@@@ Basa Basa: Homowo (Vintage Voudou, 2018). I got to a page of Bandcamp’s best records of winter 2018 and this reissue is right at the top of the list. I would call the first tune an African disco groove, laidback with funky dancefloor flourishes. In addition to the laidback polyrhythms there’s a plethora of slack guitar sounds and space organs. Mind you this is not white boy slack, this is African motherland slack. Chill and funky. I like the fourth tune, African Soul Power, the best but I could have used more uptempo dancefloor bangers and I prefer the guitar shredding over the slow jams.
@@@ Special Interest: Spiraling (N/A, 2018). Queer punk out of New Orleans that I got to via the very same Bandcamp best of winter 18 records. I can’t help but think of Sleaford Mods and their insane British punk hip hop when I hear this bass sound and the drum machine drumming. The singer is whipping quite a negative shitty on the second tune, Disco. Disco, disco, disco we want disco! Well, not really but I get it…..I’m always up for some lo fi punk aggro but this could use a Red Bull or some hot sauce. More nihilistic than pissed off, though she tears it pretty good on the sixth song, Nerve. Shoulda put this tune upfront, it’s the best of the bunch in my dumbass opinion.
@@@ Starchild and the New Romantic: Language (N/A, 2018). ’80s inspired funk off the very same Bandcamp best of winter list. I saw Prince namechecked but my first impression is that the guitar playing is not going to be up there with Prince hall of fame fretwork. He should have been more than namechecked as this is a love letter to the Purple One. This second tune, Mood, surely evokes him bigly and the singer is doing some inspired falsetto loverboy work in the third tune Only if U Knew. I like this record as the songs are heartfelt so it doesn’t feel like it’s just biting to get his listeners. It is a bit uneven as some of the tunes work better than others. My favorite Prince music is his very earliest work in the mad early ’80s.
@@@ Portal: ION (Profound Lore, 2018) My last listen on Bandcamp’s best of winter 2018 releases. The Profound Lore releases I’ve check out have been sludgy and slow and while this one doesn’t appeared to be heading in a straight metal direction it is sludgy for sure. Oooh, I was totally wrong as it shifted markedly from a dark swirly looped opening to a sped up freaked out metal shitshow. Jumpy thrash drums and super Red Bulled guitars that sound like they’re coming out of a giant AM transistor radio. Painfully static and needly. The singer is a giant exhaling thing, slowly releasing gravelly clouds of doomy gas. It’s not particularly inviting but I don’t think this is supposed to be aimed at the Miley Cyrus crowd. This some of the best metal I’ve heard in a while, Imma have to circle back on this foul brew. Check it out as the guitar player and the drummer really get into some chaotic spillage.
YTD recordings listened to: 182
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 97
Not good music: 80
Honorable Mentions: 3
Possibles: Retox, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, The Ballantynes, Slidhr, The Chewers, Toxic Holocaust, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, Lenguas Largas, The Coral, T.O.M.B., Lozen, Erase Errata, Mastery, Leviathan, Hartley C. White, Weed, Cold Water, Janelle Monae, Luther Dickinson, Graeme Barrett, Fast Asleep, Goldlink, Cavanaugh, Gentleman Surfer, 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, Dona Onete, Succumb Succumb, Gloom, Priests, Propaganda, This is the Kit, Roberto Gonzalez, Integrity, Tuba Skinny, The Expanders, Irreversible Entanglements, Converge, Open Mike Eagle, Criolo, Billy Strings, Flowers of Sulphur, Tal National, Portal