Jazzcore is one of these things that’s really, really good, but that doesn’t get a ton of attention, and doesn’t get a ton of releases either! It nonetheless covers a wide range of sounds, from the improvised to the purely written, from prog-adjacent to jazz-adjacent to… a lot of other things! It’s a great genre, and here’s my best picks for 2021.
Number Five: Skeletonized Quartet – Future Shock
Skeletonized has been around for some time, and they’ve been quite consistent with releases! Putting out a few releases every year at least! With Future Shock, you can hear their … Read more
Improvisation is often seen as inseparable from jazz. Sure, you often have to improvise in jazz, but improvisation is not bound to any one genre, and I’m going to prove that to you. Here are my favourite improvised pieces of music from 2021!
Number Five: i.o – The Complete 2021 Releases
Taken together, Blasted Sentinel, No Guardians for Rusted Remains, and The Same as My Red add up to an insane 2 309 minutes! That’s about 38 hours and a half! And before you ask: yes, I listened through it all. Not in one go, I paused for … Read more
Folk is the music for the people, from the people. And as our planet is pretty big, there are uncountably many different sorts of “folk” music. So many, in fact, that my top 5 cannot possibly cover all of the immense variety of sounds there are. Nevertheless, it does cover some decent part of it, and so here are the five best folk albums from 2021 in my opinion!
Number Five: Nika Mo – Of Cloven Hoof in Honey
On Of Cloven Hoof in Honey, Australian singer Nika Mo explores many of the lesser known Grimm tales, and turns … Read more
Avant-garde black metal is when expectations are defied, challenged. The listener is a gladiator fighting an arena full of wolves, bears, and lions. So, let’s see which albums managed to kill me this year.
Number Five: Issolei – Devouring Current
Devouring Current was released in two parts, but I’ll take it whole. The album is filled with intricate, banger riffs that are only at home on the fringes. While the album is more in line with the norms of the genre than the others on this list, it does such a good job of it that I could not let … Read more
Comprising Canadian cellist Raphael Weinroth-Browne and Iranian kamanche player Shahriyar Jamshidi, Kamancello is the fruit of collaborative improvisation, with the dynamic skill sets of each player bouncing off each other in unique and enchanting ways. Weinroth-Browne has, in a sense, the more challenging job of delicately balancing low-end rhythmic richness with melodic lead performance and harmonization; Jamshidi, with all his talents, is restricted to the higher range of his kamanche (think Persian violin) and thus contributes almost exclusively higher leads and harmonies. The duo juggles their three modes (kamanche leading, cello leading, dual harmony leads) with precision and aplomb. Coming … Read more