@@@ Gillian Mapp: Orange Bitters (Lekker Collective, 2020) I’m on this label’s mailing list and I got to this r&b track from an email from them. I don’t think the folks who made this could make it any more lush and intimate if they tried. Super chill keyboard organ patch and Ms. Mapp’s framed vocals, they are going for dessert style r&b. It’s about sensations and feeling those sensations and the lyrics are about time and space, kisses on the lips, and other slideshow, stream of conciousness lyrical images. A tasteful delay on her voice and intimate reverb feels end up making a minimal set of sounds evoke a much larger feeling.
@@@ Kenny Chesney: You Don’t Get To (Warner Nashville, 2020) I saw this track shouted on Bob Lefsetz’s music industry blog+. I haven’t been keeping up with my new country listening, I love the new country tracks. This is a ballad with those ringing piano chords you find all over today’s music. #blech. The emphasis here is on the lyrics where he just straight up tells his ex what she can’t do so he can protect himself and stay unhurt by this awful person. She doesn’t get to swing by with that look in her eye, naimsayin’? He does a good job delivering the lyrics but the lyrics are a bit dramatical. Maybe if he stripped back the sounds and didn’t have a closet arena rock sound packed in here. I’m sure duder is still hurtin’ but it’s still mad shiny and poppy sounds so that’s a bit tough to reconcile those two concepts.
@@@ Luba Mason: In Walked Bud (Blue Canoe, 2020) I seen it on the Twatter, who doesn’t love the twatter. I don’t see this record up on Apple Music so we’re stuck with GooglePimpTube. Regular readers know of my conflicted relationship with straight jazz. I dig the vibes intro, and then comes the upright bass and Ms. Mason. It’s a live track which maybe gives the performance a bit more punch as there are humans there to interact with (pre covid obviously). I’m not sure what to say here I like the vibes player a lot, then the bass player. I don’t think I’m a fan of straight jazz vocalizing, it doesn’t work for me. Check out this trio track if you’re a fan of the formula.
@@@ Lawrence Brownlee: Barbieri di Saviglia (Warner, 2020) I got to this piece via the email from National Sawdust in Brooklyn. I’ve gotten a bit into classical music via my cello playing son but my most notable connection to the Barber of Seville is the Looney Tunes classic the Rabbit of Seville where Bugs Bunny prepares a salad on Elmer Fudd’s bald head. Good times! Let’s not go down the Looney Tunes rabbit hole (no pun!) To say these motherfuckers can sing is a tad simplistic. Are they more skilled than a talented MC? Well classical music is an established form and hip hop allows for more variation. This is an incredibly rich recording and a lush headphone listen and while most folks aren’t rocking this old school Italian opera style they should check it out to see how many different ways there are to victimize a microphone. Also check out the rabbit of seville. When Bugs is cranking the barber chair up into the theater higher and higher and elmer fudd has shaving foam on his head, oh that’s good times.
YTD recordings listened to: 720
Good music, not list worthy: 384
Not good music: 314
Honorable Mentions: 4
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, Chezidek, Shy One, Protomartyr, Nnamdi, Ekiti Sound, Awa Fall