Finally! Merril is back and tUnE-yArDs are back. She has been on tours and also less available since she dropped the hugely successful tUnE-yArD album, w h o k i l l. All of us fans out there have been waiting and waiting and waiting for her to come to town with a new amazing album. And boom, she does let down. Merrill Garbus was in Haiti last year to, where she absorbed the culture and contributed as a human. Also while there, she, as she puts it, “situated myself in a non-western musical tradition.” She took dance classes and enjoyed life, pulling from a swath of music and dance influence. Like a strong method actor, Merrill places herself in musical context to find her creative vision and then she executes amazingly in her style. So here we are, the release of “Water Fountain,” an amazing song off her upcoming album, Nikki Nack, out May 6th.
Enjoy today’s super hot tUnE-yArDs jam!!!!
Earlier this year, there was a scare that Thee Oh Sees might break up. But then they released a song off their up-coming album. Good news, they’re still at it and innovating their sound as always. I’m excited for Drop to drop. Their most recent release is an animated video for “The Lens.”
The gorgeous paper cuts animated video is exactly the pairing to this almost minstrel tune. Parts of it remind me of The Beatles and parts of it remind me of a dark, melancholy and more mysterious psychedelic band that is dabbling in some technicolor escapade that a lone astronaut might experience while on a peyote driven space vision quest. The visuals of this video are hot and really strange.
Enjoy today’s hot jam.
Maputo or Cape Town or Dar Es Salaam, it just doesn’t matter. John Wizards is bringing the hotness.
Leader of the pack and producer John Withers visited and lived in all three locals. His inspiration came from the cultural vibrancy, sounds and urban environment. You can hear his influences in each gorgeous and ephemeral track. Today’s jam is “Muizenberg.” And yeah, it’s hot, the kind of hot that makes you want to go for a stroll with your shades on looking at the city around you bustle in slow motion. Each corner you turn open with a sunny fade in a stranger smiling or doing something that a stranger might do, like bite into a hot dog, trip on the sidewalk, cough, laugh or just ignore you and walk by.
John Wizards is a band that is crazily eclectic with dashes of reggae, R&B and electro-fuzz pop. I’m digging these jamz this early spring and you should too.
The Troggs , “Cousin Jane ” of Trogglodynamite is an outstanding song. This particular song is one of my favorites by this classic UK band that formed in the early 60’s. Better known for pop hits, like “Love is all around” and “Wild thing, “Cousin Jane” stands out as one of those songs that demonstrates the depth of their inspiration and repertoire. While most of the album is so-so, this song appeared, this gem of a song. This song among many demonstrates how and why the Troggs played a big role in influencing the garage rock and punk movements. “Cousin Jane” is one of their more melancholic, delicate and ballady cuts and exemplifying the a transitional phase into their sound as they matured into more alternative musical approaches
Enjoy today’s jam
Just over a month ago, the ethereal and fuzzed-out, lo-fi blanketed Dum Dum Girls released their most recent LP, Too True. This album is a bit of a step-away from some of their harder-hitting numbers. The entire album is reminiscent of a foggy dream that is driven heavily by effects and pedal usage. Each track from “Too True To Be Good” to “Lost Boys And Girls Club” and “Are you Okay?” leave listeners in a hazed and unsettled state.
That said, each video for the album, released so far, is stunning and deeply artistic. Today, a short was released showcasing the song, “Are You Okay?” by Bret Easton Ellis.
Dig on today’s jam.
What can I say about the man, the legend, John Fahey?
I guess I can say that the legend of Blind Joe Death carries true today just much as it did yesterday. I will say that his contribution to blues is often understated. The truth is that his unique take, his very west coast inspired take, his contemporary American take without question cements Fahey as one of the 20th century’s most inspiring and most compelling blues enthusiasts and influences. He did some crazy mind-boggling things and he was in Salem, Oregon–where I went to Willamette University. Salem has a tremendous music scene and always has–a strong portion of the Portland music scene originated in Salem–how’s that for some waaaaaa news? Back to Fahey, one would not typically pick this small capital city as laying claim to hosting the latter life of one of the most mysterious and inspired blues and Americana musicians of our day and age–even if the latter years were fairly dark for Fahey. The truth is that his unique type of finger picking has a ghostly beauty that most cannot capture or achieve–it was the essence of Fahey that made his music so remarkable.
His inventions for acoustic and electric strings are the stuff of legend. I mean, numbers don’t lie– Fahey has 30 albums, and “his presence has unsettled audiences from here to Tasmania.” He was also an avid painter, inventor and dark humorist with a pen just as ferocious as his guitar. This ramble on the legend does not do justice to Fahey’s unique musical vision, adaptations and contributions to the music of America. If you don’t know the man, go check him out now. He died some years ago but his memory will not go unforgotten.
Enjoy today’s tribute to Fahey and Blind Joe Death.
I’m keeping this brief, pre-war jazz and cinematic jazz is the bee’s knees.
Sex Mob has embraced a more ambitious mission than many: to revive the adventurous spirit of pre-war jazz. Cinema, Circus & Spaghetti is their take on this revival. (Sex mob plays Fellini: The Music of Nino Rota)
Mariano Rodriguez from Bariloche Patagonia, Argentina–wow! His album, Praise the Road is Jaw droppingly beautiful slide steel, strut and picking. I recently stumbled into this immensely talented musician and have not taken him off the music cycle yet. His technique, authentic and open-minded sound is reminiscent of so many American appalachian to delta roots, British isles’ folk, latin excursions and desert blues musicians before him. But damn, Rodriguez has no problem falling into this pantheon of historically talented musicians. Rodriguez is a force unto himself and hails from the Imaginational Anthem school of guitar.
There is a folklore out there that has spanned generations internationally, from the oceanic explorers to the westward migration in the states, from Che in South and Central America to Kerouac and the beats, and from the loose-footed traveler to the romanticized road-trip, there has always been a mythos around the idea of the open road. The open road represents freedom, exploration, personal reflection, no-limits, an unknown, inspiration, confusion and a place for discovery (external and internal).
This latest album by Argentinean guitarist Mariano Rodriguez pays tribute to this long tradition of open road inspired arts, music, writing and folklore. This album is guitar, banjo, organ, and Jew’s harp and tells complex stories of discovery without words.
Rodriguez’s songs are exploratory, memory riddled paintings that have a creative curation that I think is the musical expressionistic equivalent of famed Argentinian Author, Jorge Luis Borges. Every corner of this gorgeous music has possibility.
Enjoy today’s knock-out killing it jam. Also Check out the full album, Cypress Shadow by him below. The whole album is amazing but track 2 and 10 really resonate for me..
Who’s launched into 2014 with possibility? There are certainly some bands out there who have emerged. But for my money, The Acid is the most promising of those that have emerged. This contemplative and curiously rich trio came out of nowhere with a mesmerizing 4-track debut EP. This band has what I can only describe as an almost cinematic and certainly exploratory free-form driven electronic atmospheric sound that has gorgeous possibility and is complimented by powerful but subtle beautiful voices and harmonies. Singer and songwriter RY X is part of The Acid; these guys have a cool future that I’m excited to see unfold. “Basic Instinct” is a killing track and the video is slowmo awesomeness.
Enjoy today’s jam.
Wow and about time! Just learned about this vocal psych star. Who is Claudine? She’s some kind of cosmic intergalactic kind of awesome. Imagine the offspring of straight dry delivery Nico and playful Deefhoof’s Satomi Matsuzaki. That’s French Claudine. Sad news is that she murdered her husband but was only convicted of a lesser crime and walked. So probably not the best person to be idolizing. But that said, in the 60s and 70s, she spun out some amazing tracks like this chilled out Stones cover of, “Let’s Spend The Night Together.” Anyway, her song was not credited by “Blurred Lines” and it should have been. Typical Jamerism is all I’m saying. So where does her music leave you? I’d say it leaves you on a beach in Bermuda, depressed but optimistic that the day ahead has sweet lovepportunity on the horizon.
Dig on today’s jamz.