@@@ Jaleel Shaw: The Soundtrack of Things to Come ( , 2013) I saw somebody announcing on the Twatter an interview with this NYC sax player and found this record on bandcamp. Instrumentation is sax, piano, bass and drums and the record opens with a mournful melody for a tune called I Wish I Didn’t Know. I like the interplay between the musicians with the sax player and piano player catching my ear the most. One of my gripes with straighter jazz is the low energy of the horn players, but this is not the case here as Shaw has both a strong tone and high energy. The production here is a tad clean for my taste but this is pretty standard. Whether it be heavy metal or jazz I’m always up for more fire so I dig the energy but could use more.
@@@ Ayalew Mesfin: Blindsided by Love ( , 2020) I got to this Ethiopian musician via the reissue joint Stranded Records. There’s a lot of what they called Ethiopian jazz floating around that I don’t much cotton to, but this is a more driving retro, almost gospel rockin’ testifying thing he’s got going on. Very nice horn lines and as it’s a retro recording the drums are lower and the voice cuts through the mix as those frequencies are more evident. I’m wasting some time on the interwebz after this single and the player clicked through to the next track which is even more urgent and higher tempo. The singer is feeling it, he’s really working hard and it makes me like the music much more. Passion, energy, I love that shit.
@@@ Cilantro Boombox: Wahoo (Cbbx, 2020) I got to this track via a music publicist email. I like the name of the band, I think it’s funny. Yikers, after an odd pitch shifted intro it gets into an ’80s dance rock, horn driven flow with a synth bass (I like that) frantic hi hat centric drumming (don’t like that), tambourine (agnostic, prefer cowbell). Out of that party section comes a more driving chorus with power chords, a different beat and the refrain wahoo, wahoo wahoo. Pretty much sums up where we’re at, no? Nice horn solo, some janky guitar, but yes, yes I hear it, there’s a cowbell up in there. This track has shot up my list as I’m a huge lover of cowbell and it is deftly deployed here and in large amounts. Fuck me, this is great! Points for weirdness for sure and big ups on the cowbell. This is slotted as jazz on Apple Music but it’s really kind of a Frank Zappa frat boy party track.
@@@ Tame Impala: Is It True (Island Australia, 2020) Oh boy, the indie folks have gotten super into the retro disco funk which I find a bit regrettable. I like some of it but it does seems folks forget the success Prince enjoyed with his guitar shredding. Without some disruptive guitar it gets a bit smooth, in my humble opinion. Not only smooth it doesn’t grab your attention. I was surfing the Twatter reading about all this bullshit in Kenosha, WI and I got so engrossed in that so deeply I didn’t even notice how the track had moved on to the video in Apple Music. The music is fine, it’s polished but it doesn’t hit hard and leave an impression. I’m guessing that’s by design but I don’t have to like it.
YTD recordings listened to: 660
Good music, not list worthy: 344
Not good music: 297
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, Nico Gomez, Nohe and Sus Santos, schroothoop, Tiny Bit of Giant’s Blood, Pole, Naeem, Mekons, Santrofi, DJ Nigga Fox, Flor do Toloache, Alexander Hawkins/Tomeka Reid, STORMLIGHT, Venomous Concept, Chezidek, Shy One, Muqata’a, Protomartyr