This Year, Those Albums – 2020 Jazz You Should Hear

Turned in the ballot to the Francis Davis / Tom Hull NPR party, but 10 ain’t ever enough, and a wider pic is always helpful, so…

UPDATE: here’s the results of the NPR Jazz Critics Poll 2021

Gregg August Dialogues On Race (Gregg August)

Ambrose Akinmusire on the tender spot of every calloused moment (Blue Note)

Eric Revis Slipknots Through a Looking Glass (Pyroclastic)

Michael Moore’s Fragile Quartet Cretan Dialogues (Ramboy)

James Brandon Lewis / Chad Taylor Live in Willisau (Intakt)

Rudresh Mahanthappa Hero Trio (Whirlwind)

Angelica Sanchez & Marilyn Crispell How To Turn The Moon (Pyroclastic)

Matthew Shipp Trio The Undefinable (ESP-Disk)

Pavogüchi III (Aklovap)

Susan Alcorn Pedernal (Relative Pitch)

Micah Thomas Tide (Micah Thomas)

Tim Berne & Nasheet Waits The Coandă Effect (9 Donkeys)

Raf Vertessen Quartet LOI (El Negocito)

Rob Mazurek Exploding Star Orchestra Dimensional Stardust (International Anthem / Nonesuch)

The NDR Big Band with Michael Moore Sanctuary (Ramboy)

Fay Victor’s SoundNoiseFunk We’ve Had Enough (ESP-Disk)

Adam Kolker Lost (Sunnyside)

Webber/Morris Big Band Both Are True (Greenleaf Music)

Rich Halley The Shape of Things (Pine Eagle)

Sara Schoenbeck & Wayne Horvitz Cell Walk (Songlines)

Luciana Souza Storytellers (Sunnyside)

Ingrid Laubrock & Tom Rainey Stir Crazy 1-45

James Carney Sextet Pure Heart (Sunnyside)

Dayna Stephens Trio Liberty (Contagious Music)

Matt Wilson Quartet HUG! (Palmetto)

Chad Taylor The Daily Biological (Cuneiform)


Ben Monder solo at the Vanguard

Jon Irabagon Quintet at Smalls

Orrin Evans Quartet at Smoke



  1. Eric Revis, Slipknots Through a Looking Glass (Pyroclastic)
  2. Michael Moore’s Fragile Quartet, Cretan Dialogues (Ramboy)
  3. Ambrose Akinmusire, On the Tender Spot of Every Calloused Moment (Blue Note)
  4. Matthew Shipp Trio, The Unidentifiable (ESP-Disk)
  5. Rob Mazurek Exploding Star Orchestra, Dimensional Stardust (International Anthem)
  6. Susan Alcorn Quintet, Pedernal (Relative Pitch)
  7. The NDR Bigband With Michael Moore, Sanctuary (Ramboy)
  8. Raf Vertessen Quartet, LOI (El Negocito)
  9. Pavogüchi, III (Aklovap)
  10. Webber/Morris Big Band, Both Are True (Greenleaf Music)


  1. Thelonious Monk, Palo Alto (1968, Impulse)
  2. Milford Graves & Don Pullen, The Complete Yale Concert, 1966 (Corbett vs Dempsey)
  3. Sonny Rollins, Rollins in Holland (1967, Resonance)


  • Fay Victor’s SoundNoiseFunk, We’ve Had Enough! (ESP-Disk)


  • Micah Thomas, Tide (self-released)


  • Arturo O’Farrill/The Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, Four Questions (Zoho)

2 responses to “This Year, Those Albums – 2020 Jazz You Should Hear

  1. Pingback: Into the NEW! Happy 2021❤️ – Fay Victor

  2. Pingback: The Beauty of Frank Kimbrough’s Music | Lament For A Straight Line

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