Wow, I haven’t listened to as much music as I have in November for six months. In addition to all the new releases I recommended in the last 2010 through my (biased) eyes (and some on Not Not Fun I found out about later on). There was over 40 albums to get through for the our Albums of the Year to be unveiled in a couple of weeks time. I’m down to 5 more albums and the final list is shaping up but its not as easy as I thought it was going to be.

Back to November’s releases I really enjoyed Barn Owl’s ‘Ancestral Star’ for many of the same reasons I enjoyed Sunn O)))’s ‘Monoliths and Dimensions’ last year. The enormous drones are great for getting immersed in and theres some that feels right about listening to this music as the nights get darker and the days shorter. I’d also (more) highly recommend Evan Caminiti’s solo album ‘West Winds’ available via download on Thrill Jockey and Amazon.

Unfortuantly Bjorn Troske’s new album ‘Kokning’ didn’t prove to be worth the wait after all. Its too polite for my taste and really need something else to shake it out of  its generic House and Ambient stylings. Another album that disappointed was Stereolab’s – ‘Not Music’ on which I thought the band trod water, the material was recorded at the same as their last album ‘Chemical Chords’ and you could see why much of the material had been left off.

I feel the need to revisit the mysterious Jatoma’s self titled debut album as I wasn’t playing attention while listening to it and therefore won’t make a judgement on it yet. You can listen to it here.

The month did end on a high through with the brilliant double album of remixes, reinterpretations and covers of classic material from artists such as Konono No.1 and Kasai Allstars who’ve featured in the Congotronic’s series by Crammed Discs ‘Tradi-Mods vs. Rockers: Alternative Takes on Congotronics’. The long awaited new album by Kanye West didn’t disappoint either and though I’ve yet to decide if it does live up to all the hype and Pitchfork’s 10/10 review, its certainly an ambitious and wide ranging effort that reaffirms West as one of key players in the hip-hop scene.

Spotify playlist:

November playlist