20 Classic Albums I Discovered and Loved in 2023 (So Far)

Matt Fish
8 min readJun 22, 2023
Photo by Mike: https://www.pexels.com/photo/file-arrangement-1181769/

To achieve my goal of listening to 400 or more albums in 2023, I’ve looked to the past as much as I’ve stayed in the present.

There’s been lots of great music released so far this year, don’t get me wrong. But this challenge has been more than an excuse to delve deeper into each week’s new releases. It’s been a way for me to play catch-up and knock as many classic (or maybe not-so-classic) records of my ever-expanding list of “that looks/sounds interesting” entries.

When you toss that insatiable curiosity about music history down the bottomless well of important artists, genres, movements, eras, and moments since the dawn of recorded media, you find yourself in a never-ending vortex of discovery. The more I hear and discover, the more I realize how much I don’t know.

For the sake of brevity, this list consists of 20 classic albums or underrated gems that were, in a word, outstanding. Not merely good or great, but stop-what-you’re-doing-right-now-and-give-this-your-full-attention exceptional. There were many other records that almost made the cut, which means I’ll likely run a follow-up list or two down the line.

As with my other “best of” music blogs, if you haven’t heard one or more of the albums listed here, I highly recommend they be added to your streaming diet for the week or month. Or, if you’re like me — a person who enjoys the trappings of physical media despite their obsolescence — consider purchasing vinyl, CDs, or cassettes from a local record store in your area.

A final note: This is not a ranked list (i.e., the №1 album is the best of the bunch). They’re simply presented in alphabetical order for ease of consumption.

Let’s go!

1. “93 til Infinity” by Souls of Mischief

Synopsis: Jazz hip-hop perfection

Takeaway: Okay, fine, the word perfection gets tossed around a lot, but believe me when I say it’s the absolute correct term for this album. The rapid-fire bar spitting, deft lyricism, laid-back energy, and the air-tight jazz-fusion production all feel so organic, coalescing with each other to create a statement that’s far greater than the sum of its parts.

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Matt Fish

Writer, content creator, music obsessive, DJ, currently sitting down.