Music for 5/14/19!!! Satori, Quiet Earth, Luke Combs

@@@ Satori: Makhtub (Crosstown Records, 2017)  I got to this world/trance/New Age artist from a gig announcement from the hoity toity BK music club National Sawdust.  The opening tune (clipped below) featurs some cool chopped and glitched Middle Eastern string sounds and some less cool vocal parts.  It’s a slow jam but I have a feeling this next track is gonna be a dancefloor banger.  Noop, wrong again.  I like the third tune, Dive Into the Mystic, but if you desire a hypnotic trance-like listening experience from that part of the world I would recommend any number of Tinariwen records over this.  I like parts of this but I want it to hit harder.

@@@ Quiet Earth: Desertion/Migration (N/A, 2018)  This two song blast of distortion and punk/metal/rock energy is off an Invisible Oranges looking back at underrated music of 2018.  It’s a duo record and they kick it out for a duo but the drummer is also listed as the bass player and if he’s playing those two instruments at the same time, well then he gets a friggin’ gold star for that.  More than solid shit to harvest the crust from your eyes.  I little drano for your soul.  Sonically the sounds lean more punk than metal as it has a spill-y less manicured feel to it than most metal.

@@@ Luke Combs: Beer Never Broke My Heart (Sony, 2019)  Some new country off the Apple Music hot tracks section.  The blend of power rock guitar playing and banjo always spins my head a bit til I reconcile those two sounds, but the hook is good and could probably do better as an official anthem for the Beer Brewer’s Association of America.  Combs has a suitably gruff voice and I think I would enjoy this song more if it was more straight redneck and less mainstream rock.

YTD recordings listened to: 250
Good music, not list worthy: 146
Not good music: 90

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

Advertisements

Music for 12/10/18!!! Kacey Musgraves, Lucy Dacus

@@@ Kacey Musgraves: Golden Hour (MCA Nashville, 2018)  #3 on NPR’s best of 2018 list.  I know she’s a critical darling but I’ve never heard the mind blower to convert me.  The production here is large sounding with shades of Daniel Lanois’ Emmylou Harris record.  She’s going for the big meta lyrics and I wish they were better.  The playing is very good, there are some interesting sounds tucked into this country record, but I don’t hear the best of year vibes here.

@@@ Lucy Dacus: Historian (Matador, 2018) #4 on the NPR best of 2018 list.  Oh boy, mopey indie music.  Has the world an infinite appetite for downer guitar indie or is there something wrong with me?  Dacus has a fantastic voice and she deploys it with great taste but the tunes….they’re more background music for a coffee shop rather than something that grabs you and doesn’t let go.  I understand I’m running the risk of being a krank by not liking what is apparently so likable but this doesn’t work for me.  This makes me feel sleepy.

YTD recordings listened to: 678
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 369
Not good music: 264

Best: 16
Honorable Mentions: 8

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, 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, 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

Music for 9/18/18!!! Greta Van Fleet, Carrie Underwood

@@@ Greta Van Fleet: Watching Over (Republic, 2018) Recycled classic guitar rock via the hot tracks section at Apple Music.  If you take Neil Young’s guitar and you mix it with Jack White’s nasal schtick and then sprinkle some space dust on it you get close to this.  If this is updated hippie music, it’s an angry sounding hippie at the steering wheel.  I don’t buy the epic-ness of this track, it smells a bit pose-y.  I also don’t super love the singer’s voice but they’re getting a huge push.

@@@ Carrie Underwood: Love Wins (Capitol Nashville, 2018). A new country single off the Apple Music hot tracks.  New country as in it’s not really country, it’s arena rock with a few country music pubes sprinkled over it.  She’s singing about the state of the world, but the way she’s panting on the microphone, she sounds like she needs a room to be alone for a bit.  She says she believes that we’re sisters and brothers and in the end love will win.  I think she needs to take the whole pill and not break it in half.  She needs the full dose.  It’s a love song but brotherly and sisterly love.  It’s also very cliche and sort of hollow.  Given how the song is arranged I can’t imagine I share any values with Ms. Underwood.  When I see her protesting outside an internment camp for Mexican immigrant children then I will give her props and support this sentiment.

YTD recordings listened to: 534
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 280
Not good music: 222

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

Music for 4/28/18!!! Jennifer Lopez, Dierks Bentley

@@@ Jennifer Lopez: El Anillo (Sony, 2018)  I have not heard a Jennifer Lopez tune in ages.  I’m more than a bit shocked at the freshness of the sounds here.  It is a blend of Spanish language lyrics, Latin percussion rhythms and electronic sounds.  Lopez does a good job at not oversinging and bringing lady funk to the tune.  She’s not particularly feminine in her vocal style which is also a bit surprising.  There is a small part of the tune where the vocal melody becomes more romantic but it is sandwiched by tough dancefloor sounds on either side.

@@@ Dierks Bentley: Living (Capitol Nashville, 2018) A pre-release new country single off the Apple Music hot tracks seciton.  Regular readers know how much I love new country music with its arena music production and it’s piquant lyrical blend that consists mostly of corn and cheese.  Now I like corn and cheese as much as the next guy but I like it when I go out for Mexican.  This is a tune about being grateful for your life and I’m down with that except these are third grader lyrics and should come with a baby food spoon and a Disney cap.  Some days you’re living, that’s the big vocal hook.  Oy.

YTD recordings listened to: 231
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 122
Not good music: 101

Best: 4
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, Hernan Sama & Marcelo von Schultz

Music for 4/17/18!!! Nicki Minaj, Jason Aldean

@@@ Nicki Minaj: Barbie Tingz (Cash Money, 2018)  Off Apple Music hot tracks section, Nicki goes retro in the sounds, especially the drums on this track.  Oh man, right before the halfway point in the track she goes full hardcore on pissy bitches.  It’s raw and contrasts with the LL Cool J friendly style beats.  I think this pissy bitch might be a white girl but I’m not sure on that outside of the title.  Could this be Taylor Swift the bitch she wants to gut and cut?  Hmmm….

@@@ Jason Aldean: Drowns the Whiskey (Macon, 2018)  I think Nicki Minaj might have a much larger dick than this dude Aldean who might actually be sporting a va-jay-jay.  He’s trying to drink away the memory of a woman but the memory is drowning the whiskey and not the other way round, blah blah blah.

YTD recordings listened to: 209
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 112
Not good music: 90

Best: 4
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

Music for 3/19/18!!! Hailu Mergia, Fyahbwoy, Leon Bridges, Jason Aldean

@@@ Hailu Mergia: Lala Belu (Awesome Tapes from Africa, 2018). I got to this African record via the WRIR playlist email.  I don’t find that much jazz in this first tune, it’s more of a soul tune with a little improvised accordion over it.  The instrumentation here is drums, bass, organ, accordion and percussion.  I like it, and I promise I won’t be a genre bitch. I like the accordion player but I want more than mostly straight jazz grooves — I want more funk or more outside playing or both.  It’s pleasant and the sounds are good.

@@@ Fyahbwoy: Cadenas De Oro | (Nacional, 2018).  An urban Latin single that I saw on the very same WRIR playlist email.  Keyboards, guitar, drum machine and a loverboy singer/MC.  I can’t tell if this is a drummer or a drum machine but does it matter that much.  He’s got some pretty nice Spanish dancehall toasting going on.  I prefer that to his loverboy routine.  It’s a solid track, if you don’t like the singer you’re not gonna like the tune.  I’m agnostic on the singer.

@@@ Leon Bridges: Bad Bad News (Sony, 2018). I’ve heard Bridges before and like his music but I’m a little surprised to see such fusion-y track on the Apple Music hot tracks section.  When Bridges starts singing I get why, he really can carry a song.  There is a little blues swirled up in the fusion but it’s pretty mid to late ’70s fusion jazz sounds.  If it had different sounds I would be up on this big time.  The bass sound is great but I can’t abide by the guitar sound.  Listen for yourself.

@@@ Jason Aldean: Rearview Town (Macon/Broken Bow, 2018).  That’s right Aldean is leaving town, probably because of a woman.  God damn, girl what did you do to my man Jason?  Broken hearts and rusted plows so he’s mixing his personal plight with the decay of rural America.  This is going to be a short review as I’m on the verge of tears.  Someone get me a Kleenex!  Power chords, a guitar solo that would make Bon Jovi proud.  I’ve attached the lyric video so you can get your heart torn out.  I have to break away and shed a few tears for Facebook as America discovers what an ill bitch spying machine it is.  Lots of tears over here so make sure you got some self-care lined up, the world is full of sadness.  Ya know, broken hearts and rusted plows!

YTD recordings listened to: 151
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 79
Not good music: 69

Best: 4
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

Music for 3/6/18!!! Anna Meredith, Malina More, Carrie Underwood

@@@ Anna Meredith: Calion (Moshi Moshi, 2018) I got a music publicist email saying that this musician had performed the best NPR tiny desk concert ever.  That’s ever people, as in all of them.  So she gets a peep and that is high praise from the NPR eggheads.  This tune opens up as a blend of electronica and classical — two arpeggiated synths over a minimalist kick drum pulse.  Now another synth and some handclaps.  It’s definitely more deftly arranged than your normal dance floor banger but I’m not crying or so joyous that I’m thinking about the phrase ‘best ever’.  It definitely heats up in the last third of the track but I stand by my opinion.

@@@ Malina Moye: Bad As I Wanna Be (N/A, 2018). Marketed as a guitar visionary in the publicist email that I got this single is also being framed as a #metoo kinda song.  This clip below is a marketing montage for an upcoming tune but it does not have a tune clipped so I’ve attached one below that.  Moye has been around for a bit and she’s most definitely now being packaged as a strong female/sex bomb/guitar hero.  I like her guitar playing though it’s not particularly groundbreaking.  Her singing is good, again nothing too wild or memorable.  She’s pretty funky but I wanted more funk.

@@@ Carrie Underwood: The Champion ( N/A, 2018). A country singer rocking a duet with Ludacris is absolutely today’s Ebony and Ivory moment.  I got to it via music honcho/blowhard Bob Lefsetz and his email list.  His taste is usually a big ol’ bag of ass, but I enjoy the listens because he is so hyperbolic.  It’s a smash, oh fuck off.  I would recommend listening to the video but not checking out the images as it’s chock full of American propaganda.  The only tune that references champions is the Queen track from back in the day and though that track is as cheesy it takes this tune out on a stretcher.  This is a bullshit, cliche cheese bomb and I hate it.  Ludacris does a breakdown of the word champion by saying the c stand for blah, the h for blah blah.  I had to click the tune off 30 seconds from the end, it’s fucking awful.

YTD recordings listened to: 126
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 66
Not good music: 57

Best: 2
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, Magrudergrind, 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, Melissa Laveaux