With so much good music coming through thick and fast, it’s easy for albums to drop online and go overlooked. Check out our weekly mini-guide to the essential releases you may have missed. Happy listening – and don’t forget to hit the links and support the artists.
ODD JAZZ – ODD JAZZ Vol 2
I’ve had this album on my “must listen” pile for a few months, so I’m glad I finally gave it a go. ODD JAZZ is a unique project that brings together a group of talented Finnish musicians to create a collection of captivating compositions. Recorded at Hämeenlinna, an all-analog studio in Southern Finland, each track showcases the talents of the performers and their ability to collaborate in different formations to produce a sound that is both innovative and enriching. With a focus on exploring the unknown and pushing the boundaries of the genre, ODD JAZZ is a must-listen for anyone who appreciates the beauty of improvised music and the limitless possibilities of creative expression.
Parasite Jazz – Parasite Jazz
Imagine a blend of space rock, motorik-infused-dub, medieval folk, and quirky trance no me neither but lucky for us, the collective known as Parasite Jazz has come up with precisely that. The group’s ability to seamlessly weave disparate sound elements is a testament to their musical talent and creativity, resulting in a one-of-a-kind listening experience. Fancy something edgy, new, and exciting? Why not listen to Parasite Jazz and discover the magic of this captivating collective?
Lorrenzo Morresi & Le Isole – Pop Flop
Here’s one for lovers of classic library music from the 70s, but one that fuses blaxploitation funk and contemporary electronica. 70s library music continues to inspire Lorenzo Morresi. His follow-up to ‘Cosmica Italiana’ is a collection of funky jazz-fusion jams that honour the sound of that era while taking it into adventurous and innovative territories. The result is an exciting and dynamic album that captures the era’s spirit, recorded with Luciano Cantone, aka Le Isole and a virtuoso ensemble of musicians. I highly recommend it.
Natural Information Society – Since Time Is Gravity
If you’re looking for something different and out of the ordinary, the new Natural Information Society album might be the one for you. The album features 11 members and draws on jazz composition, world music, and rhythmic minimalism. Combining the improvisational spirit of jazz with the structure and form of a more extended narrative, the ensemble led by multi-instrumentalist Joshua Abrams creates a captivating listening experience. Abrams, who plays the giumbri, a three-stringed bass lute that is fundamental to Moroccan Gnawa music, describes the band’s sound as “rooted in jazz composition, world music and indie-rock eclecticism”. Highly recommended.
Gayance – Mascarade
For her debut album, Gayance joins forces with Rhythm Section for an album that moves between poetic, soulful odes to the past, accounts of the Afro-diasporic feminine experience, and playfully energetic dance grooves. The album explores Gayance’s heritage and identity, reflecting her upbringing in Canada and her Haitian roots. Gayance’s sound combines house, jazz, broken beat, and electronic elements, creating an intriguing and captivating blend. The result is an album that is both profoundly personal and highly danceable.
James Holden – Imagine This Is A High Dimensional Space Of All Possibilities
After experimenting with free jazz and Moroccan Gnawa music, James Holden revisits the rave music he grew up listening to. The project blends dance music forms like Balearic, IDM, and trance with organic sounds. His fourth album is a sonic exploration of musical genres, creating a distinct soundscape where tracks build patiently, offering an immersive listening experience. His production style is recognised for its delicate balance of complexity and accessibility, making this perfect for both the dance floor and the home listener. By combining the classic rave music of his youth with his distinctive style, Holden creates a modern take on the early 1990s dance music scene.
Skins – Never Cursed ( ஒேபா சபகபடதிைல)
This is an album called ‘Never Cursed’, by an artist called Skins, and you need to hear it! The debut record from the London-based Tamil-Canadian producer sits at the intersection of Alex Zhang Hungtai, James Ferraro and Yves Tumor. Blending elements of hip-hop, ambient noise, dream pop and shoegaze into moody drum machine edits and hazy soundscapes, this is an easy album to get lost in – a gloomy, solemn journey full of subtle complexities that rewards multiple listens. This is a sound world we’re completely smitten with – we have a feeling it’ll be on repeat. Another wonderous offering from the mystifying O___o? imprint.
Genji Sawai – Sowaka
The classic LP “Sowaka” by Genji Sawai, featuring Midori Takada and Bill Laswell, is reissued for the first time. In 1984, Sowaka displayed a cutting-edge sound that blended dub, world, jazz, electro, hip-hop, and avant-garde music. An extraordinarily sought-after and singular piece of music from the golden era of Japanese music, a perfect match of some of the most experimental artists of that time. Well recommended.