What is a Qobuzissime? It’s an award presented by Qobuz for a first or second album.

Pop or Reggae, Metal or Classical, Jazz or Blues, no genre is excluded. More often than not the award is presented to a newly discovered artist.

Sometimes it might be a particularly quirky or a crossover album from a discography.

The important aspects are uniqueness, sincerity and quality. We look for these things in the recording, the project and the sound identity.





Albums

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 26, 2018 | CRYBABY

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
Francis Mallari, Elliot Berthault, Maxime Gendre, Simon Dubourg, Guillaume Rottier: five lads making beautiful, violent French post-punk. Rendez-Vous have something of a fresh Eighties chill flavour. And they don’t sound French. From Fad Gadget to Soft Moon, the quintet blends together a huge range of influences, without ever falling into imitation. After two EPs, Rendez-Vous in 2014 and Distance in 2016, the Parisians have dug deep into the blackness of a punk style that's dark but fine, elegant and worn, and never too gritty. This is a classy and romantic rendez-vous in black and white. The group are held together by a strong spine made up of Francis' rough and husky voice, the choppy guitar and busted synths and above all the intense, unwavering bassline (Sentimental Animal, Paralyzed) which creates a rhythm that's certainly upbeat but not rushed: Superior State says it all: from the first track, until the final bow. Excellent. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 19, 2018 | Communion Group Ltd

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzissime
It wouldn't be right to reduce Tamino-Amir Moharam Fouad simply to an heir of Jeff Buckley with hints of Radiohead from their earlier years. The Belgian songwriter, only 21 years old, offers much more than that on his first album, even if Colin Greenwood, the bassist from Radiohead, does feature on the album... Tamino, an Antwerp-native and John Lennon-admirer, has always kept his Egyptian origins preserved in a corner of his head, under his jet-black mane. The Arabic music that his mother played at home must have been all the more influential when it was the work of Muharram Fouad, his singer-actor grandfather, a star in Cairo in the sixties... This eclecticism is at the heart of Tamino's music, which owes as much to Buckley folk music as it does to Beatles pop and even to the nonchalant melancholy of Leonard Cohen, another one of his idols. To fuse these disparate influences, the mysterious young man possesses a deadly weapon: his voice. It’s an equally versatile organ, capable of stretching slowly and transforming itself into a stunning falsetto, an impressive technique that he never abuses. It is this voice that transforms Amir into a long and poignant novel. A coming-of-age story that alternates between the dreamer (the pure folk on Verses) and the lyrical poet as on So It Goes, Each Time and Intervals, conceived around a section of Arabic strings. A Qobuzissime album that’s oozing with original and touching poetry. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 12, 2018 | Kitsune Musique

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
The story of Parcels is both a childhood dream and a wonderful human adventure. Formed just four years ago, for what is the “first real band” for each of its members, the quintet (music-lovers and Steely Dan-addicts) quickly sold out their first concerts in Byron Bay, a surfing spot on the East coast of Australia. But despite being half a world away, the smell of Berlin nights lured them over to try their luck in Europe. Good move: the international music hub that is the German capital lead them to a signing with the Parisian label Kitsuné. After two EPs where they demonstrated their compatibility, Thomas Bangalter came to congratulate them and give them some advice following a concert in Paris, producing their single Overnight a few months later. Now equipped with Daft Punk’s totem of protection, the Aussies have launched their debut album with an emphasis on the collective – symbolised by the title of the album, Parcels – a pop-funk wave that sounds like an album by The Beatles with Nile Rodgers on the guitar. Amongst these twelve tracks (three of which have already turned heads: Tieduprightnow, Bemyself and Lightenup), you realise that this group really is a group in the true sense of the word and that these guys love nothing more than jamming out. The lyrics on Lightenup were written collectively – proof that Parcels plan to head down this road together (or at least that their lead singer isn’t a complete megalomaniac). And as long as they keep their spirits up this high, nothing will stop them from cruising on down this sunny highway. © Smaël Bouaici/Qobuz

Alternative & Indie - Released August 31, 2018 | Jazz Village

Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzissime
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Dying today. In Creole, mo jodi. The title says it all for Delgres’ first album, an impeccable trio that could easily be compared to what would happen if the Black Keys dropped their anchor in the Antilles… Delgres for Louis Delgrès, an abolitionist infantry colonel born in Saint-Pierre, famous for his anti-slavery proclamation, a high point of Guadeloupe’s resistance against Napoleonic troops who wanted to restore the slave trade. When Louis Delgrès and his 300 men realised all was lost when faced with Bonaparte’s soldiers, they decided to commit suicide using their explosives, by virtue of the revolutionary emblem live free or die… However, this historic name doesn’t constrain Pascal Danaë, Baptiste Brondy and Rafgee to only be a “band with a message”. Delgres proudly waves its name and the ideals that go with it, but focuses first and foremost on making rock with a touch of garage, fed with some primitive blues, raw soul music and sounds from New Orleans. Combining dobro guitar, drums and sousaphone – an atypical tuba popular in the carnival fanfares of the Antilles and New Orleans −, the trio assert their originality. In his writing too, Danaë goes back and forth − with great ease − between Creole and English, blurring the lines between his influences, which he has always treated with taste throughout his long career (he was for instance involved in Rivière Noire, best World Music album at the 2015 Victoires de la Musique). A stylistic kaleidoscope, illustrated by the ballad Séré mwen pli fo, sung in duo with Morcheeba’s Skye Edwards. In its edgier moments as well as nostalgic and absorbing sequences, Mo Jodi talks about History, but also hope, and builds bridges between continents and centuries to create a blissful journey of rock’n’blues’n’soul that will take you by the guts! © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 8, 2018 | Easy Eye Sound

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
After buccaneering around the West Coast with the Clams, Shannon Shaw has headed to Nashville, as Dusty Springfield did in 1968. With a clear nod to Dusty in Memphis, this first solo effort marks the beginnings of an emancipated life. Shannon & The Clams is a group from Oakland, California, which owes as much to Primus as it does to Devo, Missing Person or Roy Orbison. They have mastered the art of disguise, putting out absurd shorts, and invite journalists into their tiny rooms. They're signed on Burger Records. Their poetry is written in punk, rockabilly, doo-wop and garage. Even punkier, and rawer, were Hunx and His Punx, which Shannon joined at Seth Bogart's invitation. Now flying solo, Shannon is showing us a different face. Her husky voice has the doo-wop soul of the great girl groups, the Ronettes, Shirelles and the Shangri-Las: you could already hear it on the Clams' Onion, produced by Dan Auerbach. And though Shannon's still on bass, now she has centre stage. A fan of the Clams, the Black Keys singer invited Shannon to do a turn in his Easy Eye Sound studio. With six songs in her pocket, our glamorous blonde leapt at the chance to join a clique off over-qualified musicians, and to fulfil her destiny. These old-timers recorded with Aretha, Elvis and Dusty... Which must have raised the pulse. And here they raise the ghosts of her broken, sorry loves, and push the great singer's feline, charming voice to its limit. Scintillating sixties melodies, cinematic arrangements straight out of James Bond: Auerbach has crafted this album painstakingly. It's classy, and classic, with a little touch of glockenspiel, vibraphone and some chimes, and a faintly musty retro whiff. Dan has played Phil Spector, and brought out Shaw's genius, and revealed the diva. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released March 2, 2018 | Domino Recording Co

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzissime
Confusion guaranteed! They are Australian, Japanese, English, Korean and they have dropped their anchor in the UK capital. They love the pop of yesterday as much as the pop of today. They make musical collages look as easy as breathing in and out. What if Superorganism were THE group that captured all that's best in our times? This young collective of international musicians, all big fans of pop culture, met on YouTube; and they composed, recorded and produced their first album in a studio in East London, where they now live together! This sunny record is a rainbow of minimalist indie pop, synthetic and racing, as extravagant as it is kaleidoscopic, bringing praise from artists like Frank Ocean and Ezra Koenig from Vampire Weekend. For some this will bring to mind those distant cousins of the The Avalanches, The Go! Team or I'm From Barcelona: but Superorganism has a light touch and a dreamlike, soothing quality which are all their own, and which have made this album a heartwarming Qobuzissime. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 12, 2018 | Dead Oceans

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzissime
As intense as an XS G-string stretched around an XL derrière, Shame isn’t here to joke around. The concentrated post-punk that is at the heart of this debut album from the London quintet stands out through its charisma, violence and originality. Songs Of Praise even sounds like the soundtrack to a really grey, frustrated England. There’s a lot of The Fall, Gang Of Four and Killing Joke in this sonic bundle of nerves, but it never sounds retro or backwards. Like Fat White Family, Ought or even Vietnam, Shame belongs in 2018 and you can definitely hear it! Straight from Brixton, singer Charlie Steen, guitarists Sean Coyle-Smith and Eddie Green, drummer Charlie Forbes and bass player Josh Finerty produce and cage their seemingly visceral irritation on punchy songs (Dust On Trial) that are sometimes poisonous and throbbing (The Lick) but at other points more genial (One Rizla). Here, Shame play brazen, uncompromising and unapologetic rock. Just one listen to Songs Of Praise and your body will come out bruised, yet you will keep asking for more. © MZ/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 13, 2017 | Downtown JV

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
In the latest edition of the hipster series, Lawrence Rothman seems to be the world champion. An androgynous face (and voice) made for the glossy pages of fashion magazines, a passion for the noteworthy transformations in Cindy Sherman’s photography (Rothman changes his look with every clip!) and packed full with friends who came to lend a helping hand (Kim Gordon from Sonic Youth, Angel Olsen, Marissa Nadler, Duff McKagan from Guns’N’Roses, Stella Mozgawa from Warpaint, Tom Krell a.k.a. How To Dress Well, the bassist Pino Palladino, Kristin Kontrol from Dum Dum Girls…the list goes on!). To our ears, Rothman sounds like the soul dandy/R&B from the 80s. Talk Talk often comes to mind, as well as David Bowie, Depeche Mode or sometimes Prince and, a little closer to home, Ariel Pink and How To Dress Well. But under the glitzy varnish, this début album holds songs with staggering melodies. Some compositions bring a rather cathartic style of writing with which Rothman displays his personal quest for an identity that he defines as non-binary (gender queer). This Californian, who was born in Los Angeles 35 years ago and who claims to love Charles Bukowski just as much as R. Kelly and Tupac Shakur as much as Leonard Cohen, has assured that The Book Of Law is one of the most moving albums of 2017. A highly refined Qobuzissime. © MZ/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released July 21, 2017 | Columbia

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
This is the debut album from 18-year-old "voice of a generation" Declan McKenna, who broke out in 2015 with his FIFA-criticizing debut single, "Brazil." Recorded with Simian Mobile Disco's James Ford (Arctic Monkeys, Depeche Mode, Florence + the Machine), the album sees him melding politically and socially conscious lyrics wiser than his years with a louche, laconic indie pop style, and features all six of his previously released singles. ~ John D. Buchanan
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A/B

Alternative & Indie - Released June 10, 2016 | Elektra (NEK)

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
Opening with a track entitled No Good? A surefire way to help listeners understand that what comes next is rock’n’roll inspired by the golden age of guitar. It’s easy to see why the TV series Vinyl chose the the track to integrate into their soundtrack. Kaleo mark their territory definitively here with energetic rock, deft instrumentalism and some great folk ballads. The vocals of JJ Julius Son goes from are at times rough, and at others, crystalline – the dynamism is impressive from start to finish. There is an element of brilliance on their album A/B (Way Down We Go). With the likes of the Jacquire King (Kings of Leon) and Mike Crossey (Arctic Monkeys), Kaleo has definitely ensured the quality of production – and the sound on this album is a testament to that fact. An incredibly diverse project well deserving of our Qobuzism award!
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Ambient - Released November 27, 2015 | Intuitive Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 24, 2014 | Warner Bros.

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime
Theophilus London has to be doing something right to have Kanye West as his executive producer, soul legend Leon Ware as creative co-producer, and the Force M.D.'s, Devonte Hynes, and Jesse Boykins III as guest collaborators. Additionally, Karl Lagerfeld serves as art director and photographer for Vibes!, London's second proper album. Timez Are Weird These Days, the artist's debut housed in a Ware-emulating cover, lacked focus and was mostly surface with little depth. This offers measurable improvements across the board. Even when London muddles quasi-philosophical gibberish and pro-fellatio sentiments on "Water Me," the hooks and basslines dig deeper. It's more creative, too: "Neu Law" cleverly overhauls a decade-old droning synth-pop vignette by John Maus and is enhanced by Miri Ben-Ari's gently cutting strings. London continues to craft frivolous tunes about playboy escapades. On "Do Girls," where he performs his version of orientation conversion therapy on a woman, he cannonballs into a wading pool of inanity. Well above that, there's the bopping "Need Somebody," powered by help from Ware and the Force M.D.'s, and a chorus that oddly recalls that of Eric Burdon & War's "Spill the Wine." It casually lays waste to everything on Timez. The best bid for commercial radio play, however, is "Can't Stop," an adroit production from Club Cheval, Brodinski, and 88 Keys that features West in top lewd form. Best of all is the finale, "Figure It Out," produced by Ware. Hynes and the Force M.D.'s also join in to make it one of the year's finest slow jams, akin to an update of a top Ware ballad (like "Rockin' You Eternally" or "Words of Love") with sinewy low end. ~ Andy Kellman
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2013 | Vertigo - Capitol

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzissime - Hi-Res Audio
Taking a cue from like-minded purveyors of moody, shape-shifting modern rock like Wild Beasts, the XX, and Alt-J, London four-piece Arthur Beatrice cast a seductive shadow on their major-label debut, the icy and elegant Working Out. Choosing the band's moniker by inverting head Golden Girl Bea Arthur's name aside, the quartet's 11-track inauguration is a brooding, largely quirk-less affair that sounds a bit like Beach House setting up shop on a bridge above the Thames. Vocal duties are split between the fantastically named, Morrissey-esque Orlando Leopard and the soulful Ella Girardot, the latter of whom imbues each syllable with a sort of restrained, wounded elegance that's both bewitching and melancholy, like Adele or Florence Welch at their least bombastic. Musically, the duo toe the line between urban sophisti-pop and crestfallen indie rock, and at their most effective ("Late," "Midland," "Grand Union"), they evoke the best works of the artists they sound most similar to, while managing to sow some of their own seeds within the existing architecture. One of the group's most subtle selling points are brothers Hamish (bass) and Elliott Barnes (drums), whose tasteful contributions to tracks like "Carter (Uncut)" and "Charity" are so immaculately rendered and refined they could be bottled and sold at top-shelf prices, and they help to reinforce the stateliness of Leopard and Girardot's vocals without usurping them in the process. Working Out is an apt title, as Arthur Beatrice sound a little bit like they're in the late stages of development, where momentum is sometimes mistaken for maturation, but there's little doubt that they have the tools and the talent to carve out their own niche if given the room to grow a bit further out of the very populated one they currently reside in. ~ James Christopher Monger
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 27, 2014 | Arista France

Hi-Res Distinctions Qobuzissime - Hi-Res Audio
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 7, 2013 | Domino Recording Co

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Qobuzissime - 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 April 16, 2012 | Tricatel

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Album du mois Trax - 5/6 de Magic - Qobuzissime - Hi-Res Audio