@@@ Divanhana: Zukva (ARC, 2016). Super tight Balkan music out of Bosnia that I got to via the CFUV weekly email. Instrumentation is accordion, fiddle, guitar, bass, drums, clarinet and probably other instruments over the course of the record. My first impression in this first tune is that these guys sound like they’ve played 1,000+ gigs. As my insane grand dad used to say these guys ‘are tighter than a bull’s ass at fly time’. A cow would not want a fly to fly up his ass when they come out so he keeps his ass locked tight. He was special, my grandfather. Little trick playing here and there and the band turns on a dime. The singer is really stretching out in this second tune — wow, she can sing. Imma gonna swing back and check out this whole record but thus far I’ve heard nothing but excellent ensemble playing and singing.
@@@ With the Dead: With the Dead (Rise Above, 2015). Switching gears we move over to some heavy gloomy ass metal off the CFUV weekly email. Opens up with the big drum sound and tidal waves of detuned guitar syrup. Distorted, post-rock vocals on tap in this first tune. How much weed did it take to get to this guitar sound? Imma guessing many bowls were packed. The second tune is closer to Stone Temple Pilots than Converge. Riff, thick rock drums and this whole anti-religion vibe which I get and don’t give a shit about at the same time. Come for the guitar sound and leave when you’ve had yer fill.
@@@ GoGo Penguin: Man Made Object (Decca France, 2015) Some piano trio jazz out of the UK and while Apple Music has it described as spring loaded abstractions (sounds great!) it’s more of light, New Age-y affair (not as good!). The piano player is too pretty for my taste and the drummer sounds almost like a rock drummer. Let’s give these fish and chip motherfuckers another shot. The second tune opens up cute — I say my good friend do you have any gray poupon mustard? Or a flavored coffee? Or some more cream cheese for your bagel? This is a most delightful brunch and I just love the faux sophisticated background music.
@@@ Walter Martin: Arts & Leisure (Ill Flottante, 2016) Some ambient, quirky indie folk I got to from last week’s All Music notable release email. I like that the lyrics in this first tune are different but they’re a tad too indie for my taste. And he whistles in this first tune. I don’t know why that annoys me so much, but it does. It just stinks of wuss rock. I really dig the ambient sound of the record and the quasi-orchestral instrumentation but the vibe is a bit light and quirky.
YTD recordings listened to: 142
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 77
Not good music: 56
Honorable Mentions: 3
Possibles: Chris McGregor, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Dave Arner Trio, MAKU Soundsystem, Zomby, Retox, 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, T.O.M.B., Fofoulah, Lozen, Erase Errata, Dawn Richard, Mastery, Leviathan, Xibalba, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, Akitsa, Janelle Monae, Luther Dickinson, Destruction Unit, Graeme Barrett, Fast Asleep, Goldlink, Cavanaugh, Gentleman Surfer, Satoko Fuji, Mystic Braves, Reverend Peyton, Living Hell, Matt Walker, Divanhana