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The most beautiful album of the year

Alabaster DePlume takes the suitcase labelled “jazz” on a trip around the globe. He opens it up in various corners of the world – for forty minutes, we delve into melodies as if taken straight from the Ethiopiques stage, set sail for the Far East and towards Japanese Min’yo folk, only to return to Europe along the path of Celtic music.


On “Nigunim” Bastarda lead us through their world with profound reverence, far away from the profane, maintaining the narrative potential of the nigunim. Yet the most important thing is that they are able to convey the full emotional load of this timeless music in their own inimitable style.

Intergenerational dialogues

Lonker See’s “Hamza” shows an entirely new side of the band – yet one that’s entirely consistent with their earlier work. In turn, while the meeting of three musicians from Bydgoszcz is no less surprising, the result is completely different to what they’ve been doing so far.

What a girl wants

Underground music skilfully takes apart the image of a sweet pop girl posturing in music videos. And not just that: it also sends a clear signal to all members of society who face discrimination because of their sex, origin or sexual orientation.

Never-ending processions

“Processions” is a contemplative journey through folk music, a lesson in deep and close listening. Because you do have to listen closely to it, capture the sounds, their details, try to discern all the hidden layers. It’s an invitation to deep listening: this is escapist music, you have to let it play out, catch your ear in a trance

Duos for drums and bass

Last weeks saw the release of two records that may serve as a brilliant example here. Llovage is a peculiar amalgam of ideas and sounds, whose range of uses is as broad as that of the title herb, whereas Black Myths are all about reflecting the emotions, revolt and anger of the African American community through music.