Music for 11/6/19!!! Kelly Moran, Jaws of Love, Kanye West

@@@ Kelly Moran: Autowave (Warp, 2019)  I think I got to this track via the Twatter.  I’ve heard Moran before she signed to Warp and I think she has bolted a larger electronic element onto her music for this run round the track as Warp specializes more in electronic music than improvised music.  She does an avant prepared piano thing but this first track is about equal parts prepared piano and electronic/manipulated sound.  It sounds like really well recorded high voltage line out in the middle of a field.  Very buzzy and drone-y.  It does shift frequencies.  It is the short first tune of her new record called Ultraviolet.  I think I’m going to hang for part of the second track because I like her music — plain production, interesting playing and sonics.  This second track, Helix, is an almost 9 minute monster shot of improv and drone electro garnish and I’m feeling it, this is pretty awesome.  Insanely beautiful headphone music, this music will fuck you up if you check it out.

@@@ Local Natives: Jaws of Love (N/A, 2019)  I checked out the latest record by these guys and thought it was a high end coffee shop version of a Radiohead album but I can throw ’em another listen.  I don’t know if this is a bonus track to their latest record or what, I’m just the listener here.  Aargh, I’m internet confused — there is a Local Natives dude in this outfit but I’m not sure if it’s a solo track or a Local Natives track.  It’s not on Apple Music so I will just give my piquant observations via this GooglePimpTube track below.  It opens with meaningful piano, and when the singer comes in it’s clear there’s too much reverb on his voice.  It’s too big, it’s trying too hard to be big.  I know it’s odd to say this but this might be worse than the National, a band I loathe for their unjustified pretension.  About 1:45 some chorused guitar comes in as well as a mixed low shuffle beat.  This track is 5:25 long, the full band comes in around 3:15 and I feel like I’m suffering.  What am I to connect with here?  Lyrics?  No.  Sounds? No.  Interesting production?  No.  Cliches?  I don’t roll like that.  My opinion is the tune should be chopped by at least 90 seconds and somebody should get some Red Bull or maybe try to inject some energy into it.  It’s the debut solo record from the Local Natives’ singer, I ascertained that.

@@@ Kanye West: Follow God (UMG, 2019)  Let’s check out new Jesus flavored Kanye!  I think it will be in line with a headline that said that Kanye’s record about God is more about himself than it is about God.  All about Kanye baby!  He takes an old soul sample, chops it up on the Yeah syllable and we get a simple hip hop beat and Kanye.  I keep hearing the phrase Christ-like.  It’s a good groove, Kanye West can produce shit, but my overall feeling is not only that the tune is about Kanye but it’s a fragment of a song.  He just kinda rambles on about various religious things, mostly that phrase Christ like and it doesn’t feel like a song.  It’s not a tune by a crazy man but it is music created by a person that dabbles in crazy.

YTD recordings listened to: 581
Good music, not list worthy: 344
Not good music: 199

Best: 0
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, Horndal, Wyxz, Tarek Atoui, Hawktail, Saicobab, Shannon and the Clams, General Purv, Shipping News, Big Thief, Emma Louise, Andre Bratten, Nathan Corder/Tom Weeks, Oli XL, Buzzherd, Logistic Slaughter, The Muslims, Tobe Nwigwe, Saint Abdullah, Bug Martin, Kaleta and the Super Yamba Band, Toko Telo, Brittany Howard, The Garifuna Collective, Mariachi El Bronx, Bonnie Baxter, Danny Brown, clipping., Deafkids, Michael Kiwanuka, Kelly Moran

 

 

Music for 9/9/19!!! Jordan Christoff, Frank Turner, Post Malone

@@@ Jordan Christoff: Liminal (N/A, 2019)  Ambient music off of a best of Bandcamp ambient list from a few weeks ago.  Two just over 20 minute monster shots of ambient music!  Get your slow cloud on people.  I will be making a reasonable amount of tastings and moving on to graze elsewhere cuz that’s how I roll.  This first piece entitled Iron Goddess is a slow roller with metallic flavoring.  I’m listening around the halfway point and we have some slight rain like sounds, a lit over top blurp (very slight), and a wave of what sounds like a stretched metallic sound — maybe a string sound stretched a whole bunch and it’s coming in waves.  The second piece Valentine is sounds more synth and cloudy and I know these are very abstract words people, but ambient music is very abstract and the focus on texture and the combination of textures seems not crazy.  A second wave combines and pushes against the initial layer of sound and whole impressions is one of slow moving tectonic changes.

@@@ Frank Turner: No Man’s Land (Polydor, 2019)  A British dude writing 13 tunes about historically significant women.  Odds of it being cool around 20% but I’ll give him a shot.  It is punk folk and I’m a bit surprised this is a major label release as it is pretty amped up.  However, the second tune kicks in and it’s more in line with Hootie and Blowfish rather than Billy Bragg.  Ah, we have a situation where the record flattens out in energy and song styles as it unfolds.  I like Turner’s voice and a lot of his lyrics and his ambition but it doesn’t thread the needle for me personally.  As always listen for yourself.

@@@ Post Malone: Hollywood’s Bleeding (UMG, 2019)  I’m just checking this first tune and I guess if you want to trumpet this gent it’s his voice in a hip hop/r&b musical setting but I find it to be emotionally tiresome cheese.  As with a lot of these major label releases it’s the lyrics that really drive my negative feelings.  It’s just a big bucket of cliche cheese.  I will check a few more of these tracks but the overwroughtness of the opener is not a big sell for me.

YTD recordings listened to: 462
Good music, not list worthy: 282
Not good music: 154

Best: 0
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, Horndal, Wyxz, Tarek Atoui, Hawktail, Saicobab, Shannon and the Clams, General Purv, Shipping News, Big Thief, Emma Louise, Andre Bratten, Nathan Corder/Tom Weeks, Oli XL, Buzzherd, Logistic Slaughter, The Muslims, Tobe Nwigwe, Saint Abdullah

Music for 6/14/19!!! Tim Hecker, Taylor Swift, Duncan Fellows

@@@ Tim Hecker: Anoyo (Kranky, 2019)  Hecker’s last record Konoyo made my best of 2018 list so he automatically gains a peep due to that.  A high string sample harp sounding sits at the center of the piece with a lot of ambience floating behind it as well as some very tight bass pulsing at moments.  Also occasional glitch hits which I love.  This first tune is 9+ minutes long and really goes for an outer space vibe.  I believe I really grooved on the darkness of his last record and the goal here is for something that is both dark and light.  The second tune brings in some percussion and it sounds like it’s being played by a human which really changes the feel of the track.  As the third track is titled ‘Step Away from Konoyo’ it clearly aspires to step away from the previous record in spirit.  This is more a space journey than a dark thing.

@@@ Taylor Swift: You Need to Calm Down (Taylor Swift, 2019)  Ah Taylor’s supposedly meaningful conquest of the pop charts continues with this second pre-release single.  I thought the verse is all right but the cornucopia of Taylor background vocals is a cheesy comet streaking across the the sky.  So many of Swift’s songs are about this topic, man what a snowflake.  If shade never made anybody less gay, that line contradicts the first few lines of the tune.  How canny and sophisticated to take a personal theme and blow it out to all these girls are hip to your tricks, blah blah blah, a wee bit tiresome.  I like the arrangement, it’s solid pop and makes sense.  Some of the arrangements on her last record were confused and painful.

@@@ Duncan Fellows: Cursive Tattoo (Level, 2019) Super energetic indie guitar pop punk that I got to via a music publicist email.  It’s got elements of classic rock at points including a piano part and a roots rock kinda thing so it’s a mash of Strokes like business smashed into something like the Band.  I like the energy of the track and the singer is comfortable behind the mic but it spills a bit all over the place without the greatest focus.

YTD recordings listened to: 302
Good music, not list worthy: 179
Not good music: 105

Best: 0
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, Horndal, Wyxz, Tarek Atoui, Hawktail, Saicobab, Shannon and the Clams, General Purv, Shipping News, Big Thief

Music for 10/25/18!!! Rae Spoon, Tim Hecker, Echo Beds

@@@ Rae Spoon: Bodies of Water (Coax, 2018) #1 out at CFUV in Vancouver.  It’s a singer/songwriter record with a young female singing.  The first tune starts out solo, clean electric guitar and her.  It’s melancholy and sweet.  A band does make a mellow appearnace behind her but it’s still very meaningful and deep.  The second tune brings on the classic indie though with a piano and a small synth part added to the guitar.  I like her voice without liking the lyrics very much.

@@@ Tim Hecker: Konoyo (Kranky, 2018)  I tyr to check out Tim Hecker’s ambient music as he’s a professional ambient music maker with skills.  This first tune, This Life, has a dark and mechanical bent to it with some screeching metallic sounds and offkilter synth playing that is not pillowy or cloudy, it’s unsettling.  The second tune, In Death Valley, focuses on more bell like sounds and there are a lot of delays and a lot of bell like sounds.  It’s got a dark feel to it but not as actively dark as the first tune.  It’s pretty engaging music.  Outside of three 3-5 minute pieces these are all long ones that require some attention.  Thus far I like the pacing and the sounds of this latest Hecker effort and I will swing back on this record when I have more time.

@@@ Echo Beds – Buried Language (The Flenser)  This recording is slotted as industrial music on the Apple Music and is in the loud section of the weekly CFUV playlist email.  It’s opens up with a straightforward drum machine rock/industrial beat but a super needly thin guitar part.  The comes the creepy voice.  I like the muscularity of it but I’m not super into the singer.  I really am in the mood for some dark sounds these days, but this is a bit overwrought.  I guess it works for the Halloween crowd as it has a cartoonish, villain-y feel to it but I would stick with the Tim Hecker record above if you want some dark and submersive music.

YTD recordings listened to: 599
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 319
Not good music: 244

Best: 9
Honorable Mentions: 6

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, 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, Lawaii, Etran De L’Air, Ruby Karinto, Elysia Crampton, Parquet Courts, Orlando Lopez, Moskus, Kendl Winter, Tkay Maidza, Peregoyo y su Combo vacana, serpentwithfeet, Tim Hecker

2018 Honorable Mention Pick 6

Automatisme: Transit (Constellation, 2018)

Automatisme has put together a dark ambient record with a blend of synths, glitched noises, dashes of drum machine rhythm, and mechanical sounds that evoke industrial music without the manic, pounding pace of that electronic genre.  These pieces sound more performed and organic than a lot of looped ambient music you might encounter.  There are moments of floating cloudiness but there is a pleasing juxtaposition between that and more urgent sounds making the recording more full bodied and engaging.

Check it out, one of my favorite tracks is clipped below.

Music for 9/14/18!!! Twenty One Pilots, Automatisme, Signal

@@@ Twenty One Pilots: My Blood (Fueled By Ramen, 2018)  I got to this track via music biz blogger/big mouth Bob Lefsetz, who has pretty awful taste in music.  But he has juice, so there ya go!  This is a pre-release single that starts out a little rock and a tad electro but I anticipate a cheesy chorus explosion that streaks across the sky.  I’m a bit shocked as there has not been a cheese-gasm yet.  It certainly does not aspire to be Bob Dylan’s All Along the Watchtower but I like the bass sound and the falsetto singing is interesting.  The lyrics revolve around a relationship and fighting together and staying together.  The tambourine and the handclaps and the synths not as cool.  It peters out and meanders a bit at the end but overall not as bad as expected.

@@@ Automatisme: Transit (Constellation, 2018)  Off this week’s CFUV playlist email and it looks like it’s gonna be an electronic ambient affair.  I’m good for that.  This first tune opens up cloudy and then moves into some fairly deep mechanical stutter and glitch.  Deep as in a lot, not as in meaningful.  Thus far no beats and an alternating cloudy/glitchy movement.  The second tune goes deeper with some panned bells, more glitch and an OCD knocking sound that conversates with some oscillating church organ type synth patches.  I like this, it’s thick and engaging.  Let’s hope they can keep the focus on the next track.  Track 3 was solid but not super up my alley but Track 4, confusingly named Bureau 3 is hot.  I’m going to have to swing back on this record and check it out as it’s looking like it’s half loaded with over the top full on ambient action.

@@@ Signal: Signal (Ramp Local, 2018)  I got to this noisy ass punk record via the CFUV weekly playlist email.  It’s not standard caffeinated three chord singalong business, it has a darker more aggro feel to it.  There are punky fresh bits of kibble with the last song clocking in at 2:56.  It’s a helluva staticky guitar mess with an agitated woman working the microphone with fairly and purposely inane lyrics.  The drummer and the bass player do simple but interesting things.  I like this and if you’re feeling like you would like a quick blast of angry female business, they’re here for you.

YTD recordings listened to: 529
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 278
Not good music: 219

Best: 9
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, Kendl Winter, KEN mode, Automatisme

Best of 2018 Pick 9

700 Bliss: Spa 700 (Don Giovanni, 2018)

Organic electronic production and a pleasantly confrontational African American female MC/singer/spoken word artist headline this EP.  It is rough without being overly fast and aggro with more than one mention of slave ships and other racial references.  I dig that and think the way the lyrics and the sounds go together is great.  The beats are more sci fi than funky with a lot of thick, grizzled bass pulses and frequent high end blasts, whistles or creepy ring outs.

It’s 13 minutes of trippy, pissed off computer music.  Excellent and unique work.