2019 Favorites

Just going to list them.

This said "Ryan" a few minutes ago.


Aesop Rock and Tobacco - Malibu Ken (Rhymesayers Entertainment)
Angelo De Augustine - Tomb (Asthmatic Kitty)
Billy Woods & Kenny Segal - Hiding Places (Backwoodz Studioz)
Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah - Ancestral Recall (Ropeadope)
Devendra Banhart - Ma (Nonesuch Records Inc.)
Fennesz - Agora (Touch)
FKA Twigs - MAGDALENE (Young Turks)
Giovanni Guidi - Avec Le Temps (ECM)
HTRK - Venus in Leo (Ghostly)
OHIO - Upward, Broken, Always (12k)
Pascal Gallois Conducts Prague Modern - Gérard Grisey, Fabien Lévy (Stradivarius)
Rafael Anton Irisarri - Solastalgia (Room40)
Stenny - Upsurge (Illian Tape)
Steve Lehman Trio, Craig Taborn - The People I Love (Pi Recordings)


ATLAS (Monk, Sharon) at Walt Disney Concert Hall
Barbara Hannigan & Stephen Gosling - Jumalattaret (Zorn) at Libbey Bowl
FKA Twigs at Palace Theater
Yuja Wang, Dudamel, LA Phil - Must the Devil Have All the Good Tunes? (Adams) at Hollywood Bowl

we still do this

so I think this is the last one before year-end

Quirke - Steal a Golden Hail (Whities)

unfortunately-named does it again

Stenny - Upsurge (Ilian Tape)

when do I get the IT experience?

also love the 2LS bit

10, finally

I thought I'd never get here.

Hemlock Ernst & Kenny Segal - Back at the House (Ruby Yacht)

so we should know that "& Kenny Segal" is a... green... flag

I read a really weird review of this album.

Daniil Trifonov, The Philadelphia Orchestra, Yannick Nézet-Séguin - Destination Rachmaninov: Arrival (Deutsche Grammophon)

I submit to Blockbuster Video.

Pita - Get On (Editions Mego)

doing the sounds in all the ears

Carla dal Forno - Look Up Sharp (Kallista)

the right vibes

FKA Twigs - Magdalene (Young Turks)

! expect to see this again in a few weeks

Kindohm - Meme Booth (Conditional)

here, do this

Philip Thomas - Morton Feldman Piano (Another Timbre)

thank you to stores for highlighting this; looks like there's a lot of great stuff to check out on this label

Pelada - Movimiento Para Cambio (PAN)

I probably wouldn't roll in English.

Grischa Lichtenberger - re: phgrp (reworking »Consequences« by Philipp Gropper's PHILM) (Raster)

interesting turn and use of materials

Brother Ali & Evidence - Secrets & Escapes (Rhymesayers Entertainment)

baseball been very good to me

My shift and N keys are messed up. Apparently Apple will fix, but when can I go?

yes, many

Carl Stone - Himalaya (Unseen Worlds)

"Ah yes some classic fuckery," says a friend.

I particularly like the closing droners.

Claire M Singer - Trian (Touch)

I loved Fairge. I love A Different Place + Solas + Eilean + Fairge even more.

speaking of

Steve Lehman Trio, Craig Taborn - The People I Love (Pi Recordings)

all really good, qplay drums

Devendra Banhart - Ma (Nonesuch Records Inc.)

aching, singalong, I got here late. microphones

J. Albert - Wake Me Up (Hypercolour)

unique and goes

Jennifer Koh - LIMITLESS (Cedille Records)

awesome collection of duets with the composers. extended

In the words of edoardo ballerini,
here, watch the tape

Luke Howard - The Sand That Ate the Sea (Mercury Kx)

haunting as cover

don't know aesthetic exercise

OHIO - Upward, Broken, Always (12k)

liner notes say it

Sylvie Courvoisier & Mark Feldman - Time Gone Out (Intakt Records)


Telefon Tel Aviv - Dreams Are Not Enough (Ghostly)

heavy, blossoms, airship, don't talk to me about lovelorn

Tyshawn Sorey & Marilyn Crispell - The Adornment of Time (Pi Recordings)

and moreinter with quiet

and here, do this too


Little Brother - May the Lord Watch (EMPIRE)

what I came for


The Humble Bee & Offthesky - All Other Voices Gone, Only Yours Remains (IIKKI)

sound sources saturate soft deep

Datach'i - Bones (Timesig)

genreperfect feel

JACK Quartet - Filigree: Music of Hannah Lash (New Focus Recordings)

it's all there

sound and notesguide

bow pluck strum gliss

match meet counter solo

and all here

Ariel Kalma & Sarah Davachi - Intemporel (black sweat records)

but trance

Siavash Amini - Serus (ROOM40)

this could have happened when bill pullman walked into that dark hall

unique ones pt II

Saul Williams - Encrypted & Vulnerable (Pirates Blend)

keeps rotating, not like other

John Zorn - Tractatus Musico-Philosophicus (Tzadik)


Say I love...

[I'm telling myself that] when this gets to the end I'll try to have things to say.


Black to Comm - Before After (Thrill Jockey)

sustains interest in surprising ways

Joshua Sabin - Sutarti (Subtext Recordings)

sounds become sounds, great

perhaps instant finalist

just read more about what's up here, cool, recommended (redundant)

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma - Tracing Back the Radiance (Mexican Summer)

extreme power noise

or like chillmoods bass clarinet I can't remember which


Rafael Anton Irisarri - Solastalgia (Room40)

tone, grain, distortion, saturation, light

John Zorn - Nove Cantici Per Franceso D'Assisi (Tzadik)

better and better

Seattle Symphony, Ludovic Morlot - John Luther Adams: Become Desert (Cantaloupe)

"close your eyes and listen to the singing of the light"

Anthony Naples - Fog FM (ANS)


Felicia Atkinson - The Flower and And The Vessel (Shelter Press)

interior buzz


I cannot tell a lie.


Tim Hecker - Anoyo (Kranky)

like more than konoyo, intriguing melodies & atmospheres, quiet instead of saturated, narrow frequencies play over grainy sub-harmonics

Helm - Chemical Flowers (PAN)

enter sound world, world about sound, environments for the curious

Liam Byrne - Concrete (Bedroom Community)

hear and feel the instrument, compositions from 1500s and 2010s together and contemporary in continuum, past through present

Kassel Jaeger - Le lisse et le Strié (Latency)

sound enviro

Jamila Woods - Legacy! Legacy! (Jagjaguwar)


one in

Régis Renouard Larivière - Contrée (Recollection GRM)

"Through a direct concrete symphonic attunement, one can hope to collapse time and fold it back on itself, so as to finally free oneself from hard, successive, deadening durations and arrive at that aeration and ventilation that makes time seem holey, open to circulation."

Clearing House

I've been busy.

Fennesz - Agora (Touch)

four expansive deep dives, as usual, the best

Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah - Ancestral Recall (Ropeadope)

This doesn't sound like anything I've heard before, though lines of influence and tradition can be identified from all over. Very cool album. Combines a bunch of sounds in a way that's original and super fresh when this approach might in most cases sound... otherwise.

Giovanni Guidi - Avec Le Temps (ECM)

expressive, beautiful, lyrical

This video is weird.

JAB - Erg Herbe (Shelter Press)

He wanted to make "nice, strange and thoughtful music," and here it is. Flute environments FTW.

Žibuoklė Martinaitytė, FortVio - In Search of Lost Beauty (Starkland)

amazing piece of deep texture/thick atmosphere that I’d love to hear live

also now timely

Kilchhofer Anklin - Moto Perpetuo (Marionette)

excellent album, really interesting imperfect rhythms

reading now about the setup it's pretty interesting

need to get more into Marionette

Pacific Breeze: Japanese City Pop, AOR, & Boogie 1976-1986 (Light in the Attic)

got hands on this fantastic compilation. have been exploring more of the individuals (nanako sato playing in background as I type)

Sarah Davachi - Pale Bloom (W.25TH / Superior Viaduct)

drifting, melting piano and tones

dream music

KÁRYYN - The Quanta Series (Mute)

fantastic meeting of vocals and electronic music, w lyrical density/intensity to work through on repeat listens. several tracks released before

András Schiff - Franz Schubert: Sonatas & Impromptus (ECM)

Ever since jokes about "total dedication to Schubert" I'm going more and more in. Beautiful recording of this familiar music, on an almost-familiar instrument. Interesting to read about the pF and listen for the differences.


MED & Guilty Simpson - Child of the Jungle (bang ya head)

solid album with outstanding beats / feel across the beats, localcast

Quelle Chris - Guns (Mello Music Group)

guns suck, cool style, creative all around

Billy Woods & Kenny Segal - Hiding Places (Backwoodz Studioz)

great everything, KS on top, admittedly a bit obscure/murky, takes some circles and genius

can somebody watch luca may 8 so we can go to this show?

chillout room

Jonny Nash- Make a Wilderness (Music from Memory)

beautiful ambient. textures, chords, melody; like cendre?

quick... 4

Chris Potter - Circuits (Edition Records)

not my typical sound of preference, but done so well. of course these guys are great


Pascal Gallois Conducts Prague Modern - Gérard Grisey, Fabien Lévy (Stradivarius)

bassoonbreathtime. first time hearing vortex temporum, amazing


Julian Lage - Love Hurts (Mack Avenue)

Julian Lage makes magic. Heard much of this at the outstanding live show. Watch the videos.


Simon Scott - Soundings (Touch)

Love what SS has been doing. Another Touch album to dissolve toward.

first blood

Aesop Rock and Tobacco - Malibu Ken (Rhymesayers Entertainment)

A quick pleasure, dense as expected. Always enjoy breaking apart the images and references as well as I might, checking up on a few online and letting some remain mysteries. Fresh soundmatch.


Akira Rabelais - cxvi (Boomkat Editions)

Soft speech, quiet drones, endless piano decay. fin et suite


Angelo De Augustine - Tomb (Asthmatic Kitty Records)

beautiful, quiet songs


Autechre - AE_LIVE (Warp)

It's interesting to listen to live set after live set from the same tour... and then listen to them all again. There of course emerges recognized passages and elements, but there isn't one (studio) reference to know exactly how it canonically goes, how this sounds different from the next. What emerges is a fuzzy composite ideal, and each new listen has its standout moments. Is it the same moments from the same sets that stand out each time? No idea. Used the graphic for the one I first heard in 2015.


British Murder Boys - Fire in the Still Air (Downwards)

The best BMB document I know. Hard and on-point.


Croatian Amor - Isa (Posh Isolation)

Enigmatic, dark sounds, a bit future-exotic. The AI folk are everywhere these days, friendly and scary.


Ex:Re (4AD)

Another sad and intimate one, great lyrics/songs.


Lee Gamble - In a Paraventral Scale (Hyperdub)

the edge


Mikron - Severance (CPU Records)

not the edge, but sometimes things are just right


Saba Alizadeh - Scattered Memories (Karlrecords)

Kamancheh meets texture extensions.


2018 Favorites

I started with paragraphs then realized I'll only tolerate fragments.

These are my favorite albums this year:

Andrew Cyrille - Lebroba (ECM)

Frisell's the perfect complement to Smith's lead voice.

Autechre - NTS Sessions (Warp Records)

8 hours manifold Autechre; gonks stand out

Black Thought - Streams of Thought (1&2) (Human Re Sources)

Ninth hard loops, Remi soul songs, Black Thought super solid; replayable

Busdriver - Electricity Is on Our Side (Temporary Whatever)

sprawling but connected dots; hard to choose highlights; creative/dense with ideas

ERP - Afterimage (Forgotten Future)

nothing new but perfect

Helios - Veriditas (Ghostly International)

become alpine vapor in morning glow

Hprizm - Magnetic Memory (Don Giovanni Records)

I need an Asia remix with everyone on it.

Ian William Craig - Thresholder (130701)

voice as artifact, voice as endless presence

International Contemporary Ensemble, Anna Thorvaldsdottir - AEQUA (Sono Luminus)

textures, breaths, ancient melodies, heaviest sounds

anyone have 9.1?

Jakob Bro - Bay of Rainbows (ECM)

beautiful surfaces, depths and melodies; evening song most memorable from show

Jerry Quickley - (american) FOOL (Temporary Whatever)

word and sound in inventive, expressive mesh of stories

Low - Double Negative (Sub Pop)

very cool sound/style; seems everyone liked this

M. Geddes Gengras - Light Pipe (ROOM40)

echoes, FAX, mystery, space, ocean, endless

Myra Melford's Snowy Egret - The Other Side of Air (Firehouse 12 Records)

captivating interplay

Oliver Coates - Shelley's on Zenn-la (RVNG Intl.)

great beats and textures, like this direction, plaid moments, where was this on lists

Skee Mask - Compro (Illian Tape)

beautiful detailed production, plenty of easy references (BoC, LTJ); does loving this over, say, safe in the hands of love (or a handful of others I could name) make me old?

Sylvie Courvoisier Trio - D'Agala (Intakt Records)

awesome trio, love the tidal crescendos of activity, when can I see live

Yves De Mey - Bleak Comfort (Latency)

best sound stories... Actually this one in particular has me thinking a bit on the topic of logic/functionality in music and composition, extending a bit to the arts and thinking/culture in general. Perhaps I'll take a moment to post this musing in a couple of weeks (probably not).

5 Favorite Performances

I'm amazed by how many shows I failed to attend from my calendar. In any case...

  • Ojai everything... maybe With Abandon?
  • Zorn/Anderson/Riley @ The Chapel (possibly somewhat for the fact of it, though it was great)
  • Saul Williams & Mivos Quartet @ Ford Theatre
  • Julian Lage Trio @ Lodge Room
  • Estonian Phil. Chamber Choir & Tallinn Chamber Orchestra @ Royce Hall (Adam's Lament++)

final installment

and one of these might appear in my next post

Kankyo Ongaku: Japanese Ambient, Environmental & New Age Music (1980-1990) (Light in the Attic)

The title says it. Great compilation, comes with a great book. Nice package.

Get it


Joël Grare - Des pas sous la neige (Alpha)

Want more bells? Do you like bells? I like bells. Would you like to see George Wendt playing the bells? Well hell's bells, somebody had to do it. This is also cool.

ERP - Afterimage (Forgotten Future)


3 unlike

HTRK - Dying of Jealousy (Ghostly International)

HTRK is better each time.

space, delays, tones, need more

Anna Thorvaldsdottir & ICE - AEQUA (Sono Luminus)

light dark ice air dread serenity and breathing and breathing IDK but likely AOTY group so will have to think of more

Yuja Wang - The Berlin Recital (DG)

the LA concert was canceled, so at least I have this

also, while she obvs. has a fanbase, I feel like YW is the most-hated musician on social media..."

home stretch or almost

soon it'll be December

not sure how I'll find time to go over everything

Shad - A Short Story About War (Secret City Records)

less and less interest in most rap, but this is actually interesting

favorite: The Revolution/The Establishment (especially the establishment)

Andrew Cyrille - Lebroba (ECM)

Cyrille, Smith and Frisell sound great together. The music is textural and contemplative but also melodic, which is an attempt at saying something but could really describe any music that's not hyperactive and has pitches. "Really nice."

Demdike Stare - Passion (Modern Love)

tear it apart, send it a signal-fed gate, rip it up. there's definitely still life here. curious about the cover. murk

Alexander Lonquich - Schubert 1828 (Outhere Music)

"total dedication to schubert"

Richard Devine - Sort/Lave (Timesig)

a welcome album return, sounds torn to shreds, from the sculptural to the track/narrative-oriented. Off-topic, but I loved that Lipswitch jacket back in high school.

Saloli - The Deep End (Kranky)

new age lullaby keyboard jams

Myra Melford's Snowy Egret - The Other Side of Air (Firehouse 12 Records)

A+ come to LA

Ian William Craig - Thresholder (Fat Cat Records)

grainy noisy patchy emotive edge

a bunch

M. Geddes Gengras - Light Pipe

trip and trip


Subtle Degrees - A Dance that Empties (New Amsterdam)

Hypnotic sax & drum patterns from Travis Laplante & Gerald Cleaver.

Witnessed without knowledge of the project at Blue Whale a few weeks ago and was transported.

Yes, that’s all acoustic/played.

Forest Drive West - Apparitions (Livity Sound)

oh, right, I love techno, I forgot

just the essentials

Vril - Anima Mundi (Delsin)

speaking of which

Delsin redo

some unbeatable repetitive blissouts

Hotel Neon - Means of Knowing (ARCHIVES)

and speaking of blissing

Kenny Segal - Happy Little Trees

vibe. man behind some of the best//\\on his own

Eli Keszler - Stadium (Shelter Press)

very cool percussion, pads, bass

this morning listening to it again in the car I was thinking “this clicky thing right now reminds me of the drummer at the oneohtrix point never show on monday,” and now that I’m looking up a few background pieces of information that won’t really inform what’s here anyway I see this: "whilst this year he has toured with Oneohtrix Point Never’s MYRIAD live show”

so yeah, that's the guy

that was a pretty strange show btw... and (of course) completely different from the Stone show... but I guess that was 7 years ago


Fatima - And Yet It's All Love (Eglo Records)

like the songs and production. songs

Quatuor Voce - Itinéraire (Alpha)

really enjoyable / interesting quartet music pointing to/from different directions. alpha has been great

a bunch of stuff finally

If I followed my normal rules I'd still be stuck in revisions, but I adjusted the flow to clear some items out.
Some favorites.

Helios - Veriditas (Ghostly International)

Hey guys, let's make some gorgeous music.
Ok, cool, sounds good.

This One (ECM)

Three great musicians on an intimate recording. Beautiful, (mostly) calm music that intensifies in waves. Can't wait to see them next month.

JK Flesh - New Horizon (Electric Deluxe)

super heavy, lots of grain, has its waterfall moment (to sound like I was born yesterday). really good

Oliver Coates - Shelley's on Zenn-La (RVNG Intl.)

freshers. steps into more dance terrain with a unique sounding album on idm/techno tips but for anyone

Barbara Hannigan & Reinbert de Leeuw - Vienna: Fin de Siècle (Alpha)

Romantic, nature-infused (except for mr G who skips it), star-lit poetry, set to the music of a place and time. Schoenberg, Webern, Berg, Zemlinsky, Alma Mahler, Wolf. I might not be aware of this if not for BH's upcoming role but have really enjoyed listens both with and without the translations "in hand." recommend

Low - Double Neative(Sub Pop)

Washes of words, guitar, and textures. I love the weaving of not only melodic motifs but technical / timbral motifs (in the application of filters/distortion etc). Carries a quality that reminds me of some of Sylvain Chauveau's music that I've liked. Apparently I'm late to the show.

not exactly denis lavant

Tim Hecker - Konoyo (Kranky)

brooding and detailed, not as fully-saturated-wash. he's good at {}---[]](


stephan mathieu - radiance
john zorn - book of beriah


Subscribe to RSS - releases