Album discoveries 2020

2020 has been a year of discovering a lot of different and new music. For this reason, I have decided to compile a list of some of the albums I have discovered this year. Hopefully it may serve as an inspiration for you to embark on a similar music discovering journey.

Winter Albums

I sometimes find myself craving music that puts me in a winter state of mind without any Christmas over- and undertones. After all, it does get tiring to listen to the same Christmas songs during November, January, February and parts of March. Therefore I have compiled a list of albums that have a winter atmosphere.

Teaser: Eneferens – The Bleakness of Our Constant (2018)

My introduction to Eneferens came when I was browsing through the records in the eminent establishment that is Sound Pollution: a record store located in Stockholm’s Old Town. The staff was playing The Bleakness of Our Constant through their stereo system, and there was something about the sound of this record that grabbed me

Black Sabbath – Heaven and Hell (1980)

“Children of the Sea” could possibly be my favourite song on the album, it’s definitely a top 3 album song for me. It’s also one of the best Dio-era Sabbath songs in my opinion. I would actually go as far to say that it’s one of Sabbath’s best songs ever! It starts off with a beautiful acoustic guitar picking pattern. Iommi’s clean electric guitar then enters, followed by Geezer who plays his bass in third harmonies

Opeth – Ghost Reveries (2005)

The next part feels like what the song has been building up to in the 6:26 minutes since the song started. Åkerfeldt, Lindgren and Mendez play a jagged and supremely evil riff in unison. Lopez matches the staccato nature of the riff with double bass drum action. A nice little detail is how there’s a faint growl that comes before the vocals kick in

Martin Birch (1948-2020)

His production on the Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath and Rainbow albums are some of my favourites. No matter how many instruments are playing simultaneously, everything is perfectly audible and balanced. “The Clairvoyant” from Seventh Son of a Seventh Son is a fast paced song with drums, bass, two guitars, vocals and keyboards, yet everything is perfectly balanced in the mix.

Stevie Wonder – Innervisions (1973)

Listening to this song in 2020, you’d be forgiven for thinking Stevie Wonder could somehow see 43- 47 years into the future of American politics. These lyrics seem just as relevant today, if not even more so, than they did in 1973 when Nixon was president

Sam Rowan – Kickstarted (2020)

Kickstarted’s vocal melody is quite simple yet fits very well to the music. After the first verse, a guitar enters and plays some melodic phrases. These phrases do what they’re supposed to do and do it well: serving the song. My first thought when I heard the guitar sound was that it reminded me of Robert Fripp’s and Adrian Belew’s

Christopher Cross – Christopher Cross (1979)

“Sailing” is the second big song on the album. This also feels like the heart of the album and is definitely one of the highlights of the album and of Cross’ entire career. “Sailing” could also be seen as the anthem for the whole genre of Yacht Rock as it embodies everything that Yacht Rock is: smooth, melodic, calming, gentle, maritime-based lyrics etc.…

Slowdive – Souvlaki (1993)

“Alison” is Pop-perfection with Shoegaze trappings. It’s absolutely perfect. “Alison” was the first Slowdive song I heard and I instantly fell in love with the hazy and fuzzy soundscape of this song. Hazy and fuzzy are two words I would use to describe the sound of Shoegaze. Other words I would use are; “underwater”, “floating” and a sensation of “numbness”