Music for 7/31/18!!! BigHate, Tony Molina, Underworld and Iggy Pop, Aaron Martin

@@@ BigHate: Death Wish EP (Self-released, 2017)  A visceral and updated classic metal sound from a female fronted Italian metal band.  A big wall of guitars and they aren’t afraid to beat you down with them.  The drummer is also quite a bruising and pumped up kinda gent.  The energy is super high but the production is polished and a bit sweet so you have to be into that.  A less shiny production sound works better for me but metal lovers should check out this singer, she sounds more than a bit insane.

@@@ Tony Molina: Kill the Lights (Slumberland, 2018)  Jangly guitar record off last week’s All Music notable release email.  Reaches way back to the hippie era of the Byrds and California jangle rock as well as Alex Chilton and Big Star (and ooh a little bit of Norwegian Wood acoustic Beatles as well).  It has the required slackness/mope sauce that today’s indie listeners seem to need on top of the old school jangle.  They most definitely have the guitar sounds and the playing down pat but I don’t know why someone who likes this style wouldn’t head over to Big Star’s Radio City and just camp their asses out.

@@@ Iggy Pop & Underworld: Tea Time Dub Encounters (Caroline, 2018) Also off this week’s All Music notable release email.  I think it’s hilarious they have a track called Get Your Shirt as I haven’t seen a picture of Iggy Pop with a shirt on in decades!  The first tune opens up brisk dance floor and then Iggy comes on with the spieling.  He goes into some old school decadence thing where he celebrates how you used to be able to smoke cigarettes and do blow on airplanes.  I guess so.  I’m on the second tune and the sounds thus far are video game machine on speed, in that neighborhood.  I like the third tune, the Big Song because the spoken word subject is more engaging and quite un-Iggy like.  Surprisingly introspective.  It’s an interesting collaboration that hinges upon whether you want to hear Iggy Pop talk about his life — I’m interested at points, at other points I could give a shit.

@@@ Aaron Martin: Touch Dissolves (IKKI, 2018)  I saw this recording mentioned on the Twatter by a jazz writer so here we are.  Martin is an improvising cellist who specializes in creating pieces that evoke tranquility.  The first tune is A Child’s Arms are Moonlight — I like the music all right but I think that’s an awful name for a tune.  It’s just too New Age-y for me.  The piece is multilayered and focused on long tones with some pulses that rings and some bow work/vibrato that gives you a nice tremolo-ish tone.  The second tune focuses on more higher string strumming that gives the impression of a uke with a little calm singing as one might sing to the child with the moonlight arms (oy).  It’s pretty music if not predictable.

https://iikki.bandcamp.com/album/touch-dissolves?action=share&from=embed&context=daily

YTD recordings listened to: 445
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 226
Not good music: 197

Best: 8
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

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Music for 7/30/18!!! The Chainsmokers, Inge Ginsberg, Michael Arnowitt, Beacon

@@@ The Chainsmokers: Side Effects (Columbia, 2018)  A midsummer sexy cheese biscuit from the Chainsmokers.  If you google what is the most sultry cheese you get no answer.  Fuck off, the Chainsmokers are the answer!!! Google asks you if you want to search for the saltiest cheese.  Ha, no!  There is a female guest singer here and as far as music goes we have a four on the floor kick drum, a pleasant slightly distorted bass sound, sweet cotton candy clouds of synthesizer and a big ol’ chorus hook to reel the fish in.  As far as the lyrics it’s classic themes of yearning and wanting some love today.  There is a rap section here which we will not comment on.  Lyric video?  That’s better than watching Trump toilet tweet!!!!

@@@ Inge Ginsberg: Death Metal Grandma (N/A, 2018)  I saw on the Twatter a twat about the video below.  A 96 year old Holocaust survivor performing her poems with a death metal band.  You can’t fuck with this headbending mash of generations and cultural influences but the combination of a Holocaust survivor and death metal does make sense if you think about it.  She does a little moshing at 1:25 and she’s got skills!  I’m blogging about this because I see a lot of hipsters wearing the same tight blue jeans, writing the same song and pretending that Jesus just laid a golden egg and they’re breaking the mold.  But you’re not breaking the mold the way a Holocaust survivor death metal combo platter does.  Showing the kids how it’s done!

@@@ Michael Arnowitt: Sweet Spontaneous (PARMA, 2018)  I’m on the mailing list for this hybrid classical/jazz label and I try to give their releases a peep.  Oh boy, this is vocal jazz which I have problems with.  I love Billie Holiday and some of Ella Fitzgerald but this is another thing.  It’s not nearly as cool as death metal grandma.  This is brunch music for the upper middle class.  Highbrow production signifying class both economic and cultural.  I tipped out when the spoken word artist came in on the third tune.  I get that some folks might really be into this but I’m not one of those folks.  I’m with Inge!

@@@ Beacon: Losing My Mind (Ghostly, 2018) I got to this track via the Twatter and a label twat launched thereupon.  Regular readers know of my war on cheese and we attack hipster cheese as well as Chainsmokers type cheese biscuits.  This is just a few sequins and an Ambien away from Barry Manilow cheese!  Solo piano, breathless vocals, and a string swell.  I’m sorry I have to stop typing for a second to wipe my eyes as this is powerful business.  He’s so in love he’s losing his mind!  God this hit me hard, right in the nutz.  It kicked me with a cheesy boot, right in the nutz.

YTD recordings listened to: 441
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 224
Not good music: 195

Best: 8
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

2018 Honorable Mention Pick 5

Toxic Holocaust: Chemistry of Conciousness (Relapse, 2013)

Short on guitar solos and absent any epic lead singers these guys bring a solid amount of punk energy to their metal music.

Check out the track below — tasty thrash drumming, a wall of guitars with some methed out threedling, and a Lemmy descendant on the microphone.

A little Bad Brains, some Motorhead, it’s a metal formula based not on rocking but on plain, straightforward sonic assault.

Check it out!

Music for 7/27/18!!! Moon, Gavin Haley, Kalli Ma, YG

@@@ Moon: Extinction (N/A, 2018)  I got to this Chicago power trio via a publicist in the Midwest.  It’s retro grunge-y but with a bit more pep and a tad less flannel.  The singer  works in a higher vocal register and could be mistaken for a woman as he does a Patti  Smith/Geddy Lee thing.  The second tune, Revolutions, takes the tempo down and showcases the singer more than the rock band playing vibe.  I’ve listened to portions of three tunes and I like the first tune best.  I prefer my rock uptempo and less epic rather than more.  That said, the production here is excellent and all the players play really well.

@@@ Gavin Haley: better off (Red Bull, 2018)  I try to listen to Red Bull releases because you can crack a lot of jokes about Red Bull and because it’s hilarious how every artist has to sound like he/she is pumped up on Red Bull to get on the label.  Color me wrong as shit as this tune opens up chill and laidback with the vocal hook is ‘she’s hooked on drugs’.  It’s not a rocking tune nor completely a ballad so it occupies a space in between with what I would refer to as ‘meaningful’ lyrics.  I only glanced quickly at the video but I think they spent more time on the video than the track.

@@@ Kalli Ma: Offence-Defence (Self-released, 2018)  Another track, this time electronic, that I got to via a music publicist email.  It’s got an medium aggressive and slightly dark color to the sounds with a No Wave singer.  There are a lot of blasts of sound pushing through the mix – a quick synth arpeggio, an electronic blast, other such business.  I like the sounds, I don’t like the singer as much.  It’s not personal.

@@@ YG: Handgun (Def Jam, 2018)  It’s interesting this rough track occupies the #1 spot on the Apple Music hot tracks section.  It’s also interesting how many of these gun anthems involve explicit mentions of the female genitalia.  I’m not sure how it’s connected but it’s a common theme.  The beat is skittery and mixed with a pretty ominous piano figure that drives the track.  There is a lot of chanting which raises the martial vibe of the track.  It’s an all right track, it’s most interesting feature is how it gets to be #1 track.  One might say there are some white and black music executives more than willing to make money off these tracks which can be interpreted as glorifying and romanticizing gun violence.  Not trying to be uptight, just sayin’.

YTD recordings listened to: 437
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 2230
Not good music: 192

Best: 7
Honorable Mentions: 4

Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, 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

Music for 7/26/18!!! Ari Lennox, Ovlov, We Are Muffy

@@@ Ari Lennox: Whipped Cream (Interscope, 2018) You can imagine a tune called whipped cream is gonna be a booty anthem for sure.  It’s a slow one with a four on the floor kick drum, a plinky guitar figure, some quiet and burbling keys and even a french horn (I think).  Points for the french horn.  She’s been eating whipped cream and having vivid dreams.  You dig?  It’s a slow jam, well put together in an old school fashion.

@@@ Ovlov: Tru (Exploding in Sound, 2018)  I don’t know if shoegaze is a genre that hipsters still embrace but I call shoegaze a guitar storm with non-rock introspective voices nestled inside the aforementioned noise.  The guitar sounds here are primo, high end and the band is tighter than a bull’s ass at fly time.  It’s a pretty standard formula but they rock the shit out of it.

@@@ We are Muffy: The Charcoal Pool (Tapete, 2018)  This is some super friendly retro hippy-ish folk I got to via All Music’s notable release email.  I saw the Mr. Rogers documentary last night and Mr. Rogers’ thing was making kids feel safe and recognizing their emotions as valid.  This record will not threaten your sense of safety in any manner.  The second tune sets aside the happy bounce and does get a tad darker.  The instrumentation consists of multiple acoustic guitars and a male and female singer.  It appears the first tune is a bit of an outlier as the tempo drops and a folk sadness does make its appearance in the second and third tunes.  I feel a bit deceived as the fourth tune brings in bass and drums.  The vibe is both up and down with very pretty singing and a variety of moods.  And make sure to check out the Mr. Rogers documentary, Fred was a heavy cat!

YTD recordings listened to: 433
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 228
Not good music: 190

Best: 7
Honorable Mentions: 4

Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, 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

Music for 7/25/18!!! Phronesis, Moskus, Makru

@@@ Phronesis: We Are All (Edition, 2018) I saw this jazz outfit mentioned in a twat on the Twatter.  This is a pre-release track from an upcoming full length and it opens very pretty and slow with piano and bowed bass.  It is a piano trio (duh piano, bass and drums) and I hear more than a bit of prog rock/quasi-classical melodic leanings and theatrics up in here.  To my ears it sounds tightly arranged/composed over the course of its nine minutes.  It eventually explodes into an uptempo piano solo with the rhythm section right behind his/her giant keyboard runs.  It goes out mellow with a solid bass solo.  If you like some prog swirled up in yer straight jazz well then….

@@@ Moskus: Ulv Ulv (Hubro, 2016)  I saw a new disc from this out jazz outfit listed on the London Jazz News but found this one on the Apple Music to stream.  I know a fair amount about the free jazz scene but haven’t heard these guys so I’m going to have to hit the GooglePimp.   I can see these guys are a trio from Norway and there’s a woman in the band.  They are listed as piano, bass and drums but I hear other instruments in there.  I’m greatly enjoying this ambient and spacious improvisation.  There is variation to the pieces as well as some humor but the playing is unexpected and substantive.  This is great music and I will circle back to listen to the full record when I have more time but I’m pretty certain this will be on my best of year list.  Check it out.

@@@ Makru: Tu Mission (Self-released, 2018) I got to this world music record via a world music publicist funny enough.  I don’t read these bios carefully but it is a record by a Spaniard that moved to San Francisco.  I hear a lot of reggae influence, Spanish romantic music in the horn lines, and other influences.  It is a proud mash of styles that is executed well.  I like the female singer and the concious vibes of the record.  While there are a variety of musical influences an emphasis on melody runs through the tunes.

YTD recordings listened to: 430
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 226
Not good music: 189

Best: 7
Honorable Mentions: 4

Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, 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

Music for 7/24/18!!! Sea Moss, the Social Stomach, VoidCeremony, DRAM

@@@ Sea Moss & the Social Stomach: Ugh (Crash Symbols, 2018).  I got to this raucous yet partyistic noise based party punk via an email from KFJC out in California.  This first tune features a brisk tempo and pig squealing synths with other animal sounds but also a funky cowbell and a bouncy beat.  There is a woman wailing as in an incomprhensible fashion and lots of droney, siren-y shit.  The second tune, A Four Mile Parade takes a Left on Broadway, speeds up the tempo, keeps the wails, animal sounds, and siren sounds — it sounds as if the tune is imploding from the inside.  Let’s check out the band from the second half of this EP, the Social Stomach.  These guys are pleasantly strange as well but they sport a little prog and more rock vibes than noise.  A female singer works the microphone here but she has more of a detached Frank Zappa flow rather than the barnyard animal aspirations of the first outfit.  Spanish in the second tune which starts to heat up with some sci fi movie oscillating synth.  Both of these bands are fully formed and freaky — one with a partyistic, noisy tilt and the other a sort of art school prog with punk swirls.

@@@ VoidCeremony: Foul Origins of Humanity (Mondo Macabre, 2017)  Also off a KFJC email list of live and in studio performances.  This is three tracks of stormy, threedly epic death metal/black metal.  The singer is low in the mix and he explores various caveman concerns while a dual guitar attack gets nutty.  The second tune picks up where the grind of the first tune ended — it’s thrashy with some classic metal and they play fast.  Red Bull, meth, who knows.  It’s all about the guitars here.

@@@ DRAM: Best Hugs (Atlantic, 2018)  DRAM goes for song of the summer with an ’80s inspired synth r&b party bomb.  He gives an inspired vocal and rhyming performance but the early ’80s disco juice is not going well over here.  I feel the same way here as the Childish Gambino summer BBQ anthem — to my ears they’re trying too hard to get the title going for maximum bounce and party vibes but lacking on soul.  I can’t give song of the summer to the vocal hook ‘Your girl gives the best hugs’.  I like DRAM but really?

YTD recordings listened to: 427
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 224
Not good music: 189

Best: 7
Honorable Mentions: 4

Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, 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