We asked past Common Time contributors to shout out a favorite 2020 release that won't pop up on the other lists. Thanks to all the music makers, DJs, obsessives and all of YOU for locking in to this little project. xx

Via Rosie Ama Cain (Ransom Note, Stamp The Wax): Behua Icara - Ritmos para Sanar
"This compilation hasn't had near enough attention — and not only is it full of amazing music, it's for an incredible cause too. The brainchild of several Lima-based collectives, their mission is to raise money for the indigenous Shipibo Conibo Xetebo during the pandemic. As well as highlighting a load of local talent and native Shipibo artists, the release calls on artists from all over the world for a batch of tracks that stretch from eerie ambience to churning rhythms and hypnotic slow burners. Toma Kami's collab with Shipibo rapper Wihtner FaGo is my personal tip!"

Via Akinola Davies Jr.: Obongjayar - 10k
"I shot the video for it and was super surprised it didn't take off for him - it's a great tune!"

Via F.Æmbient (Kashual Plastik): JJ Ulius ‎– Demos 17-19
"A compilation of odds and ends from Gothenburgs best songwriter, known from Monokultur and Skiftande Enheter."

Via Toby Feltwell (Cav Empt): UnoTheActivist - Night Mode feat. 2gramcam
"This has half a million views, so it'd be a smash in underground terms, but it feels bizarrely underappreciated in terms of the world it exists in."

Via Fit Of Body (Harsh Riddims): Sword II - Between II Gardens

Via Flaty (Gost Zvuk, West Mineral, Firecracker): Nikita Bugaev - Unnamed

Via Brian Foote aka Leech (Peak Oil, Kranky): Wetman - The Wettening EP
"I'm fine with the drum n bass resurgence going on for as long as it likes. Here's a nice slice of domestic dnb with a title that has only become more resonant since it came out at the beginning of summer."

Via Simon Gabriel (2 Bridges Music & Arts): Sleepy Hallow ft. Fousheé - Deep End Freestyle Hook - Take You Home Lil Wayne - Ball Hard ft. Lil Twist

Via Scott Gailey (You're Me, Hotspring): Julian Yi-Jong Hou - Grass Drama
"The sound of watching a flower hear itself grow."

Via Nathan Harrington (PAN, 2 Bridges): Nicola Ratti - music for other purposes
"Five diverse pieces of music for dance and film that are as playful as they are somber and introspective making for some of the most beautiful work Nicola Ratti has released yet."

Via Haruka Hirata (Big Love Records): Duma - Duma
"Their powerful yet emotional rhythms let us instantly spread our wings and fly through the city and unseen landscapes."

Via Liz Harris (Grouper, Nihvek): It Did Happen Here (podcast, KBOO)

Via Vladimir Ivkovic (Offen Music): EMMANUELLE PARRENIN / DETLEF WEINRICH - Jours De Grève LP
"This is such an amazing LP by Detlef Weinrich and Emmanuelle Parrenin, but an easy one to overlook this year, because it's not really released yet - although it's been floating around for a while. Spiritus rector Gilbert Cohen and his mighty Versatile label, Ghédalia Tazartès, Quentin Rollet, Nicolas Chaix (…) during an intensive time of public strikes in the French capital. Too late for Best Of 2020 lists, probably too early for Best Of 2021 lists, but something precious to cherish."

Smagghe & Cross - 1819
"I realized that this LP on Offen was released in January 20, not December 19. Criminally overlooked considering how amazing it is :)"

Via Forest Juziuk (ASRA, Late Music, Laffs & Danger): Rychlicki & Kostkiewicz - ZAPIS
"My partner played ZAPIS while cooking a few times this year & I went crazy hearing it from the other room – I just loved it. It's not often that I come across guitar music like this & it turns out these guys are part of a really incredible coterie of Polish musicians & bands."

Via Sam Karmel (CS+KREME): Sleeper And Snake - Fresco Shed
"A tidy pop album that more should hear....Relaxed well written loose pop songs with snakey sax hooks and cello rhythm by Melbournites Amy Hill and Al Montfort, nice delivery driving music."

Via Elon Katz (Zero Grow): Sockethead - Harj​-​o​-​Marj

Via Suzanne Kraft (SK U KNO, Running Back, Melody As Truth): Little Movies - Live At Cafe Oto

Via Michael Kucyk (Efficient Space, Noise In My Head): Blazer Sound System - YO6TH
"Need to spotlight this massiv Blazer release that came out at a pretty hectic time when attention was occupied elsewhere."

Via Bianca Lexis (Dublab, NTS): Clarissa Connelly - The Voyager
"Not sure how slept on this one is, but it’s absolutely beautiful."

Via DJ Lyster (YOUTH): NEW ORDER ~ We All Stand (John Peel - TX 1/6/82)

Via Silvia Malnati (Noods, Sagome, Honest Jons): FenGi - mnk
"I first listened to this album on a warm summer day, confined at home but enjoying the sun on the balcony. FenGi is the moniker of the Turkish sound artist Altuğ Kaptan, and mnk represents his extended examination of the vibratory and the resonant. I love the suspended atmospheres he creates by combining and re-imagining everyday sounds and the fact that, as a restless explorer, he finds music within every corner of his house."

Via Maral (Leaving Records, Ninja Tune): Andrew Siegel - Reston Town Center Blues
"Andrew is an old friend of mine and I've had the honor of watching these songs grow from acoustic demos to lush haunting tracks with the help of Andrew Sarlo, who's one of my favorite producers. The care he gives to each sound & song is so apparent in the album. It's one of those records that you put on while going on a walk and it feels like you are walking in the music. We both grew up in Virginia and this record feels like the east coast in the fall. Sarlo explained the album as a weird cocktail between Scott Walker, Velvet Underground, Nick Cave, 90s films and more which I love. It's hard for me to pick a favorite but Cherry and Fools Garden are tracks that I always go back too but honestly once I start listening to a song from the album I just end up needing to listen to the whole thing :)"

Via Marylou (Oiseau Danseur, Rinse France, Ominira): DJ Die Soon - Kappa Slap
"'Horror Music on Rice' Spawned from the underground noise hiphop scene of London and Berlin, Japanse Die Soon casts dystopian freak beats across desolate, bleak landscapes. It's hard, it's disturbed; twisted imagination filtered through a SP-404."

Via Matt McDermott: Man Rei - Cusp
"Séance songs that manage to surf the liminal w/o drifting off into nothingness. On the West Virginia (!) based label Crash Symbols."

FUJI​|​|​|​|​|​|​|​|​|​|​TA - iki
"If Nyman scored the Greenaway films using only a homemade pipe organ."

Via Max D (Future Times): Greg Beato - New Format
"Super crazy and I didn't hear anybody talk about it."

Via ML (NTS, Carhartt WIP): Sockethead - Harj​-​o​-​Marj
"Why? It simply says much to me about my life. It's an intoxicating musical novel full of spellbinding characters."

Via Moopie (A Colourful Storm): Pumice - Table
"Pumice is the longstanding project of Stefan Neville and on Table he is joined by Jade Farley. It's their latest and greatest in a stretch of brilliant works. Thanks to Soft Abuse for putting this out and for capturing my imagination throughout this year."

Via NINA (V-I-S, Trilogy Tapes, Parallaxe Editions): DJ Fusiller - Sacrilège Vénération Vol. 2b
"This is a mixtape, a collage, a trip (at least for me), an inspiration (at least for me) and a reminder that a mix should not be a technically perfect mix but a story. A discovery for me, this person with its idea!"

Via John Olson (Wolf Eyes, American Tapes, Inzane Johnny): erl & jakesand - 004
erl - WQLX//Teachers
"Two 2020 cosmic jammers from my main skate hometown L.ansing S.kater D.etonater wrecker = PROD ERL."



Via Eric Porter (Afrikan Sciences): soundsteps - soundsteps
"Backstory: This is my friend Stephanie Disla aka Stef Eye formerly of the group Fisheye. We came up together in the late 90's early 00's NYC. A frequent source of inspiration in my musical DNA! Soundsteps is a tactician of biosonics, a method to measure subtle changes of energy fields, considering the physical effects of sound as supplements. The joys of silence and sound!"

Via Claire Rousay: Rosso Polare - Lettere Animali
"This album, like everything released by Klammklang, is absolutely phenomenal. There really is something to be said for artists who can include such a variety of sounds on a single release while still keeping the work focused and cohesive. This album is recorded, mixed, and mastered to perfection. S/O Cesare Lopopolo, Anna Vezzos, & Alexander Pustynsky."

Via Ana Roxanne: EDDIE CHACON - Outside (Laraaji Remix)
"Loving the sparseness & space of his full length, as well as the story of an artist really taking their time. I feel drawn to this track in particular: mystical heartbreak…"

Via Coby Sey (CURL):
Brother May & Micachu 'Archives 2008 - 2014'

Via Dania Shihab (Parallaxe Editions): FRKTL - Excision After Love Collapses
"This digital self-released album by Egyptian Sarah Badr is just amazing. The title track sounds like a mutilated orchestral warm-up warbled through a tape player and دَفْق (Crash Blossoms), with its layers of echoing Oud, is the evolved experimental Arabic music I've been waiting to hear for years. It's dark and complex in just the right way."

Via Conrad Standish (CS+KREME): Polido - Sabor A Terra
"Just a very well-executed, blunted, late night record. I don't know any stories behind it. I do know that Polido is portuguese, or at least lives there. I suppose it fits closest into that kind of Gast/Gossiwor axis but it's not so much derivative of that, it's definitely its own record and I hereby and henceforth use this noble platform to promote theeeee"

Via Stephen (Total Stasis): Sebastiano Carghini - Blue
"There was a period in april-may when koreatown really emptied out, and i was enjoying slinking around at night - it was lovely not running into anyone other than stray cats, and it smelled like jasmine more than trash. carghini sent me this release around then - the subdued tracks that form its backbone have nocturnal, negative space aspects (especially 1, 3 (this is my favorite), 5, 8) that mirrored the moment in their sparseness, sounding mechanical but eerily's worth a listen if you like that early industrial, minimal tape music, deserted ghost dub kind of feeling…"

Via Pete Swanson (Freedom To $pend, Collective Jyrk, Yellow Swans): Hardijs Ledins/Kaspars Rolsteins - Entire demo of "Rolstein on the Beach" (1993-1997)
"Five hours of 'Rolstein On The Beach' sessions, one of Hardjis Ledins of NSRD's most ambitious works...staggeringly epic, deep and fun."

Via Even Tuell (Workshop, Airbag Craftworks): Roméo Poirier - Hotel Nota
"I would like to point to an album that brings me bright, calming feelings these days. I'd put this one in the shelf for 'future hope micro jazz' The whole record is pickled with lots of nurturing good powers. While it's not waisting energy, it's rich in subtle groove and flowing details."

Via J.Tripp: Terrence Dixon - From The Far Future Pt​.​3
Manuel Pessôa de Lima - Realejo
hazbaragaz - KM03. hazbaragaz
Coby Sey - MASS: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Rhodri Davies - Telyn Rawn
Meftah - Information travels through e​.​p. Malcom Goldie - The Sound Of Malcolm
Serpente - Fé​/​Vazio
Grischa Lichtenberger - KAMILHAN, il y a péril en la demeure
Speculative Ero - Speculative Ero Vol. 1
"There was so much good music this year. I'm sure there always is. It was inspiring to give it a bit more attention than perhaps I have in the past. The records above stayed with me throughout the year. They found their way onto a lot of mixes and logged significant listening time in general. It's all a kind of inbetween music, hard to pin down, not obvious... really great."

Via Sam Valenti IV (Ghostly International): Various Artists - Transcendental Movements Vol. 1
"Leaned pretty heavily into this compilation this year to soundtrack the haunted city and inner life. A listening experience goal similar to our Thousands Of Eyes In The Dark compilation last year, but more spaced-out. Never gets stuck, as it's a group effort (Konduku, Neel, Donato Dozzy, Lanoche, etc.), and manages to scratches the edges of idm and dub techno. Very tasty airlock music."

Via Yu Su (bié Records): Knopha - Gym
"Knopha is a master of combing sounds of hyper digital manipulation and the most crystal-clear organics. All the small details sit in so well with each other in a space of endlessness. I can honestly only expect more mind-blowing surprises from him."

Via Scott Zacharias (No Way Back): The Coneheads - Selected Ringtones
"I was the possibly last person to get turned on to 2015 Egg Punk or whatever the fuck it is. I can’t get enough. Mind you, it's always in a bar, but my friend Chris blasts these kids like the Coneheads. These mfs could care less. It’s truly the best."