This past year has closed out the decade with a whirlwind of great releases—underscoring the fact that the international music scene is healthier than ever, despite political turmoil that literally and figuratively divides us.

Our Editors Alex Baker (myself), Frank Deserto, and Andi Harriman have done our best to curate what we thought we some of the best releases of 2019, but I must make a mea culpa in advance because—despite the overlap in some of our choices—there are invariably some names left out that may have warranted inclusion if we were to expand both the number of entries and the scope of genres.

For example, one of the best political anthems of the year is perhaps Berlin post-punk act Diat’s “W.I.G.T.D.W.M?” (What’s It Got To Do With Me) from the album Positive Disintegration.

Two others, while not included in the list below, I mention here because of their artistic integrity, and activism in battling the Patriarchy and abusers.

The first being HIDE, whose frontperson Heather Gabrel smashes gender-roles, and truly does take a chainsaw to the bro-culture in music with their industrial noise opus Hell is Here (Dais).

The second ranks high on quite a few year-end lists, and rightly so. This is Lingua Ignota’s third studio album Caligula, which while defying genres, saunters in softly—in a matter of moments easing in from a caress to a slap in the face with a hand coated in shards of broken glass.

Another newer artist, that I could not quite fit on the list is Skemer, whose track “Sunseeker” from their album Benevolence, has been on heavy rotation in my own personal playlists.

There was also Tempers, whose fantastic single “Capital Pains”, the opening track featured on their third studio album Private Life is the NYC duo’s best song yet.

And finally, Wingtips, whose album Exposure Therapy released in August via Artoffact Records is a personal favorite of mine.

As for legacy acts, the only album I had initially planned to include in my list was Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds Ghosteen, which was to my mind the spiritual successor to Cave’s closing contribution to Current 93’s All The Pretty Little Horses album, “Patripassian”.

This is record is one of the most beautiful expressions of what happens when one emerges from the perdition of grief with a renewed love and compassion for those lost.

Also worth praising both The Membranes What Nature Gives… Nature Takes Away, and New Model Army’s From Here, two records that are a must-listen for any fans of classic post-punk.

Now, that we have got the intro out of the way, here is the list below, and we hope that some of you will fall in love with some of these entries as we have if you had not heard them the first time.

Alex Baker


  1. Secret Shame Dark Synthetics 

2. Twin Tribes Ceremony (Negative Gain, Manic Depression Records, Young & Cold Records)

3. Boy Harsher Careful (Nude Club)

4. Tamaryn Dreaming the Dark (Dero Arcade)

5. Body of Light Time to Kill (Dais)

6. Chasms The Mirage (felte)

7. Drab Majesty Modern Mirror (Dais)

8. Second Still Violet Phase (Fabrika Records)

9. Ritual Howls Rendered Armor (Felte)

10. Cold Showers Motionless (Dais)

11. She Past Away Disko Anksiyete (Fabrika/Metropolis)

12. Ploho Пыль (Sierpien Records, Other Voices Records, Bluedog Music, Vinyl Codes)

13. Sólveig Matthildur ‎Constantly In Love (Artoffact Records)

14. Xeno & Oaklander- Hypnos (Dais)

15. Automelodi- Mirages Au Futur Verre​-​brisé (Holodeck)

16. Mueran Humanos- Hospital Lullabies (Cinema Paradiso)

17. Kontravoid Too Deep (Fleisch)

18. Wires & Lights A Chasm Here And Now (Oblivion)

19. All Your Sisters Trust Ruins (The Flenser)

20. Hante Fierce Synth Religion


Non-Album Singles (Including EPs)

1. Korine “Uncrossed”

2. SRSQ “Temporal Love” (Dais)

3. Ill Humans “Whatever” (From Disruption of The Binaries EP)

4. Pawns Monuments of Faith (Near Dark/Last Hour Records/Inflammable Material)

5. Thymian Thymian

6. Some Ember Submerged (Third Coming Records)

7. Panther Modern Los Angeles 2020 EP

8. Just Mustard- Seven (Pizza Pizza Records)

9. The KVB Submersion

10. Isolated Youth Warfare EP Fabrika Records


Frank Deserto


1. HTRK- Venus in Leo (Ghostly International)

2. Tamaryn- Dreaming the Dark (Dero Arcade)

3. Mueran Humanos- Hospital Lullabies (Cinema Paradiso)

4. Silent EM- The Absence (Disko Obscura)

5. Secret Shame ‎– Dark Synthetics (Self-released)

6. Xarah Dion– Plein Nord (Zodiaque/Visage Musique)

7. Chasms- The Mirage (Felte)

8. Body of Light– Time to Kill (Dais)

9. Automelodi- Mirages Au Futur Verre​-​brisé (Holodeck)

10. Nick Cave & the Badseeds- Ghosteen (Ghosteen Ltd.)

11. Xeno & Oaklander- Hypnos (Dais)

12. Be Forest- Knocturne (We Were Never Being Boring)

13. Kontravoid- Too Deep (Fleisch)

14. Carla dal Forno- Look Up Sharp (Kallista Records)

15. Second Still- Violet Phase (Fabrika Records)

16. Boy Harsher- Careful (Nude Club Records)

17. Cold Showers- Motionless (Dais)

18. Ritual Howls- Rendered Armor (Felte)

19. UV-TV- Happy (Deranged Records)

20. Vaura- Sables (Profound Lore Records)


1. SRSQ- Temporal Love (Dais)

2. Odonis Odonis- Reaction (Felte)

3. Just Mustard- Seven (Pizza Pizza Records)

4. Multiple Man- High on the Hog (Fleisch)

5. The Holy Circle- Sick with Love (Deathbomb Arc)

6. Whiner- You Never Have to Feel This Way Ever Again

Andi Harriman

1. Boy Harsher Careful

2. Kontravoid Too Deep

3. Body Of Light Time To Kill

4. Multiple Man High On The Hog

5. S Y Z Y G Y X Fading Bodies

6. She Past Away Disko Anksiyete

7. Rhys Fulber Ostalgia

8. Pawns Monuments of Faith

9. Randolph And Mortimer Manifesto For A Modern World

10. Blu Anxxiety God’s Exposure

11. TWINS New Cold Dream

12. Years Of Denial Suicide Disco

13. Pelada Movimiento Para Cambio

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