Listen to music that opens your heart-mind. Support local artists. Connect with street performers. Participate in crowdfunding campaigns. Buy directly from musicians, independent labels, or independent record stores. If you are inspired by music, share it. Tell your friends. Gift them with your favourites. Remember this: The gift must always flow!


First and foremost, if I had to recommend only one album to you, it would be “Hvel” by Árstíðir – among the most beautiful human-made sounds I’ve ever listened to. I also crowdfunded its production, which makes me the proud keeper of a sample of original ash from Eyjafjallajökull (plus CD and Vinyl and stuff). Close runner-up is Ayreon‘s “01011001” due to the epic storyline.

I deepened my love for crowdfunding, pay-what-you-like business models, and direct connection to artists via Amanda Palmer, thanks to my dear brother who turned my attention towards her music on Bandcamp a couple of years ago.

Some of my recent album favorites:

  • Floor Jansen – “Paragon” (2023)
  • Cellostrada – “Sideways” (2016)
  • The Mission (UK) – “Carved in Sand” (1990)
  • Arjen Anthony Lucassen’s Star One – “Revel in Time” (2022)
  • Erwin R. – “Ondraseits” (2022), “Anaseits” (2017)
  • Árstíðir – “Pendull” (2021), “Nivalis” (2018)
  • Aephanemer – “A Dream of Wilderness” (2021)
  • Tori Amos – “Ocean to Ocean” (2021)
  • Munknörr – “Shaman” (2021)
  • Drumspyder – “Kenning” (2021), “Nine Branches” (2019)
  • Hindarfjäll – “Från Tidernas Begynnelse” (2020)
  • Myrkur – “Folkesange” (2020)
  • Wardruna – “Kvitravn” (2021)
  • Laura Inserra – “Altitude” (2019)
  • Estampie – “Signum” (2005)
  • Glorious Leader – “The Analog Cabin Mystery” (2021)
  • Marko Hietala – “Pyre of the Black Heart” (2020) / “Mustan sydämen rovio” (2019)
  • Anneke van Giersbergen – “The Darkest Skies Are The Brightest” (2021)

More singer/songwriter/artist recommendations, on the inspirational / folk / medieval side:

If you like darkwave, psybient/trance-like music and stuff:

If there can be some gothic / rock / metal / avantgarde / … in it:

Best album picks:

Inspiring / haunting songs that give me chills / move me to tears:

  • Alanis Morissette – “You Owe Me Nothing In Return”
  • Amanda Palmer – “Drowning in the Sound”
  • Amorphis – “Folk of the North”, “Weeper on the Shore”, “Elegy”
  • Anneke van Giersbergen – “Beautiful One”, “The Blower’s Daughter”, “Agape“, “My Promise
  • Arianna Savall – “Dóna’m la mà”
  • Arjen Anthony Lucassen’s Star One – “The Eye of Ra“, “Lost Children of the Universe
  • Árstíðir – “While This Way”, “Entangled”, “Himinhvel”, “Silfurskin”, “Heiðin”, “You Just Have to Know of Me”
  • Ayreon – “Dreamtime“, “Valley of the Queens“, “And the Druids Turned to Stone“, “The Age of Shadows“, “Beneath the Waves“, “The Fifth Extinction“, “The Truth is in Here“, “The Sixth Extinction“, “Sea of Machines“, “The Source Will Flow“, “The Human Compulsion
  • Blind Guardian – “A Past and Future Secret”, “Mordred’s Song”, “Lord of the Rings”, “The Bard’s Song”, “Nightfall”, “Time Stands Still (At the Iron Hill)”
  • Carbon Based Lifeforms – “Photosynthesis
  • Dire Straits – “Brothers in Arms
  • Dream Theater – “Metropolis – Part 1: The Miracle and the Sleeper
  • Epica – “Sancta Terra”
  • Erwin R. – “Staunen”, “A Mensch is a Mensch”, “Morbides Lied”
  • Falkenbach – “When Gjallarhorn Will Sound”
  • The Gathering – “On Most Surfaces
  • Guns N’ Roses – “Civil War”
  • Haggard – “Awaking the Centuries”, “Herr Mannelig”, “Tales of Ithiria”
  • In Extremo – “Lieb Vaterland, magst ruhig sein
  • The Mission (UK) – “Grapes of Wrath”, “Belief”
  • Nightwish – “Ghost Love Score“, “Shoemaker
  • Pain of Salvation – “Spitfall”, “1979”
  • Rhapsody – “Legendary Tales”, “Symphony of Enchanted Lands”
  • Savatage – “Dear Winter Dead”, “Christmas Eve (Sarajevo 12/24)”
  • Schandmaul – “Geisterschiff” (acoustic live), “Baum des Lebens”, “Euch zum Geleit”, “Anderswelt”, “Dein Anblick”, “Die drei Prüfungen” (lyrics! <3), “Vogelfrei”, “Sonnenstrahl”
  • Shadow Gallery – “Hope for us?”, “First Light”, “Comfort Me”
  • Therion – “Vanaheim”
  • Tori Amos – “Ocean to Ocean”, “Reindeer King”, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (cover)
  • Within Temptation – “Our Solemn Hour”, “Our Farewell” (in duet with Anneke van Giersbergen)

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