@@@ Rolling Stones: Living in a Ghost Town (Universal, 2019) An updated rock flavor to this ‘rona inspired anthem about all the folks not on the street. They bust out a surprising amount of energy in the chorus til they go back to the very slightly reggae’d out verse, complete with a little dub action on the outro. It’s a vibe track that harkens back to their ’70s output, the second half of that decade to my ears. It’s a cool they’re still able to make a relevant track. If it’s a party it’s a party of 1, that’s the last line. I read somewhere on the interwebz that this was a track they had lying around but they changed up some of the lyrics to make it relevant so that explains the genesis and timing of this track.
@@@ Ed O’Brien: Shangri-La (Capitol, 2020) A solo record from a Radiohead guitarist that I found both on the All Music notable release email as well as a feature from the music gear pimp Reverb. Sporting the ambience of Radiohead but decidedly more upbeat in spirit. It’s almost a 6 minute track and the space rock gives way to a thicker more rocking vibe at about 2 minutes. The production here is quite tasty, layers of guitars, little circular bird chirp type sounds and thick oozing sandwich of vocal tracks. I like a lot of the sounds here but this tune feels a bit long to my ears. I guess I’m left feeling that I dig the electronic component of recent Radiohead records more than I thought I did and find that more three dimensional than the straight ahead space rock sound that you get here. I have troubles with earnest music, I struggle to get with it.
@@@ mxmtoon: lessons (AWAL, 2020) The third song off this 21 minute EP length record. It comes out as an ambient electro thing with very mainstream pop production. Miss mxmtoon has a dreamy and pleasing voice but I’m finding her lyrics here full of cliches and not enjoyable. Examples of aforementioned cliche include I thought I had it all figured out, but I’m full of questions now, be patient with yourself there’s more room to grow if you leave your worries on the shelf. Life goes fast, remember that kids! These lyrics combined with the ambient production produces a New Age feeling and I’m not a fan of those. I do have to give props to the super wide mix, it’s stuffed with all manner of sounds — background vocals, acoustic guitar arpeggios, etc.
@@@ Unified Highway: The Truth (Easy Star, 2020) I got to this track via a music publicist email. Electro based reggae (particularly notable is the sawtooth patch for the bass) with tasty dub touches on this track. The singer is sweet (with a robotic element mixed in there at points) and I find the manicured arrangement to be quite pleasurable when there’s a non-mainstream feel to the track. It’s a roots reggae sonic slideshow — they switch up the instruments a bit, they switch up the bass patch, they throw in a guitar shred that’s epic but forgivably epic under the sonic circumstances. It’s a fat fat headphone track. I would check out more of this record.
YTD recordings listened to: 310
Good music, not list worthy: 162
Not good music: 136
Honorable Mentions: 0
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, 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, Noname, Klara Lewis, Krullur, The Lowest Form, Hard Proof, Yotoco, Jungle Fire, Sandoz, Oddisee, RAM, Fiver, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Criolo, Billy Strings, Flowers of Sulphur, Portal, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Barro, Daniel Khan, Tallawit Timbouctou, Sumac, Tropical Fuck Storm, Harriet Tubman, Ammar 808, Anais Maviel, Chaka Khan, Pom Poko, Fried Egg, Tarek Atoui, Saicobab, General Purv, Shipping News, Big Thief, Mariachi El Bronx, Pour Me a Grog, Sudan Archives, Lakou Mizik, Moodymann, Pharmakon, Alefa Madagascar, Janjao, Luge, Wiki, Mick Jenkins, Jeremiah Jae, Fera, Gambian Griot Kora Duets, Drama, Beatrice Dillon, Mass Worship, mmmonika, Les Deuxluxes, Tony Allen, Fra Fra, Nihiloxica, Hailu Mergia, Pokey LaFarge