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CD's for Music Conoisseurs

Steve Means "payocracy"
The list author says: "The creme de la creme."
Ineffable Mysteries From Shpongleland
Ineffable Mysteries From Shpongleland
"The absolute cutting edge of modern music. Adjectives do not do this rich, seamless music justice; nor does categorization. "Instrumentation" and/or samples run the full gamut. There is occasional singing and vocalizations, and even a singing computer at one point. Definitely psychedelic, organic, and electronic... if you can even imagine that. You can't until you hear it."
Last Days Of Gravity
Last Days Of Gravity
"Outstanding modern music. Full of rhythm, beautiful textures, melody, some vocal samples, but mostly fantastic overall aesthetics. Lower "weirness factor" than the more daring/risky Ineffable Mysteries, but that makes this a bit more accessible. An absolute pleasure to listen to."
Nothing Lasts But Nothing Is Lost
Nothing Lasts But Nothing Is Lost
"One of the very few that comes close to the pinnacle of modern music is its predecessor by the same artist. Head and shoulders above anything else, but you do have to be "experienced," or at least have an open mind. Read the reviews."
Ok
Ok
"Modern cross-pollination at its very finest - mostly uptempo."
Pat Metheny Group
Pat Metheny Group
"Melodic jazz at its very finest. This is so great it will bring a tear to your eye."
Like Children
Like Children
"It took this a long time to come out on CD, so this was left off this list until now. Great musicianship and piece composition by 2 former members of Mahavishnu Orchestra who play all instruments, but this is more melodic than most MO. Everyone loves this, and no one gets tired of it. One song has Jan Hammer vocals, but it's still a great song. Just great music the way it should be."
Agharta
Agharta
"A prescient electric free-jazz/fusion masterpiece. Miles meets Jimi Hendrix (aka Reggie Lucas)."
Passion
Passion
"An early East-meets-West masterpiece - won't go away."
Blumenkraft
Blumenkraft
"O.T.T. is at least acquainted with Simon Posford, and they are the only non-blood-related artist I know of to approach his quality in terms of modern electronic music. Similar in style and craft to "In Dub" by Hallucinogen, but this one is a bit more varied and longer. Modern, highly textured, non-repetitive dub/electronica."
Lifeforms
Lifeforms
"Beautiful, eminently listenable avant-garde modern electronica."
Moroccan Roll
Moroccan Roll
"Unforgettable virtuoso jazz/fusion - Englishman plays sitar?!"
Borboletta
Borboletta
"Santana's best CD you've never heard of! Why haven't you?!? It might be because there are Buddhist undertones... not acceptable to the conformist recording industry establishment."
Blackouts
Blackouts
"Ashra's mid period work is great, but hard to find electronic music. Manuel Gottsching has to be a European legend! Talk about gorgeous guitar!"
Chromium Echoes
Chromium Echoes
"Why is the very best music so hard to find?? Electronics with gorgeous guitar from Barcelona."
Orbus Terrarum
Orbus Terrarum
"Even my Dad loves this one. [Is that good?? Sure it is.] Electronica par excellence."
Transmutation (Mutatis Mutandis)
Transmutation (Mutatis Mutandis)
"Great Trip Hop, Funk, Jazz Fusion, and Blues all in one amazing CD!"
Black Market
Black Market
"The best release by Weather Report. Everyone should own this."
The Pearl
The Pearl
"Some of the finest ambient piano music you'll ever hear. Brings out the emotions."
Romantic Warrior
Romantic Warrior
"Virtuoso jazz/rock fusion at its very finest. Melodic, not grating, but has plenty of spark. Still fresh at 28 years of age."
Blow By Blow
Blow By Blow
"A timeless beauty by someone many regard as the greatest living guitarist. People who don't know what is playing will invariably ask when they hear this."
It's Tomorrow Already
It's Tomorrow Already
"Very fun electronica from a modern renaissance man."
The Human Condition
The Human Condition
"These guys can DJ my nightclub anytime!"
Last Train to Lhasa
Last Train to Lhasa
"The epitome of modern "driving" music. That's: music to play in your car while driving."
One Second
One Second
"Great, quirky early European theatrical techno. Most reviewers agree it's an essential for any music lover."
Duniya
Duniya
"Beat oriented cross-cultural groundbreaker. The most "sticky" of Loop Guru's releases."
Space Hotel
Space Hotel
"Another cross-cultural merger. This time it's ambient + Indian. Beautiful."
Ngaio Gamelan
Ngaio Gamelan
"Globetrotter from New Zealand melds Eastern Europe with Southeast Asia. Groundbreaking in its seamlessness."
Selected Ambient Works 85-92
Selected Ambient Works 85-92
"Avant garde melodic electronica. Sometimes a little too repetitive. A good introduction to a very important modern artist."
Von
Von
"This Icelandic band is hard to describe. It is hauntingly beautiful (dark to brilliantly gorgeous) distortion-oriented art rock, I suppose.  The lyrics are generally beautifully sung, but good luck understanding them.  Literal understanding is not necessary however, and that is a hallmark of greatness.  Their other works are almost as good."
Global Drum Project
Global Drum Project
"I am only familiar with about half of his later work. The planet drum CD's are great, but not as consistent as this one.  Mickey Hart deserves to be on this list due to his music ambassadorship alone.  This work is emblematic of his ground-breaking world-percussive music.  Actually, this is quite melodic, and not overly percussive."
Big Men Cry
Big Men Cry
"I tried not to have 2 by the same artist, but I just couldn't keep this off the list. This has it all. Favorite ethno-techno band."
Utopia
Utopia
"Todd Rundgren is inconsistent, or you could call him experimental and sometimes cutting edge. When he's "on" he's absolutely brilliant. This release is his most consistently brilliant... a must-own."
Venusian Summer
Venusian Summer
"Again, the best is hard to get.  A mid 70's jazz fusion masterpiece.  Has everything from haunting beauty to some of the most intense yet melodic instrumental work you'll ever hear.  Lenny was the great drummer for Return To Forever.  Here, he plays with Larry Coryell, Al DiMeola, and other greats."
Tally Ho
Tally Ho
"Tripped over this purely by accident. For the modern acid-jazz afficionado: the greatest CD you've almost certainly never heard of. Good luck acquiring it!"
Complete Go Sessions
Complete Go Sessions
"All-star lineup, including Al DiMeola, Klaus Schulze, and Michael Shrieve; but doesn't sound pretentious at all. Quite simply some of the best music you'll ever hear. Calling it fusion doesn't do it justice."
Play
Play
"Choppy (inconsistent), but some atonishingly beautiful music here."
Meddle
Meddle
"Had to include this just so you know my heritage. This list is all over the map, because great music knows no boundaries."