Music for 2/25/21!!! Sibylle Baier, Dan Wilson, Galya Bisengalieva

@@@ Sibylle Baier: I Lost Something in the Hills (Orange Twin, 2006) This looks to a reissue of a lo fi bedroom classic by a German woman from the ’70s. It’s a sad woman with an acoustic guitar walking through the hills. In the woods, moody and shit, I’m making a bit of fun but she’s got a very nice voice. Only the slopes gave her hope, that’s a good line, dramatical but effective nonetheless. I like it, I find the lyrics a bit, I don’t want to be too dead inside a bit over the top and I prefer Nick Cave’s exquisite guitar playing but this is fine lo fi mope for those who need it and the demand is probably very high these days.

@@@ Dan Wilson: Who Shot John (Mack Avenue, 2021 ) I got to this straight jazz guitar track via the Twatter. Love the Twatter. Instrumentation is guitar, bass, piano and drums — at least in the opening. Wilson’s tone is more pointed and less noodly than most jazz guitarists and I respect that. The drummer is swirling in some funk which I think would be great if there was more funk in the rest of the players. The drummer switches out to a more openly Latin flavor and I think that works better for the tune but that’s just me. Like the guitarist most here, then the drummer, agnostic on the bass player and don’t love the piano player. They’re heating shit up here and then it comes back down to a simmer. I like it all right. This is a pre-release track, there will be more shortly if it’s a pre-release because that’s what a pre-release is.

@@@ Galya Bisengalieva: Aralkum (One Little Independent, 2020) This is an ecological focused music piece I got to via the hoity toity Brooklyn club National Sawdust. Aralkum is the opening track of the record and this work is slotted as electronic on the ol’ Apple Music. I like it thus far as it goes up to the epic New Age line and doesn’t cross it. Bisengalieva is a violinist and there’s some of that standing sharply in contrast to the breathy synths and some undercover piston-y electronic beat action. Insect-y and churn-y rather than funky. That contrast between the violin and the synths is my favorite component of the tune and myself I could use some more rhythm and some bass. Overall mostly for the NPR crowd but as far as who it’s aimed at it does a good job feeding the NPR people. She’s blurbed as favoring apocalyptic moods and I get that but it’s a shiny and pretty sonically pleasant apocalypse I’m hearing here. I’m guessing the apocalypse will be a lot less beautiful when it really gets going.

Music for 2/20/20!!! His Name is Alive, The Telescope, Pulse Emitter, Amor Muere

AppleMusicExp_2_20

His Name is Alive: Guitar Echo (Disciples, 2020) We’re listening in the apple Music experimental section. This first tune is not very experimental — if you take U2’s guitar player the Edge and put him in a room with a little oxy and tell Bono to go grab a beer and a ton of Facebook stock it would sound like this. Pleasantly delayed solo guitar noodling.

The Telescopes: The Speaking Stones (Cold Spring, 2020) A step in the right direction for my ears. Dark and aggro out of the box. A low voice intoning spoken words among the reversed loops and ominous drone. I like that South Asian-esque drone going on. Is it gonna be 4 minutes of this because it sounds like an intro to a tune and not a full tune?? Waiting, waiting. I’m not gonna lie, I coulda used more action here. Not a ton but some.

Pulse Emitter: Cloud Refuge (Hausu Mountain, 2020) What you might expect from a tune called Cloud Refuge. Lots of airy synth patches and aggressive panning to simulate clouds and rain and cloud related stuff. About 2 minutes in on a 7 minute track it sounds like somebody slotted in a step sequencer to get some rhythm going, oh that’s out and we’re back to the swirl of clouds. To my ears we’re right at the edge of the precipe about ready to fall into the New Age Cheese Precipice but not quite. I like my ambient music darker than this, but if you’re looking for something quietly hopeful and rainforest-y….

Amor Muere: Can we Provoke Reciprocal Reaction (Umor Rex, 2020) This tune has the most interesting opening section. There’s an ambient, oscillating tone in the back of the mix and a plucked string/percussion thing in the front. Okay, voices now and my general impression is that of a dark Kate Bush type song. Some pretty vocals but a bit more disturbing and swirling underneath that. This tune has the most interesting arrangement of what I heard today and a spirit of freshness to it. The interplay between the stringed instrument, the electronic haze and the vocals is interesting.

YTD recordings listened to: 122
Good music, not list worthy: 72
Not good music: 50

Best: 0
Honorable Mentions: 0

Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, 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, Noname, Klara Lewis, Krullur, The Lowest Form, Hard Proof, Yotoco, Jungle Fire, Sandoz, Oddisee, RAM, Fiver, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Criolo, Billy Strings, Flowers of Sulphur, Portal, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Barro, Daniel Khan, Tallawit Timbouctou, Sumac, Tropical Fuck Storm, Harriet Tubman, Ammar 808, Anais Maviel, Chaka Khan, Pom Poko, Fried Egg, Tarek Atoui, Saicobab, General Purv, Shipping News, Big Thief, Mariachi El Bronx, Pour Me a Grog, Sudan Archives, Lakou Mizik, Moodymann, Pharmakon, Alefa Madagascar, Janjao, Luge, Wiki, Mick Jenkins, Jeremiah Jae, Fera

 

Music for 9/9/19!!! Jordan Christoff, Frank Turner, Post Malone

@@@ Jordan Christoff: Liminal (N/A, 2019) Ambient music off of a best of Bandcamp ambient list from a few weeks ago. Two just over 20 minute monster shots of ambient music! Get your slow cloud on people. I will be making a reasonable amount of tastings and moving on to graze elsewhere cuz that’s how I roll. This first piece entitled Iron Goddess is a slow roller with metallic flavoring. I’m listening around the halfway point and we have some slight rain like sounds, a lit over top blurp (very slight), and a wave of what sounds like a stretched metallic sound — maybe a string sound stretched a whole bunch and it’s coming in waves. The second piece Valentine is sounds more synth and cloudy and I know these are very abstract words people, but ambient music is very abstract and the focus on texture and the combination of textures seems not crazy. A second wave combines and pushes against the initial layer of sound and whole impressions is one of slow moving tectonic changes.

@@@ Frank Turner: No Man’s Land (Polydor, 2019) A British dude writing 13 tunes about historically significant women. Odds of it being cool around 20% but I’ll give him a shot. It is punk folk and I’m a bit surprised this is a major label release as it is pretty amped up. However, the second tune kicks in and it’s more in line with Hootie and Blowfish rather than Billy Bragg. Ah, we have a situation where the record flattens out in energy and song styles as it unfolds. I like Turner’s voice and a lot of his lyrics and his ambition but it doesn’t thread the needle for me personally. As always listen for yourself.

@@@ Post Malone: Hollywood’s Bleeding (UMG, 2019) I’m just checking this first tune and I guess if you want to trumpet this gent it’s his voice in a hip hop/r&b musical setting but I find it to be emotionally tiresome cheese. As with a lot of these major label releases it’s the lyrics that really drive my negative feelings. It’s just a big bucket of cliche cheese. I will check a few more of these tracks but the overwroughtness of the opener is not a big sell for me.

YTD recordings listened to: 4462
Good music, not list worthy: 282
Not good music: 154

Best: 0
Honorable Mentions: 0

Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, 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, Noname, Klara Lewis, Krullur, The Lowest Form, Hard Proof, Yotoco, Jungle Fire, Sandoz, Oddisee, RAM, Fiver, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Criolo, Billy Strings, Flowers of Sulphur, Portal, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Barro, Daniel Khan, Tallawit Timbouctou, Sumac, Tropical Fuck Storm, Harriet Tubman, Ammar 808, Anais Maviel, Chaka Khan, Pom Poko, Fried Egg, Horndal, Wyxz, Tarek Atoui, Hawktail, Saicobab, Shannon and the Clams, General Purv, Shipping News, Big Thief, Emma Louise, Andre Bratten, Nathan Corder/Tom Weeks, Oli XL, Buzzherd, Logistic Slaughter, The Muslims, Tobe Nwigwe, Saint Abdullah

 

Music for 8/14/18!!! Mark Pritchard, 700 Bliss, Space Africa, Pig Destroyer

@@@ Mark Pritchard: Come Let Us (Warp, 2018) An electronic single from the album the Four Worlds. I got to this record via an email from Izotope, an audio software company. I think I’ve heard this record before but I didn’t realize that until I started playing it. It’s an electronic record and the tune clipped below and the tune S.O.S. feature spoken word performances and they’re sorta cosmic in nature. Right now I’m checking out the gorgeous The Parkstone Melody II. It’s a full melted and widened out melody that gets garnished with some long tones and breaks out of any notion of set rhythm and moves organically, say like water. Check that out, it’s really nice.

@@@ 700 Bliss: Ring the Alarm (Dongiovannirecords, 2018) With a tune called Cosmic Slop which references Funkadelic I’m expecting this to be a dancefloor jam but weird. It’s a 5 song, 13 minute EP and it’s pleasantly weird with what sounds like a black female spoken word/singer. The production here is partly funky, partly glitchy and it produces a fresh combination of sounds while being laced with some strong pro-black sentiments. I haven’t heard anything like this and I will be circling back on it when I get a chance to listen to the whole thing. The time clipped below is the production I enjoyed most.

@@@ Space Africa: Uwem/Creation (sferic, 2018) The last of what has turned out to be a pretty good list of electronic records from the software company Izotope. Funny how a software company can put together a better playlist than Spotify or Apple Music who traffic in mainstream sonic baby food. Whoever is in this outfit is putting the Space in the Space Afrika moniker. A few minimalist bass pulses and a kick drum with some periodic synth cloud bursts. The second tune, sd/tl, changes some of the sounds but retains the formula. It’s tastefully restrained while it remains engaging. I’m on the fourth tune here and while I’m not as into it as the 700 Bliss record above the sounds and production here are very well done. There are spots where I think it lags or repeats a bit too much but it’s a good record folks should check out.

@@@ Pig Destroyer: Head Cage (Relapse, 2018) I was cranking some heavy metal to piss of my neighbors and I discovered that Pig Destroyer has a couple of pre-release singles up for an upcoming full length banger. When dance music publicists say something is a dancefloor banger it’s kinda douche, but when Pig Destroyer drops a full length head banger, heads are gonna get banged. This first tune, Army of Cops is a medium tempo assault that is more metallic than the methed out manic shit of Book Burner. The second pre-release tune, The Torture Fields, is more up but both tunes are dominated by the drummer — he’s all over the place and it’s extremely pleasurable listening. For those who do not know the Pig Destroyer, the singer is more post hardcore than heavy metal caveman. It’s mostly metal with some thick chunks of hardcore and speed metal tossed in for over the top mayhem. I’ll check back on this full length head banger when it comes out.

YTD recordings listened to: 470
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 241
Not good music: 197

Best: 8
Honorable Mentions: 5

Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, 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, 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, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Orlando Lopez, Moskus, Kendl Winter, 700 Bliss