Welcome to ISC HiFi. Explore new records daily from our growing collection of classics and rarities from around the world. Discover the stories behind the records. Experience the ISC listening space from home through our (( ROOM RECORDING )) audio player below.

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Although not a household name, Austrian pianist Joe Zawinul is known by many jazz fans to have been one of Miles Davis’ secret weapons during his Bitches Brew/ […]

Legendary Motown songwriter Leon Ware’s sensual masterpiece Musical Massage is a soul classic that should honestly be a lot more popular than it is. Some say its failure […]

After finding success in composing hits for other artists in the early 60’s (such as the Monkees’ “Pleasant Valley Sunday”, Aretha Franklin’s “(You Make Me Feel Like a) […]

Art Blakey & the Afro Drum Ensemble’s The African Beat is a landmark jazz percussion album. Released in 1962, the album was one of the first to bring […]

We came across this one randomly while digging in a $5 and under bin… Inspired School Of Astral Music is the ambient side project of Portland-based experimental producer […]

Stanley Cowell was a highly influential figure within the jazz community who somehow never broke through to the mainstream despite his long and storied career. Cowell started out […]

Gris-Gris by Dr. John is an invocation of the spirit of Bayou Funk and Louisiana Blues mixed with playful psychedelic rock. What’s most exhilarating is being able to […]

Recorded shortly after Herbie Hancock’s Mwandishi band broke up, Love, Love continues right where the group left off with two long tracks of deep, avant-garde fusion. The Mwandishi […]

Kathy Smith began as a fixture around the Los Angeles hippie and folk scene of the 60’s and 70’s, playing regularly at venues such as Paradox, the Troubador, […]

Released on the cult new age label Higher Octave Music, William Aura’s Half Moon Bay is a highly sought after New Age gem that was one of the […]

Originally recorded in 1996 but never officially released due to “creative differences” from their then label, London Records, Sleep’s Dopesmoker first made its way to the public in […]

Celestial Sky is an underrated disco-funk gem by Norman Connors’ Starship Orchestra. Connors is a brilliant composer/producer and one of the more unsung jazz greats even though he’s […]

Craig T. Cooper is an LA-based guitarist who recorded two incredible smooth-jazz influenced funk records in the late 80’s and early 90’s. Both albums contain a slew of […]

To say that Le Noise is one of Neil Young’s of most experimental and underrated records would be an understatement. The record, along with its accompanying live DVD, […]

On Sweetnighter, jazz fusion supergroup Weather Report take a decidedly different approach from their first two outings. While still adventurous and free form, the music here is funkier […]

In 1983, Yellow Magic Orchestra’s Ryuichi Sakamoto starred in his first film alongside David Bowie and legendary Japanese actor/director Takeshi Kitano aka “Beat Takeshi.” The film, Merry Christmas, […]

Released in 1961, Sunday At The Village Vanguard is a timeless classic that’s routinely ranked as one of the best live jazz recordings of all time. The album […]

An all-time jazz classic, Joe Henderson’s The Elements is a beautiful meeting of five singular talents propelled to cosmic dimensions by the one and only Alice ‘Swami Turiyasangitananda’ Coltrane. […]

On The Corner remains to this day, one of Miles Davis’ most polarizing efforts. Scorned by critics and fans alike upon its release, the free form jazz funk […]

One of the all time greatest 70’s jazz-funk albums, Gears features organist Johnny “Hammond” Smith in collaboration with the legendary Mizell brothers. The album was released in 1975 […]

Famously deleted from the catalogue of Asylum Records, with David Geffen pointedly trying to erase it from history, No Other is the lost and recently found masterpiece by […]

Under the moniker Fools, Chris Bear (the longstanding drummer/multi-instrumentalist of Grizzly Bear, and composer for HBO’s High Maintenance) recently released his first solo album on the Music From […]

Chrome were an experimental rock band formed in San Francisco in 1975. After their first album, the group’s mastermind, Damon Edge, met guitar player Helios Creed and the […]

One of our favorite ECM records, The Jewel In The Lotus is the debut solo album from master bass clarinetist Bennie Maupin. Though not a household name, Maupin […]

Perhaps the most significant thing about Seasons for Pete Jolly was that this album broke away from the more traditional approach that Jolly had been familiar with in […]

Batteaux is a long treasured and notoriously under appreciated 70’s underground folk-funk classic. The only release by the Batteau brother duo is a perfect mix of balearic blue […]

Chicago house music pioneer Larry Heard steps away from the dance floor to circle back on the downtempo and ambient themes previously explored on his 1996 album Alien. […]

Sun Ra’s Angels & Demons at Play is a diptych of a record created from two separate recording sessions recorded four years apart (Side A-1956 and Side B-1960). […]

In 1968, the Everly Brothers had nothing to lose, at least as pop artists. They hadn’t charted in three years, hadn’t been in the Top 10 for a […]

When Bernard Wright released his debut album ‘Nard in 1981, he was only 18 years old. The only son of Roberta Flack had generated quite a bit of […]

When Prince entered the studio to lay down the tracks on For You, the stakes were high. He would be the youngest artist in Warner Bros. history to […]

If you’re familiar with Jessica Pratt’s first two records, her third album, Quiet Sign, isn’t a tremendous departure, per se. But while the first two albums are bedroom […]

Brazilian drummer & percussionist Airto Moreira’s second solo LP Seeds On The Ground – The Natural Sounds Of Airto is a “world music” masterpiece that blends a variety […]

Harumi’s self-titled debut and sole release is one of those quintessentials as far as rare records go. It checks literally all the boxes necessary for what you’d expect […]

Peter Ivers was somewhat of a behind-the-scenes L.A. figure of the ’70s and ’80s best known for writing “In Heaven (Lady in the Radiator Song)” for David Lynch’s […]

Billy Higgins may not be a household name in jazz, but the master drummer was certainly one of the most revered in the scene. In fact, Higgins is […]

Most listeners seem to discover the highly regarded avant-garde trumpeter Jon Hassell via his Fourth World, Vol. 1: Possible Musics collaboration with Brian Eno which was not just […]

Motown’s Syreeta Wright is a bit of an unsung hero. Although her voice was not as outright powerful as the other soul divas of her day (Aretha, Diana, […]

Sextant, the first record Hancock cut for his new label Columbia Records, was considered a commercial flop upon its release in 1973. The record showcased Hancock’s early adoption […]

I’m the One is the debut LP from avant-garde singer and composer Anette Peacock. Peacock was a mostly self-taught musician who grew up in California and moved to […]

Los Angeles-based singer / ambient musician Ana Roxanne’s debut EP ~~~ is a sacred work of astral ambient music that lands perfectly on local favorite Leaving Records. Through […]

A masterpiece of uncanny soul, In a Mood is a holy grail find and one of only two albums by the late-great outsider guitarist Harry Case. A bit […]

Pharoah Sanders’ final album for Impulse! is a joyous message of love for all times. “Love is Everywhere” begins with a gorgeous bass vamp followed by steadily cascading […]

Sensations’ Fix is the brainchild of Italian musician Franco Falsini. In the sixties, Falsini developed his musical chops playing in a beat style band in Florence before moving […]

This surreal and transcendental work by the American avant-garde giant was the first iteration of what would be Robert Ashley’s televised 1983 opera Private Lives. A theatrical work […]

A record that we’d instantly pick out of the stacks based on cover alone, Paul Parrish’s The Forest of My Mind is a wonderful trip through mellow, psychedelic […]

What started as a “just for fun” side project from a little known guitarist has since become a rare and quite sought after 70’s private press, breezy psychedelic […]

It’s no accident that Paranoid is considered one of the greatest and most influential heavy metal albums of all time. “Paranoid is important because it is the blueprint […]

Joni Mitchell’s 8th studio album Hejira has the imagery of highways, small towns and snow, in large part because it was written on a cross country road trip […]

You may not have listened to tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon’s One Flight Up but you’ll feel like you have when you do. As original as he is timeless, […]

One of our many favorites from the legendary Oakland-based label Black Jazz, double bassist Henry Franklin’s The Skipper At Home takes off right where his solo debut The […]

Steve Kuhn’s 1971 self-titled melancholic free jazz opus was written and recorded after he returned from living in Sweden for several years in the wake of his break […]

Time Capsule’s third release is the first-time vinyl reissue of 2003’s Illuminated Audio by Gigi (or rather: producer, bassist and spouse Bill Laswell). It’s essentially a remix album […]

A truly transcendent crossover gospel album by Chicagoan pastor and activist T.L. Barrett and his beloved youth choir. Barrett was the pastor at the Mount Zion church, whose […]

As a possible ode to Mort Garson’s Plantasia, Olive Ardizoni designed their first record as Green-House to communicate with plant life and the people who care for them. […]

Another archeological music discovery by Numero Group, Edge of Daybreak’s Eyes of Love was a long lost prison letter and portrait of incarcerated soul. It was recorded entirely […]

Welcome to the cosmic playground of The Space Lady, the Queen of Outsider Music. The Space Lady (AKA Suzy Soundz; born Susan Dietrich Schneider) has a heart as […]

After a making his way playing guitar and pedal steel in several different psych-rock and modern country groups over the last two decades, Raymond Richards debuts his first […]

A great way to travel when you’re stuck at home is to listen to Houston-based trio Khruangbin, whose band name is the Thai word for “flying engine” or […]

Rare Silk was an 80’s vocal jazz group, a genre that at the time was defined by it’s multi-part vocal harmonies, pop sensibilities and mix of swing and […]

It’s hard to pin down where to start with an artist that suffered such an incredibly turbulent life and at the same time, composed – on par with […]

A heartbreakingly intimate and rare private press record featuring American folk singer Kath Bloom accompanied by experimental musician Loren “Mazzacane” Connors. The record was originally issued in limited […]

A stark, off-kilter, angst-driven, supercharged debut album by British/German political-journalist-turned-singer Annika Henderson, performing as Anika, backed by the experimental electronic rock band BEAK>. The album consists primarily of […]

A free form jazz guitar record by a pioneer of the genre. Metheny plays with a carefree breezy dexterity here, yet manages to keep things tight with his […]

A cult classic originally released as a private pressing in 1975 that became a costly collector’s item over the years, and is now available to the masses thanks […]

Released in 1969, the In A Silent Way Sessions, as they were known, was all recorded in a day. These recordings were a departure for Davis and would […]

Shoes were formed in the early 70s by longtime friends John Murphy and Gary Klebe in Zion, Illinois before the two even owned their first instruments. The duo […]

These Trails were the Hawaii based couple Margaret Morgan and Patrick Cockett. They never played a show and recorded their sole album in 1973. They were joined in […]

Ever wonder how many amazing unreleased or unheard acetates currently sit in total obscurity, on a shelf somewhere, with decades’ worth of dust, unreleased, or perhaps even completely […]

All Keyed Up by keyboardist Ben Tankard is not what you’d expect from a gospel artist… In fact, there’s not much expected or “normal” to Ben Tankard’s life […]

From RVNG Intl. comes a 2017 anthology of self-released trans-temporal new age music by Bay Area composer/synthesist Pauline Anna Strom, assembled from seven albums composed and recorded between […]

The long-awaited reissue of Ernest Hood’s private press masterpiece is a must-have for any ambient music fan. Released in 1974 before the term “ambient music” was even coined, […]

From the expert curation of Numero Group comes an extensive anthology of rare cassette releases, deep cuts and previously unreleased gems by prolific electronic music pioneer Joanna Brouk. […]

When you think of classic digger records, Lonnie’s albums are sure to come up. Endlessly sampled (the most famous being Digable Planets’ “Pacifics”) and sought after for his […]

The debut release from NYC based artist Chester Raj Anand serves as something of an audio diary retelling the experience of a solo trip to Tokyo. The story […]

“I strove to produce a musical work which uplifts the spirit by calming the mind and organically stimulating the subtler dimensions of physiology, in a manner consonant with […]

Hard Candy, Ned Doheny’s blue eyed soul opus, offers a lesson in everything going right for a record, yet still failing commercially. After his debut album failed to […]

Jon Lucien is known as one of the most focused and emotional balladeers to ever step in front of a microphone, but it’s his soothing baritone voice that […]

Stepping Into Tomorrow is a classic jazz-funk bomb from the great Donald Byrd featuring an all star cast including Gary Bartz on saxophone, Chuck Rainey on bass, and […]

An essential for any Arthur Russell fan, Another Thought is the enigmatic artist’s first posthumous release after passing from AIDS in 1992. Compiled by producer Don Christensen from […]

Archie Shepp’s Attica Blues is a multi-faceted jazz masterpiece. Musically, it represents a departure in Shepp’s music from the free jazz leanings of his previous output to cohesively […]

Bobby Brown’s debut is a difficult to classify outsider opus that has become a sort of grail for rare psych collectors (it’s featured in the highly renowned Acid […]

Zummo With an X is the debut album of Peter Zummo, a multi-instrumentalist and frequent collaborator/friend of the great Arthur Russell. Zummo’s playing can be heard on some […]

Tim Buckley’s third album represented many important changes for the young songwriter. He stopped working with the lyricist of his first two albums and began to write his […]

American composer and multi-instrumentalist Alvin Curran’s fantastic debut Canti E Vedute Del giardino Magnetico, which translates to Songs and Views from the Magnetic Garden, consists of two sidelong […]

Linda Cohen was a mostly self taught musician from Philadelphia who along with being a fixture in the local avant-garde music scene, worked diligently as a classical guitar […]

The aptly titled Traveller is an icy ambient journey through the harshness of a 
midwestern winter. Enveloped by nature and snow, Sampson recorded the Traveller entirely alone in […]

An In Sheep’s Clothing nighttime favorite, Barbara & Ernie’s only release is a complex combination of soul, folk rock, and late 60’s psychedelia. At first listen, it doesn’t […]

San Francisco is the perfect introductory album to American jazz vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson. Featuring his right-hand man Harold Land on reeds, the duo’s style takes a step forward […]

Blacks and Blues was recorded in 1973 when American jazz flutist Bobbi Humphrey was just 23 years old, two years after becoming the first African-American female instrumentalist signed […]

If you’re new to Alice Coltrane, this is an exciting first album to catapult you straight to her planet, whereas other albums might fly you there more slowly. […]

A good rule of thumb if you want to dive into an enormous artist discography and don’t know where to begin: trust the artist’s own recommendation. In this […]

In an unlikely collaboration between folk singer Laura Allan and New Age pioneer Paul Horn, Reflections captures two artists in perfect harmony of their talents. Allan, in addition […]

What makes this record so special is the sublime interplay between Bill Evans piano playing and Jim Hall’s guitar work. These two masters of their craft found a […]

It comes as little surprise that Miles Davis was a great admirer of Ahmad Jamal. The critically acclaimed jazz innovator, known for his understated playing and elegant arrangements […]

Steve Reich’s organic minimalist tour de force is a ground breaking record that would become an influence for much of the electronic records we hear today. Reich creates […]

Charlie Haden’s Closeness is comprised of 4 duet collaboration based melodies crafted by Haden. On each number, Haden (the bassist) pushes the musical envelope playing opposite an artist […]

This record finds Neil at a crossroads musically somewhere between country, rock and blues. While the title suggests summer breezy, On The Beach finds Neil in a more […]

A monumental jazz big band record, Masterpieces by Ellington was one of the earliest releases to take advantage of the extended time available on Columbia’s brand new 12-inch […]

When Pharoah Sanders’ Love in Us All was released in 1974, it was already becoming clear that the artist was shifting away from the wilder experimentations of his earlier […]

One of the most sensual records of all time. Janis Gaye, whom the album is dedicated to, recalls “I’m pretty sure if you took a poll of how […]

A daytime favorite at ISC, John Carroll Kirby’s solo piano album Tuscany on NYC label Patience is music inspired by a time and a place. The Los Angeles-based […]

A timeless masterpiece by Simon Jeffes’ Penguin Cafe Orchestra. PCO’s sound is difficult to categorize but perhaps best summed up as a mishmash of Jeffes’ eclectic influences – […]

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