2018 wasn’t a particularly exciting year for me in Jazz. I wasn’t too much impressed with Cecile McLorin Salvant’s and Shai Maestro’s releases this year, so I didn’t even bother to review then. And overall, this was probably the year of my lowest number of Jazz album reviews since I started this blog.
I also checked out the Top 2018 lists of many other reviewers, and didn’t see anything standing out there (except for the latest Wayne Shorter which I still have to check out).
Nevertheless, here are my 5 favorite Jazz albums of the year. Note a big victory for ECM with 3 out of my 5 albums coming from their great label.
You may also want to check out my Top 5 Jazz albums from 2017, 2016, and 2015, as well as my Top 5 Classical albums of 2018.
Melody Gardot Live in Europe
My favorite live album of the year. And no, I didn’t just pick this for the cover. Check it out, Melody is at her best here. See my original review here.
Marcin Wasilewski Trio – Live
A lot of live albums this year. 3 out of 5. I completely forgot to review this. Marcin Wasilewski plays what regular readers by now understood to be my favorite trio style: intimate with beautiful melodies.
You can find it here (Qobuz)
Keith Jarrett Trio – After The Fall
Not really a new recording, just a new release. But one really worth having. See my original review here. The only downside is the recording quality which is not on par with the regular ECM pristine sound.
Tord Gustavsen – The Other Side
Good to see that Gustavsen is back in trio format. This reminds me very much of The Ground, my favorite Gustavsen album. You’ll find my original review here.
Joey Alexander Christmas
Joey Alexander is my discovery of the year. Hence the mention of this short EP, which I reviewed here.
You’ll find the download links to the albums in the respective original reviews.