@@@ Hopsin: Pound Syndrome (Funk Volume, 2015). After a medium gangsta hip hop intro, the second tune Forever Ill gets into a West Coast/George Clinton ’80s space funk arrangement. Mr. Hopsin can rhyme and he rhymes very quickly. He sounds a bit like Eminem. The lyrics focus on aggression and putting down ‘commercial n*ggas.’ The third tune, No Hope, more than dabbles in women hating lyrics which is almost always a cue for my exit. Plus, the cheesy piano on this tune is bleh.
@@@ Mick Futures: Banned From The Future (Telephone Explosion, 2015). Some punk rawk heavily influenced by early Clash records without the black music influence. Alienated singer, lots of guitars (also a synth in that first track?), super straight fast rock/punk beat. The second tune is less fantastic, with a slurpy phase guitar, a No Wave vocal melody and a general tempo sag. C’mon fellas, keep it brisk. We’re getting more into ’80s synth rock and krautrock with the third tune, Tentative Issues and I’m getting less happy. By the fourth tune, A Few Pieces, we’re into the straight up Devo bite. Ah well, it’s a ’70s/’80s white boy with guitar record pu pu platter.
@@@ Soulstack: Soulstack (Independent, 2015). A funky blues/soul mashup I saw in the roots section of the CFUV weekly email. James Brown-like singer with full horn section, lots of guitars, electric organ, and an active drummer. In this first tune, Just Don’t Call it the Blues you even get cowbell, and who doesn’t love cowbell. I can picture these guys tearing it up on the college frat circuit. More Blues Brothers/Blues Traveler than Howlin’ Wolf.
YTD recordings listened to: 591
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 341
Not good music: 204
Honorable Mentions: 15
Possibles: Chris McGregor, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Dave Arner Trio, Bill Horist, MAKU Soundsystem, Zomby, Retox, About Group, Jessie Mae Hemphill, Bone Dance, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, The Ballantynes, Debruit, Slidhr, The Whammies, The Chewers, Alexander Hawkins, Toxic Holocaust, Equal Stones, Comeback Kid, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, Lenguas Largas, The Coral, Spacesuits, T.O.M.B., Fofoulah, Lozen, Erase Errata, Mohamed Abozekry, Dawn Richard, Leo Welch, Mastery, Leviathan, Xibalba, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, Ellen Jewell, Akitsa, Chico Trujillo, Richard Thompson, Evan Caminiti, Jeremy Pinnell, Hope Drone, Pat Thomas