Music for 10/19/18!!! The Jack Moves, Lea Love, PLANET

@@@ The Jack Moves: Red Lights (Everloving, 2018). Skate-funk (wha??) I got to via a music publicist email. I guess when they mean skate, they mean roller rink skating and not skateboarding. This is some mellow ass, quiet storm, loverboy shit with some funk. It’s no monsoon of funk, it’s a white boy doing a modified blued eyed soul routine. I like the bass player, I don’t love the guitar part, and the drummer needs a Red Bull.

@@@ Lea Love: No Feels (Mensch House, 2018). Some bouncy reggae also from a music publicist email. This tune is at a very similar tempo but the beats are much beefier and Love brings the energy on the microphone. One tune is funk and one tune is a reggae/soul explosion but the white boys should peep this and note the flavor pack. They have some standard but interesting eq sweeps through the tune that momentarily sucks the high end out of the track and fades it back in. It’s not the most amazing tune ever but it’s got motion and rhythm at a higher level than the track above.

@@@ PLANET: SAVE.SOLD (N/A, 2018) I got to what I think is going to be a rock track off an online music magazine. After an intro guitar it gets into an Oasis type thing with a lot of guitar chords/distortion and a white boy shuffle drum beat. I like the vocal hook here ‘You tell me you’ve been saved, you tell me you’ve been sold’. It’s got more than a bit of shoegaze dropped in there which lends not a melancholic vibe but a less rocking flavor.

YTD recordings listened to: 587
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 313
Not good music: 239

Best: 9
Honorable Mentions: 6

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, 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, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Orlando Lopez, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Peregoyo y su Combo vacana, serpentwithfeet

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Music for 10/17/18!!! Marie Davidson, Quavo, Micra

@@@ Marie Davidson: Work It (Ninja Tune, 2018).  I like to check out music biz blowhard Bob Lefsetz’s musical picks cuz I get to call him a blowhard and there’s nothing finer than shitting on a music biz tool.  This opens up with a drum machine freakout — Apple Music has this blurbed as darkwave techno but this is pretty popped out.  It’s an ode to work which I’m agnostic on.  Sweat, sweat to be a winner.  Oy, fuck off.  Gone are the days when musicians had something rebellious to say.  There’s very little arrangement to be had here.  It’s the drum machine (mostly rolls) then Davidson doing her spoken word thing and then a little synth here and there.

@@@ Quavo: Quavo Huncho (Capitol, 2018). I’m agnostic on the Migos.  They’re okay but I don’t like them as much as the hype imply.  I will check out the first and third tunes hoping I get to hear the single.  This first tune has a decent arrangement but the parroting background MC annoys me.  They all do when they do that shit.  I like the flute part and the vocal melody.  Mr. Quavo starts to hit the mic harder towards the end of the tune.  One more track.  This third tune, Huncho Dreams, is all right.  I like the beats but the record doesn’t have any sort of high energy to latch on.

@@@ Micra: Plastic (Micra, 2018) I got to this track from tracks of the week at Line of Best Fit.  It is a moody synth rocker with a female singer.  Lots of drama and epic ness going on.  The tune is an update on the ’80s synth rock formula.  Synth-y sounding drums, big clouds of synthesizers and occasional bursts of guitar.  It’s a more female sounding U2 track with the great fortune of not having Bono on the microphone.  Not really my cup of tea but check it for yourself.

YTD recordings listened to: 581
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 309
Not good music: 237

Best: 9
Honorable Mentions: 6

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, 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, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Orlando Lopez, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Peregoyo y su Combo vacana, serpentwithfeet

Music for 10/15/18!!! Neneh Cherry, SASAMI, Orkid, Bad Bunny

@@@ Neneh Cherry: Kong (Small Town Supersound, 2018). A pre-release single by ’80s singer Neneh Cherry.  Produced by 4tet who I am a fan of.  Not a fanboy, but a fan.  It’s a trip hop track with a dub baseline, a slow piano arpeggio, and some dark echo effects.  A simple open hi hat pattern with kick drum drive the tune.  The tune finds a nice groove but doesn’t progress much during it’s 4:24.  I could have used more than what is on offer.

@@@ SASAMI: Not the Time (Domino, 2018).  A shoe gaze single I got to via tracks of the week at Line of Best Fit.  The guitars a little less stormy than what you would expect and it has a keyboard, but the intimate and confessional vocals nestled in the middle of the mix are classic.  Solid B.

@@@ Orkid: No Noh (Shir, 2018). Mainstream electro pop off the Line of Best Fit tracks of the week.  Female singer doing an up and down melody, low medium funky drum machine beat, though there is a nice echo on one of the drums.  There’s not a lot to the arrangement outside of beat and the vocals so if you don’t like the singer (I’m not a huge fan) then you won’t jump and down over this.  As always, listen for yourself.

@@@ Bad Bunny: MIA (OVO, 2018). Drake breaks the internet as he appears on this Latin single and does his loverboy thing entirely in Spanish.  It’s good to see he’s as buttery soft in Spanish as he is in his native tongue.  Bad Bunny is pumping out the sugar for the ladies as well as this is almost Halloween candy for your ears.  There are some nice drum beat variations in the back end of the tune but this is pretty disposable as again there’s not much here after the beat, the baseline and the microphone work.

YTD recordings listened to: 578
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 308
Not good music: 235

Best: 9
Honorable Mentions: 6

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, 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, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Orlando Lopez, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Peregoyo y su Combo vacana, serpentwithfeet

Music for 10/11/18!!! Tierra Whack, Tess Roby, Proc Fiskal

@@@ Tierra Whack: Whack World (Interscope, 2018) 15 1-minute hip hop songs that I got to from a best 25 records from the last 3 months at factmag.  I’m on the third minute and I like the brevity of the tunes and the tidbits have more of a melancholy flavor than a party vibe.  I don’t think the brevity and the melancholy are connected.  The jumps from one bit to the next are pleasantly jarring.  The sounds are very new, no retro hip hop happening here.  It’s like somebody hitting the fast forward every 1 minute.  I really like the tune 4 Wings.  I found it and shit!  Enjoy.

@@@ Tess Roby: Beacon (Italians Do It Better, 2018)  We switch gear from youthful African American female gloom hop to white people electronica.  It’s opening up with a sinuous guitar line and a Rush beat, not great as far as I’m concerned.  Then a singer — where is she from?  Montreal!  I love Montreal.  I think this is poor record sequence/placement on my part as the jump from those hip hop kibble and bits to this is not great.  This is low energy, not as funky, and just a wee bit……white.  And I say that as a human that used to be a white person.  I thought this was going to be an electronic record but it’s an indie rock record with an electronic U-haul attached to the back.

@@@ Proc Fiskal: Insula (Hyperdub, 2018).  This is an abstract electronic record I got to via the same best 25 records of the last three months.  It is most definitely chopped pretty roughly with plenty of processed vocal samples and bass ‘n drum type beats.  It is trying to be both funky and trippy and thus far I don’t think it’s hit either goal.  I want to like it as it aims for a place I enjoy listening to but it sounds a bit sterile and technical for my taste.  The arrangements are more than competent but it’s a nerd record.  Homie needs some doobie in his funk, imho.

YTD recordings listened to: 574
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 306
Not good music: 233

Best: 9
Honorable Mentions: 6

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, 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, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Orlando Lopez, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Peregoyo y su Combo vacana, serpentwithfeet

Music for 9/28/18!!! Fay Victor’s SoundNoiseFUNK, Sarah Hahn

@@@ Fay Victor’s SoundNoiseFunk: Wet Robots (ESP Disk, 2018) I saw this free jazz funk record shouted on the Twatter. I know some of the players on this recording and when you click on the first track set aside any expectations that this might be a variant of a George Clinton/Funkadelic record. It’s funky but not in a typically funky manner. Victor is entertaining with quasi-mental hospital vocal style and she is accompanied by drums, guitar, and a sax player. I’m super into Victor’s singing — she appears to be emulating any number of other instruments, most notably sax. I do think with a band name such as SoundNoiseFUNK that a bassist would be standard issue. I’m very much enjoying what’s here but some thump would really take it places, in my opinion.

@@@ James Supercave: Come Alone (Self-released, 2018) I got to this mainstream indie pop rock tune via a music publicist email. The arrangement sounds pretty familiar with a few fresh bits thrown in, but the singer, what can we say about the singer? He’s not super interesting in the verse but he does a better job with his falsetto in the chorus. There is some nice sonic rotation through the tune where some sounds drop and others show up but it sounds like slinky ear candy and not much more than that to me.

@@@ Sarah Hahn: I Close My Eyes to See (Parma, 2018) I’m on the mailing list of this small New Hampshire modern classical/sometimes jazz label. They do pretty cool stuff. The track opens with an extended flute/piano jam. I thought there were vocals on this record, but maybe I’m on the crack again and misread as we’re almost half way through and it’s a very nice flute/piano duo piece. It sits inside what I know to be classical music while pushing through a lot of energy and passion in places. I like it.

YTD recordings listened to: 547
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 290
Not good music: 226

Best: 9
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, KEN mode, Automatisme

Music for 9/21/18!!! Lil Uzi Vert, Lana Del Rey, Mariah Carey

@@@ Lil Uzi Vert: New Patek (Atlantic, 2018)  I don’t know when hip hop started using a background singer as an instrument with various uhs and gunshot mimicry and yeahs but when employed it comes across as disposable music.  It happens on this track as well.  Lil Uzi is quick on the mic with solid rhythmic skills but it’s a pretty standard trap arrangement with throbbing fat bass and beats.  Lyrics revolve around the new Patek watch on his wrist and the various romantic situations that arise from the milly in the bank.  He’s got a girl with a fat ass that barely fits in his whip!  He also asks one girl to take a show so she don’t stink.  It’s an almost five minute track that shouldn’t have broken three minutes.

@@@ Lana Del Rey: Mariners Apartment Complex (Polydor, 2018) Is it sexist to say that 70% of Lana Del Rey’s is due to her movie starlet’s lips? To flip it away from the human body, her success is not embedded in transformative music that takes you to another place. She traffics in pretty basic rock star blah. My guess is Lana is gonna be sad and dour on this track but gorgeously so. You took my sadness out of context at the Mariners Apartment Complex. That’s the first line so I get a gold star! The lyrics are pretty standard word salad but there are some nice moments. Why is Lana so sad? I’m not sure I care except she keeps foisting her existential issues on America. The vocal hook is when she says ‘I’m your man!’ which turns all the femme centered lyrics on their head with that statement.

@@@ Mariah Carey: GTFO (Sony, 2018) Mariah goes full batshit crazy with her new song about her hair Get The Frizz Out which should result in a solid tie in with some sort of hair product company. It opens up with a sort of glitched up Prince keyboard centered arrangement. Oh my, it’s not about getting the frizz out she wants him to get the fuck out! Mariah, yo go girl standing up for yourself. It’s an interesting blend of intimate, ballad-y sounds and a defiant sentiment. I didn’t watch the video but it looks like she’s not wearing a lot of clothes.

YTD recordings listened to: 539
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 284
Not good music: 224

Best: 9
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, KEN mode, Automatisme

Music for 9/17/18!!! Dad Nap, Scott Xylo, Immersion

@@@ Dad Nap: Worn Out (Self-released, 2018) I got to this DIY record via the music blog Indiepulse.  Super DIY recording — a one microphone creation with virtually no low end but tons and tons and tons of energy.  Manic acoustic guitar strumming, some harmonica and speedy vocals.  The vocalists are working so fast they sound more than a bit a little like Eminem.  I really appreciate the spirit.

@@@ Scott Xylo: Call Us When You Get there (Black Acre, 2018) I was clipping the above record on to this here blog post when I saw this record posted on the front page of Bandcamp and thought it looked good.  Btw, it’s album of the day at Bandcamp.  I expect a whole lot more low end on this recording as it’s a mash of Afrobeat, jazz, and funk.  Has a pretty intimate and laidback feel to it with mellow ass vocals.  Bits of Maxwell and other loverboy r&b gents.  The third tune, Sam’s Joloff, is the first spot where I felt connected to the sounds going on.  Simple funky bass line, some washed out midnight electric organ, some sax playing and mostly African drumming.  I like it without loving it.

@@@  Immersion: Irreversible Mechanism (2018)   Some metal off the bandcamp.  These guys are from Finland so you know it’s good!  Not really but it’s a great marketing line.  From reading their band camp page, they’re super into atmosphere and not putting out your standard metal bashing.  Which is great for them, but not so much for me.  This is a long intro on this first tune, I’m not feeling punished yet.  This is operatic and slow.  Not really my thing, let me skip to the next track.  Oh no, there it is!  I had to wait almost 4 minutes.  This is an epic artsy metal stomp.  It’s a lot of sustained guitar melodies, a lot of kick drum, and a lot of caveman-esque vocals.  I like the dirtier business myself but this isn’t all about what I like.  Check it out if it seems applicable to you.

YTD recordings listened to: 532
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 280
Not good music: 220

Best: 9
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, KEN mode, Automatisme