Category World/International

Guy Klucevsek – Teetering on the Verge of Normalcy

  Guy Klucevsek  (Starkland Records)  Teetering on the Verge of Normalcy.  This is not your polka party accordion.  The songs and performances are passionate (2,14,17) and Klesmeresque (15, etc.) and more in the European tradition of accordion.  Klucevsek, American-born, has performed internationally and has composed for the solo accordion as well as for music groups […]

Hasa–Mazzotta (Ponderosa) Novilunio

Lovely traditional Albanian folk music in various languages with mostly female vocals. Great traditional instrumentation! Some good Gypsy jams as well. RIYL: Gypsy, Traditional FCC: Clean

Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino (Ponderosa) Canzoniere

Legendary Italian group comes together for a modern fusion album with many styles represented here. From out of control folk ragers to slow ballads, they are all interesting. Some of my favs are the wild Balkan inspired trax. Try 4,7,9,10,12. RIYL: Balkan Beat Box FCC: Clean

Camille (Because Music) Ui

Breathy French Female Vocals done in creative and whimsical arrangements and layers, backed by fun electro beats. Try 3,5,7,9,10. RIYL: Zap Mamma , French Pop FCC: Clean

Various Artists (Reachout International Records) Essential Dub

Great modern Dub styles from many renowned artists. All Good! RIYL: Dub FCC: Clean?

Como Asesinar a Felipes (Kool Arrow) Eclipse

Latin, Hip Hop, Spoken Word, Slam Poetry, with groovy backing music. Some experimental atmospheric and trippy LONG songs as well. RIYL: Spacetime Continuum, Manu Chao, DMT FCC: Clean

The Grasslands Ensemble & Daniel Ho (Wind Music) Between the Sky & Prairie

Some soft and easy with a classical feel, others upbeat and spirited folk in this release. Traditional throat singing, nature sounds, and unique traditional instruments played by masters. Daniel Ho adds Hawaiian vibes with his Ukulele. Hobbits from Mongolia would love this music! RIYL: Asian Folk, Hobbits FCC: Clean

Hilario Duran (Alma Records) Contumbao

Energetic Cuban Jazz with exciting percussion holding it all together. Very danceable, mostly instrumental trax – some nice piano jazz as well Try 1,3,5,7. RIYL: Cuban Jazz FCC: Clean

Eliana Cuevas (Alma Records) Golpes Y Flores

Lovely female Latin vocals with jazzy piano and percussion brings this airy and easy collection. This would be great for someone learning Spanish b/c she speaks perfect and slower. Try 1,4, 6. RIYL: Sade, Esperanza Spaulding FCC: Clean

Baraka Moon (Self Released) Wind Horse

Great Didg and tabla with traditional male vox. Desert/Sufi Inspired grooves – LONG songs. Try 1,2,4. RIYL: Traditional Sufi FCC: Clean

Lee Scratch Perry & Subatomic Soundsystem (Subatomic) Superape Returns to Conquor

81 YO Perry joins forces with contemporary dub pros to give us this incredible mix of old skool and new. Phat modern basslines infuse this whole album. All good- check the dubstrumentals too! Try 1,3,4,10, 13. RIYL: Dub FCC: Clean

Steve Marshall & Woulter Kellerman (Self Released) Where is Home?

An album with a few different vibes… some are singer songwriter mellow songs and some feature African vocalists; some of the lyrics and styling better than others. Great flute work and mellow guitars throughout. If you like 1, you’ll like them all! Try 8, 2, 11. RIYL: Jack Johnson FCC: Clean

Tsionathonisen-Kontiwennenhawi-Akwesasne Women Singers

In this CD produced by Bear Fox Music with the women’s singing group, Kontiwennenhawi (Carriers of the Words) and most known as the Akwesasne Women Singers.  Each song has voice intro in traditional language and is sung with rattle, drum or call and response and in traditional rounds.  Group performs regionally and  recently can be […]

Trio-Da Kali and Kronos Quartet (World Circuit) Ladilkan

Traditional music from Mali and an amazing recording of their instruments. The combo of the Balaton (Xylophone), the bass Ngoni (lute), and female vocalist makes for a great musical experience. RIYL: West African Music, Female Vocalists, Traditional instruments.

Leti Garza (Self Released) El Unico Para Mi

Classic female Latin vocalist which spans 3 languages. Jazzy Romantic music with mixed styles of Salsa, Merengue, Bolero and more backed by beautiful piano and Spanish guitar. Start with 2 & 7.

Chandrika Tandon (Soul Chants) Shivoham The Quest

Heavy vocal emphasis which at times is backed by choir of voices, borders on theatrical feeling. Several different languages represented here, some in English. Each song has a different flavor but it all has roots in traditional Indian music. RIYL: Indian Music, Female Vocals, an Open Mind…

Various Artists (Shanachie) Afrobeats Hot Hits

Great description of what Afrobeats music is on the back, if you are not familiar with this emerging style taking over dancefloors all around the world. These are the hottest tunes of this genre and if you like one, you’ll be dancing to them all! Start with 1, 2, 4, 7, 10, & 14.

Rayce (Shanachie) African Juice

They call it “Afrobeats” which is not like Afrobeat at all. For the uninitiated it’s a mix of Dancehall, Soca, Reggaeton, West African Rhythms, Hip Hop, and even RPM. Heavy Auto-tuned Vox with romantic and party lyrics. Joyful, Sexy, Happy, Whinin’, Panty Droppin’ Music! If you like 1 song, you will like them all! Start […]

Antibalas (Daptone) Where the Gods are in Peace

Another amazing release from this incredible band! If you like Afrobeat, you know these guys are at the top of the talent pool mixing classic styles with jazz, ska, and urban inspirations. These tracks bring us back to the roots with many LONG compositions. Try 1 & 4 but they are ALL GOOD!

Christos DC (Honest Music) Tessera

Positive, Heartfelt, Conscious, and Upbeat Tunes from Greek-American Producer. Try 1, 2, 3, 7, 9, 10, 12 but they are ALL GOOD! Sly & Robbie on Drums & Bass and they show their skills on this album. Different Vocalists provide a unique feel to each track and some are better than others. Try 6, 7, […]

Various Artists (Ostinato) Sweet as Broken Dates, The Lost Somali Tapes

Amazing story here- these recordings were part of a national archive and would have been destroyed forever if it wasn’t for a dedicated group committed to saving the tapes and burying them until the conflict was over! Definitely sounds like a cassette. Beautiful, Haunting, Trippy Echoes & Synths, Psychedelic, great Organs. 1, 10, & 13 […]

Quadro Nueva w/Cairo Steps (Justin Time) Flying Carpet

Egyptian Sufi Music done by a German Supergroup with 20 years of history playing together. Feels like Sexy World Inspired Jazz with great instrumentals clearly played by Masters. Amazing Clarinet, Spanish Guitar, Latin Percussion, with African feel. Magical, Mystical, Belly Dancing, Haunting Desert Vibes! All good! Try 1, 2, 3, 7, 9, 10, & 12

Betsayda & Parranda El Clavo (Odelia) Loe Loa

Traditional Venezuelan music meant to be sung together with a group. Makes you feel like you are a part of the party! Very uplifting and celebratory music that makes you feel the roots of this rich musical culture. Great percussion! ALL GOOD!!

Ruben Gonzalez (World Circuit) Introducing…

Hard to believe this legendary Cuban pianist hasn’t released a solo album before this! He’s a favorite among the Buena Vista Social Club, has played with everyone, and this album is a masterpiece of classic Cuban music. All Good!!

Chicago Afrobeat Project (Self) What Goes Up

Another solid release from this diverse group. Lots of different vocals including Chance the Rapper gives this album a different feel from song to song, but the Afrobeat holds it together. Great instrumentation and the vocals vary depending on the song. Start with 1, 2, 6, & 8