The Best Records of 2005 

Tribal drones, lush Britrock, and cartoon monkey bands beguiled our critics this year.

Page 7 of 7

Sacha Perry Trio

In an era when every pianist sounds like Bill Evans, Perry has chosen as his model the chronically underrated Elmo Hope. Perry appeared on one of the best jazz records of 2004 (Across 7 Street), and he sounds even better on this hard-swinging trio date. Harmonically advanced but never merely cerebral, Eretik is the best debut by a jazz pianist in recent memory. (Smalls)

Seoltaí Séidte -- Setting Sail

Until now, these recordings have been known to very few, drawn from 78s cut but never released in Ireland between 1957 and 1961. Helpfully, this two-CD set features a 93-page booklet with invaluable information about the singers and players heard as soloists. Revered names like Willie Clancy and Dennis Murphy abound, and the lesser-knowns more than hold than own. A must for Irish music lovers. (Gael Linn)

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