Durand Jones & The Indications released their third album, Private Space, in 2021 (order on limited edition purple and pink vinyl), and in September they returned to the road supporting it, playing ACL Fest, Ohana, and headlining shows throughout the US.

Now that 2021 is behind us, the band have recounted some of their favorite music of the year to us. Vocalist Durand Jones, guitarist Blake Rhein, and drummer Aaron Frazer each picked a few albums, and you can see their choices, complete with commentary, below, and stream Private Space.

We recently teamed up with the band for an exclusive vinyl pressing of their new album, on purple and pink vinyl, and limited to just 300 copies, available exclusively at our store. Order yours HERE.

Durand Jones & The Indications' Favorite Albums of 2021

Blake Rhein (guitar)

Joyce Wrice - Overgrown
I’ve been following Joyce Wrice and her collaborators (mndsgn, Devin Morrison) for a few years now and was really excited about her debut record. Based around a 90s R&B vibe, the record has insane features from KAYTRANADA, UMI, and Freddie Gibbs. The title track (probably my favorite) is a really beautiful ballad with just piano and voice that really showcases Joyce’s songwriting chops.

This album only lived on streaming services for a short window, but I played the hell out of it. All the SAULT stuff gives me such a stream-of-consciousness feeling with really simple and memorable lyrics. Inflo's work on this one and the new Cleo Soul record make him one of my favorite producers at the moment.

Pino Palladino, Blake Mills - Notes With Attachments
I came across this record on saxophonist Sam Gendel’s feed. Sam plays “poly-sax” on a few cuts of this left-field jazz album. I would not consider myself a jazz head by any stretch, so I think this is a great record for someone who wants to dip a toe into new jazz sounds. I also dug the Pharaoh Sanders and Floating Points record from this year, but definitely came back to this one a lot more.

Durand Jones (vocals)

Remi Wolf - Juno
Firstly, I love an artist who doesn't take themselves too seriously. I feel like that's something that separates Remi Wolf from the mass of new artists coming on the scene. Her lyrics are fresh, vulnerable, witty, and of course hilarious. She doesn't rely on conventional pop structures and melodies-- that's what makes this one unique to me. "Sexy Villain" will always be summer bop for me from here on out.

Jon Batiste - We Are
This album embodies all that I find American music to be. Raw yet refined. Regal and homely at once. This record can get you really hot and cool in one listen. I love the arc of this record and the several styles that Batiste show us his mastery in. I play this album the most when I'm cooking something up in the kitchen. I think it's because I can't keep still, I'm constantly dancing while I'm handling the pots! Everything seriously grooves.

Cleo Sol - Mother
I love how when you hear certain pieces of music it brings you exactly to a place where that music was playing and the moment was perfect. I have that relationship with this album. Moreso I love Cleo's approach to songwriting, particularly her song structures. I love how songs like "Music" and "One Day" end sounding completely different than they began. I love songs that take you on journeys.

Aaron Frazer (drums)

L’Impératrice - Tako Tsubo
Over our years of touring overseas, I fell in love with the European take on disco and boogie that was thriving in places like Italy, France and the Netherlands. L’Impératrice carries on that tradition with this killer LP combining Parisian boogie sensibilities with a bit of synthed out city pop.

Westside Gunn - Hitler Wears Hermes 8: Side B
Westside Gunn and his regular cast of collaborators do what they do best on this album- keep it grimy, utilizing their complementary timbres like the great vocal groups from The Ink Spots to Wu Tang.

Buzzy Lee - Spoiled Love
In a year where I spent a lot of time alone, this record from Sasha Spielberg felt like a fitting companion. It’s witchy, warm and intimate, full of wonky, hushed, double-tracked vocals. The goosebumps I get listening recall the first time I heard Tobias Jesso Jr. or Bon Iver.

Tyler, The Creator - Call Me If You Get Lost
It’s a daring, winding record that creates a collage of styles, flowing like a mixtape (the DJ Clue adlibs take me back to my days trawling the depths of DatPiff). It’s a great example of pushing hip hop into new directions while never losing the spirit of what it was back at 1520 Sedgwick.

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