2015 was a rather good year for music. HCTF lists the 20 albums that will be in regular rotation for many years to come.
10 Jorma Kaukonen: Ain't In No Hurry
There are fine acoustic pickers, there are damned fine acoustic pickers and there is this guy.
(...) like a great wine: he gets better with age. He celebrated his 74th birthday in December, but retirement isn't part of his vocabulary. His new album (...) sees him once more exploring well known songs from the folk and country canons plus a healthy dose of originals. He is one of the greatest acoustic guitar players this side of Betelgeuse, with a finger picking style that is totally at ease and nearly impossible to replicate.
9 Zombie Garden Club: Zombie Garden Club
Johnny Douglas for all your garage band needs and analog equipment fix.
Singing about girls, cars, having the blues and craving for karma may be not very original, but it makes killer jukebox material. He is a gear head using vintage amps and keyboards that are a bitch to maintain, but emanating a warm sound that all the programming geeks in Silicon Valley haven't been able to replicate in a convincing manner.
8 Jumble Hole Clough: A List Of Things That Never Happened
One-man project courtesy of Colin Robinson, friendly mad scientist and BBC Radiophonic Workshop fan, churning out a wealth of highly original musical wanderings.
Via a freaky visit to Budapest he goes pastoral for A sundial in the rain, thinking about death ("it's not a teardrop, it's a coffin"). Recurring Bathysiderodromophobia earns the top spot. Driven by a soft Kraftwerk meets Gary Numan rhythm track, Robinson builds a multi-faceted sculpture of repeating, twisted musical themes. If Gaudi had been a composer he would have been writing stuff like this.
7 Mr. Fantastical: Born To Boogie Born To Die
Jason Corman is a muso in disguise for all your party and music geeks needs.
His new album (..) has its fair share off stomping good time music, but spin one of the smart instrumentals and be prepared to pick up your jaw from the floor. The acoustic Haunted Potato Shed wouldn't have been out of place on Ry Cooder's Paris, Texas soundtrack and the fast bits during the heavy Jaapan Funk will be dissected by guitar geeks. AARPeggio is another showcase of his chops and then some.
6 Janet Feder: T H I S C L O S E
Be prepared for prepared guitar. Accessible avant-garde guitar excursions that dig deep.
Her latest album (...) is a sonic expedition, playing instruments in an unorthodox fashion, focusing on textures and melody as equals. Feder picks her single notes carefully, sprinkling them on top of drone like tapestries (No Apology() or striking up a conversation with a jazzy piano (You As Part Of A Whole). The sparse, mostly acoustic She Sleeps With The Sky is a 101 for a complex composition dressing up as deceptively simple showcase.