Between The Cracks: Essential Releases You Need To Hear

We’re a little late with this week’s mini guide but here for your listening enjoyment is our latest ‘Between The Cracks’. As per usual no lengthy write-ups as who reads those anyway? We keep it short and to the point because you’re here to listen to the music! Happy listening – and don’t forget to hit the links and support the artists.

Tenderlonious – Ragas from Lahore – improvisations with Jaubi

The prolific Tenderlonious has yet another new project in the shape of Ragas from Lahore. Marking his fifth release of the year so far the record follows on from his highly acclaimed, three-track (sold out) limited edition 10″ vinyl release of Tender in Lahore ‘from earlier this year. Recorded last April over one day in Lahore, Pakistan with instrumental quartet Jaubi, the suite of improvised ragas found on the album is the result of that recording session. The consistent quality of his recordings is just off the scale – another essential release from Tenderlonious that you need in your collection.


Jonny Nash & Teguh Permana – Poe

Amsterdam-based Melody As Truth label owner Jonny Nash returns with a new collaborative album with Indonesian musician and Tarawangsawelas member Teguh Permana. Recorded throughout March this year together they created ‘Poe’, a gorgeous five-song collection of ambient soundscapes that soothes and mesmerises in equal measures. Poe’, meaning ‘Days’ in Sundanese, is a meditation on death and rebirth as reflected in the passing of time and the changing of the seasons. This album is the audio balm needed to soothe a troubled mind. Lovely stuff.


Jahari Masamba Unit – Pardon My French

A new album from Madlib is always worth investigating. On Pardon My French he hooks up with Karriem Riggins. Speaking about their style the duo share “We would have called it spiritual jazz, but Phil Ranelin told us to call it Black classical music.” They serve hip-hop and jazz music, where the groove is constant and their creative imaginations endless. You won’t be able to stop your feet, head and everything else from moving! As the French say belle musique!


Group Rhoda – Passing Shades

Mara Barenbaum aka Group Rhoda returns to Dark Entries. Passing Shades marks the Oakland-based electronic producer’s second solo album on Dark Entries, and is the third time Barenbaum has collaborated with the label previously on the Max & Mara LP’ Less Ness’ in 2013 and the Group Rhoda LP ‘Wilderless’ in 2017. The 8-song album finds her exploring the metaphysics of loss and the transient essence of the material world. Stylistically, Barenbaum pairs synthesiser-laden symphonics, four-to-the-floor inflections, and cosmic musings with her striking tones. Recommended listening for those who like their darkwave tropical and their industrial soft.



cktrl – Robyn

London imprint Touching Bass are on a roll, and this EP from cktrl might be the labels best offering to date. That in its self is saying something as Demae’s full-length Life Works Out…Usually and Clever Austin’s debut solo LP Pareidolia’ are both genuinely unique and brilliant. This four-song EP sees cktrl working with the likes of the amazingly talented Duval Timothy, lb Kamara (creative direction), Coby Sey, Shirley Tetteh and Purple Ferdinand to create a vital exploration of contemporary-classical music from the black perspective. A gorgeous fusion of modern classical and jazz that you need to hear. Sheer joy from start to finish.


Dave De Rose – ACTIVATE

Talk about on a roll; Dave De Rose blesses us with his fourth release of the year. ACTIVATE is a genuinely intriguing EP that is full of invention, quirkiness and surprise. Across four tracks he covers a dazzling array of styles and tones – including the delicate alt-electro pop of ‘Proof’ which we premiered on the site. Never one to travel along well-trodden musical paths Dave De Rose continues to keep listeners on their toes. Definitely a record you need to spend some quality time with.


John Jeffrey – Passage

Lovely, unwinding EP that is perfect Sunday morning listening. Great stuff from drummer and multi-instrumentalist John Jeffrey who is augmented by guest musicians and engineer Colin Stewart, in his quest for creating something meditative and spiritual. The result is four shimmering instrumentals that mix new age jazz, delicate ambience and warm Americana to good effect. Headphones recommended.


The Vernon Spring – The Vernon Spring

Sam Beste is The Vernon Spring. The solo adventure of the producer who you’ll know from his work with Hejira, soulstress Tawiah, and string duo Fran & Flora to name a few. The sound – layered piano pieces, stripped-back beats and studio experimentation of the highest order. Please do yourself a favour and check it out now!



R-kay – The Escape (ft. GeeFree, Ayeisha Raquel & Lex Amor)

It’s been a while since we recommended some UK hip hop, but the laidback and smooth sounds of new R-Kay track has us hitting the repeat button. The neo-soul and jazz-tinged backdrop is well crafted, and the rhymes by guest collaborators GeeFree and Lex Amor are the icing on the sweet-tasting cake.


Ayar – Lux

New track ‘Lux’ from East London lyricist Ayar, has pretty much been on repeat since it graced our ears last week. Take a listen now and take notice of its reflective and relatable lyrics. Check his excellent previous offerings for more uniquely refreshing hip-hop that likes to deviate from the expected norm. 


Four more worth your ears… 

EABS – Discipline of Sun Ra

Scrimshire – Believers Vol. 1

Allysha Joy – Light it Again 

Raúl Monsalve y Los Forajidos – Bichos

CF Smith

Permeating your ears with good music.

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