Best of 2017 Pick 7

Dona Onete: Banzeiro (Mais Um Discos, 2017)

If you took the spirit of the lead singer from the Pogues and put him into the body of an almost 80 year old Brazilian woman and then put her in front of band that is more like a Colombian cumbia band than Brazilian Bossa nova and it would sound like this record.

It’s a party record with a great balance of energy and the weight the limited range of Onete’s gruff voice brings.  She’s awesome.

I have no idea what the lyrics are about and I could care less, it’s a great set of tunes with a great spirit.  Check it out

 

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Music for 6/22/18!!! Arianne Grande, Physique, Lily Allen, Beyonce and Jay Z

@@@ Arianne Grande: a light is coming (Republic, 2018) A pre-release single for Disney snowflake Arianne Grande with an intro rhyme from Nicki Minaj. If you want some toughness on your track, dial 1-800-NickiMM! I tell you this with the experience of listening to thousands and thousands and thousands of tracks I have no idea what this track is about. There is a vocal sample ‘you wouldn’t let anybody speak and instead’ that goes circular in various volumes through the WHOLE track and there is a vocal hook ‘a light is coming to give back everything the darkness stole’ but I have no idea how those two things go together or what it may or may not mean. The verse gets brisk but I can’t glean any meaning off that either. So there ya go, it doesn’t have to make sense, it would be nice if it did, but it’s a flavor pack from a mainstream ‘artist’.

@@@ Physique: This Punk Life is shit (Iron Lung, 2018) A full on wall of guitar buzz on a hardcore punk record I saw in the loud section of the CFUV weekly playlist email. Regular readers know that I’m super open to anti-social expression as being cathartic but the buzz and high end on this record hurts my ears. Nice punk rockers wouldn’t do this to me. I’m sure this is full on ripping live but I can’t roll with it, I need my ears and shit!

@@@ Lily Allen: No Shame (Warner, 2018) Sort of the British equivalent to Arianne Grande. I got to this record via the Guardian’s best records of 2018 thus far. I can say that the songs here make more sense than the pre release single from Arianne Grande. It dabbles in some non pop sounds and while the music is more coherent, I don’t find this to be a particularly interesting collection. As with the Beyonce and Jay Z music I’ve been peeping over the past week you have to be involved with these musicians as people to find their music engaging. It’s a lifestyle package which has nothing to do with music. I love the Guardian but just another example of poor mainstream journalistic music reviewing.

@@@ Beyonce & Jay Z: Nice (Sony Music, 2018) Speaking of which let’s keep enduring this record! It opens with the repeating hook ‘I can do anything!’ and the Jay Z comes with his trip. It’s a boasting song with typical references to their incredible wealth — by the way why is it hip for Beyonce and Jay Z to flaunt their wealth but it’s disgusting for Trump to do the same? It’s ill and typically American to flaunt wealth regardless of color, naimsayin’? I find Jay Z’s rhymes more interesting than Beyonce’s here but it is their collective self-absorption that drives this record.

YTD recordings listened to: 349
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 184
Not good music: 157

Best: 6
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, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto

Music for 6/20/18!!! Matt Anderson Quartet, Uniform and the Body, Debby Friday

@@@ Matt Anderson Quartet: Rambling (Jellymould Jazz, 2018) I got to this straight jazz record via the London Jazz blog. The first tune is regal with a three horn intro before it goes full band with piano, bass and drums added to the tune. It builds to a climax, a pretty one, everybody’s hair remains in the same place. The second tune brings on the smooth jazz guitar. I’ve listened to parts of three tunes and it’s midtempo playing with an emphasis on being pretty and what I call meaningful playing. It’s slow and serious and unfolds slowly and effortlessly like a flower. Not really my thing as I love the messy shit but if you have a job and you’ve had a long week and your looking for some comfort jazz this could work for you.

@@@ Uniform & The Body: Mental Wounds Not Healing (Sacred Bones, 2018) I got a publicist email and saw this record on the CFUV weekly playlist email in the loud section so there ya go. Every year there is a heavy record for NPR listeners who might want something a bit rough but they don’t crave a solid beat down. Thus far this first tune is a slightly more aggro Nine Inch Nails and personally I thought the Nine Inch Nails dude was kind of a soft punk bitch. Let’s peep more. It’s not a metal record, it’s a dark electronic record with a lot of static and processed vocals that make the singer sound like a degraded sex slave. The third tune gets into some spilly power chords but alas I think this is indeed for the NPR heavy listeners. No methed out tempos, not full on freakshow. It’s not bad it’s just not enough for me.

@@@ Debby Friday: Bitch Punk (Self-released, 2018) Also off this week’s CFUV playlist email. I think Debby Friday might have more balls in her pants than the total testicle count of all the musicians in the previous two releases. Ms. Friday brings some aggro beats with fat synth bass pulses and she goes off on the microphone. Plenty of skitter, plenty of fatness, plenty of attitude. On the third tune she gets into some rough drum machine play with some distortion crushing and crusting up the proceedings. When it gets to full blast on this tune, Indulge Me, she has whipped herself and you quite a nice shitty. Nice work maam, show ’em how to do it.

YTD recordings listened to: 345
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 182
Not good music: 155

Best: 6
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, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto

Music for 6/19/18!!! Beyonce and Jay Z, The Greatest Showman, Onyx Collective

@@@ Beyonce & Jay Z: Apeshit (Sony Music, 2018) The second tune off the new Beyonce/Jay Z surprise record. It’s an attempt at a trap tune with hip hop sounds but it lacks the grit and funk of a full on dirty ass trap tune. Beyonce rhymes on the mic and it’s all right but she does bust it impressively two thirds of the way through the tune. Jay has a brief rap and it’s notable for dissing the Grammys. The sounds are all right but honestly a little disappointing by virtue of the sounds not  being very interesting.  I guess if you don’t believe that Beyonce and Jay Z don’t stand for anything, which is my position, it makes their music a lot less appealing.  I think they’re both masterful business people but I think as musicians they’re overrated.

@@@ The Greatest Showman: The Greatest Showman (Atlantic, 2018) Music biz blogger/bigmouth Bob Lefsetz posted about this movie soundtrack record. He usually drifts towards cheese and this is no exception. If you take Imagine Dragons and have a love baby with Disney shit and a little bit of Queen you get this over the top first track. I feel the cheesy epic-ness forcing itself into every orifice of my body and I don’t like it. If you’re not up for that you can enjoy the power ballad cheese of the second tune, A Million Dreams. A young boy and his dreams, good for him but he’s gonna have to pursue them without me. This shit is awful as far as I’m concerned as it further disconnects white people from reality. And I say this as a reluctant white person.

@@@ Onyx Collective: Lower East Side Part Three (Big Dada, 2018) I saw this experimental jazz record featured on the front page of the New York Times, which is not usually a positive as I rarely find great records (if ever!) in the New York Times. But I persevere and I like experimental jazz. It’s not as great as the Greatest Cheeseman reviewed above, but it’s trying! The first piece is a drone with some tinkly metal percussion and toms, electric bass (?), and some interesting sax work. It is supposed to be a dark record and I get that but it’s not full of classic free jazz skronk/frustration so it has a downer pretty vibe thus far. I wish the recording sounded a bit better (especially the bass sound) but it’s a good record with the fourth track ‘There Goes the Neighborhood’ being my favorite of what I heard with it’s classic sax forlorn wail.

YTD recordings listened to: 339
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 178
Not good music: 153

Best: 6
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, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto

Music for 6/18/18!!! Beyonce and Jay Z, Grouper, Nervosa

@@@ Beyonce and Jay Z: Summer (Sony, 2018) Beyonce and Jay Z are two of my least favorite musicians ever. I love Solange but these two, blech. However, they are a huge deal and I like to keep my finger on the corpse of the mainstream music business. I’m sure the sounds here are going to be high end. I’m a little surprised at the Caribbean influences with the soul arrangement on this first tune. Beyonce is the main attraction of this first tune but the lyrics are pretty standard if not cliche. Now Jay Z is on the mic and this is adult mature, post gangsta Jay Z. It’s a well focused track but I don’t see it to be the work of our finest American superstars. There are better soul tunes for sure, there are better lyrics, there are better vocal performances and rhymes. I guess when you Beyonce a solid B is considered an A.

@@@ Grouper: Grid of Points (Krankey, 2018) Some alternative off this week’s CFUV playlist email. It opens female acapella but this first tune appears to be an intro flavor pack and the second tune is the proper first tune. It is piano and wispy, angelic female singing, sparse arrangements and super ethereal. I don’t want to type too loudly while I listen that is how fragile we’re talking here. This is music for sad female teenagers but personally I don’t think it’s good for this demographic. That’s just my opinion but it is its own little world, easily squashed is what it sounds like to me.

@@@ Nervosa – Downfall Of Mankind (Napalm) Some all female metal off this week’s CFUV weely email. We’re more concerned with the quality of music than the gender of the creators of it and these ladies bring a solid, muscular style to this record. The singer is quite pleasing with a sandy, cattish growl to her voice and she is back by some thrash drumming and a wall of buzzy as a million bees guitars. I like this record with the singer leading the way.

YTD recordings listened to: 336
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 177
Not good music: 151

Best: 6
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, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto

Music for 6/15/18!!! Ruby Karinto, Heron, Pharis and Jason Romero

@@@ Ruby Karinto: Ruby Karinto (HoZac, 2018) I got to this Canadian indie rock record via this week’s CFUV playlist email. It opens uptempo with some steady rock drumming and I think they’re rocking lyrics in Japanese. I better look that shit up, I don’t want to confuse my Asian nations. Whew, I confirmed the singer is Japanese and the rest of the band appear to be boring white people. This is what I thought indie rock is supposed to be — weird ass rock by freaks, not tight jeans posing hipster nonsense. I think I prefer singers in foreign languages and this young Japanese lady has shit going on. While she’s out front, the rest of the band is doing solid if not weird work behind her. I’m feeling the drummer, the synth player shooting squiggles all over the place and the bass player, well there’s not a lot of reward for being the bass player. I’m going to put this record on my list for future listening.

@@@ Heron – A Low Winter’s Sun (Sludgelord) Also off this week’s CFUV playlist email. It is a doom metal record that opens up with the tune ‘Of Gods and Goats’ so a little Satanic reference right out of the gate. It’s a wall of rolling guitar distortion in this first track, you can really get lost in it. I like this singer, he’s not your typical doomer, he sounds really pissed off. I’m feeling this second tune as it is a nice blend of darker emotions — sadness, frustration, melancholy, it’s not one dimensional. These are all hefty slabs of noise most getting up into the 7 minute area. Good stuff, thinking man’s heavy music, check it out.

@@@ Pharis & Jason Romero – Sweet Old Religion (Lula) A roots/folk/blues kinda record also the CFUV weekly playlist email. It’s centered around the vocal harmonies of male and female voices singing on top of two acoustic guitars. Super pretty first tune. There’s a full band on the second tune, but it’s still a super sweet affair so I’m guessing it’s gonna go like that all the way through. The sounds are great, the singing is super beautiful so if you’re into the uplifting roots music these two will hook you up big time.

YTD recordings listened to: 333
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 175
Not good music: 150

Best: 5
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, Ruby Karinto,

Music for 6/14/18!!! HTRK, Kids See Ghosts, Nicki Minaj, Tyler the Creator

@@@ HTRK: Mentions (Ghostly, 2018) I saw this single get a shout on the Twatter so I threw a peep its way. Depending on mood HTRK could be extrapolated as Hot Track or Hot Rock or maybe even Hat Rack. It is a downtempo moody affair with some heavily delayed guitar, a female singer and a beat with lots of bits of delay collaged to it. It leans more Hat Rack than Hot Rock or Hot Track. I find the singer a bit, well let’s just say she could use a coffee. That’s not a criticism, just a suggestion. The sounds are cool, it’s a slow groove flavor.

@@@ Kid Cudi & Kanye West: 4th Dimension (UMG, 2018) I’m listening to this track because it says it features Louis Prima. They put a sample at the front of the track but they only retain and chop up a vocal snippet in the tune. There are some ghoulish laughs in the middle of the tune which are kinda low IQ but it’s the beat, the bass and the vocal sample that drive it. I don’t find the rhymes to be particularly compelling, they might be

@@@ Nicki Minaj: Rich Sex (Cash Money Records, 2018) Off the Apple Music hot tracks section. I’m more than a bit fascinated by Nicki Minaj — she’s not a woman to be played with and has bigger balls than most male rappers. That said, there are some ill sentiments up in this anthem to money and dick. There’s not such thing as broke and handsome? Oh my, that’s fucking offensive. It’s a pretty driving rhythm and a gnarly ass bass but I can’t give much respect to her analysis of fucking broke dicks and the joy of rich sex. No lectures, rhyme what you like but this kind of sentiment is exactly the same kind of shit El Trump-o traffics in — wealth over everything.

@@@ Tyler the Creator: 435 (Sony, 2018) Well it has turned into a mainstream hip hop single listening day. I’m a Tyler the Creator fan — he throws plenty of interesting weirdness into his mainstream hip hop. Weird sounds as well. It’s a 93 second track so there’s not too much to get worked up over. On the site genius it says Tyler is frustrated he doesn’t get enough respect. So that’s what the track is about. It is more interesting to me how the hip hoppers have adopted a steady flow of singles going up on streaming services and have mostly abandoned whole records. Even the righteously MAGA penis Kanye is shooting out all manner of EPs. So it’s a case of a quick tidbit to feed the fans and keep the name out there rather than being the most interesting song.

YTD recordings listened to: 330
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 172
Not good music: 147

Best: 5
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