Between The Cracks: Essential Releases You May Have Missed

With so much good music coming through thick and fast, it’s easy for albums to drop online and go overlooked. 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! Check out our weekly mini-guide below and if you like what you hear, click the links and support the artists.


Jennifer Souza – Pacífica Pedra Branca

Musician and singer-songwriter Jennifer Souza blesses us with a new album titled Pacífica Pedra Branca. The album blends jazz, melancholic folk, indie rock, and soft pop in a modest fashion, with every song, lingering long in the memory. In short, this is a magical album that you don’t want to miss.


Juçara Marçal – Delta Estácio Blues

Juçara Marçal reimagines samba, tropicalia, maracatu, and more on the stunning Delta Estácio Blues, which was partly inspired by Danny Brown’s 2017 album Atrocity Exhibition. Fiery and passionate, Delta Estácio Blues was written in an oppressive political climate when Brazil suffered from the Covid pandemic. It’s a record filled with pain, anguish, chaos, and anger. Kiko Dinucci, one of Brazil’s most innovative artists, co-produced this splendidly eclectic collection. I can’t stop listening to this album


Amanda Whiting – Lost in Abstraction

Love at first sight. You won’t want to miss Amanda Whiting as she shows off her hypnosis-inducing harp skills on this latest album for Jazzman Records, featuring evocative spiritual jazz and classical stylings. ‘Lost’, ‘Too Much’, ‘Got It’ and ‘Up There’ are tracks that will brighten your mood if you are feeling a bit down. I definitely recommend spending some time with this album.


Emma Johnson’s Gravy Boat – Worry Not

We thought we’d already shared this album, but apparently not (or worry not), so this is the debut album from Emma Johnson’s Gravy Boat, a cinematic quintet led by Leeds based saxophonist and composer Emma Johnson. An album full of zesty jazz fusion compositions bursting with vibrant colour, this album draws inspiration from hard bop to modern tenor/guitar-led quintets. Whatever you do, don’t miss the gravy boat.


Sushma Soma – HOME

Sushma Soma’s second album, HOME, explores sounds from our everyday lives that impact our environment. She attempts to express the interconnectedness between man and nature in seven tracks through her unique aural style. Bright music for dark times.


Michał Jan & Immortal Onion – Screens

Poland and the Netherlands connect on this fascinating album. Screens is a collaboration between saxophonist Michał Jan Ciesielski and progressive jazz trio Immortal Onion. The six-track project is a culmination of a collaborative effort between four artists renowned for their distinctive styles and sounds, reinventing electronic jazz fusion. Beautiful, fresh, and endlessly listenable.


East Portal – East Portal

East Portal stitches together seven atmospheric yet restrained tracks inspired by Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Ryuichi Sakamoto, and seasonal releases by Jussell, Prymek, Sage, and Shiroishi under Fuubutsushi. It’s an adventurous trip into ambient, deconstructed jazz soundscapes. Whack on your headphones and press play.


Širom – The Liquified Throne of Simplicity 

On their new album, Širom takes the borderless, collective spirit of groups like Don Cherry’s Organic Music Society and Art Ensemble of Chicago and combines it into one transportive and kaleidoscope musical collection that makes boundless transitions from minimalist to expansive. With acoustic and often handmade instruments, the Slovenian “imaginary folk” trio has released its most epic and transportive album.



Forager Records – Sky Dust Drifter

Born out of isolation and deep introspection, Forager Records has released another stellar collection. ‘Sky Dust Drifter’ is an album of obscure tracks taken from private press AOR, psychedelic folk and soft rock 45s and LPs between 1973 and 1980. It’s a must-have if you loved Numero Group’s ‘Seafaring Strangers’ comp and have been enjoying the Praise Poems series.



Shabakah – Afrikan Culture

A meditative yet energetic mood emerges on Shabakah Hutchings’ debut solo EP, Afrikan Culture. The project features Shabakah using the Shakuhachi (a Japanese end-blown flute), a Kora (a stringed instrument used extensively in West Africa), and a Mbira (a “thumb piano” from Africa) alongside his trusted saxophone. Every time I listen to this record, it gets better and better. Beautiful songs, beautifully recorded. More of this, please!




CF Smith

Permeating your ears with good music.

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