Best of Nu Jazz 2021


Nu jazz is a fuzzy category. It’s based on jazz, loosely or strongly, and usually features electronic music influence, and can also have hints of R&B, hip-hop, and other genres. I think it’s a fantastic genre, and here are my favourite albums of 2021!


Number Five: Portico Quartet – Monument


Art in the Age of Automation was one of my favourite albums from 2017, and Portico are back with yet another really strong album in Monument. This electro-jazz album is full of highlights and filled with delights, and if you missed it (what are you doing?), now’s the time … Read more

Best of Afrobeat 2021

Welcome to the first of this year’s best of lists, curated by yours truly! As you might have noticed by now, this year is going to be separated by genre, or style, or attribute… it’s rather inconsistent between categories! On top of that, some categories are rather spread-out within themselves! I mean, there’s more than one kind of “hardcore” music out there for example, and I’m trying my best to keep my categories straight, but it’s often difficult to decide in which category such and such album should go, especially with the miscegenous music I usually listen to! Nevertheless, in … Read more

Haolin Munk – Planestasia Suite

The Music

The Words

Jazz and hip hop are two proximate worlds, but it’s a rare treat to see them interconnect. Fortunately, Ontario, Canada’s Haolin Munk quartet is here to settle the score. In what sounds like a softer version of Montréal’s New Apple Taste, without the noise and the rock, their science-fiction concept album – who else gets hints of Clipping.? – is an astonishing jazz fusion release filled with tasty grooves, decadent solo sections, and an overall spotless arrangement work.

Since the Haolin Munk quartet is an instrumental entity, each vocal track exists thanks to the help of … Read more

Art the Band – Snacks

I’ve written a line or two about Toronto’s Art the Band, last year, when I found out about their full-length, Boost Unavailable. I was impressed and awed by it, so it’s with great anticipation and matching expectations that I’ve approached their most recent release, the Snacks EP. I wasn’t aware that it was coming, so I was surprised, and, upon listening to it, was once again surprised. I have to say that I didn’t exactly recall what Art the Band was about, but Snacks quickly corrected this. The first and “Big Track” is a pretty standard jazz … Read more

Namby-Pamby Boy – Namby-Pamby Boy

Out in September but available for streaming now, Austrian Namby-Pamby Boy‘s self-titled third album aims at the no small task of transcending genres and categories. While not being outside of any pre-existing box, Namby-Pamby Boy is an album that breeds jazz, electronica, hip-hop, and rock together in a buffet of compositions. The ten-track, one-hour album goes from moody to energetic and offers plenty of interesting and powerful moments, thanks to the lush keyboards and meandering saxophone rocking the songs. The album will be out on September first through Babel Label.

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