@@@ Hungry March Band: Running Through with the Sadness (Imaginator, 2018) A pre-release single from an old school New York city institution. I’m sort of done with the klezmer/jazz/Balkan business but these guys are like a mariachi band that know a lot of jazz and had a syringe full of Red Bull shot into their eyeball. My favorite music is the stuff where the musicians sound like they don’t give a shit and are playing their asses off. This is an example of that formula in action. I will listen to more of this when it comes out and this is a pretty hot lead single.
@@@ Neko Case: Hold-on (Anti-, 2018) From this week’s All Music notable release email. This first tune does live up to its lush billing while it does purposely meander through a bunch of sections. The second tune appears to be much more of a fm adult alternative ‘rocker’. I know that there is an extremely ardent Neko Case fan club but without ramming a stick in there I’m having trouble understanding why they’re so ardent. She’s a good singer but I don’t hear anything super extraordinary in the lyrics, the singing or the songwriting. The music is pretty straightforward mostly soft fm radio rock. For example, in the fifth tune Bad Luck the vocal hook is ‘chipped my tooth on an engagement ring’ so I guess that’s the kind of quirkiness that has gotten her a lot of fans. God bless her for having fans that support her.
@@@ Lush: Snail Mail (Matador, 2018) Some debut singer songwriter action off this week’s All Music notable release email. This young lady just graduated from high school so it looks like she’s got plenty of time to have the music business crush her soul! I kid, I kid (not really). After a bit of a intro sing and strum she gets into a full band retro indie from the ’90s kinda flavor. Ms. Lush has a very nice voice, they put too much reverb on it. Regular readers know what I think of the vast majority of indie guitar music — this is perfectly decent music in its slackness (and whiteness might I add) but I can’t really get with the vibe. It’s the Velvet Underground, it’s Pavement, it’s Lou Reed, it’s the Feelies, it’s in that neighborhood.
@@@ Sly & Robbie, Nils Petter Molvaer, Elvind Arset, Vladislav Delay: Nordub (Sony Germany, 2018) I saw this genre mashing record on the London Jazz news blog weekly email. I don’t love the synths on the first track but the second track brings some fat dub low end and some vocals. I’m digging this track over the opener. I’m on the fourth tune and my feeling is that it’s differently ambient than traditional dub records, the rhythm section is pretty banging, but I did not find my attention riveted to the other elements besides Sly and Robbie. It’s a bit sleepytime tea.
YTD recordings listened to: 326
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 170
Not good music: 145
Honorable Mentions: 4
Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, Lenguas Largas, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, Leviathan, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, Janelle Monae, Luther Dickinson, Graeme Barrett, Fast Asleep, Goldlink, Cavanaugh, Satoko Fuji, Moken, Juan Atkins, Lantern, Twin Peaks, Djelimady Tounkara, The Oh Sees, Denny Zeitlin, MILF, Unfun, De La Soul, Carl Sagan’s Skate Shoes, A Tribe Called Quest, Noname, Gouge Away, Klara Lewis, Krullur, The Lowest Form, Hard Proof, Yotoco, Jungle Fire, Sandoz, Oddisee, Forro in the Dark, RAM, Fiver, Dona Onete, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Converge, Open Mike Eagle, Criolo, Billy Strings, Flowers of Sulphur, Tal National, Portal, Hernan Sama & Marcelo von Schultz, Jean Grae and Quelle Chris, Lawaii, Los Texmaniacs, Etran De L’Air