Hey all! Did you hear about this pandemic going on? It’s another year of social distancing and lockdowns we’re about to end in the hope that 2022 will finally be better and bring some light at the end of that two-year tunnel. In the meantime, we’ve been doing what we do best and that’s sitting inside and listening to music. Old music, new music, you name it and we’ve listened to it. We also wrote some words about a couple of new records and, as we do every year, have compiled two lists of albums we think you should check out, which you can find below. Enjoy.
Wander’s 2021 List Of Cross Secting Endless Everythings
After extensive deliberation, I selected the below 21 albums as the best of the past year. Among all the names you’ll find some welcome returns from a few regulars but you’ll find that there is also enough room for the young and ambitious. Between these two parallels styles bounce around from drone metal, kraut-jazz, indietronica to folk and hard rock. When scanning through you will also discover some works to enjoy some well deserved R&R by. Just make sure you don’t sleep on this list, because life is too damn short. Let’s rock:
21. The KLF – Come Down Dawn
20. Dinosaur Jr. – Sweep It Into Space (SftDS Review)
19. Motorpsycho – Kingdom of Oblivion (SftDS Review)
18. Nightshift – Zöe (SftDS Review)
17. Vanessa Amara – Music for Acoustic Instruments & Feedback
16. Vapour Theories – Celestial Scuzz
15. John Dwyer – Moon-Drenched
14. Springtime – Springtime
13. black midi – Cavalcade (SftDS Review)
12. Nala Sinephro – Space 1.8
11. BIG|BRAVE – Vital (SftDS Review)
10. USA/Mexico – Del Rio (SftDS Review)
9. Low – HEY WHAT (SftDS Review)
8. Floating Points, Pharoah Sanders & The London Symphony Orchestra – Promises
7. The Notwist – Vertigo Days (SftDS Review)
6. Grouper – Shade (SftDS Review)
5. Hedvig Mollestad Trio – Ding Dong. You´re Dead. (SftDS Review)
4. The Body & BIG|BRAVE – Leaving None But Small Birds (SftDS Review)
3. Kiri Ra! – Kiri Ra!
This ambient jazz work was made for the archives of the Swedish Film Institute but luckliy found it’s way to a few stores. Kiri Ra! constructs divine landscapes by creating and repeating minimalistic motives in which the spaces between the notes will make you unwind, if you want it or not.
2. Jim Ghedi – In the Furrows Of Common Place (SftDS Review)
In the Furrows is a stunning work of folk that is as honest as the day is long. Old English, Norse and even Pictish vocals with a good dose of activsm, it’s all here. Therfore Ghedi’s heavily rooted record deserves a place among 2021’s centerpieces.
1. Lingua Ignota – Sinner Get Ready (SftDS Review)
Kristin Hayter latest is as impactful as always. Don’t expected an easy listen, but expect a jaw-dropping, captivating, and intense one. Now get ready to submerge yourself in this landmark release and don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Ralph’s 2021 List Of Better Things To Listen To Than Another COVID Press Conference
All in all 2021 was a massively crummy year for me for a lot of reasons. As always, music has been a companion throughout everything and it’s actually been a really good year when it comes to new releases. It’s been hard to pick 21 best albums from the whopping 47 I added to my collection this year, and as always there’s the massive fear of forgetting something. Also, there’s no doubt I’ll discover this one hidden gem after the fact. In the meantime though, check this out:
21. Servants to the Tide – Servants to the Tide
20. Wheel – Preserved in Time
19. Dread Sovereign – Alchemical Warfare
18. Cradle of Filth – Existence is Futile
17. The Night Flight Orchestra – Aeromantic II
16. Wardruna – Kvitravn (SftDS Review)
15. Blaze Bayley – War Within Me (SftDS Review)
14. Dragony – Viribus Unitis (SftDS Review)
13. Yoth Iria – As the Flame Withers
12. Wizardthrone – Hypercube Necrodimensions (SftDS Review)
11. Therion – Leviathan (SftDS Review)
10. Iron Maiden – Senjutsu (SftDS Review)
9. Mägo de Oz – Bandera Negra
8. Ex Deo – The Thirteen Years of Nero
7. Helloween – Helloween (SftDS Review)
6. Epica – Omega (SftDS Review)
5. 1914 – Where Fear and Weapons Meet
4. Tribulation – Where the Gloom Becomes Sound (SftDS Review)
3. Seven Spires – Gods of Debauchery (SftDS Review)
Seven Spires‘ third album is a fearless masterpiece with the band performing in peak condition. Yes, it’s a bit long but there is so much happening that I’m still discovering new details, which still makes me enjoy Gods of Debauchery a little more every day.
2. Aephanemer – A Dream of Wilderness (SftDS Review)
I remember writing about this album somewhere in the distant past. All kidding aside, A Dream of Wilderness is an incredible album that’s just a joy to listen to. The band pummels you with so many great melodies you’ll be sad when it’s over. Lucky you for having that repeat button.
1. Blazon Stone – Damnation (SftDS Review)
Is Blazon Stone‘s Damnation the best album I’ve heard in 2021? Perhaps not. Is it my favourite of the lot? Aye, mateys! Did you catch Running Wild‘s brand new Blood on Blood in my top 21 by the way? Exactly. The apprentice has finally outgrown the master here.
That’s it! 42 albums to love, hate or feel mediocre about. Like always it is time for a bit of wintersleep over here but if you really can’t live without us for a few weeks then just give us a follow on Instagram. Now let’s slam the door shut on 2021. Cheers!
Anticipated for 2022:
- Ghost (TBD 2022)
- Fountains D.C. (TBD 2022)
- Blind Guardian (TBD 2022)
- Drug Church – Hygiene (11-03-2022)
- Proscriptor McGovern’s Apsû – s/t (15-01-2022)
- Boris – W (21-01-2022)
RP & WRM – 271221