@@@ Hollie Cook: Vessel of Love (Merge, 2018) Blurbed as sensual reggae on the Apple Music it is interesting to see this recording show up on hipster label Merge. The arrangement of this first tune is dense and satisfying while the production sound straddles modern cleanliness and old school thickness. Cook’s voice is more mainstream r&b than traditional reggae but she’s a great singer and I’m really feeling the bass player while the synth horns not as much. I didn’t have very high expectations of this record but it’s really well done. I’m not a fan of how synth-y it is but that may be why they released it as it brings reggae close to an indie electronic record.
@@@ EMEL MATHLOUTHI: Ensenity (Partisan, 2018) Another world music record on a white people’s music imprint though I think Partisan has released some African music before. From my video searching I believe this singer is Palestinian and in an unrelated note these look to be remixes. Okay the interwebz is very confusing as it appears that there are two albums released by Partisan — one the original songs and a remix record. This first tune is a medium slow ballad with dramatic vocals and a lot of electronic music elements in the arrangements. The second tune brings a more familiar hybrid of traditional and electronic sounds as well as a brisker tempo. It’s very dramatic material and I like it all right. Myself I would rather tune in to Omar Souleyman as it’s a similar formula.
@@@Benoit Delbecq 4: Spots on Stripes (Clean Feed, 2018) A jazz record off the Portugese imprint Clean Feed on whose email list I preside. Instrumentation is piano, sax, bass and drums. I’m not the hugest fan of Mark Turner, the sax player but I like Gerald Cleaver and I don’t know anything about the piano player Delbecq. Thus far I’m enjoying Cleaver and the piano player who politely plays somewhat rhythmically off kilter to the drummer or at least that’s what I hear. It’s not swinging it’s pushing. I’ve checked out portions of four of the tunes and while I really liked the first tune I found the second and third to be less engaging.
YTD recordings listened to: 178
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 95
Not good music: 79
Honorable Mentions: 3
Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, The Ballantynes, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, Lenguas Largas, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, Leviathan, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, Janelle Monae, Luther Dickinson, Graeme Barrett, Fast Asleep, Goldlink, Cavanaugh, Gentleman Surfer, 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, Dona Onete, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Irreversible Entanglements, Converge, Open Mike Eagle, Criolo, Billy Strings, Flowers of Sulphur, Tal National