Playlist 04/28/11

This is the list of artists, albums, and songs
Artist Album Track
Salva Complex Housing Issey Miyake
Stateless Matilda Ariel
Ancient Astornauts Into Bass and Time Last Night (feat. Akua Naru
Gold Panda Companion Fifth Ave
Groundislava Groundislava Panorama
Space Dimension Fabric 57: Agoria Mercurial Attraction
Blueprint Adventures in Counter-Culture Go Hard or Go Home
Chancha Via Circuito Rio Arriba Puente
Dam Mantle First Wave Movement
French Horn Rebellion The Infinite Music of… Broken Heart
Second Sky The Art of Influence Connect
Slugabed Moonbeam Rider EP Tomorrow Morning
UNKLE Only the Lonely The Dog Is Black
Young Athletes League We Only Feed Ourselves Glossed Over
3:33 EP-1 333DIRT
Model 500 Fabriclive 57: Jackmaster Night Drive
Gorillaz The Fall The Snake In Dallas
Atmosphere Family Sign My Notes
2562 Fever Aquatic Family Affair
Graham Knox Frazier Gonna Dig This Something Special
Mr. Pauer Soundtrack Escaping
Daft Punk Tron Legacy: r3c0nf1gur3d C.L.U. (Paul Oakenfold remix)
Younger Brother Vaccine Night Lead Me Astray
Daedelus Bespoke Suit Yourself
d’Eon Dark Bloom Transparency
Dirty Vegas Electric Love Electric Love
Theophilus London Lovers Holida Wine and Chocolates
Blue Sky Black Death Noir Sleeping Children are Still Flying
DJ Cosm Time and Space Hi (feat. Rasui Syed)
Prefuse 73 The Only She Chapters The Only Hand To
Broken Bells vs Sub Swara Meyrin Fields
Ooah The Love I Need
Cassettes Won’t Listen Kevin Spacey The Echoes
Chrissy Murderbot Women’s Studies Bussin Down
Esquare aka Fyxz TV Pet Wish (Sei A remix)
Jack Dixon & Robin Card Decade EP Keith (Elephino remix)
Mexicans With Guns Ceremony Jaguar
Mount Kimbie Carbonated EP Baves Chords
Movits! Out of My Head 40 Bars
Sole and the Skyrider Band Hello Cruel World Hello Cruel World (Alias remix)
MJ Cole & Wiley From the Drop Angel Riddim vs From the Drop
Kryptic Minds Follow Me VIP Follow Me VIP
Caspa I Beat My Robot/Marmite 12″ I Beat My Robot (12″ mix)
CRST Revival May Not Be Real
DJ Narrows J Da Flex & El-B Presents Conscience of A Ghost
Silkie Sandsnake/Cyberdub Cyber Dub (Skreamix)

XLR8R 195 – Shigeto

This guy is one of my favorite artists over the last 18 months. His release, Full Circle, stuck around on the Nerd Show playlist for months. The follow-up remix album was just recently bumped off the list, but there’s always something more around the corner. He drops a mix for the XLR8R Podcast and you should listen in:

ESL Music sale

I caught a fortunate tweet by ESL Music on Twitter, @ESLmusicDC, that they were having a spring sale. Most notably there were very good deals on vinyl, which I’m a big fan of.

Shop ESL Music

I took the opportunity to pick up a handful of singles and an album. Very excited to play these:

Ancient Astronauts – Into Bass and Time 2xLP
Ancient Astronauts – Rhythm EP
Federico Aubele – Postales
Thievery Corporation – The Time We Lost Our Way EP
Kabanjak – Put Em Up EP

Less than $20!

Playlist 04/21/11

This is the list of artists, albums, and songs
Artist Album Track
Salva Complex Housing Keys Open Doors
Los Chicharrons Roots of Life Bamako
Stateless Matilda Assassinations
Ancient Astornauts Into Bass and Time Rocket Science
Rainbow Arabia Boys and Diamonds Without You
Antonionian Antonionian My Mind’s I
Zion I & The Grouch Heroes In the Healing Of A Nation Like A G (feat. Rakaa)
Gold Panda Companion I Guess I Should Say Thanks
Groundislava Groundislava Animal (feat. Weary)
Innerpartysystem Never Be Content EP Squid
Eisbar Fabric 57: Agoria Subspace Two
Blueprint Adventures in Counter-Culture So Alive (innerpartysystem remix)
Chancha Via Circuito Rio Arriba Prima
Dam Mantle First Wave Movement
DELS GOB GOB (Untold remix)
French Horn Rebellion The Infinite Music of… Mawson’s Peak
Matthew Dear Slowdance Slowdance
Second Sky The Art of Influence Sundowner
Slugabed Moonbeam Rider EP Heck Flex
Numan Punch Bag x POW 2011
UNKLE Only the Lonely Only the Lonely (dub)
Wagon Christ Toomorrow Wake Up
Young Athletes League We Only Feed Ourselves We Only Feed Ourselves
Errors Come Down With Me Germany
3:33 EP-1 333N4
Larry Heard Presents Mr. White Fabriclive 57: Jackmaster The Sun Can’t Compare
Gorillaz The Fall Hillbilly Man
Atmosphere Family Sign If You Can Save Me Now
2562 Fever Cheater
Graham Knox Frazier Gonna Dig This And House Music
Findlay Brown Promised Land Promised Land (Hypnolove remix)
Mr. Pauer Soundtrack Mente de Mente
Daft Punk Tron Legacy: r3c0nf1gur3d The Son of Flynn (KI:Theory remix)
Younger Brother Vaccine Pound A Rhythm
Daedelus Bespoke Sew, Darn, Mend
d’Eon Dark Bloom Tongues
Dirty Vegas Electric Love Little White Dove
Theophilus London Lovers Holida Wine and Chocolates
Blue Sky Black Death Noir Our Hears of Ruin
Prefuse 73 The Only She Chapters The Only Hand To
Broken Bells vs Sub Swara Meyrin Fields
Ooah The Love I Need
RJD2 Deadringer Ghost Writer
DJ Krush Shinsou Alepheuo
Mount Kimbie Maybes EP Maybes (James Blake remix)
Burial Untrue Ghost Hardware
Kryptic Minds Follow Me VIP Rubberman
DJ Signify Of Cities Low Tide (feat. Aesop Rock)

Gold Panda – NPR

An interesting interview with one of my favorite artists, Gold Panda:

When I first encountered the music of British producer Gold Panda on an episode of All Songs Considered, I loved what I heard. However, I had little to no idea what I was hearing or where the sounds came from. When it comes to electronic music, that can be a barrier to entry for some listeners. Without the usual visual cues of traditional Western music (a guitarist strumming a chord, say), it can be a challenge to think of the person behind a laptop pushing various buttons and turning assorted knobs as a “musician.”

See the full interview HERE

Guru – One Year Later

A year ago we lost one of the most gifted and unique MCs on the planet, Guru. He had so many memorable tunes with Gang Starr, but I’ll only give you an early one here:

Playlist 04/14/11

This is the list of artists, albums, and songs
Artist Album Track
Salva Complex Housing Beached
Los Chicharrons Roots of Life Timbuktu
Stateless Matilda Ballad of NGB
Ancient Astornauts Into Bass and Time Calvert Street Rock
Mic Crenshaw Under the Sun Bad Blood
Rainbow Arabia Boys and Diamonds Hai
Antonionian Antonionian The Ride
George Acosta Visions Behind Expressions Tearing Me Apart
Jib Kidder Library Catalog Music Together
Rocky Business A Rebel’s Roar Rocky’s Theme
Zion I & The Grouch Heroes In the Healing Of A Nation Leader
Dirty Vegas Changes 2 Changes (Shiny Objects Dub)
Gold Panda Companion Lonely Owl
Numan Numan Vol. 1 Volvic
Groundislava Groundislava Final Impasse
Innerpartysystem Never Be Content EP Out of Touch
We Are Enfant Terrible Explicit Pictures Filthy Love
Mark E Fabric 57: Agoria Belvide Beat
Cottam Fabric 57: Agoria Sunrise Sunset
Blueprint Adventures in Counter-Culture That’s My Culture
Miriam Garcia Rio Arriba Pintar El Sol
Dam Mantle First Wave D2
French Horn Rebellion The Infinite Music of… Brasilia Girl
Matthew Dear Slowdance Innh Dahhh
Second Sky The Art of Influence Under the Line
Slugabed Moonbeam Rider EP Tomorrow Morning
UNKLE Only the Lonely The Dog Is Black
Wagon Christ Toomorrow Ain’t He Heavy, He’s My Brother
Young Athletes League We Only Feed Ourselves Monaco Sunglasses
Errors Come Down With Me The Erskine Bridge
3:33 EP-1 333EP2
Geiom Fabriclive 57: Jackmaster 2 4 6
Doug Willis Fabriclive 57: Jackmaster Doubswana
Gorillaz The Fall Revolving Doors
Atmosphere Family Sign Millennium Dodo
2562 Fever Winamp Melodrama
Graham Knox Frazier Gonna Dig This Bonus Beats
Findlay Brown Promised Land Promised Land (Hypnomix)
Mr. Pauer Soundtrack Get Me High
Daft Punk Tron Legacy: r3c0nf1gur3d The Grid/Game Has Changed
Younger Brother Vaccine Shine

New Music – 04/07/11 & 04/14/11

This is going to be quick and dirty. We’re talking about nearly 300 tracks to listen to, all told. Lots of good stuff too, as if there weren’t enough excellent music out there right now…

3:33 – EP-1

The definition of Crunchy Hip-Hop. Heavy basslines, distorted drum beats, distant synthesizers and noises sampled from the darkest depths of the meanest subways in the world. Short-ish, but very much a complete meal. I’d really like to hear a mashup of some of these cuts with one of my favorite MCs. 333N3, 333EP1, 333EP2, 333N4 and 333DIRT all make, as I mentioned elsewhere, “Cracker Jacks seem downright mushy”.

Errors – Come Down With Me

Once or twice a year I’ll get an album like this. It reminds me of a crossover between Holy Fuck and, say, Cut Copy. Instrumental, but with a lot of drive, however, non-confrontational. This is an album that wants you to groove along. Very well administered electronic components and effects make it a step or two above many acts who give it a whirl. I was surprised that only the final track, Beards, wasn’t at least a four-star. A Rumour in Africa, The Erskine Bridge, and Germany are my favorites.

Fabriclive 57: Jackmaster

Oh sweet days, more Fabric releases. I made a few inquiries and was rewarded with more than I expected. For this treat, we’ve got what is a Fabric release that fits solidly into the dance floor. This is 70 minutes of music from the best clubs in the world, some new, many old, and some forgotten till now. It’s a combination of House, Hip-Hop, Florida Bass, European garage, German eccentricities and the like. Lots to like here, some stuff I’m not too fond of, but this is an album focused on the dancing, and it pulls no punches. Model 500’s Night Drive, Anthony Shakir’s Plugged In, Splack Pack’s Scrub Da Ground, and Hudson Mohawke’s Fuse are only a few of my favorite tracks on this delightful dancehall release.

Gorillaz – The Fall

Let me be clear in that I’ve never been a Gorillaz fan. I respect some of their work and innovations. November Has Come is still my favorite track of theirs, if ONLY because it features MF Doom’s voice. The Fall was edited completely on an iPad, which is surely a first for a release of this caliber. It sounds a bit like it, too, but perhaps that explains why I’ve been impressed by a few tracks. On Revolving Doors, Hillbilly Man, and The Snake in Dallas, all things fall into place and this good album finds its great moments for me.

Atmosphere – The Family Sign

Slug and Ant bring to the table their seventh full-length release. It’s been a bit since we were treated to When Life Gives You Lemons…and it feels to me like Slug has gone from tortured soul to insightful storyteller, to our benefit. While I don’t like this album as much as You Can’t Imagine.. and God Loves Ugly, it feels better, even when the topics are depressing. Slug’s presence on these tracks is almost mesmerizing at times, and it’s hard to concentrate on anything but the story. It’s compelling, and that’s why we love Atmosphere and their flavor of Hip-Hop. Became, Just for Show, She’s Enough, Millennium Dodo, If You Can Save Me Now, and My Notes are very choice cuts indeed.

2562 – Fever

Imagine my delight when I found this one available. Any Craftstep fan like myself knows that 2562’s place in the arena of a post-Dubstep world was long ago solidified. Fever isn’t more of the same, it’s even better. There’s a delicate methodology required to make this sort of music not feel cacophonous, and with few exceptions, Fever has done that solidly. Winamp Melodrama, Cheater, Aquatic Family Affair, Intermission, and This Is Hardcore are my favorite tracks.

Graham Knox Frazier – Conna Dig This

I’ll admit that House has been a favorite of mine from many moons ago, and it’s not hard to believe that quality House is still being crafted today. GKF has done his homework and isn’t breaking any new ground with this release, but with a formula so well tested, this isn’t a bad thing. In fact, this could almost be called minimalist by some standards. The typical house beat, some synths, and a vocal sample are the most common formula. Nothing much extra, just good stuff here. Check out And House Music, Something Special, and Bonus Beats for my recommended tracks.

Findlay Brown – Promised Land Single

The original track is a bit of a 70s-era throwback in all the right ways. A good track, but there’s no way I’d play it on my show. However, as is commonplace nowadays, remixes accompany. The Hypnolove remix tweaks the original and makes it less a muzak track and morph it smoothly into a calm, electronic tune much more suited to the show. A few of the other mixes are decent, but move in the wrong direction for my taste.

Mr. Pauer – Soundtrack

Another South American artist finds his way to me, to great effect. The opening track is intriguing, while the second, featuring Itagui is less so. The third is where I get very interested. Its reinforcement of the vibe I heard earlier is certain, and I can’t help but bob my head to the beat. The use of more traditional South American beats and influences combines very well with electronic sampling, beats, and synthesizers. It’s a really fun blend. I quite enjoy Escaping, Get Me High, and Mente De Mente.

Daft Punk – Tron Legacy R3c0nf1gur3d

Take a damned fine musical score/soundtrack by the world renowned duo Daft Punk and give it to some of the best electronic artists in the world for a bit of a retouch and see what happens. Tracks like Derezzed get treated by The Glitch Mob and Avicil, Paul Oakenfold reworks C.L.U., The Crystal Method blasts The Grid/Game Has Changed, and Photek reimagines End of Line. All told, fans of the original are probably fans of Daft Punk, and they’ll appreciate the liberties taken by Moby, Kaskade, and others. This is a very good companion to the original. Really like it.

younger Brother – Vaccine

This was a surprise until I did a little research. It turns out that the music for this release was made by one of the guys from Shpongle, of whom I’ve been a long time fan. That’s a pretty solid basis, but it’s easy to screw it up with terrible vocals. Good thing Benji Vaughan has a voice to match the music. The combination makes for something kinda unusual in music that I’ve heard for a while. Few male vocalists sing over this style of electronic music, and perhaps that’s why I like this album so much. There aren’t any bad tracks, seriously.

Blueprint – Adventures in Counter-Culture

I knew this was going to be one of those albums I’d like a few tracks from and hav a lot of trouble with the rest. I was right. Go Hard or Go Home, My Culture, So Alive, and Stole Our Yesterday are definitely standout tracks, The rest, for reasons that I haven’t been able to grasp, don’t compete. He’s certainly talented, and even the tracks I don’t like are better than, say, Del’s latest, but this would be a far more compelling album if it wasn’t such a crapshoot.

Second Sky – The Art of Influence

Ah, how sweet is this? I’d heard a few tidbits of their work in the past but never a full release. This trio, unsurprisingly signed to ESL, the label of Thievery Corporation, take us on a full-length downtempo, chill, tour of the world. I had a good feeling this would be one of those uncommon five-star albums, and I wasn’t disappointed. This is music that takes cues from every form of cultural music there is, from Hip-Hop, Reggae, Dub, India, Spain, Africa, and beyond. It’s a rare treat, and one I’ll be enjoying for years to come.

Fabric 57: Agoria

The first Fabric release I’ve had in at least six months, this one is a journey in the truest Fabric way. Agoria gives us a House and Progressive House treat all the way through. Its as diverse as I’ve heard, and there’s not a bad track on the whole release. Top Fabric quality, and I’ll have fun playing some of these cuts on the show for sure.

Dam Mantle – First Wave

This one is another I can put in the Craftstep bin, and it’s not what I was surprising from a release I received on physical media. There are many samples blended in amidst the heavily dubstep-influenced tracks. Certainly a very broadly spaced album, it does have some notable tracks including Theatre, Broken Slumber, D2, and Movement. I’m pleased that there are some more cohesive tracks on this album, as I know artists within these genres tend to get a bit crazy sometimes. I do hope to hear more from them in the future.

French Horn Rebellion – The Infinite Music of…

How could this be any good, with a name like that? I’m as surprised as you might be that I didn’t just delete it after the first listen. However, from the first track I was teased onward. Broken Heart finally convinced me that yes, this was an album I need to pay more attention to. Heavy synthesizers, beats, and male vocals can give me a headache, but the production does wonders and there are simply interesting sounds here. Brasilia Girl, Mawson’s Peak, and What I Want are some of the more interesting cuts on the album. Interesting, for sure, and I might even be able to see them live.

UNKLE – Only the Lonely

UNKLE are a group I can compare with, say, Atmosphere in some ways. I’ve loved some of their past releases, and consider them canon in the annals of music. However, more recent releases have fallen a bit flat. Only the Lonely, with a track featuring Nick Cave, is basically an EP with two great tracks. Only the Lonely (dub), and The Dog is Black are more interesting than the rest and help me maintain my faith that UNKLE will find its way out of the darkish funk they’ve been in for a while. I want something more inspired.

Slugabed – Moonbeam Rider EP

On of the newest on Ninja Tune, this guy gets my respect for that alone. This kinda reminds me of Rustie, but less trippy and noisy. I did have to go through and listen to this EP twice before giving it solid ratings, so different was it from what I was listening to before and from what I expected. Heck Flex and tomorrow morning are the sort of tracks I’m looking forward to hearing from his solo work in the future.

Chancha Via Circuito – Rio Arriba

I like this guy. An Argentine with a Cumbian heartbeat, I’ll be playing this music for years to come. Similar to Mr. Pauer’s re-imagining of his influences, Chancha takes the ever-diversifying Cumbian genre and runs it through the wringer. It’s better for my Western ears, and it’s much more interesting too. Cuts like Puente, Cumbion de las Aves, Pintar el Sol, Prima, and Amelia are among my favorites. This is a heavy album with much to share. I shall do so in turn.

Matthew Dear – Slowdance EP

Hmm, I like the Todd Edwards remix of Slowdance and Innh Dahh, and didn’t really care for much else. I really would rather the original track be better than the remixes, or at least hold its own. Could be worse.

Moving Units – Tension War

Wannabe The Faint. Skip it.

Wagon Christ – Toomorrow

An interesting album, and as I mentioned during a review of a single from this album, it’s very similar in feel to Negativeland, but with some more musical insight instead of being so heavily reliant on samples to tell the story. Tracks like Toomorrow, Ain’t He Heavy, He’s My Brother, and Wake Up are definitely interesting. I am not surprised that, similar to Negativland, I have a hard time with some of the other work. There are very good tracks on this album, but I wish there were more.

Young Athletes League – We Only Feed Ourselves

Received as part of a package from Ninja Tune, this was a surprise. I didn’t expect the three tracks to be as good as they are. This music resides at a weird crossroads where many have fallen. It’s simple, and simpler to get wrong. It’s very hard to make this kind of music and do it well. How can I even describe it? Easy: intriguing.

Eskmo – We Got More / Moving Glowstream

Eskmo is an interesting sound. I would have preferred his album to be instrumental, but it wasn’t. In this case, two tracks that I was a bit of the five-star fence about are given to Amon Tobin, Slugabed, and others. There are some good retouches, but there are other tracks from this album that would’ve been better choices.