Active Music Listening Wednesday March 12, 2014

YTD recordings listened to: 196
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 133
Not good music: 56

Honorable Mentions: 0
Buys: 0

Possibles: Boyd Rivers, Chris McGregor, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Dave Arner Trio, Trap Them, Bill Horist, MAKU Soundsystem, Zomby, Retox, Owiny Sigoma Band, About Group, Jello Biafra, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Jessie Mae Hemphill, All Pigs Must Die, Kendl Winter, Shigeto, Bone Dance, Cage the Elephant, Defeater, Sidi Toure, Lindi Ortega, Jonwayne, Christian Kjellvander, Okkyung Lee, Tiger Hatchery, Xiu Xiu, The Ballantynes, Debruit and Aljawal, Slidhr, Temples, The Whammies, The Chewers.

@@@ Hammercult: Steelcrusher (Sonic Attack, 2014) Off the weekly metal mailorder I get.  With titles like Hymn to the Steel and the title track Steelcrusher, we’re in for a heavy metal celebration.  You’re classic metal/combo — a piquant blend of guitar ka-chunk and melodic shreddiness, the singer sounds like a hopped up iguana.  Very reptilian and throat smashed.  Also some very nice chanted background vocals reminiscent of ’80s hardcore.  From the comments of the Youtube video these guys are from Israel — an interesting factoid and I think somebody might be putting crank in their tour bus couscous.  These guys are thrashing very hard.  This is the best thing I heard today.


@@@ Ledisi: The Truth (Verve, 2014) A r&b singer more rooted in the late ’70s/early ’80s funk soul than most new r&b records.  I saw this record listed on the All Music weekly email, by the way.   Hints of Michael Jackson, Earth Wind and Fire (without the Horns), and the Gap Band.  Production level is high, but it’s not completely slick and teched out sounding, and I appreciate that.

@@@ Dean Wareham: Dean Wareham (Double Feature, 2014).  Off the All Music weekly email, the record opens up with a shiny, medium melancholic tune, The Dance Disappears.  There’s a healthy slatering of reverb on Wareham’s soft, mostly detached sounding voice which lends a trippy folk/psych vibe to a standard guitar indie band behind him.   Think of Leonard Cohen blenderized with The Feelies.  I really liked the third tune, Heartless People.


@@@  Slowly Rolling Camera: Slowly Rolling Camera (Edition Records, 2014).  Switching gears we check out some ambient straight/fusion jazz record with elements of drum ‘n bass I saw listed on the London jazz blog.  High levels of lounge smoothness with production values that borrow from various genres.  Some snarly rock guitar, some big straight jazz sounding upright bass, and a smooth jazz/lounge singer.


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