darkly psychedelic, and his lyrics are just as philosophical and contemplative as ever.

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.

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.

Jim O’Rourke – Insignificance

After a prolific career as a noise/improvisational/experimental guitarist and a few forays into folk and chamber pop, Jim O’Rourke surprised his audience with an album closer to straightforward rock than his audience could have ever expected of him. Yet underneath it’s catchy, cheery, and polished exterior, his lyrics are full of humorously bitter resentment. Like his debut singer/songwriter album Eureka, Insignificance is full of the meticulous and lush arrangements that Jim would become known for.

Grails – Chalice Hymnal

While each Grails album uses instrumental rock as a means to explore a vast record collection’s worth of influences, none have done so with the subtlety and focus put into each track of this latest offering, allowing us to see the intangible essence of their sound more clearly than ever.

Six Organs of Admittance – Ascent

Taking a detour from his usual loner-droner psych folk style, Ben Chasney enlists former Comets on Fire bandmates to jam some heavy rock burners with a a cosmic amount of electric guitar shredding, evoking Neil Young & Crazy Horse blasting off on a rocket. The new electric energy brought to this album is balanced out by an equal amount of the fingerpicking prog-folk and meditative acoustic ballads that have been developing in his music since the 90’s. While I will always love his more melancholy, nocturnal records that sound like he’s lost in a forest somewhere, I welcome the fiery energy of Ascent.