Music Year 2019

Of course, it's too early for a year-end list. But as the proto-fascist organization of my youth insisted, one should always be prepared. For records in hand, * identifies an advance copy, ** something borrowed. Some albums released in previous years are included here, noted by a "-NN" (e.g., -18 for 2018) -- these are mostly imports or self-releases, often hard to figure out official dates, but they were unknown (to me, at least) before the current year.

I keep adding to the 2018 until the end of calendar 2019, especially where the record was known to exist in 2018 and I'm just getting around to it.

New Records

  1. Heroes Are Gang Leaders: The Amiri Baraka Sessions (Flat Langston's Arkeyes)
  2. Moppa Elliott: Jazz Band/Rock Band/Dance Band (Hot Cup, 2CD)
  3. Hayes Carll: What It Is (Dualtone) **
  4. James Brandon Lewis: An Unruly Manifesto (Relative Pitch)
  5. Carsie Blanton: Buck Up (So Ferocious) **
  6. Todd Snider: Cash Cabin Sessions, Vol. 3 (Aimless) **
  7. Liebman Rudolph & Drake: Chi (RareNoise) *
  8. Dave Rempis/Brandon Lopez/Ryan Packard: The Early Bird Gets (Aerophonic)
  9. Yugen Blakrok: Anima Mysterium (IOT) **
  10. Quinsin Nachoff's Flux: Path of Totality (Whirlwind, 2CD)
  11. Ill Considered: Ill Considered 6 (Ill Considered Music) **
  12. Robert Forster: Inferno (Tapete) **
  13. Mdou Moctar: Blue Stage Sessions (Third Man) **
  14. Stephan Thelen: Fractal Guitar (Moonjune)
  15. Ran Blake/Clare Ritter: Eclipse Orange (Zoning)
  16. Pet Shop Boys: Inner Sanctum (X2) **
  17. People Under the Stairs: Sincerely, the P (Piecelock 70) **
  18. Matt Brewer: Ganymede (Criss Cross) **
  19. Samantha Boshnack's Seismic Belt: Live in Santa Monica (Orenda)
  20. Leyla McCalla: Capitalist Blues (Jazz Village) **
  21. Benjamin Boone/Philip Levine: The Poetry of Jazz: Volume Two (Origin)
  22. Little Simz: Grey Area (Age 101) **
  23. Jason Ringenberg: Stand Tall (Courageous Chicken) **
  24. Tomeka Reid/Filippo Monico: The Mouser (Relative Pitch)
  25. Allison Miller's Boom Tic Boom: Glitter Wolf (The Royal Potato Family) **
  26. Art "Turk" Burton: Ancestral Spirits (T N' T Music)
  27. Kel Assouf: Black Tenere (Glitterbeat) **
  28. Dave: Psychodrama (Neighbourhood) **
  29. Our Native Daughters: Songs of Our Native Daughters (Smithsonian Folkways) **
  30. The David Berkman Sextet: Six of One (Palmetto)
  31. Scott Robinson: Tenormore (Arbors Jazz)
  32. Billy Mohler: Focus! (Make)
  33. Stephan Crump/Ingrid Laubrock/Cory Smythe: Channels (Intakt)
  34. Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba: Miri (OutHere) **
  35. Iro Haarla, Ulf Krokfors & Barry Altschul: Around Again: The Music of Carla Bley (TUM)


Records in hand, but which haven't yet been graded.

  • Juan Álamo & Marimjazzia: Ruta Panoramica (Summit)
  • Hiljaisuus: Kuzu (Astral Spirits/Aerophonic)
  • Larry Koonse: New Jazz Standards Vol. 4 (Summit)
  • Lisa Maxwell's Jazz Orchestra: Shiny! (Uncle Marvin Music)
  • Sam Ospovat: Ride Angles (Skirl)
  • Marcos Silva: Brasil: From Head to Toe (Green Egg)

Also Noted:

Records in hand, graded B+ or below, in alphabetical order within grade slots:

  • Aesop Rock & Tobacco: Malibu Ken (Rhymesayers) **
  • Chord Four: California Avant Garde (self-released)
  • The Coathangers: The Devil You Know (Suicide Squeeze) **
  • The Delines: The Imperial (El Cortez) **
  • Jordon Dixon: On! (self-released)
  • Stella Donnelly: Beware of the Dogs (Secretly Canadian) **
  • Steve Earle & the Dukes: Guy (New West) **
  • Yelena Eckemoff/Manu Katché: Colors (L&H Production)
  • Joe Fiedler: Open Sesame (Multiphonics Music)
  • Fidel Fourneyron: ¿Que Vola? (No Format) **
  • Larry Fuller: Overjoyed (Capri)
  • Julian Lage: Love Hurts (Mack Avenue) **
  • Jon Lundbom Big Five Chord: Harder on the Outside (Hot Cup)
  • Branford Marsalis Quartet: The Secret Between the Shadow and the Soul (Okeh) **
  • Wynton Marsalis: Bolden: Music From the Original Soundtrack (Blue Engine)
  • Dan McCarthy: Epoch (Origin)
  • Joe McPhee/John Butcher: At the Hill of James Magee (Trost) **
  • Dave Meder: Passage (Outside In Music)
  • Mekons: Deserted (Bloodshot) **
  • Mdou Moctar: Ilana: The Creator (Sahel Sounds) **
  • Jorge Nila: Tenor Time (Tribute to the Tenor Masters) (Ninjazz)
  • OGJB Quartet [Oliver Lake/Graham Haynes/Joe Fonda/Barry Altschul]: Bamako (TUM)
  • Ivo Perelman/Mat Maneri/Nate Wooley/Matthew Shipp: Strings 4 (Leo)
  • Jim Piela: Out of Orbit (Orenda)
  • Quelle Chris: Guns (Mello Music Group) **
  • Tom Rainey Trio With Mary Halvorson and Ingrid Laubrock: Combobulated (Intakt)
  • Joshua Redman Quartet: Come What May (Nonesuch) **
  • Alfredo Rodriguez/Pedrito Martinez: Duologue (Mack Avenue) **
  • Matthew Shipp Trio: Signature (ESP-Disk) [**]
  • Sir Babygirl: Crush on Me (Father/Daughter, EP) **
  • Jim Snidero: Waves of Calm (Savant) **
  • Alister Spence and Satoko Fujii Orchestra Kobe: Imagine Meeting You Here (Alister Spence Music)
  • Tiger Hatchery: Breathing in the Walls (ESP-Disk -18)
  • David Torn/Tim Berne/Ches Smith: Sun of Goldfinger (ECM) **
  • Warren Vaché: Songs Our Fathers Taught Us (Arbors) **
  • Anna Webber: Clockwise (Pi)
  • Dann Zinn: Day of Reckoning (Origin)
  • 2 Chainz: Rap or Go to the League (Gamebread/Def Jam) **
  • Charlotte Adigery: Zandoli (Deewee, EP) **
  • Laura Antonioli: The Constant Passage of Time (Origin)
  • Art Ensemble of Chicago: We Are on the Edge: A 50th Anniversary Celebration (Pi, 2CD)
  • Ehud Asherie Trio: Wild Man Blues (Capri)
  • Atomic: Pet Variations (Odin)
  • Michaël Attias: Ëchos La Nuit (Out of Your Head)
  • Allison Au Quartet: Wander Wonder (self-released) **
  • Bali Baby: Bubbles Bali (Billmania Media) **
  • Blu & Oh No: A Long Red Hot Los Angeles Summer Night (Native Sounds) **
  • Itamar Borochov: Blue Nights (Laborie Jazz)
  • Layale Chaker & Sarafand: Inner Rhyme (In a Circle)
  • Etienne Charles: Carnival: The Sound of a People Vol. 1 (Culture Shock Music) **
  • Romain Collin: Tiny Lights: Genesis (XM)
  • The Comet Is Coming: Trust in the Lifeforce of the Deep Mystery (Impulse!) **
  • Stephan Crump's Rosetta Trio: Outliers (Papillon)
  • Czarface/Ghostface Killah: Czarface Meets Ghostface (Silver Age) **
  • Chuck Deardorf: Perception (Origin)
  • Joey DeFrancesco: In the Key of the Universe (Mack Avenue) **
  • José Dias: After Silence, Vol. 1 (Clean Feed) **
  • Dreezy: Big Dreez (Interscope) **
  • Mats Eilertsen: And Then Comes the Night (ECM) **
  • Ex Hex: It's Real (Merge) **
  • Fleurine: Brazilian Dream (Pure Imagination)
  • Rosie Flores: Simple Case of the Blues (The Last Music Company) **
  • George Freeman: George the Bomb! (Blujazz/Southport)
  • Paolo Fresu/Richard Galliano/Jan Lundgren: Mare Nostrum III (ACT) **
  • Girls on Grass: Dirty Power (self-released) **
  • Ariana Grande: Thank U, Next (Republic) **
  • Guillermo Gregorio & Brandon Lopez: 12 Episodes (Relative Pitch)
  • Alexander Hawkins: Iron Into Wind: Piano Solo (Intakt)
  • Miho Hazama: Dancer in Nowhere (Sunnyside)
  • Christoph Irniger Pilgrim: Crosswinds (Intakt)
  • Vijay Iyer/Craig Taborn: The Transitory Poems (ECM) **
  • Ahmed Ag Kaedy: Akaline Kidal (Sahel Sounds) **
  • Izumi Kimura/Barry Guy/Gerry Hemingway: Illuminated Silence (Fundacja Sluchaj) **
  • Brian Krock: Liddle (Outside In Music)
  • Pablo Lanouguere Quintet: Eclectico (self-released)
  • Remy Le Boeuf: Light as a Word (Outside In Music)
  • David Liebman/Jeff Coffin/Victor Wooten/Chester Thompson/Chris Walters/James DaSilva: On the Corner Live! The Music of Miles Davis (Ear Up) **
  • Joe Lovano: Trio Tapestry (ECM) **
  • Doug MacDonald Quartet: Organisms (self-released)
  • Marilyn Mazur: Marilyn Mazur's Shamania (RareNoise) *
  • Xose Miguélez: Ontology (Origin)
  • Levon Mikaelian Trio: Untainted (self-released)
  • Greg Murphy Trio: Bright Idea (Whaling City Sound)
  • New Orleans Jazz Orchestra: Songs: The Music of Allen Toussaint (Storyville)
  • Larry Ochs/Nels Cline/Gerald Cleaver: What Is to Be Done (Clean Feed) **
  • May Okita: Art of Life (Origin)
  • Kassa Overall: Go Get Ice Cream and Listen to Jazz (self-released) **
  • Nicki Parrott: From New York to Paris (Arbors) **
  • Jessica Pavone: In the Action (Relative Pitch)
  • Pet Shop Boys: Agenda (X2, EP) **
  • Powder: Powder in Space (DJ Mix) (Beats in Space) **
  • Catherine Russell: Alone Together (Dot Time) **
  • Dua Saleh: Nur (Against Giants -EP) **
  • Nick Sanders Trio: Playtime 2050 (Sunnyside)
  • Sigrid: Sucker Punch (Island) **
  • SOL Development: The SOL of Black Folk (self-released) **
  • Carol Sudhalter Quartet: Live at Saint Peter's Church (Alfa Projects)
  • Typical Sisters: Hungry Ghost (Outside In Music)
  • Ralph Alessi: Imaginary Friends (ECM) **
  • Angel-Ho: Death Becomes Her (Hyperdub) **
  • Better Oblivion Community Center: Better Oblivion Community Center (Dead Oceans) **
  • Chai: Punk (Burger) **
  • Theon Cross: Fyah (Gearbox) **
  • Angel Bat Dawid: The Oracle (International Anthem) **
  • Mimi Fox: This Bird Still Flies (Origin)
  • Larry Grenadier: The Gleaners (ECM) **
  • Nick Grinder: Farallon (self-released)
  • Hama: Houmeissa (Sahel Sounds) **
  • William Hooker: Cycle of Restoration (FPE) **
  • Human Feel [Chris Speed/Andrew D'Angelo/Kurt Rosenwinkel/Jim Black]: Gold (Intakt)
  • Michael Kocour: East of the Sun (OA2)
  • Lapis Trio: The Travelers (Shifting Paradigm)
  • Jenny Lewis: On the Line (Warner Bros.) **
  • Jack Mouse Group: Intimate Adversary (Tall Grass)
  • Helado Negro: This Is How You Smile (RVNG Intl) **
  • Nivhek: After Its Own Death/Walking in a Spiral Towards the House (Yellow Electric) **
  • Ulysses Owens Jr.: Songs of Freedom (Resilience Music) **
  • Pedro the Lion: Phoenix (Polyvinyl) **
  • Jeremy Pelt: Jeremy Pelt the Artist (HighNote) **
  • Ivo Perelman/Mat Maneri/Nate Wooley: Strings 3 (Leo)
  • Royal Trux: White Stuff (Fat Possum) **
  • Dave Rudolph Quintet: Resonance (self-released)
  • Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah: Ancestral Recall (Ropeadope) **
  • Wadada Leo Smith: Rosa Parks: Pure Love: An Oratorio of Seven Songs (TUM)
  • The Specials: Encore (Island) **
  • Lyn Stanley: London Calling: A Toast to Julie London (A.T. Music)
  • Dexter Story: Bahir (Soundway) **
  • Dave Stryker: Eight Track III (Strikezone)
  • Terraza Big Band: One Day Wonder (Outside In Music)
  • Paul Tynan: Quartet (Origin)
  • Sharon Van Etten: Remind Me Tomorrow (Jagjaguwar) **
  • Vestbo Trio: Gentlemen . . . (Dog Hound) **
  • Claudia Villela: Encantada Live (Taina Music)
  • Trevor Watts/Stephen Grew: Let It Be: Live in Liverpool (Fundacja Sluchaj) **
  • Wing Walker Orchestra: Hazel (Ears & Eyes)
  • Nate Wooley: Columbia Icefield (Northern Spy) **
  • Dave Zinno Unisphere: Stories Told (Whaling City Sound)
  • The 14 Jazz Orchestra: The Future Ain't What It Used to Be (Dabon Music)
  • Cyrille Aimée: Move On: A Sondheim Adventure (Mack Avenue) **
  • Blue Standard: A Good Thing (Big Time)
  • Randy Brecker & NDR Bigband: Rocks (Piloo)
  • Chat Noir: Hyperuranion (RareNoise) *
  • Robert Ellis: Texas Piano Man (New West) **
  • Carolyun Fitzhugh: Living in Peace (Iyouwe)
  • Ben Lamar Gay: Confetti in the Sky Like Fireworks [This Is Bate Bola OST] (International Anthem) **
  • Polly Gibbons: All I Can Do (Resonance)
  • Girlpool: What Chaos Is Imaginary (Anti-) **
  • Hot 8 Brass Band: Take Cover (2019, Tru Thoughts, EP) **
  • Sean Noonan: Tan Man's Hat (RareNoise) *
  • Rich Pellegrin: Down (OA2)
  • Ruby Rushton: Ironside (22a) **
  • Jamie Saft/Steve Swallow/Bobby Previte: You Don't Know the Life (RareNoise) *
  • George Strait: Honky Tonk Time Machine (MCA Nashville) **
  • Fumi Tomita: The Elephant Vanishes (OA2)
  • Urbanity: Urbanity (Alfi) **
  • 4WD [Nils Landgren/Michael Wollny/Lars Danielsson/Wolfgang Haffner]: 4 Wheel Drive (ACT) **
  • Chris Potter: Circuits (Edition) **
  • Greg Ward Presents Rogue Parade: Stomping Off From Greenwood (Greenleaf Music) **
  • Ustad Saami: God Is Not a Terrorist (Glitterbeat) **
  • The United States Air Force Band Airmen of Note: Global Reach (self-released)

Reissues/Compilations/Vault Music:

In previous years I tried to separate reissues from compilations, including newly released vault items in the latter. This made sense when I was reviewing a lot of Recycled Goods material, but led to other problems with year-end lists, so as of 2013 anything containing any previously released material is collected here, and anything that is wholly previously unreleased is treated as new, above.

  1. Eric Dolphy: Musical Prophet: The Expanded 1963 New York Studio Sessions (Resonance, 3CD)
  2. Ran Blake/Jeanne Lee: The Newest Sound You Never Heard (1966-67, A-Side, 2CD)
  3. Alex Chilton: From Memphis to New Orleans (1985-89, Bar/None) **
  4. Betty Carter: The Music Never Stops (1992, Blue Engine)
  5. Sir Shina Peters & His International Stars: Sewele (1986, Strut) **
  6. Kankyo Ongaku: Japanese Ambient, Environental and New Age Music 1980-1990 (Light in the Attic) **


Also Noted:

  • Burnt Sugar/The Arkestra Chamber: Twentieth Anniversary Mixtapes: Groiddest Schnizzits: Volume Two (2001-17, Trugroid/Avantgroidd) **
  • Big Star: Live on WLIR (1974, Omnivore) **
  • James Booker: Vol. 1: At Onkel Po's Carnegie Hall, Hamburg 1976 (Jazzline) **
  • Sun Ra: Crystal Spears (1973, Modern Harmonic) **
  • Kid Creole & the Coconuts: Live in Paris 1985 (Rainman) **
  • Sun Ra and His Spirit of Jazz Cosmos Arkestra: WUHY Radio Philadelphia 1978 (Enterplanetary Koncepts)
  • Townes Van Zandt: Sky Blue (1973, Fat Possum) **


I don't review DVDs. I don't watch DVDs. I don't record them in my database -- well, almost never, anyhow. Part of this is that I don't have the time, the eyes, or at the moment even the equipment. I never request DVDs. Still, some publicists insist on sending them anyway. Here's a list. They're all pending, and will probably remain that way until hell freezes over.


I always come up empty for song lists at year-end poll time. So I thought I'd start here.