The decision to award a Qobuzism is made unanimously by the Qobuz team. In most cases, a Qobuzism is given to a “crossover” album in the best sense of the term, in that it will speak to all of our users.

By awarding a Qobuzism, we aim to draw attention to standout albums across a wide range of genres. In theory a Qobuzism is intended to alert you to an artist’s debut which has ventured into unexplored territory; but albums which merit this distinction can, in practice, come from anywhere! In each instance Qobuz endorses the album entirely, working with the artist in order to give them the greatest exposure possible – both within and outside of Qobuz. 

What we love is to give our Qobuz users the chance to discover recordings which are not necessarily what they would normally go for.

Albums

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 3, 2016 | Marathon Artists

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzism
No effects. No frills. No guests. No nada. Just songs, nothing but songs. Max Jury hasn’t completed a quarter century on this earth, yet his obsession remains with a timeless art of old: writing. The young American is clearly a man of taste and his world visibly (and audibly) collides with that of Neil Young, Townes Van Zandt, Gram Parsons, Randy Newman, Paul McCartney, Harry Nilsson and Tony Joe White, among others. His first album brings together many songs that you’ll be humming to yourself at the end of the night. On the facade of this almost-classicism, Jury integrates sublime melodies and sophisticated arrangements. He has opted for the piano rather than guitar here, interestingly enough. Jury has long since realized the inextricable link between country music and soul. Knowing this makes the heart of his art truly jubilant. © MZ / Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 6, 2014 | Play It Again Sam

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzism
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£8.79

Alternative & Indie - Released September 22, 2014 | Infectious

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzism
The 2012 Mercury Prize winners begin their sophomore outing with the subversively titled "Intro," a four-and-a-half-minute highlight reel of what's to come that pairs the monastic chanting that prefaced An Awesome Wave's first single, "Fitzpleasure," with a pastiche of new age and worldbeat-blasted ambient pop that suggests Mogwai by way of Peter Gabriel's Real World studios circa 1990 -- it's both planetarium laser light show and art installation ready. The muted yet equally heady "Arrival in Nara," all fingerpicked electric guitar and diffusive synths, and its more muscular yet no less monkish second half, "Nara," do little to rein in the holistic atmosphere that's so decisively laid out in the remarkably potent This Is All Yours' opening moments, which makes the arrival of the punchy, carnally minded "Every Other Freckle" and the meaty, Anglo-Motown thump of "Left Hand Free" so thrilling, but hardly unexpected. After all, this is a band that proved with its debut that it can go from icy, distant, and often excruciatingly beautiful to downright feral at the crack of a snare drum (or pots and pans, as the group's humble, dorm room beginnings often required), and This Is All Yours does little to tarnish their reputation as choirboys with dark passengers. That penchant for edgy refinement, along with frontman Joe Newman's elastic voice, remains the band's most effective weapon, but it's hard to pinpoint where and when that magic occurs, as it's so effortlessly woven into the group's sound. It's somewhere in between the autumnal and apocalyptic, Miley Cyrus-sampling "Hunger of the Pine," the bucolic, recorder-led "Garden of England," and the oddly soulful, midnight-black posturing of "The Gospel of John Hurt," and it gets under your skin, where it somehow manages to both hurt and heal. ~ James Christopher Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 27, 2014 | Arista France

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzism - Hi-Res Audio
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 13, 2014 | Believe Recordings

Hi-Res Booklet + Video Distinctions 4 étoiles Rock and Folk - Qobuzism
Since he released his first album Early In The Morning in 2010, James Vincent McMorrow has been creating an intoxicating concoction of folk and soul. His slight falsetto has much in common with Justin Vernon of Bon Iver or James Blake and gives his musical a certain dream-like quality. To write Post Tropical, the Irish singer-songwriter shut himself away on a farm on the Mexican border. The result is an album which reaches towards the sublime with its pure and refined melodies and harmonies, evident from the very first bars of album opener Cavalier. McMorrow strips back, and the result is a bewitchingly superb second album.
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 12, 2014 | Universal Music Division Maison Barclay

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzism
Although sparsely attended to with strings, percussion, and a few other ornamentations, Benjamin Clementine's debut album, At Least for Now, makes its case as a one-man show for piano and voice. The compelling British singer/songwriter is dramatic, self-assured, and theatrical in the extreme, boasting a powerful voice that swells to fill the room, which, on this unique record, seems to expand and shrink at the drop of a hat. A native of Edmonton in East London, Clementine left home at 16, eventually devoting himself to the lifestyle of an artistic vagabond, busking on the streets of Paris where he developed an unconventional style that blends together bits of soul, classical, opera, and street folk. A chance discovery by a French promoter led to bigger performances, a pair of acclaimed EPs, and a deal with Capitol. Opening his debut with "Winston Churchill's Boy," he boldly repurposes parts of the prime minister's famed WWII speech into an austere paean to his own journey of self-discovery. Like many of the songs on At Least for Now, it takes time to develop, but his magnetic delivery commands attention and his unusual songcraft is consistently interesting. "Adios," with its rapid-fire piano minimalism, seems to contain all of Clementine's vocal personalities as he soulfully opens up his lungs in the verses, only to half-bark the choruses before inserting a rambling spoken word rant about angels midway through. There's no shortage of standouts, with "London" and the skittering cabaret of "Nemesis" among the album's best moments. The stark, melodramatic "Cornerstone," a centerpiece of his first EP, makes another appearance here to great effect. At Least for Now is a pop record of sorts, but completely on his own terms, and like Antony Hegarty (an acknowledged influence) and Rufus Wainwright, two artists who have similar aspirations of pseudo-classical grandeur, Clementine will no doubt be polarizing for many listeners. There is no question, however, of his raw talent, poeticism, and knack for beguiling melodies, and in this oversaturated market, the true mavericks will always rise above the din. ~ Timothy Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 7, 2013 | Domino Recording Co

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzism - Hi-Res Audio
On her 2011 Mercury-nominated debut, bewitching, guitar-slinging Brit Anna Calvi delivered enough atmosphere to terraform her own planet. Elegant and poised, yet undeniably coiled and ready to strike at the first sign of a threat, songs like "Desire," "Suzanne & I," and "Blackout" sounded like a radio caught between Roy Orbison's "Crying" and PJ Harvey's "Man-Sized." One Breath, her intoxicating sophomore outing, picks right up where her eponymous first impression left off, offering up a pair of fevered, reverb-drenched, bordello-rock gems in "Suddenly" and "Eliza," before shifting gears with the icy and elliptical "Piece by Piece," one of several tracks that owe more than a cursory nod to the punchy, overcast minimalism of late-period Scott Walker. Calvi's more comfortable with pushing the envelope this time around, and One Breath feels like the work of an artist who has been given (or has at least given herself) carte blanche. Songs like "Cry," with its explosive blasts of Carlos Alomar-borne feedback, the hypnotic "Bleed into Me," which sounds like Jeff Buckley taking on King Crimson's "Matte Kudasai," and the nervy, incredibly intimate title track, may mine different areas of the sonic map, but they remain firmly entrenched in the ever-expanding Anna Calvi universe. Having eschewed much of the cavernous chamber pop of her debut for more challenging yet no less rewarding fare, Calvi's less adventurous fans may find themselves at a loss as to how to process it all, but there's something both immaculate and broken about One Breath that ultimately transcends its more difficult moments. ~ James Christopher Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released September 30, 2013 | Play It Again Sam

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzism
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Alternative & Indie - Released September 30, 2013 | Play It Again Sam

Hi-Res Booklet + Video Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzism - Hi-Res Audio
4 stars out of 5 -- "AVENTINE is a strikingly spare album of great, but frosty, beauty."
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Alternative & Indie - Released March 4, 2013 | InFiné

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Sélection FIP - Qobuzism - Hi-Res Audio
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2013 | Arthur Beatrice, under exclusive license to Vertigo - Capitol

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzism - Hi-Res Audio
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 30, 2012 | Warp Records

Hi-Res Distinctions 5/6 de Magic - Qobuzism - Hi-Res Audio
Patience is the watchword for Gravenhurst fans, whether they're listening to Nick Talbot's complex songs unfold or enduring a five-year wait between releases, like the one between 2007's brilliantly eclectic The Western Lands and The Ghost in Daylight. Talbot's fourth album is aptly named; these silver-and-grey songs are so subtle and delicate that they seem like they could float away at any moment. This ultra-whispery direction is something of a surprise following The Western Lands' rock leanings, but on this album Talbot spends more time unifying his wide-ranging palette than dabbling in it. His fusion of folk, dream pop, and electronics is seamless -- there are no tacked-on drum machine beats here -- and harks back to earlier albums like Fires in Distant Buildings and even his debut, Flashlight Seasons. The fittingly circular acoustic guitar pattern on the drifting opener "Circadian" plays like a return to his roots, a feeling echoed later by the impressionistic instrumentals "Carousel" and "Peacock." These smoothly blended sounds put the focus on Talbot's voice and words, both of which have never been better. Though he excels at making the disturbing beautiful and vice versa, he also lets a little more light in on The Ghost in Daylight, and "The Prize" is its brightest glimmer: as breezy and sweet as anything penned by Neil Halstead or the Clientele, it dares to hope for love, even when wanting something so much threatens to overshadow actually having it. Still, Talbot is never better than when examining humanity's darkest impulses with a cool empathy that makes his songs all the more intriguing. He's a shy but perceptive observer to tragedies big and small, as on "The Foundry," a wintry indictment of society with the refrain "You won't know when evil comes/Evil looks just like anyone/I blame anyone but me," and "Fitzrovia," which sketches a dystopian still life with electronic creaks and groans, and may be the quietest song ever about governmental oppression. Talbot's fascination with crime, death, and fire endures in his deceptively gentle songs; he doesn't write murder ballads so much as murder lullabies. "In Miniature" puts lyrics about trying to catch a killer with the image in a dead girl's retina to the kind of honeyed melody other singer/songwriters would save for more uplifting topics, while "The Ghost of Saint Paul" plays like a nursery rhyme of loss. He saves the best for last with the outstanding "Three Fires," which packs a family's worth of history and emotions, dreamlike imagery and destruction into just over four minutes. It's a suitably haunting ending to The Ghost in Daylight, Talbot's most intimate collection of songs yet; even if The Western Lands was more overtly ambitious, this may be the best gateway into Gravenhurst's world -- and it was well worth the wait. ~ Heather Phares