Here’s my Top Ten, in no particular order. You can disagree with me as much as you want, but I’m still right. Bad Elephant Music releases are excluded. I don’t want to die.
The Dowling Poole – One Hyde Park
Superb pop album from Willie Dowling and Jon Poole. Makes you smile throughout. Perfect to cheer up a cold winter day.
Afro Celt Sound System – The Source
Earthier and less electronic than their previous releases, Afro Celt redux! An album will never be as amazing as their sizzling live shows, but this comes pretty close.
Sand – A Sleeper,Just Awake
Sam Healy (North Atlantic Oscillation) does a spiffing solo project. The first Sand album was lovely, this one is even better.
Frost* – Falling Satellites
Well worth waiting for. It takes something to beat Milliontown – this might just be it.
Thank You Scientist – Stranger Heads Prevail
Fun, funky and far out. Progressive rock US-style. I dare you not to dance to ‘Mr. Invisible’.
North Sea Radio Orchestra – Dronne
Simply sublime. Music at its unclassifiable best. I can’t describe it, but you MUST hear it.
Bent Knee – Say So
More art-rock madness from t’other side of the Atlantic. Courtney Swain’s high-drama vocal delivery backed by equally striking instrumental performances. Utterly captivating.
Knifeworld – Bottled Out Of Eden
The fullest realisation of Kavus Torabi’s unique musical vision. More bassoon!
Karmakanic – DOT
Probably my favourite full-on prog release of the year, BEM albums excluded. Karmakanic are sounding like a band these days, rather than a project.
Gong – Rejoice! I’m Dead!
Even Daevid Allen’s death couldn’t stop Gong from continuing. That man Torabi again, but although the voice is his, the music is undeniably Gong.