At some point in the last twelve months, chances are you've heard, seen or read something about the new wave of British jazz. Across the capital and beyond, a new generation of trumpet players, saxophonists and singers have revolutionised what we think of as jazz, and how we think about the people who listen to it.
No longer the preserve of older, middle-class audiences, UK jazz embraces its youth, drawing on grime, dub, reggae, bashment, Afrobeats and more to create a vital new sound. The response has been extraordinary, with artists such as Kamaal Williams landing Top 10 hits and Ezra Collective hitting the top of BBC Radio 1's Hype Charts. Whether it's Sons Of Kemet at the Mercurys, Moses Boyd's residency on BBC Radio 1Xtra, or any of the countless shows these musicians have been playing across London and beyond, it's been hard to avoid the revolution.
Praised for its accessibility, for new listeners wanting to break into this new movement, there's still a daunting amount of music to digest. That's no fault of those making it—most of whom have been laying the foundations of today's renaissance since their early teens—it's just the nature of jazz, with bands and individual members constantly working on new projects.
2019 looks set to be the scene's biggest year yet, so we decided to collate the 10 essential London jazz albums to serve as a primer on the sound and its origins. Dig in below.