Music for 3/21/22!!!! Yumi Zouma, Midlake

@@@ Yumi Zouma: In the Eyes of Our Love (Polyvinyl, 2022) Both of today’s listens are off this week’s All Music notable release email. This is track 6 and the tempo is brisk brisk brisk. Female singer, some jangly guitars but the voice and the drums dominate here. Short guitar solo, very poppy and energetic. I listened to today’s post from bottom to top and this is another track where elements of rock are presented in a poppier non-rock framework. Maybe rock flavored pop soda will be a flavor that people going forward. Myself, I don’t need it, but who’s to say?

@@@ Midlake: For the Sake of Bethel Woods (ATO, 2022) Updated rock on a major label at a time when rock is a pretty weak genre. Very neutral singer, big beats on the drums mixed high in the mix, no coincidence there, and a fair amount of guitar washes and a prominent piano part. It’s got a tambourine, you gotta applaud that. I don’t think it’s an accident that it’s pretty bereft of big guitar flavors. It’s like a 1970’s arena rock track but piano driven with a big drum sound. With an album evoking the town where woodstock happened, then you know it’s backwards looking without trying to sound backwards that way. The player clicked through to the next track and there’s a semi-intricate rock guitar figure but not all distorted so the formula remains in place there.

Music for 10/9/21!!! Moonchild Sanelly, Tall Black Guy and Ozay

@@@ Moonchild Sanelly: Yebo Teacher (Transgressive, 2021) Off Line of Best Fit! I’m gonna have to GooglePimp Sanelly’s bio cuz I’m hearing strong African feels swirled up in a poppy context. She’s from South Africa, I don’t know where she lives now, but she has invented a genre called future ghetto punk, I’m a fan of that. I can’t tell if this is a drum machine of hand drumming or a combo platter (guessing the latter) but the synth bass is synth bass and it’s a mostly electro arrangement with a lot call and response. Yebo means ‘I agree’ so she’s the teacher and she’s teaching her students. I’m not a huge pop fan but this is pretty strong rhythmically and is not nearly as mindless as say, the Beebs.

@@@ Tall Black Guy and Ozay: Viberite (Coalmine, 2021) I got to this via a prome email from the label that released this. I’m pretty sure on that. This is the third track from the record and it has a distinctly NYC sound with a fair amount of Tribe Called Quest friendly, sophisticated funk flavors. I wouldn’t say it’s a party track per se, but it certainly isn’t a huge statement track. It’s the vibe, right? Hooky with a bit of George Clinton (just a wee bit) in the chorus so there’s decent contrast between the rhymed verse and the chorus. A female MC grabs the mic around 3 minutes and that changes the overall feel of the track. I like this and if you’re in the mood for some fresh retro this could work for you.