With another complicated year in the books, we offer this look back at the year-in-music, Upside Down style. 2021 offered plenty of sounds to get lost in, and below you can explore some of our favorites. Most of these exist in some physical capacity, but a few exist solely in the digital realm. Presented here in alphabetical order, with new releases at the top and reissues/archival music afterwards.

Tune in to Upside Down on Monday January 10 when we offer a look back at the year that was, with a sampling of most everything highlighted here (we may need to spill into January 17, TBD). Thanks for listening!

New Music

Lea Bertucci: A Visible Length of Light (Cibachrome Editions)

Blue Chemise: Flower Studies (B.A.A.D.M.)

Bons: Peri Bathous (Spillage Fete)

Chateau: Chateau I (Hobbies Galore)

Evan Cheadle: Fault Line Serenade (Victory Pool)

Cindy: Standard Candle Demos (Paisley Shirt)

Circuit des Yeux: -io (Matador)

Colleen: The Tunnel and The Clearing (Thrill Jockey)

Chris Corsano & Bill Orcutt: Made Out of Sound (Palilala)

Cuticles: Acquaintances Or (Spik & Span)

Andre Ethier: Further Up Island (Telephone Explosion)

Euphoria Journal: Did You Find My Letter? (Regional Attraction)

Flowertown: Time Trials (Paisley Shirt)

Rob Frye: Exoplanet (Astral Spirits)

The Fulmars: The Lost Ones (Hüüpnootsche Platen Un Kassetten)

Maxine Funke: Séance (A Colourful Storm)

The Gabys: The Gabys (All Gone)

Grouper: Shade (Kranky)

Russell Hoke: The Melancholy Traveler (Round Bale)

YL Hooi: Untitled (Efficient Space)

Ibex Clone: From Nowhere (no label)

Ignatz & De Stervende Honden: Saturday’s Den (Ultra Eczema)

JJ Ulius: Vol. 1 (Mammas Mysteriska Jukebox)

Kathy Leisen: Proof (Synchro System)

Low: Hey What (Sub Pop)

Alex Macfarlane: Waving (Hobbies Galore)

Bill McKay and Nathan Bowles: Keys (Drag City)

Merope: Salos (Stroom)

Roxanne Métayer: Éclipse des Ocelles (Morc Tapes)

Millard: Kicking a Hole (Home & Garden)

Monokultur: Ormens Vag (Mammas Mysteriska Jukebox / Ever/Never)

Moon Reflecting: Non G.M.O. Rain Dance (Goaty Tapes)

Motorists: Surrounded (Bobo Integral / We Are Time / Debt Offensive)

Myriam Gendron: Ma Delire – Songs of Love, Lost & Found (Feeding Tube / Les Albums Claus)

Natural Information Society with Evan Parker: Descension O.O.O.C. (Eremite)

New Bums: Last Time I Saw Grace (Drag City)

Onion Engine: Bulbs (no label)

Powers/Rolin Duo: Strange Fortune (Astral Editions)

Present Electric: The Continuous Monument (Paisley Shirt)

The Reds, Pinks and Purples: Uncommon Weather (Slumberland / Tough Love)

Rhyton: Pharaonic Crosstalk (Feeding Tube)

Emily Robb: How to Moonwalk (Petty Bunco)

RRA: Moon Dancing (The Conservatory)

Nala Sinephro: Space 1.8 (Warp)

Steven R. Smith: In the Spires (Cold Moon)

Steven R. Smith: The Growing Surface EP (Worstward)

The Steelers: I Like the Way You Flower (no label)

The Telephone Numbers: The Ballad of Doug (Meritorio)

Vacant Gardens: Obscene (Tall Texan)

Wedrowiec: They Wander, Don’t Use the Feet (Sloow Tapes)

XR: XR (no label)

Richard Youngs: CXXI (Black Truffle)










Jane Arden & Jack Bond: Anti-Clock (Low Company)

Karen Black: Dreaming of You (Anthology)

David Chesworth & Bill McDonald: Drive Time (Chapter Music)

Jay Clarkson: Kindle (Rose Hobart)

Alice Damon: Windsong (Morning Trip)

The Fall: Live at St. Helens Technical College 1981 (Castle Face)

Henri Guedon: Karma (Outre National)

Baligh Hamdi: Instrumental Modal Pop of 1970’s Egypt (Sublime Frequencies)

Reiko and Tori Kudo: Tangerine (A Colourful Storm)

Tori Kudo: Tori Kudo at Goodman 1984-1986 (Voice of Ghost)

Art Lown: Piper Oz the Hound (Anthology)

Kevin McCormick & David Horridge: Light Patterns (Smiling C)

Hailu Mergia & The Walias: Tezeta (Awesome Tapes from Africa)

Moonlove: May Never Happen (Concentric Circles)

Leo Nocentelli: Another Side (Light in the Attic)

The Same: Sync or Swim (Freedom to Spend)

Linda Smith: Til Another Time (Captured Tracks)

Sweet Inspirations: Sweet Inspirations at Muon (An’Archives)

Tangled Shoelaces: Turn My Dial (Chapter Music)

Hessel Veldman & Nick Nicole: The S.M. Tape (Albert’s Basement / Tapeways)

Yumbo: The Fruit of Errata (Morr Music)