A Closer Listen tends to be positive in its reviews, so sometimes it’s difficult to tell which releases we like more than others. This page lets you know what we’re listening to and enjoying the most.
Matana Roberts: Coin Coin Chapter Four: Memphis (Constellation)
Each year, the issues seem to grow more immediate, and Matana Roberts has recorded another album for our times. Chapter Four traces the history of slavery back to its roots and makes unsettling connections to the 21st century.
Christopher Tignor ~ A Light Below (Western Vinyl)
The best album to date in a storied career, A Light Below offers an intriguing combination of modern composition and electronics: shifting moods, high drama and a satisfying resolution.
Minor Pieces ~ The Heavy Steps of Dreaming (Fatcat)
We’ve always admired the work of Ian William Craig, one of the rare vocal artists to grace our pages. Now he’s united with fellow folk / ambient artist Missy Donaldson to create a new brand of masterpiece. Comfort and encouragement abound.
We Lost the Sea ~ Triumph & Disaster (Bird’s Loss, dunk!, Translation Loss, Holy Roar)
This Sydney sextet has recorded a stunning album for the end of the world ~ a personal requiem with a mother and child at its center. The otherwise instrumental album leads to a devastating vocal finale.
Ed Carlsen ~ Morning Hour (Moderna)
Just the sort of music one needs to approach the day with hope ~ Morning Hour spreads its wings slowly, as soft piano leads to an unfurling of strings and the opening of electronic petals. Good morning, world!
Manu Delago ~ Circadian (One Little Indian)
This album was a bit easier to make than the last, considering it didn’t require a trek into the Alps. The intricacy remains, as Delago’s ensemble creates a suite for night and the sleep cycle. More soothing than somnambulant, Circadian is a filament made for fall.
Dominic Eulberg ~ Mannigfaltig (!K7)
Want to save the world? Start with one species at a time. That’s where Eulberg makes his stand, bringing his point across with light and hope. A gorgeous video and keepsake card game sweeten the package; environmental activism has seldom seemed this fun!