Some music that I like. Mostly fairly recent. Personal selections. Things that are beautiful, funny, wondrous, breathtaking, surprising and other things. Some are well known, others less so. All these people are making interesting work. Please have a look at what they are doing.

I decided to start this list on 17 October 2014 while driving home after hearing Rie Nakajima play at Cafe Kino in Bristol. Originally I was building it on a separate site but have decided to move it here as it makes more sense. For some time I’d been formulating a view that there has been a real shift in new music over the past ten years towards a more communicative and immediate type of work. It’s hard to define, and in a sense this list does that without needing to explain I hope. The work is engaging for me, provokes a response (normally positive), and changes my view of the world. It often makes me smile. The pieces and people listed here are personal selections, representing work which is important to me and has left a deep impression. Some of it was experienced live, some of it via recordings or online. Most of the work is relatively recent, although there are a number of older pieces which anticipate what I see as the current intent from some performers, composers and sound artists to communicate in a more immediate way without compromising the rigour of the work. Of course, there’s a lot of music I love which is not included here, but it tends to communicate in a different way. Some of the entries are for specific pieces, while others are for people: this tends to be where their general practice transcends concerns found in a particular piece of work.

I reformatted the list in 2024 as some of the links were broken, and I swapped in something else by some of the composers.

If you have a piece listed here and would prefer it to be removed, please let me know.

#1: Matthew Shlomowitz – Popular Contexts,Vol. 5: Language Command (1. Training) (2013)
#2: Joanna Bailie – Artificial Environments Nos. 1-5 (2011)
#3: Janet Cardiff / George Bures Miller – Alter Bahnhof Video Walk (2012)
4: Stefan Prins – Generation Kill (2012)
#5: Cassandra Miller – Bel Canto (2010)
#6: Rie Nakajima
#7: Alexander Schubert – Codec Error (2017)
#8: Tim Parkinson – Time with People (2014)
#9: Matteo Fargion/Jonathan Burrows – Both Sitting Duet (2002)
#10: Peter Ablinger – Deus Cantando (2009)
#61: Jaslyn Robertson – Rosenhöhe (2023)