Top 5 Albums of the Week

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Culture Calling's Top 5 albums of the week, an eclectic mix of records from across genres and decades. Come discover weekly albums to bulk out your collection.

Arooj Aftab, Vijay Iyer and Shahzad Ismaily - Love in Exile

One of our favourite albums to come out this year, this trio hits a grand harmony on Love in Exile, a serene, meditative work that blends ambient jazz with ‘neo-Sufi’, a term coined by Aftab.

One of this years ambient records that is actually exciting, Aftab, Iyer, and Ismaily create a sound fit for the desert, a mystic trip through spacious minimalism.

Aftab’s calming tenor, over Ismaily’s mellow guitar and Iyer’s uplifting keys create a special, and – dare I say – original synchronisation. A must listen.

Spotify | Apple Music

Kaytraminé – Kaytranada, Aminé

The first collaborative work from esteemed Montreal dance producer Kaytranada, the record is much more than just a chance at a witty portmanteau.

While Aminé (a-MEE-nay) has become one of the internets most loved rappers, with a penchant for cheekiness and endearing awkwardness, Kaytranada has become possibly the most well-loved producers of the last decade. This, on paper, is a match made in heaven.

While Aminé struggles to carry the record on the back of his own charisma, it is the production from Kaytranada that makes this a worthwhile listen. Inflecting his dance styles into modern hip-hop, he doesn’t miss a beat, creating the upbeat rap album of the summer.

Spotify | Apple Music

Couleur Dessin – Couleur Dessin

This style of scratchy, whiny, underproduced indie-folk has now become an endearing throwback.

'Coulour Dessin', a virtually unknown record, released in 2017, combines the normal elements of Neutral Milk Hotel with the weird parts of Pavement, with a voice somewhere between Michael Cera and Daniel Johnston.

Rampant tempo changes, foreboding discordance, retro synth sounds, and a low-mixed, whimpering voice, Couleur Dessin’s Couleur Dessin sounds lifted wholesale from the late 90s. Fans of Mac Demarco and Olivia Tremor Control will find this record a marvel, familiar enough to keep you warm yet interesting and esoteric enough to become a favourite. Become their 14th monthly listener today!

Spotify | Apple Music 

Grant Green – Nigeria

Blue Note’s sharpest guitarist Grant Green draws from the American songbook in magnificent fashion.

Going from a 10-minute, slow-shuffling cover of the Gershwin’s ‘It Ain’t Necessarily So’, to a well-muddied ‘I Concentrate on You’ and ‘The Song is You’, both covered previously by Sinatra, Grant Green puts his stamps on the classics with a wonderfully measured minimalism, even when going at pace.

An absolutely raucous talent, Green put himself on par with Django Reinhardt and Wes Montgomery in the top-tier of all-time jazz guitarists, and Nigeria makes the claim even clearer.

Spotify | Apple Music

Peter Bruntnell – Retrospective

A ‘greatest hits’ album from veteran Surbiton singer-songwriter (dubbed ‘Retrospective’ because, he says, “there haven’t been any hits) pools through decades of quality folk-rock, for years flown under every possible radar.

Some tracks make you wonder how they never charted; ‘Bent out of Shape’, a typical melancholy, moodyboy indie-folk track, still sounds unique, ‘Cold Water Swimmer’ sounds familiar, like you’ve heard it close out a 2000s coming-of-age film, and ‘Played Out’, featuring the now-massive Rumer, should have been picked up by Spotify radio by now.

While the style is a throwback to a time before the death of the popular singer-songwriter, there is something to be said about a man whose been in the business for so many years, never dejected by low sales, still pumping out quality music, for the love of songwriting.

Spotify | Apple Music