Essential CDs of the year, picked by the Echoes Staff

Read John Diliberto's reflections on the year in music

Also, check out the Listeners' Poll to see which CDs were the favorites of Echoes Listeners this year.


Essential Echoes for 2004:

RANK ARTIST CD Read more/ Purchase from
1 Anja Lechner & Vasillis Tsabropoulos Chants Hymns and Dances
2 Lanterna Highways
3 BT Music from & Inspired by the Film Monster
4 Viktor Krauss Far From Enough  
5 Erik Wollo Blue Sky Red Guitars
6 Jan Garbarek In Praise of Dreams
7 Steve Tibbetts/Choying Drolma Selwa
8 Jonathan Elias American River
9 Zero One Psi-Fi
10 Mark Dwane The Sirius Link more info
11 Vas Feast of Silence
12 Donna DeLory The Lover and the Beloved
13 Fritz Heede Illuminated Manuscripts
14 Air Talkie Walkie
15 Green Isac Etnotronica  
16 William Eaton Ensemble Sparks and Embers
17 Blow Up Hollywood Fake  
18 Lori Carson The Finest Thing
19 Jon Hopkins Contact Note
20 Moya Brennan Two Horizons
21 Jami Sieber Hidden Sky
22 Steve Roach/Byron Metcalf/Mark Seelig Mantram
23 Will Ackerman Returning
24 California Guitar Trio Whitewater
25 Jeff Johnson and Brian Dunning The Katurran Odyssey  

Listener Poll 2004 results>>



Essential Echoes for 2003:

RANK ARTIST CD Read more/ Purchase from
1 AfroCelts Seed (Realworld)
2 Saul Stokes Fields (Hypnos) More info
3 Jairamiji Kindred Spirits (Dakini) More info
4 Tim Story/Hans-Joachim Roedelius Lunz (Narada)
5 Pat Metheny One Quiet Night (Warner Bros)
6 Patrick O'Hearn Beautiful World (Patrick O'Hearn)  
7 Suzanne Teng Miles Beyond (Autumn Light)
8 Rhonda Larson Distant Mirrors (Bear Behind Productions)
9 Erik Wollo Emotional Landscapes (Spotted Peccary)
10 Rasa Shelter (New Earth)
11 Samite Tunula Eno (Triloka)
12 Loop Guru Bathtime with Loop Guru (Hypnotic Records)
13 Kila Luna Park (World Village)
14 Savae Ancient Echoes (World Library)
15 Mike Oldfield Tubular Bells 2003 (Rhino)  
16 Michael Gulezian Language of the Flame (Timbreline Music)
17 Joe Ebel Primebel (Ebel Alley Music)
18 Kevin Bartlett Near Life Experience (Aural Gratification)
19 Gigi Illuminated Audio(Palm Pictures)  
20 One Alternative Pendulum (One Alternative)
21 Cliff Martinez Solaris (Trauma Records)
22 Ghazal Rain (ECM)
23 Amethystium Aphelion (Neurodisc)
24 Adrian Legg Guitar Bones (Favored Nations Acoustic)  
25 Code Indigo Time Code (AD Music)



Essential Echoes for 2002:
 Rank  Artist  Album   Read more/ Purchase from
1 Moodswings Horizontal
2 David Bridie Act of Free Choice
3 Steve Tibbetts A Man About a Horse
4 Future Sound of London The Isness
5 Azam Ali Portals of Grace
6 Yo Yo Ma-Silk Road Ensemble Silk Road Journey
7 Ancient Future Planet Passion
8 Danny Heines What Worlds They Bring
9 Ishq Orchid more info
10 Axiom of Choice Unfolding
11 Phillip Glass Naqoyqatsi
12 Solas The Edge of Silence
13 Peter Gabriel Up
14 Phil Thornton Dreamscapes
15 Michael Hewett Being in Dreaming
16 Madredeus Electronico
17 Bobby McFerrin Beyond Words
18 Samite Kambu Angels
19 Hans Zimmer Black Hawk Down
20 Jeff Pearce Bleed
21 George Winston Night Divides the Day:The Music of the Doors
22 Mediaeval Babes The Rose
23 Edward Bilous Soundtrack: Frontier House
24 Carl Weingarten Escape Silence
25 Craig Armstrong As if to Nothing


Essential Echoes for 2001:


Read more/ Purchase from
1  Afro Celt Sound System Vol 3: Further in Time


 2  Bruce Kaphan  Slider


 3  Brian Eno / J. Peter Schwalm  Drawn from Life


 4   Dead Can Dance  1981-1998


5  Patrick O'Hearn So Flows the Current


 6  Will Ackerman  Hearing Voices


7  David Darling Cello Blue


8  Epiphany Project Epiphany Project


9  Tim Story Shadowplay


 10   Erik Wollo  Wind Journey


 11   Jalan Jalan  Bali Dua


 12   Zero One   Prototype 2


 13  Green Isac  Groundrush


 14   Gary Stroutsos  Pacific Moon


 15  Eberhard Weber  Endless Days


16  Rasa Union


17  Paul Ellis Into the Liquid Unknown


18  Tim Farrell Songs from Clarowood


 19  Lumin  Hadra


 20  Kit Watkins  The Gathering (sets 1 and 2)  More info
on these
Kit Watkins CDs
21  B-Tribe Spiritual Spiritual


22 Carol Tatum Music for Harp


23 Nana Daughters of the Sun


 24  Pat Thomi  Pyramids


 25  William Coulter/Benjamin Verdery  Song for our Ancestors



25 Essential Echoes CDs of 2000


Also, check out the Listeners' Poll to see which CDs were the favorites of Echoes Listeners this year.


click on the artists' names to read more about their CDs.






CD Title




Buy from
 1  Arvo Part  Alina  ECM
2 Vas In the Garden of Souls Narada
3 Preston Reed Handwritten Notes Outer Bridge
4 Skyedance Labyrinth Culburnie
5 Axiom of Choice Niya Yesh Narada
6 Jeff Pearce To The Shores of Heaven Hypnos
7 Rasa Devotion Hearts of Space
8 Stephan Micus The Garden of Mirrors ECM
9 Harold Budd The Room Atlantic
10 Jonn Serrie & Gary Stroutsos Hidden World Narada
11 Joanne Shenandoah Peacemaker's Journey Silverwave
12 Erik Wollo Guitar Nova Spotted Peccary
13 Sorma Mirage of the East Pacific Moon
14 Milladoiro Auga de Maio Green Linnet
15 Kate Price The Isle of Dreaming Omtown
16 Ekova Heaven's Dust Six Degrees
17 Saul Stokes Outfolding Hypnos
18 Nakai-Eaton-Clipman-Nawang In a Distant Place Canyon
19 Martin Tillman Eastern Twin Unitone
20 Arc Radio Sputnik DiN


browse DiN records
21 Steve Stevens Flamenco.a.go.go Ark21
22 Thomas Otten Close to Silence Higher Octave
23 Mary Jane Lamond Lan Duil Wicklow
24 Jeff Johnson & Brian Dunning Byzantium Ark
25 Ketil Bjornstad & David Darling Epigraphs ECM




25 Essential Echoes CDs of 1999




Also, check out the Listeners' Poll to see which CDs were the favorites of Echoes Listeners in 1999.


Rank Artist Title (Label) &nbsp
1 Jon Hassell Fascinoma (Waterlily Acoustics)
2 Afro Celt Sound System Vol. II: Release (Realworld)
3 Samite Stars to Share (Windham Hill)
4 Uakti & Philip Glass Aguas da Amazonia (Point Music)
5 Steve Roach Light Fantastic (Fathom)
6 Various Artists Northern Nights (Six Degrees)
7 J. Garbarek/Hilliard Ensemble Mnemosyne (ECM)
8 John McLaughlin Remember Shakti (Verve)
9 Toumani Diabate New Ancient Strings (Hanibal)
10 Jalan Jalan Bali (Pacific Moon)
11 Angels of Venice Angels of Venice (Windham Hill)
12 Kevin Keller Pendulum (Lektronic Soundscapes)
13 Robert Mirabal Taos Tales (SilverWave)
14 Knut Hamre and Steve Tibbetts A (Hanibal)
15 Coyote Oldman House Made of Dawn (Hearts of Space)
16 Al Di Meola Winter Night (Telarc)
17 John Doan Wayfarer (Hearts O Space)
18 Suzanne Teng Mystic Journey (Autumn Light)
19 Conrad Praetzel Receive (Paleo)
20 David Helpling Sleeping on the Edge of the World (Spotted Peccary)
21 Leo Kottke One Guitar, No Vocals (Private Music)
22 Omar Faruk Tekbelik One Truth (World Class)
23 Gregorio Allegri/Vladmir Ivanoff Sacred Treasures (Hearts of Space)
24 Paul Winter and Friends Celtic Solstice (Windham Hill)
25 Monk Blink (Ether/Flat Earth) -






25 Essential Echoes CDs of 1998


For more information about these records, click on the artist's name.



Artist Title Label
Lisa Gerrard and Pieter Bourke Duality 4AD
Robert Rich Seven Veils Hearts of Space
Vas Offerings Narada
Mary McLaughlin and William Coulter Celtic Requiem Windham Hill
Alex de Grassi The Water Garden Tropo
Happy Rhodes Many Worlds are Born Tonight Samson
David Michael and Randy Mead Courtship of the Moon Purnima
Mark Dwane The Nefilim Trondant
Maire Brennan Perfect Time Word
Steve Roach and Roger King Dust to Dust Projekt
Liz Story 17 Seconds to Anywhere Windham Hill
Baka Beyond Journey Between Hannibal/Ryko
Air Moon Safari Source/Caroline
Redshift Ether Champagne Lake
Jocelyn Montgomery and David Lynch Lux Vivens Mammoth
Djivan Gasparyan and Michael Brook Black Rock Realworld
Will Ackerman Sound of Wind Driven Rain Windham Hill
Bang on a Can Music for Airports Point Music
Monk Hush Ether
Gustavo Santaolalla Ronroco Nonesuch
Ceredwen Or Mabinogi Real Music
Tim Farrell Skydancer Magrathea
Luis Perez Tales of Astral Travelers Domo
Peter Kater and Nawang Khechog Dance of the Innocents EarthSea
Ken Bonfield Homecoming BWE



25 Essential Echoes CDs of 1997


Artist Title Label
Jamshied Sharifi A Prayer for the Soul of Layla Alula
Vas Sunyata Narada
John Doan Eire: Isle of the Saints Hearts 'O Space
Richard Souther Illumination Sony Classical
Loreena McKennitt The Book of Secrets Warner Bros
Mike Oldfield Voyager Reprise
Alpha Wave Movement The Edge of Infinity Cue
Stellamara Star of the Sea City of Tribes
Steve Roach On This Planet Fathom
Tingstad and Rumbel Pastorale Narada
Haden and Metheny Beyond the Missouri Sky Verve
Uakti Trilobyte Point Music
Steve Tibbetts/Choying Drolma Cho Hannibal/Rykodisc
Rob Eberhard Young Sticks and Stones Imaginary Road
Kolinda Osz Celluloid
Andrew White The Heart of the Celtic Guitar White Cloud
Aine Minogue Between the Worlds BMG
Vangelis Oceanic East West
Dogon The Siru ius Expeditions New Dog
Bill Frisell Nashville Nonesuch
Paul Winter Canyon Lullaby Living Music
Richard Horowitz/Sussan Deyhim Majoun Sony Classical
Annbjorg Lien Prisme Shanachie
Various Artists Summer Solstice Windham Hill
Greg Klamt Fluxus Quo Spotted Peccary



25 Essential Echoes CDs of 1996


Artist Title Label
Dead Can Dance Spiritchaser 4AD
Michael Hedges Oracle Windham Hill
Patrick O'Hearn Metaphor Deep Cave
Joaquin Lievano Ecologie Miramar
Ottmar Liebert Opium Epic
Seamus Egan When Juniper Sleeps Shanachie
Dadawa Sister Drum Sire
Angels of Venice Awake Inside a Dream Epiphany
Hans Christian Surrender Allemande
Mark Dwane Paradigm Shift Trondant
Tino Izzo Foreign Skies Chacra
Noirin Ni Riain Celtic Soul Living Music
Trance Mission Head Light City of Tribes
Paul Haslinger Worl Without Rules RGB
Sheila Chandra ABoneCroneDrone Real World
Vangelis Voices Atlantic
Adiemus Songs of Sactuary Caroline
Kevin Keller Intermezzo Zebra
One Alternative Yet to Be One Alternative
Joanie Madden Song of the Irish Whistle Hearts of Space
Davy Spillane A Place Among the Stones Columbia
Richard Burmer Treasures of the Saints Miramar
Steve Roach,
Steven Kent,
Kenneth Newby
Halcyon Days Fathom
Jan Garbarek Visible World ECM
Jeff Pearce The Hidden Rift Ancient Sun



25 Essential Echoes CDs from 1995


Artist Title Label
Patrick O'Hearn Trust Deep Cave
Lisa Gerrard The Mirror Pool 4AD
Jade Warrior Elements Island
Roger Eno Lost In Translation Gyroscope
Nakai/Eaton/Clipman Feather, Stone and Light Canyon
Carl Weingarten The Acoustic Shadow Multiphase
Baka Beyond The Meeting Pool Hannibal/Rykodisc
Nightnoise A Different Shore Windham Hill
Braheny & Clark Rain Hearts of Space
Danna & Clement North of Niagara Hearts of Space
Various Path Windham Hill
777 System 7.3 Fire & Water Astralwerks/Caroline
Keola Beamer Tales From the Dream Guitar Dancing Cat
Tomas San Miguel Lezao Narada
Nawang Khechog Karuna Domo
Michael Stearns The Lost World Hearts of Space/Fathom
B.J. Cole The Heart of the Moment Resurgence
Brian Keane The Way West Shanachie
Various Celtic Twilight 2 Hearts of Space
Sheila Chandra Roots andWings Caroline/Indipop
Alec Finn Blue Shamrock Atlantic
David Downes The Rusted Wheel of Things White Cloud
Happy Rhodes The Keep Aural Gratification
Enya The Memory of Trees Reprise
Bartz P.O.E.A.S. Imagineer



The top 25 Echoes CDs of 1994


Artist Title Label
Erik Wollo Solstice Eurock
Robert Rich Propagation Hearts of Space
Steve Tibbetts The Fall of Us All ECM
Channel Light Vessel Automatic Gyroscope
Loreena McKennitt The Mask & Mirror Warner Bros.
Paul Winter Prayer For the Wild Things Living Music
Optical Image Interference Soundart
Magical Strings Bell Off the Ledge Flying Fish
Willie & Lobo Fandango Nights Mesa
Peter Kater &
R Carlos Nakai
Honorable Sky Silver Wave
Green Isac Happy Endings Eurock
Tim Story The Perfect Flaw Hearts of Space
R. Carlos Nakai Island of Bows Canyon
Sheila Chandra The Zen Kiss Real World
Dead Can Dance Toward the Within 4AD
Vangelis Blade Runner Atlantic
Various In Search of Angels Windham Hill
Wind Travelin' Band Wind Travelin' Band AWA
George Winston Forest Windham Hill
Garbarek/Hilliard Ens. Officium ECM
Richard Souther Vision Angel
Suspended Memories Earth Island Hearts of Space
Trance Mission Meanwhile City of Tribes
Uakti I Ching Point
Future Sound of London Lifeforms Astralwerks/
Caroline Double CD