Saturday, December 15, 2018

Happy Christmas - War is Coming


The merriest of Christmases to one and sundry and I hope and trust Santa and her elvises have been good to you.

And continued apologies to those less than avid readers of this less than average site for my lardiness regarding the governance/maintenance/effluence of this musically inclined blog.

So then, gentle, accursed reader, why should you feel compelled to, with the myriad number of more esteemed alternatives available, read this hastily assembled post? (Warning: contains Prog...)

Well, it's got MUSIC in it!!!

Of course, I don't mean the music you ignore on your TV, mishear on the radio or eat on your computers...

I mean this...



And this...


Maybe this...



Definitely this...


In a year characterised by just awful shit happening here and everywhere music was one of the few things that kept the insane sane.  

Hip Hop, more specifically, female Hip Hop, ruled the roost - with releases by the already mentioned Tierra Whack, Jean Grae, Rico Nasty, Cardi B, Georgia Meldrow and CupcakKe addressing and undressing the hubris generated by white, ugly, rich men.  They didn't slay those fucks but they came mighty close.  Maybe next year...

More great records?

Francis MacDonald, nango, Bang Messiah, 79.5, Roger Doyle, Proc Fiskal, Low, Johnnny Jewel, Quelle Chris, Grouper, Dr Octagon, Marie Davidson, Yo La Tengo, Ben Hauke, Sleep, Lando Chill, Mr Fingers, Alva Noto and Ryuichi Sakamoto, Mary Gauthier, Laurie Anderson and The Kronos Quartet, n-Prolenta, Lotic, Brigid Mae Power, Marlowe and 2 great records from one of the musical phenomenons of the year, the genius that is Sarah Davachi.

And hear she is...


Reissues?  I'll give you issue reissue...


And this...




And this...


Definitely this...

The King is dead - long live The Klitz!!!

Excellent compilation album, prodeuced by the genius that was Alex Chilton, with deliciously fine sentiment attached it exemplified a marvellous year for reissues,  coming hot, thick and steamy from places deep and far and wide and tall.  And broad.  

Including: Haruomi Hosono's back catalogue, Happy Rhodes, Takashi Kokubo, Carl  Stone, The Glands, Joan La Barbera, MKWAJU Ensemble, John Coltrane, Gladiators, Skull Snaps, more from the KPM reissues' series, Catherine Ribeiro and Alpes, Marcus Valle, Brown Sugar and those amazing Steven Wilson remixes of classic Yes albums.

And here they are!!!


We did say there'd be some Prog and we did disappoint....

So 2018, a year of some highs, some low lows, lowest of lows if truth be told, with more to come in 2019 no doubt.

Merry Christmas and unhappy listening - and to make that possible - my favourite record of the year - no surprise, a reissue, but what a noise!!


X




Sunday, December 14, 2014

It's Christmas time. Be afraid.


Merry Christmas!

And, many apologies to those less than avid readers of this less than average site, for my tardiness regarding the maintenance/governance/effluence of this music etc blog.

So, then, gentle, accursed reader, why should you feel compelled to be similarly cursed to read this hastily, poorly assembled thing?

Well, it's got MUSIC in it!  

Of course, I don't mean the music that you see on the television, hear on the radio or eat on your computers.

I mean, well, this...



 And this... 
 


And maybe this...


Definitely this...
 


Lastly this...


In a return to monstrous form Aphex Twin and Locsil both released fantabulous records - music that ran the gamut from danceteriaeria to sit down, listen, shut the fuck up.

Also: Dan and Letha Rodman Melchior, Flying Lotus, Cut Chemist, The Weather Station, Orcas, Angel Olsen, FKA Twigs, Beck, United Nations, Scott Walker and Sun O))), Grouper, Fatima Al Qadiri, Ex Hex, Clark, Jonathan Richman, Perfect Pussy...

It was a quieter year for Hip-Hop with a myriad number of releases - but little that was outstanding.  The mighty Madlib reigned supreme - his collaboration with Freddie Gibbs proving, once again, to be 2014's Rap high point.  Disshonourable mention must also go to Run The Jewels, Shabazz Palaces and Edinburgh's very own Young Fathers - who released their weirdly wired debut on Anticon early in 2014.  Marvellous stuff.


Reissues?  I'll give you issued reissue...


With Roy Montgomery, Yo La Tengo, Boards of Canada, Townes van Zandt, Horace Andy, Josef K, Slint, Muslimgauze, Angus MacLise, Jonny Trunk's 'Funny Old Shit Vol1', Pablo Moses, Public Enemy, Drexciya, Sly Stone's 'I'm Just Like You.'...

However, Boom!


And Bang!



A-Boom-Bang-Bang-Shang-A-Fucken-Lang!!!!!!!!!


Tav Falco's musical outburst is almost certainly the album of the year - funny, hysterically so, it meanders Cramps like through every inconceivable music genre - creating some new ones in its sweet-smelling wake.  It's a delight - ask Santa to buy one but don't expect him to have any in stock as Donner and Blitzen both sold their souls for this Rock and sweet and sour Roll.

To finish, it wouldn't be Christmas if we didn't have some Svenonius.  'Minimum Rock and Roll' was a lovely stinky thing - worth the admission money alone for the line 'We want the Middle Class to feel alone.'

And we all want that don't we Pop Snickers?

Happy Christmas.






Monday, April 14, 2014

Bobbi Humphrey: Jazz Musician.


Bobbi Humphrey is a comparatively rare phenomenon in that she's one of the few women ever to record for Blue Note records: the label synonymous with, and celebrated for, the hard bop style that originated in the 1950's and which was popularised by musicians such as Horace Silver, Art Blakey and Miles Davis.

All men. All middle aged men.

It must have been a tough gig - literally and metaphorically - for the 21 year old Bobbi.

The flute playing on these 1970's Blue Note releases is as tight and accomplished as any contemporary male instrumentalists - so much so that artists as creatively distinctive and industry renowned as Stevie Wonder and Duke Ellington wanted her to perform and to excel on their records.

And play and excel she did, paving the way for other, similarly talented female musicians and singers to be successful in their own rights often under their own terms.

Bobbi Humphrey's third LP for Blue Note is her best.  'Blacks and Blues,' is a gorgeous record - evocative and irreverently funky, not unlike the records being made by the more celebrated George Benson at CTI and label mate and trumpeter extraordinaire, Donald Byrd.  

A great and underrated musician, still recording and performing today, look out for Bobbi Humphrey.  

Boy, can she play.