Best Album of the Past 12 Months


Damien Jurado made folk records for almost two decades before he admitted to himself that he wasn't a folk artist. And at the urging of producer Richard Swift, Jurado decided to make a record he actually liked: Maraqopa. The album is significant not just because it's the best locally in the past year, but because it's another example of an encouraging recent trend: sparse folk artists getting sick of indie and going big, with instrumentals, solos, and adventure and urgency instead of purity. CHRIS KORNELIS

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