Non-Classical Top 10

The Non-Classical Top Ten lists the albums which have proved most popular in the last month and might give you some good ideas for your next purchase. It covers jazz, but rock & pop, blues, electronica, folk and many more genres.
 

Agnes ObelAgnes Obel - Aventine

Well known in her native Denmark, Agnes Obel is a multi-award winning singer whose original song writing is at the heart of ‘Aventine', her sophomore album. A beautiful and cohesive collection ‘Aventine' is intriguingly unhurried and possesses an ethereal quality.  Agnes has created a cinematographic feel throughout the album with songs that are filmic in their evocation of stories, images and moods.

4 stars ‘...exquisite arrangements...a wonderful album.' The Guardian

 

Mike OldfieldMike Oldfield - Man On The Rocks

Mike Oldfield's first album of new material since 2008 features eleven brand new tracks; 'Man On The Rocks' is a deeply personal song-based album that reflects many of Mike's different influences.  It is, as you would expect from the man who gave the world ‘Tubular Bells' and so much more besides, an album of great variance and contrast; from the commercial punch of opening track, ‘Sailing', to the beautiful folk-influenced ‘Dreaming In The Wind' to the emotional gravitas of its closer, a cover of William McDowell's gospel song, ‘I Give Myself Away'. 

 

Elton JohnElton John - Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

Originally released at the end of 1973 'Goodbye Yellow Brick Road' was the crowning moment of an upward trajectory marking the unstoppable rise of Elton John. It gave the world the global smashes 'Candle In The Wind', 'Bennie & The Jets', 'Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting', and the soaring title track. Having already sold more than 30 million copies worldwide this celebrated album has now been re-released to mark its 40th Anniversary.

‘A small masterpiece and a strong contender for the coveted title of John's finest song ever.' AllMusic.com

  

Barb JungrBarb Jungr - Hard Rain  

On her new album Barb Jungr has deliberately chosen Bob Dylan's hardest hitting political songs and Leonard
Cohen's most extraordinary songs of conscience and given them her own unique interpretation. With songs that resonate as strongly today as when they were originally written, Jungr's thought-provoking delivery and richly emotional vocals are an unbeatable combination.  ‘Hard Rain' is exclusive to Linn in Studio Master.

8/10: 'Superlative arrangements...to  give such standards precious new life is quite some achievement.' Uncut


Ella FitzgeraldElla Fitzgerald - Ella Fitzgerald Sings The George And Ira Gershwin Song Book

‘Ella Fitzgerald Sings The George And Ira Gershwin Song Book' treats the listener to over three hours of Ella singing some of the best popular songs ever written. This extensive collection, recorded with the Nelson Riddle Orchestra, led Ira to say that he had ‘never known how good our songs were until I heard Ella sing them'. Ella's recording of 'But Not for Me' won her the 1960 GRAMMY Award for ‘Best Female Vocal Performance'. 

 

Marissa Nadler 6 Marissa Nadler - July

On ‘July' Marissa Nadler pairs her haunting siren-like vocals with songs that are gut-wrenchingly personal yet
universal in their themes of love and loss.  Widely considered her best album to date, ‘July' sees Marissa bring to bear her considerable experience, resourcefulness and resilience as both performer and song-writer to create a definitive statement; tastefully-applied instrumentation adds depth to Nadler's compositions.  

8/10: '...a career high.' NME  
  

Mark Knopfler 7 Mark Knopfler - Privateering

'Privateering' is Mark Knopfler's first double album in a 35-year recording career.  These 20 tracks of consummately crafted folk, blues, country and rock originals reflect the creative exuberance of an artist whose exceptional abilities were recognised with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2012 Ivor Novellos. Recorded in Mark's own studio, British Grove, 'Privateering' is a smart, subtle, soulful and utterly superb collection of songs from a class act with an unbeatable band. These are tough tales of real people, living hard lives in difficult times. And it is all carried off with the self-confident bravado of a latter-day privateer.   

 

GRRR!8 The Rolling Stones - GRRR!

GRRR! tells the fascinating ongoing story of the Greatest Rock'n'Roll Band In The World, from their high octane version of Chuck Berry's ‘Come On', their first single issued in June 1963, via the thrilling chart-toppers ‘The Last Time', ‘(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction' all the way to the present day with the inclusion of two new studio recordings recently completed by the group in Paris, France in August 2012.    

 

Rosanne CashRosanne Cash - The River and The Thread (Deluxe version)

Inspired by swampy delta blues, gospel, Appalachian folk, country and rock, Rosanne Cash has created an impressive and rich contemporary collection of songs. The album richly evokes the Southern landscape - physical, musical, emotional - and examines the indelible impressions it has made on her.

'Mesmerizing...Cash paints her masterpiece.' UNCUT     

  

Susan Wong10 Susan Wong - My Live Stories

Recorded live at the world famous Ocean Way Studios in Nashville, USA, 'My Live Stories' sees Susan re-visit some of her best-loved songs with an ensemble of top-notch session musicians.  Enjoying the benefits of a first-class recording environment (a studio within a 100 year old converted church no less!), Susan's soft and sultry vocal style is captured at its best.