TOP TRACKS OF THE MONTH – August 2017
Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Piccadilly Records, Rough Trade, Spotify… even occasionally one of those old fashioned music blog things. Every which way you look; wonderful new music comes at you and my monthly round up slips back and back. Just when I consider hitting publish, there’s one more playlist to check out first, a fresh batch of emails to get through… my slight obsession with the impossible task of hearing EVERYTHING good, EVERY month, ends with a ridiculous 100 song playlist and about 30 open tabs of songs still to get through.
Anyway forgive the dithering, and hopefully enjoy the music.
SUBSCRIBE TO A PLAYLIST
There’s a 100 song playlist below, but if you prefer Soundcloud it’s here, or with a few more tracks on OpenWhyd and obviously Spotify types should go clickitykwen click and subscribe to my erratically updated monthly playlist (Open in the app or your browser).
Here are a few highlights from this month’s TUUUuuuunnnes… several of which don’t feature in the playlists due to platform incompatibilities – they’re more exciting to listen to than that was to read, I promise.
B.DOLAN – ‘Bannon (feat Jasiri X, Bambu DePistola)’
Case in point for taking too long to publish my roundups, it’s over a month since B Dolan gave his mailing list subscribers exclusive first dibs on this incendiary flip of Lil Wayne’s ‘Cannon’, in ‘honour’ of ‘fascist-in-chief’, Steve BANNON. Bannon may be roadkill now but the vitriol and contempt aimed at him by Dolan, Jasiri X and Bambu DePistola is of course still very relevant given Charlottesville, Trump’s violence from ‘both sides’ response and of course Bannon getting ‘his hands back on his weapons’ at Breitbart.
It’s a free download but Dolan notes that, “If you feel like paying someone after hearing this track, consider donating to ADAPT adapt.org/donate/ in solidarity with our friend Kalyn Heffernan (Wheelchair Sports Camp) who was recently arrested protecting healthcare. ( Details: t.co/goEmhYG7TF )”
MC ALMOND MILK – ‘Lost In Drakies (feat. Gav Prentice)’
What again?! Yes, for a second month running MC Almond Milk ambles casually into my best of, and with a new single from his brother Jonnie Common due imminently they’re treating this blog like the Williams sisters do Wimbledon… just with more of a Scottish lilt and less developed quads and …let’s stop that analogy right now thank you very much.
Anyway before you drain the music blog swamp of such nepotism, give ‘Lost in Drakies’ a listen, it’s the greatest rap ballad ever written about losing your bearings in A). A housing estate on the outskirts of Inverness, or B). a world renowned South African boys choir.
Available digitally or on the dream format of C-28 if, like me, your car still rocks a cassette player.
Gav Prentice of the ULTRAS provides vocals and MC Almond Milk has returned the favour with a remix of the Ultras ‘Stepping out’, which melds mournfulness to synth pop with joyous/downbeat abandon.
XAVIER – ‘It’s Not Right But It’s Okay (Peace Attack Remix)’
New Yorker Xavier’s take on Whitney’s classic ‘It’s Not Right But It’s Okay’ has been around for a few years but Tummy Touch are bringing it back along with a new video that frankly can’t be unseen. It’s best summed up by one YouTube comment beneath it, ‘What the fuck is going on here?’ but if your eyes need to see a middle-aged man holding a banana while gyrating and undressing then click away below.
Personally I’d listen to Peace Attack’s super chilled remix which dubs the whole affair up into a trippy seven minute spaced out journey through children’s choirs and down pitched vocals while thankfully keeping that xylophone that made the original so unique.
HEADLOCK – ‘Mad Diamonds (Elusive Remix)’
Described as Tucson #shredrap, a sound ‘from dollar bin records, abandoned effects pedals, thrifted drum machines, heavy psych borrows and VCRs’ Headlock bring to mind the Beastie Boys and ‘Bug Powder Dust’ era Justin Warfield (to my mind the highest praise).
This bonus digital only remix is taken from their self-produced six-song EP “Gang Nativity” [HNR76]. The limited edition physical releases come with a variety of woven patches and steel buttons featuring a drinking and smoking nun…because why not.
PIERRE KWENDERS – ‘Sexus Plexus Nexus’
Named after a trilogy of erotic novels by Henry Miller, “Sexus Plexus Nexus” takes a leaf from it’s source material and aims for full on sensuousness: a sex, sax, and string-laden confection that floats along until Congolese rumba guitars enter the scene.
Pierre Kwenders is originally from Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, and his multi-lingual (he sings in English, French, Lingala, Tshiluba and Kikongo) stylings are already much loved in Canada with production with Arcade Fire’s DJ Windows98 (aka Win Butler) offering tour support and production for the latest album.
V Ä L V Ē – ‘Lights’
V A L V E started life as a progressive/avant-guard/sound project from Chrome Hoof/Knifeworld Bassoon and Sax-meister Chloe Herington. Recently morphing into a three piece featuring fellow Hoofer, Emma Sullivan ‘Lights’ comes as a taster for the forthcoming album.
BOSCO – ‘Castles feat. St. Beauty’
I somehow missed Bosco’s ‘Castles’ single back in April but it’s never too late to put things right. ‘Castles’ features ATL duo St. Beauty and beats from Fool’s Gold label-mate Sammy Bananas.
AUSTRALIAN ART ORCHESTRA – ‘Here Come the Waves’
The Australian Art Orchestra, led by artistic director Peter Knight, is renowned for merging musical styles and cultures. The new album ‘Water Pushes Sand’ was composed by Erik Griswold along with master musicians from Sichuan, China.
“Sichuan is the “Texas of China”. It is known for its brash and friendly people, spicy food, laid back tea-houses and the distinctive twang of its spoken dialect. Its music combines colours from rustic country folk, street songs, and the ear-splitting cacophony of gongs and cymbals. It is more like blues or early rock and roll than classical music. Even Sichuan opera is hard core“.
GLASS ANIMALS – Hazey (Body in the Thames Genusdimman mix)
Three years ago ‘Body In The Thames’ did a remix for Wolftone Records & Glass Animals of their track ‘Hazey’ from the album ‘Zaba’. It’s a misty Balearic rework with a Moroderesque bassline throb but it never made the cut for the remix EP and has never before been released or published.
As part of Bandcamp’s early August initiative of supporting transgender rights Body In The Thames have released the remix with 100% of proceeds from the download going to his native Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights.
Incidentally, with no fanfare whatsoever, Body In The Thames have just uploaded their debut LP to Bandcamp, although I’m refusing to be sucked in to listening to any more new music until I post this roundup. Pre-order it on Bandcamp now or wait till next month to see if it features here 🙂