Each year, we tap into the collective expertise of Alberta’s music community by asking artists, organizers and our own hosts one simple question: what are the must-listen albums that came out this year?

For 2018, they gave us a massive list; more than 300 albums submitted by the 40 people across the province who sent us their top ten lists. We’ve put them all together, crunched the numbers and distilled it down to the 2018 CKUA Essentials List. Whether you’re looking for a last-minute gift for the music lover in your life, or you’re just eager to expand your own collection, here are the top 30 albums from this year.

1

Earthtones

Bahamas

R&B/Soul, Brushfire – Released: January 19, 2018

“How delightful – an album that you can return to again and again when your world becomes increasingly complicated and moving too fast! The tempos are low down, the production is exquisite, the groove is loose, the band is tight, and the singer (Afie Jurvanen) doesn’t take himself too seriously. An album for long road trips and late night chilling out!” – David Ward

Selected by:

Cathy Ennis // Celeigh Cardinal // Colleen Brown // David Ward // Jenie Thai // Lionel Rault // Lisa Wilton // Matt Masters // Meg Wilcox //
Terry David Mulligan

2

Driving in the Dark

Mariel Buckley

Folk/Roots, Self-released – Released:May 4, 2018

“In the opening strains of ‘Wait,’ the opening track on Mariel Buckley’s “Driving In The Dark,” the organ evokes images of Ennio Morricone, before the guitars steer things into Springsteen territory. By the time Buckley starts singing her well crafted and heartfelt tunes, it feels like you’ve tuned in with an old friend. And you have. Take a road trip with this album.” – Matt Masters

Selected by:

Amy van Keeken // Arianne Smith-Piquette // Celeigh Cardinal // Colleen Brown // Dianne Donovan // Hayley Muir // Kerry Clarke // Lionel Rault // Matt Masters // Meg Wilcox // Shaela Miller //

3

Wolastoqiyik Lintuwakonawa

Jeremy Dutcher

Classical, Fontana North – Released: April 6, 2018

“Jeremy Dutcher’s gorgeous tenor presides as master of ceremonies in this exquisite and important album. Combining history, community, and sonic exploration this post-classical work transcends and defies genre to create a celebration of Wolastoq heritage and Dutcher’s immense talent.” – Amy van Keekan

Selected by:

Amy van Keeken // Celeigh Cardinal // Grant Stovel // Jason Troock // Lark Clark // Meg Wilcox // Rich Taylor // Tom Coxworth

4

Tell Me How You Really Feel

Courtney Barnett

Rock, Mom + Pop Music – Released: May 18, 2018

“It’s tough to succinctly describe how and why Courtney Barnett’s sophomore record is an essential album for 2018. Beyond great reviews and awards and a rising, well-deserved star in the rock and roll world, Barnett speaks truth to power, bitingly and eloquently. It’s like listening to your best friend, or your inner-voice, affirming your neurotic anxieties and vulnerabilities, laughing and lamenting over online trolls and the various abuses women suffer daily. It’s comforting to hear another woman yell about her similar, incredibly relatable struggles. Comfort in shared discomfort.” – Hayley Muir

Selected by:

Colleen Brown // Hayley Muir // Kaely Cormack // Keri Rak // Mariel Buckley // Meg Wilcox // Shaela Miller

5

Bottle It In

Kurt Vile

Rock, Matador – Released: October 1, 2018

“I love most things that Kurt puts out, I love how listening to this record makes you feel like your listening to an angsty early 20’s something slacker but in reality he’s a late 30’s father of 2, I think he’s still a slacker though?” – Leeroy Stagger

Selected by:

Arianne Smith-Piquette // Erin Ross // Leeroy Stagger // Mariel Buckley // Meg Wilcox

6

Good Thing

Leon Bridges

R&B/Soul, Columbia Records – Released: May 4, 2018

“Leon Bridges expands his retro sound into more modern melodies. As a fan of his 2015 debut, Coming Home, I was worried Good Thing would be too ‘mainstream pop’ for my liking, but Leon has retained that warm, vintage soul tone that made his previous record so good. Contemporary but classic.” – Lisa Wilton

Selected by:

Cathy Ennis // Keri Rak // Lisa Wilton // Meg Wilcox // Terry David Mulligan

7

Hell-On

Neko Case

Pop, ANTI- – Released: June 1, 2018

“Neko Case’s pristine voice is usually the biggest draw for me when listening to any Neko Case album. But with Hell-On, I was equally mesmerized by the contributions of guest musicians Eric Bachman, Mark Lanegan, Laura Veirs and k.d. lang.
It’s a dense, layered album that takes a few listens to really appreciate, but once you do, you’ll realize this is one of Neko’s best. Oh, and her voice is still magnificent.” – Lisa Wilton

Selected by:

Lisa Wilton // Oskar Zybart // Shaela Miller // Terry David Mulligan

8

Love in Wartime

Birds of Chicago

Folk/Roots, Signature Sounds Recordings – Released: May 4, 2018

“Created especially for our turbulent times with great tenderness, Love in Wartime feels like an album-length hymn to love, unity, empathy, and determination. It feels like the married couple who front his band are appealing to the whole of humankind to come together as a family, and to recognize the humanity in one another.” – Grant Stovel

Selected by:

Grant Stovel // Matt Masters // Tom Coxworth

9

Hindi Man Blues

Aki Kumar

Blues, Little Village Foundation – Released: August 1, 2018

“With a degree in computer science, love of oldies/Bollywood musicals and a harmonica in the hand, he’s on a go. Aki Kumar fuses blues and Bollywood influences with an innocent charm full of exotica. Respect!” – Baba

Selected by:

Baba // Grant Stovel

10

Free Yourself Up

Lake Street Dive

R&B/Soul, Nonesuch Records Inc. – Released: May 4, 2018

“One of the very toughest challenges in the music business is following up your last success. Choices have to be made. Compromises given and taken. Artists can simply repeat the last formula and ride out another two years or they can do what LSD just did with Free Yourself Up. Kick the doors open and find fresh air. New lyrics, new directions, new risks. Play with Predictability. In the key of C. They all set out to play jazz, now they skirt around the edges between pop and jazz and blues..on a street called Lake Street Dive” – Terry David Mulligan

Selected by:

Jenie Thai // Kerry Clarke // Terry David Mulligan

11

starlight

nêhiyawak

Rock, Arts & Crafts – Released: November 27, 2018

“Though it’s only a five-song EP, nêhiyawak manage to do an awful lot on starlight — on it, they’ve established a whole new aesthetic, a whole new voice, a whole new approach that’s startlingly innovative and powerful.This Treaty Six trio is making music that Alberta, Canada, and the world needs to hear. It’s beautiful, urgent, heartfelt, deeply original, and manages to somehow be both timeless AND very much of our present moment.” – Grant Stovel

Selected by:

Colleen Brown // Grant Stovel

12

Sweet Old Religion

Pharis and Jason Romero

Country/Bluegrass, Lula Records – Released: May 18, 2018

“After ten years of marriage, two children and having their house and workshop burn to the ground (in 2015) and rebuilding – you can hear how Pharis and Jason are truly connected – not just in music but in life. Their phrasing on their harmonies is spot on, and the musicianship of the duo is enhanced but never overshadowed by tasty pedal steel, fiddle, subtle drums and the talented John Reischman on mandolin. The sometimes haunting but always perfect blend of their voices carry you through the entire album, and it’s one of those albums where it feels you’re having a private concert just for you.” – Darcy Whiteside

Selected by:

Anna Somerville // Darcy Whiteside // Erin Ross // Jason Valleau

13

More Or Less

Dan Mangan

Rock, Arts & Crafts – Released: November 2, 2018

“It is a sober collection of anthems, full of care and concern for the modern times.
Dan Mangan is also a young father, so he can tap into deeper parts of his own self.
Growing up can be painful but there is evolution in Dan Mangan’s music addressing everyday and global challenges.” – Baba

Selected by:

Baba // Grant Stovel // Lisa Wilton // Terry David Mulligan

14

The Thread That Keeps Us

Calexico

World, ANTI- – Released: January 26, 2018

“Their latest album finds Calexico leaning enthusiastically into a few directions that they’d hinted at in recent years. Beyond their already eclectic Tex-Mex/ Meso-Americana wheelhouse, they reach out for occasional bold splashes of electronic flavour, more than a few explosions of genuine indie-rock grandeur, hints of North African influence, and touches of jazz, reggae, art-pop, and krautrock. And that broad sonic palette really helps them deepen the political underpinnings of the songwriting, too — always given to crossing borders of different kinds, Calexico here has assembled a series of very human vignettes about war, migration, and environmental disaster that feels global, relevant, and impassioned.” – Grant Stovel

Selected by:

Grant Stovel // Kerry Clarke

15

Remain in Light

Angelique Kidjo

World, Kravenworks – Released: June 8,2018

“When Angelique Kidjo moved from the African nation of Benin to Paris in the early ’80s to go jazz school, the air was full strange new pop and rock music, such as she’d never heard before.
One band clicked with her right away, though — she picked up on the Talking Heads’ love of West African music, and connected immediately with the soulfulness and universal message of their music. She says, ‘As Remain In Light was influenced by the music of my continent, I want to pay back the homage and create my own African take on Talking Heads’ songs.'” – Grant Stovel

Selected by:

Grant Stovel // Lark Clark // Matt Masters

16

Heartbreak Song for the Radio

The LYNNes

Folk/Roots, Self-released – Released: February 2, 2018

“Lynn Miles has been a mainstay of the Canadian singer-songwriter scene for decades. One of the top-drawer practitioners of the craft with 15 albums to her credit and recipient of several major awards (including a Juno and a handful of Canadian Folk Music awards). Lynn Hanson is a relative newcomer with 5 albums under her belt, but already a major figure on the circuit. Both hail from Ottawa and became fast friends when Lynn Miles produced Lynn Hanson’s River of Sand LP in 2014. An offshoot of that friendship is this 2018 album: Heartbreak Songs for the Radio under the moniker: The Lynnes. I have no idea if this will be an ongoing partnership or just a one-off, but what great album! Here’s hoping there’s more to come.” – Lionel Rault

Selected by:

Jason Valleau // Lionel Rault

17

Liberty

Lindi Ortega

Country/Bluegrass, Shadowbox Music – Released: March 30, 2018

“Channeling Ennio Morricone at times and a wayward Patsy Cline in other moments, Lindi Ortega’s latest album is lush, hypnotic and even a little psychedelic. Her songwriting is at its most compelling and her beautiful soprano voice is both haunting and alluring.” – Lisa Wilton

Selected by:

David Ward // Lisa Wilton

18

Beerbongs & Bentleys

Post Malone

Hip Hop, Republic Records – Released: April 27, 2018

“Post Malone’s sophomore album is so unique and distinct. His music is a delicious stew of hip hop, pop, rock and country with the catchiest of melodies. What I appreciate most is the flawless execution of the fusion of his influences – he doesn’t want to be labeled or pigeon holed, and manages to create music that shows us exactly who he is, and where he comes from.” – Celeigh Cardinal

Selected by:

Celeigh Cardinal // Sammy Jean

19

Grenades

Kaia Kater

Folk/Roots, Smithsonian Folkways – Released: October 26, 2018

“Growing up in Canada, Kaia’s recent journey to the Caribbean nation of Grenada (the childhood home of her father) led her to a deeper understanding of her roots. The trip inspired this collection of songs that express Kaia’s impressions of family, migration, war, love, loss, and hope. Working with producer Erin Costelo, the musical palette (banjo, guitars, horns, harmony vocals) is understated and maintains the spotlight on Kaia’s voice and lyrics.” – David Ward

Selected by:

David Ward // Grant Stovel // Tony King

20

Heaven and Earth

Kamasi Washington

Kamasi Washington, Young Turks – Released: June 22, 2018

“Kamasi Washington is the future; and the past. He came up on hip-hop, playing with Kendrick Lamar, bringing some of those influences into his own music. But, for the most part Washington is an artist all his own. His sophomore effort, Heaven And Earth, is a radical and radiant album, equal parts protest and celebration. A man who will certainly be in jazz history books in years to come. ” – Hayley Muir

Selected by:

Hayley Muir // Mariel Buckley

21

Wide Awake!

Parquet Courts

Rock, Rough Trade Records – Released: May 18, 2018

“Every song a deconstruction, a proclamation, a statement and also just riveting, musically. So many words, so much going on but it’s all rooted in killer production by Danger Mouse (Brian Burton).
” – Amy van Keekan

Selected by:

Amy van Keeken // Arianne Smith-Piquette
>

22

Laila Biali

Laila Biali

Jazz, Chronograph Records – Released: January 19, 2018

“Laila Biali’s recent release “Laila Biali” reveals a top shelf Canadian talent with outstanding chops. Not only does she share her ability to make covers sound better than the original versions, her own compositions fool you into thinking they have been standards for years. Combine this with her virtuosic piano playing and smooth sincere vocals, Laila Biali can easily hang with the iconic Canadian musicians she chose to record with her on this album.” – Jason Valleau

Selected by:

David Ward // Deb Rasmussen // Jason Valleau

23

Queen City Jubilee

Slocan Ramblers

Country/Bluegrass, SlowMusic – Released: June 15, 2018

“This Toronto-based bluegrass band has rightfully caught the attention of the bluegrass world – a difficult feat for a band from the north. This is a group that has an electrifying energy on stage – which can be a difficult thing to capture in a studio setting – but this album nails it. I find that sometimes with a bluegrass band – there is a focus either on voice/harmonies or a focus on the instruments – but these guys blend both, so all aspects of the music are equally exceptional and balanced.” – Darcy Whiteside

Selected by:

Anna Somerville // Darcy Whiteside

24

Stone Woman

Charlotte Day Wilson

R&B/Soul, Self-released – Released: February 23, 2018

“Stone Woman may be a breakup album, but the mix of Charlotte Day Wilson’s voice and the smooth, sexy rhythms almost trick you into thinking it’s the opposite! Tied together with simple yet striking lyrics, it’s an immensely listenable album that speaks to the human condition. I’m also a big fan that CDW used the prize money from the 2018 Prism Award for her music video for ‘Work’ to create a grant from female and non-binary film directors — not only is this Toronto-based artist making great work, she’s supporting the arts community as well.” – Meg Wilcox

Selected by:

Colleen Brown // Meg Wilcox

25

A Long Engagement

Nickodemus

World, Wonderwheel – Released: May 4, 2018

“As the name indicated, the album is a sonic journey of many years of connecting people through music.
The collection reflects on this NY based DJ’s history working in NYC club music and around the world. Global rhythms meet intricate electronic and danceable beats.” – Baba

Selected by:

Baba // Cathy Ennis

26

Angels of Death

Jennifer Castle

Folk/Roots, Paradise Of Bachelors – Released: May 18, 2018


Spinning magic with a quavering voice as strong as trees, singing about “coffee and hash”, Jennifer Castle brings you with her on each song. You are not alone on the dusty trail as you converse about death and memory. Jennifer is there with gorgeous melodies, love, insight and the occasional pedal steel guitar.” – Amy van Keekan

Selected by:

Amy van Keeken // Colleen Brown

27

Historian

Lucy Dacus

Rock, Matador – Released: March 2, 2018

“The hook is set with the first song – a slow but steady unfolding of a passionate love affair at the end of its line. With just an electric guitar for accompaniment, Lucy unspools the opening lyrics … “”The first time I tasted somebody else’s spit, I had a coughing fit, I mistakenly called them by your name, I was let down, it wasn’t the same””. The back story is revealed and the music slowly builds for four minutes until the pent up energy is released with a blast of distorted guitars and “”You got a 9 to 5, so I’ll take the night shift, And I’ll never see you again if I can help it”.And that’s only the first of the ten songs that make up Historian. Explore!” – David Ward

Selected by:

David Ward // Mariel Buckley

28

Mirror In Mirror

Anne Akiko Meyers

Classical, Avie Records – Released: September 7, 2018

“On this, her her 37th album(!), the great American violinist, Anne Akiko Meyers, wanted to “make it personal”. She worked directly with 5 out of the 6 composers (*Maurice Ravel just wasn’t around); she has a special affinity for Arvo Part’s arresting music (in fact, she recently opened his new concert hall/center), in Estonia, with four concerts of his music there. Mirror in Mirror reflects not only her great talent but the spiritual nature of the music.” – Dianne Donovan

 

Selected by:

Dianne Donovan // Mark Antonelli

29

Arthur Buck

Arthur Buck

Rock, New West Records – Released: June 15, 2018

“Peter Buck is the very successful guitarist/producer (Replacements, Eels, Billy Bragg, Jayhawks) and original member of the band R.E.M. Joseph Arthur (discovered by Peter Gabriel) has gone on to record 8 studio albums and several EPs. Subsequent to a chance reunion one day in Mexico, they cooked up the idea of a collaborative album. The result? This quirky, but delightful project known as Peter Buck. One of my faves of 2018.” – Lionel Rault

Selected by:

Baba // Lionel Rault

30

It’s a New Day Tonight

Michael Rault

Rock, Daptone Records – Released: May 18, 2018

“Michael Rault’s sophomore album is self-assured and mature, but retains a charming independent spirit. Lots of hooks and breezy melodies. It’s a got a bit of a ’70s AM Radio vibe, but is also thoroughly modern. ” – Lisa Wilton

Selected by:

Amy van Keeken // Colleen Brown // Lisa Wilton

Our Essentials Jury nominated more than 300 albums this year

See the rest of them

Loner — Caroline Rose

Rock

Selected by:
Arianne Smith-Piquette // Grant Stovel // Mariel Buckley
 


Poema Poematis — Ben Sures

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Baba // Dianne Donovan // Grant Stovel // Lark Clark
 


Vaughan Williams – Piano Concerto; Oboe Concerto; Serenade to Music; Flos Campi — Toronto Symphony / Peter Oundjian

Classical

Selected by:
Orest Soltykevych // Mark Antonelli
 


White & Gold — Danny Michel

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
David Ward // Baba // Leeroy Stagger //
 


Mr. Jukebox — Joshua Hedley

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by:
Keri Rak // Erin Ross
 


Ruins — First Aid Kit

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Lisa Wilton // Cathy Ennis
 


7 — Beach House

Pop

Selected by:
Shaela Miller // Jason Troock
 


Acres Of Elbow Room — John Wort Hannam

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Tom Coxworth // Allison Brock
 


Cry Baby — Joe Nolan

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Celeigh Cardinal // Allison Brock // Jenie Thai //
 


Golden Hour — Kacey Musgraves

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by:
Mariel Buckley // Cathy Ennis
 


358 Men — DJ Fett Burger and Stiletti Ana

Other

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


All Melody — Nils Frahm

Other

Selected by: Jason Troock
 


Bach – Magnificats — Arcangelo / Jonathan Cohen

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Combo 66 — John Scofield

Jazz

Selected by: Dianne Donovan
 


Distant Sky (Live in Copenhagen) — Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds

Rock

Selected by: Leeroy Stagger
 


Double Standards — Mick Kolassa

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


Edgeland — Kim Richey

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Allison Brock
 


Front and Center — Sideline

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Anna Somerville
 


In Another Life — Sandro Perri

Other

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


Late Night Tales: Agnes Obel — Agnes Obel (various)

Other

Selected by: Tony King
 


Lennie Gallant — Time Travel

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Tom Coxworth
 


Life is Unfair (box set) — Black Box Recorder

Pop

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


Metaphora — Jill Barber

Pop

Selected by: Keri Rak
 


Musas, vol. 2 (Homenaje al folclore latinoamericano) — Natalia Lafourcade y Los Macorinos

World

Selected by: Lark Clark
 


Never Ending — Beres Hammond

Other

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


Old Soul — Robi Botos

Jazz

Selected by:
Kodi Hutchinson // Jason Valleau
 


Orach — Tannahill Weavers

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


See You Around — I’m With Her

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


Sonic Creed — Stefon Harris & Blackout

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


The Blues Is Alive & Well — Buddy Guy

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Cindy McLeod
 


The Broken Instrument — Victory

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Hayley Muir
 


The Horizon Just Laughed — Damien Jurado

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Tom Coxworth // Rich Taylor
 


Tipping Velvet — Sheldon Zandboer

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


Treasures from the Temple — Thievery Corporation

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Kerry Clarke
 


Ye — Kanye West

Hip Hop

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


A Poem Unlimited — U.S. Girls

Pop

Selected by: Mariel Buckley
 


Be The Cowboy — Mitski

Rock

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


Call It Home Vol 1 & 2 — California Honeydrops

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Lionel Rault
 


Distant Danger — Nuela Charles

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


Dust Dance — Tri-Continental

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Lark Clark
 


For Glenn Gould — Stewart Goodyear

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Human Touch — Daniel Romano

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Shaela Miller
 


Joy As An Act Of Resistance — Idles

Other

Selected by: Arianne Smith-Piquette
 


Little Big — Aaron Parks

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


Live at the Devil’s Arse — Richard Hawley

Pop

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


Lover of Life — Jim Serediak

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


Nont For Sale — Sudan Archives

Other

Selected by: Meg Wilcox
 


Old Rockhounds Never Die — Odetta Hartman

Other

Selected by: Tony King
 


Pacific Northwest 72′-73′ — The Grateful Dead

Rock

Selected by: Leeroy Stagger
 


Passwords — Dawes

Rock

Selected by: Jenie Thai
 


Puff: In The Air Without A Shape — Bernice

Rock

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


re:member — Ólafur Arnalds

Classical

Selected by: Jason Troock
 


Spiritflesh — Spiritflesh

Electronic

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


The Questions — Kurt Elling

Jazz

Selected by: Dianne Donovan
 


The Travelin’ McCourys — The Travelin’ McCourys

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Anna Somerville
 


The Tree Of Forgiveness — John Prine

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Allison Brock
 


The Window — Cecile Mclorin Salvant

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


These Are The Days — Jann Arden

Pop

Selected by: Terry David Mulligan
 


To the Sunset — Amanda Shires

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Keri Rak
 


Tough As Love — Lindsay Beaver

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


Vivaldi: Recorder Concertos — Vincent Lauzer / Arion Baroque Orchestra

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


12 — Sloan

Pop

Selected by: Lionel Rault
 


A Perfectly Good Friendship — Steve Pineo

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Jason Valleau
 


Art of Doubt — Metric

Rock

Selected by: Keri Rak
 


Beloved Of The Sky — Renee Rosnes

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


Concentric Circles — Kenny Barron

Jazz

Selected by: Dianne Donovan
 


Darkened Windows — Underfelt

Electronic

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


Del McCoury Still Sings Bluegrass — The Del McCoury Band

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


Encore — Anderson East

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Jenie Thai
 


Flow State — Tash Sultana

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


High As Hope — Florence and The Machine

Rock

Selected by: Leeroy Stagger
 


Honey — Robyn

Pop

Selected by:
Jason Troock // Arianne Smith-Piquette
 


Ice Queen — Sue Foley

Blues

Selected by:
Jenie Thai // Cam Hayden
 


Miles To Go — Colin James

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


More Blood More Tracks — Bob Dylan

Rock

Selected by: Leeroy Stagger
 


Move Through The Dawn — The Coral

Rock

Selected by: Lisa Wilton
 


Rivers and Roads — Special Consensus

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Anna Somerville
 


Soil — Eartheater

Other

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


Temet — Imarhan

World

Selected by: Amy van Keeken
 


The Official Body — Shopping

Rock

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


The Tree — Lori McKenna

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Allison Brock
 


True in Time — John Gorka

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


Unbreakable:Alborosie Meets The Wailers Unlimited — Alborosie

Other

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


Undertones — Al Muirhead

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


Universal Beings — Makaya McCraven

Jazz

Selected by: Tony King
 


Vivaldi – The Four Seasons — Rachel Podger, violin / Brecon Baroque

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Whistle Down the Wind — Joan Baez

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Tom Coxworth
 


Abundance — Ernesto Cervini’s Turboprop

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


abysskiss — Adrianne Lenker

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


All Ashore — Punch Brothers

Folk/Roots

Selected by: David Ward
 


All the Things That I Did and All the Things That I Didn’t Do — The Milk Carton Kids

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Keri Rak // Celeigh Cardinal
 


Beneath the Open Sky — Nefesh Mountain

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


Bootleggers Choice — Southern Culture on The Skids

Rock

Selected by: Erin Ross
 


Ch’usay — Novalima

World

Selected by: Cathy Ennis
 


Clean — Soccer Mommy

Rock

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


Dirty Computer — Janelle Monáe

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Celeigh Cardinal
 


Elephants on Acid — Cypress Hill

Hip Hop

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


Hope River — Agent Sasco

Other

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


MassEducation — St. Vincent

Pop

Selected by: Tony King
 


Motherland — David Aaron Carpenter, viola / London Philharmonic Orchestra

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


Music IS — Bill Frisell

Jazz

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


My New Moon — Amos Lee

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Lionel Rault
 


Naath — Emmanuel Jal

World

Selected by: Lark Clark
 


Nothing Is Still — Leon Vynehall

Electronic

Selected by: Jason Troock
 


Onion — Shannon & The Clams

Rock

Selected by: Arianne Smith-Piquette
 


Overload — Georgia Anne Muldrow

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


Pictures of Us — Braden Gates

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Lionel Rault // Anna Somerville
 


Prokofiev for Two — Martha Argerich & Sergei Babayan

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Radyo Siwell — Melissa Laveaux

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Hayley Muir
 


Room 25 — Noname

Hip Hop

Selected by:
Kris Harper // Kaely Cormack
 


Shapeshifters — Good Lovelies

Pop

Selected by: Jason Valleau
 


The Crossing — Alejandro Escovedo

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Leeroy Stagger // Keri Rak
 


Then and Now — Benny Green

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


These Days — Ndidi Onukwulu

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Kerry Clarke
 


Things Change — Dennis Ellsworth

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Leeroy Stagger
 


Time Traveller — Lennie Gallant

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


Where No One Stands Alone (Reissue) — Elvis Presley

Other

Selected by: Matt Masters
 


44:36 — Fares Karam

World

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


A Star Is Born — Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Jason Valleau
 


African Experiments 1972 – 1979 — Afro National

World

Selected by: Kerry Clarke
 


Anthem — Madeleine Peyroux

Jazz

Selected by: Cathy Ennis
 


Awake — Hannah Saunders and Ben Savage

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


Blues Is Alive and Well — Buddy Guy

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


By The Way, I Forgive You — Brandi Carlile

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Jenie Thai
 


Con Todo El Mundo — Khruangbin

World

Selected by:
Hayley Muir // Amy van Keeken // Meg Wilcox //
 


David Byrne — American Utopia

Pop

Selected by: Lisa Wilton
 


Devotion — Tirzah

Electronic

Selected by: Arianne Smith-Piquette
 


Drumphilia Vol. 1 — Andrea Benini

Electronic

Selected by: Matt Masters
 


Electric Light — James Bay

Other

Selected by: Celeigh Cardinal
 


Goin’ Gone — Kat Danser

Blues

Selected by: Baba
 


Hollywood Africans — Jon Batiste

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


How to Socialise & Make Friends — Camp Cope

Rock

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


In a Poem Unlimited — U.S. Girls

Pop

Selected by: Amy van Keeken
 


In Dreams — Amy van Keeken

Pop

Selected by: Colleen Brown
 


K. T. S. E. — Teyana Taylor

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


Khonnar — Deena Abdelwahed

Electronic

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


Miles We Put Behind — T. Buckley

Folk/Roots

Selected by:
Andy Donnelly // Allison Brock
 


Mozart – Piano Quartets — Daniel Barenboim / Michael Barenboim / Yulia Deyneka / Kian Soltani

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Music for Happiness — Joey Pecoraro

Electronic

Selected by: Tony King
 


My All To You — Beatrice Deer

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Hayley Muir
 


Negro Swan — Blood Orange

Pop

Selected by: Jason Troock
 


Ofertório (Ao Vivo) — Caetano Veloso

World

Selected by: Dianne Donovan
 


Orquesta Akokan — Orquesta Akokan

World

Selected by: Lark Clark
 


Secularia — Eliza Gilkyson

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Tom Coxworth
 


Snowmelt — Zoe Keating

Other

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


Songs Of The Plains — Colter Wall

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by:
Shaela Miller // Allison Brock
 


Srul Irving Glick: Suites Hebraiques — James Campbell / Angela Park / Cameron Crozman

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


This Too Shall Light — Amy Helm

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Allison Brock
 


Vanished Gardens — Charles Lloyd & The Marvels + Lucinda Williams

Jazz

Selected by: David Ward
 


White Album Reissue — The Beatles

Pop

Selected by: Terry David Mulligan
 


Whole New Life — Reverend Horton Heat

Rock

Selected by: Erin Ross
 


Angry — Too Attached

Electronic

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


Anthem of a Peaceful Army — Greta Van Fleet

Rock

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


Aviary — Julia Holter

Pop

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


Bad Ideas — Shaela Miller

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Lisa Wilton
 


Bicycle Riding in the Dark — Lorna MacLachlan

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


Blood and Bones — Bob Schneider

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Dianne Donovan
 


Call The Comet — Johnny Marr

Rock

Selected by: Shaela Miller
 


Deren — Bombino

World

Selected by: Kerry Clarke
 


Destination Rachmaninov: Departure — Alejandro EsDaniil Trifonov, piano / Philadelphia Orchestra / Yannick Nezet-Seguincovedo

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


Dyna-mite — Jon Cleary

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Jenie Thai
 


Explosion — Cory Weeds

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


Freedom — Amen Dunes

Rock

Selected by: Jason Troock
 


Hive Mind — The Internet

Hip Hop

Selected by: Hayley Muir
 


Katchi — Ofenbach Vs. Nick Waterhouse

Pop

Selected by: Matt Masters
 


La Force — La Force

Pop

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


Left To Our Own Devices — Jack Pine and the Fire

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Jason Valleau
 


Legacy — Katchafire

Other

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


Major Love — Major Love

Rock

Selected by:
Jenie Thai // Cathy Ennis
 


May Your Kindness Remain — Courtney Marie Andrews

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Mariel Buckley
 


North of Despair — Wood & Wire

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


Paco and The Melodic Polaroids — Tim Easton

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Leeroy Stagger
 


Performance — White Denim

Rock

Selected by: Amy van Keeken
 


Putting On Airs — Erin Rae

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Erin Ross
 


Rough Cut — Curtis Salgado and Alan Hager

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


Schubert – Piano Sonata D960; 4 Impromptus — Marc-André Hamelin

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


She Remembers Everything — Rosanne Cash

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Allison Brock
 


So Calypso! — Calypso Rose

World

Selected by: Lark Clark
 


Take Good Care — The Revivalists

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Lionel Rault
 


Tearing At The Seams — Nathanial Rateliff and the Night Sweats

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Terry David Mulligan
 


The Waves, The Wake — Great Lake Swimmers

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Keri Rak
 


American Utopia — David Byrne

Rock

Selected by: Baba
 


Bananas and Blow — Ween

Rock

Selected by: Erin Ross
 


Basic Behaviour — Frigs

Rock

Selected by: Kerry Clarke
 


Blackout Summer — Dusted

Other

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


Finally Free — Daniel Romano

Rock

Selected by: Shaela Miller
 


First Flower — Molly Burch

Pop

Selected by: Hayley Muir
 


FOR — Kate NV

Electronic

Selected by: Tony King
 


Hilary Hahn Plays Bach: Sonatas 1 & 2; Partita 1 — Hilary Hahn

Classical

Selected by: Dianne Donovan
 


I was in a Cult — Teddy <3

Electronic

Selected by: Matt Masters
 


In The Blue Light — Paul Simon

Other

Selected by: David Ward
 


Jake Owen — Jake Owen

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


La Cumbia Chicharra — Hijo de Tigre

World

Selected by: Lark Clark
 


Low Tide — Tracy Grammer

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Tom Coxworth
 


Meguri — World’s End Girlfriend

Electronic

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


Mozart In London — The Mozartists / Ian Page

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


Murals — Solon McDade

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


No Mercy In This Land — Ben Harper, Charlie Musselwhite

Blues

Selected by:
Erin Ross // Baba
 


Ocean Electro — Kellarissa

Electronic

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


Please Don’t Be Dead — Fantastic Negrito

Other

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


Royal Traveller — Missy Raines

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Anna Somerville
 


The Gap of Dreams — Altan

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


The Island of Form — Ethan Ardelli

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


The Wooks — Glory Bound

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


Voodoo In The Shadows — Fiona Boyes

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


Whatever It Takes — James Hunter (The James Hunter Six)

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Amy van Keeken
 


Baika — Nemanja Radulovic, violin / Double Sens

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


Birds And The BEE9 — Sampa The Great

Hip Hop

Selected by: Arianne Smith-Piquette
 


Black Magic (Deluxe Edition) — Yemi Alade

World

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


Broken Politics — Neneh Cherry

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Tony King
 


Chasing Shadows — Evan Cheadle

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Shaela Miller
 


Critical Equation — Dr. Dog

Rock

Selected by: Kerry Clarke
 


Daqa’iq Tudaiq — Jerusalem in my Heart

World

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


Egypt Station — Paul McCartney

Rock

Selected by:
Terry David Mulligan // Baba
 


Facing Dragons — Christian Sands

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


Feed the Fire — Kinnie Star

Electronic

Selected by: Celeigh Cardinal
 


Fire — Midnight Skyracer

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


Folksinger — Steve Poltz

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Tom Coxworth
 


Malice, Mercy, Grief & Wrath — Belle Plaine

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by:
Shaela Miller // Allison Brock
 


Muse — The Tiki Collective

Jazz

Selected by: Jason Valleau
 


Reyna Tropical EP — Reyna Tropical

Pop

Selected by: Meg Wilcox
 


Scorpion — Drake

Hip Hop

Selected by: Dianne Donovan
 


Scuse Us While We Kiss The Sky — David and Jad Fair

Other

Selected by: Erin Ross
 


Shine Bright — Marcia Ball

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


Some of that Sunshine — Karrin Allyson

Jazz

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


Steak Night at the Prairie Rose — Mike & The Moonpies

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Mariel Buckley
 


Sunshine — The Hearts

Rock

Selected by: Colleen Brown
 


The Real Sound of Mark — Mark Grusane

Other

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


The Roxy Performances — Frank Zappa

Other

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


Vacuum — Entropia

Other

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


Venom and Faith — Larkin Poe

Blues

Selected by: Jenie Thai
 


Walton – Viola Concerto — James Ehnes / BBC Symphony Orchestra / Edward Gardner

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Warm — Jeff Tweedy

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Leeroy Stagger
 


When The Sun Comes Up — The Lonesome Ace Stringband

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Anna Somerville
 


Written in Water — Shooglenifty with Dhun Dhora

World

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


16/17 — Ryan Playground

Electronic

Selected by: Tony King
 


AM Waves — Young Gun Silver Fox

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Lionel Rault
 


Bark Your Head Off, Dog — Hop Along

Rock

Selected by: Cathy Ennis
 


Cool Cat — Paul Oscher

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


Dans le noir — Safia Nolin

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


Hilary Hahn Plays Bach — Hilary Hahn, solo violin

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


Howllin’ and Prowlin’ — Peter and the Wolves

Rock

Selected by: Keri Rak
 


I’ve Always Dreamed — Eliad

World

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


Jessica Heine — Goodbye Party

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Anna Somerville
 


Knock Knock — DJ Koze

Electronic

Selected by: Jason Troock
 


Mirror Suite — Penny Sandborn

World

Selected by: Erin Ross
 


Morning, Buddy — St. Arnaud

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Colleen Brown
 


No Luscious Life — Gold Teacher

Electronic

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


Norway — Shaye Zadravec

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Deb Rasmussen
 


Not Been Sleeping — Dustin Bentall

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Matt Masters
 


Out in the Open — Steep Canyon Rangers

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


Oxnard — Anderson Paak

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


Sandwood — Doncan Chishlom

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


Schumann – Cello Concerto — Gabriel Schwabe / Royal Northern Sinfonia / Lars Vogt

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Stillness Falls — Chandelle Rimmer & Tom Van Seters

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


Touch — Copperhead

Pop

Selected by: Kerry Clarke
 


Years — Sun June

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


You’re Fine — Barbara Lica

Jazz

Selected by: Jason Valleau
 


A Piano and A Microphone — Prince.

Pop

Selected by: Terry David Mulligan
 


ABIAH — Abiah Sings Nina

Jazz

Selected by: Tony King
 


Adagietto — Mischa Maisky, cello / Lily Maisky, piano

Classical

Selected by: Mark Antonelli
 


And Yet It’s All Love — Fatima

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Arianne Smith-Piquette
 


bodiesofwater — Rae Spoon

Pop

Selected by: Hayley Muir
 


Bruch; Elgar – Violin Concertos — Rachel Barton Pine / BBC Symphony Orchestra / Andrew Litton

Classical

Selected by: Orest Soltykevych
 


Crepe Paper Heart — Becky Buller

Country/Bluegrass

Selected by: Darcy Whiteside
 


David Vest — David Vest

Blues

Selected by: Cam Hayden
 


EVO — Skerryvore

World

Selected by: Andy Donnelly
 


Fenfo Something To Say — Fatoumata Diawara

World

Selected by: Lark Clark
 


Future Me Hates Me — The Beths

Rock

Selected by: Kaely Cormack
 


Gave in Rest — Sarah Davachi

Other

Selected by: Jason Troock
 


I Used to Know Her: Part 2 — H. E. R.

R&B/Soul

Selected by: Sammy Jean
 


Juliana Hatfield Sings Olivia Newton-John — Juliana Hatfield

Pop

Selected by: Oskar Zybart
 


Kailyard Tales — Jason Wilson and Dave Swarbrick

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Leo Cripps
 


Love Is Here To Stay — Tony Bennett & Diana Krall

Jazz

Selected by: Kodi Hutchinson
 


Love, Loss and Autotune — Swamp Dogg

Other

Selected by: Rich Taylor
 


Makanda at the End Of Space the Beginning of Time — Pierre Kwenders

World

Selected by: Matt Masters
 


Resilience — Samite

World

Selected by: Cathy Ennis
 


Solo Piano III — Chilly Gonzales

Classical

Selected by: Celeigh Cardinal
 


The Book Room — Kilchhofer

Electronic

Selected by: Kris Harper
 


The Broken Heart of Everything — David Francey

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Tom Coxworth
 


The Way These Things Go — FY5

Folk/Roots

Selected by: Anna Somerville
 


Tough Luck — Scenic Route To Alaska

Rock

Selected by: David Ward
 


Years — Sarah Shook & The Disarmers

Rock

Selected by: Mariel Buckley