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  /  Lexicon   /  Lexicon: Gem

Lexicon: Gem

A piece of music which sticks out is commonly referred to as a gem by music reviewers. Like actual gems, the kind that people wear as jewellery, musical gems too are admired for their beauty, excellence, or perfection.

Depending which section of the record store you’re looking in, gems are everywhere, but they can predominantly be found in the latin, afrobeat, and jazz section the last time we looked in the Style of Sound lexicon. In fact, gems appear 5.8x more in latin, afrobeat, and jazz music reviews compared to electronic reviews.

One partial explanation for the gem treasuretrove within latin, afrobeat, and jazz music is that reviewers seem to associate music from the past with old-school qualities inherent in gems. Theoretically there should be lots of classical gems too – but to be honest, I haven’t actually read many classical reviews in some time.

How Does a Gem Sound?

The world is full of gems, but we’ve always thought this piece of music by Soundpool to be a timeless gem in our eyes and ears.

Seven Super Shiny Examples of Gems

  1. “It’s an 8-track, 33 minute journey into the world of afrobeat rhythms, funky horn riffs, and classic hip-hop gems.”
  2. “The new selection effortlessly mixes the old with the new, plucking dusty gems from Trinidad, Colombia, Dominica, Congo, Cameroun and beyond.”
  3. “This love of digging deep for those obscure and long lost vinyl gems is the basis of their new Magik Cyrkles compilation.”
  4. “Super cool 12” vinyl double pack featuring a superb selection of obscure slo-mo gems from the 70s and early 80s that found favour on Italy’s Afro Funky / Cosmic disco scene receiving heavy rotation from legendary DJs like Daniele Baldelli & Beppe Loda.”
  5. “This is effortlessly apparent throughout ‘Crafted’ as techno, disco, rock and electronica freely intertwine components creating unique, dance floor gems.
  6. “A wonderful gem in pure culture drifting towards a black hole ….. perfect.”
  7. “Chicago legend Marshall Jefferson gave the world many classic records over the years including this influential proto-deep house gem way back in 1986, helping to solidify a blueprint & sound for numerous producers to come in the following decades.”

What gems are you listening to at the moment?

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