Remember that time when I was like, “I don’t really want to blog anymore, but maybe I’ll just do a big giant post once a month or something,” and nobody, including myself, thought I ever would? Well, it’s happening, right now. Think of this as a mini digest of some posts I might have done individually had I still felt the spirit. We have a lot to talk about.
First off, Beat Culture, a veritable dailybeatz regular this year, has finished his debut LP Forgive and is trying to release it on vinyl, because vinyl is awesome. He’s raising funds via indiegogo and we are big/huge fans of his stuff and want to have it in our record collection, so please help out if you can, even if it’s just a few bucks. He’s raised over $2,500 so far but still has just under $1,000 with only three days left. And you know how these things work – unless you reach your fundraising goal, you don’t get any of the donations, which is why it’s super important that we help him reach that goal. You can donate some funds here and everything helps, even if it’s just a few bucks. He’s streaming this track as a little sample and to help promote the fundraising efforts, so please help out this talented rising artist if you can, because I want to have some Beat Culture on vinyl, y’all.
Next, we are going to talk about a couple of songs that have not left my head for the better part of 2-3 weeks. These tracks are certainly not underground (or even new, for that matter) but I guess I just needed to make sure every person has heard them, just in case. And there are no rules to blogging (isn’t that the whole point?), and ESPECIALLY no rules to not blogging, which is what I do now, so shove it.
The first is “Yet Again” from the soon-to-be Grizzly Bear album Shields, currently streaming on NPR. This track is one of the catchiest little ditties I think the band has put out to date. As Carles put it, a more mainstream track to appeal to NPR Cool Dads. I guess if I wasn’t relationshiply challenged, I might be an NPR Cool Dad, so maybe Carles wasn’t too far off. Anyway, it’s a completely fantastic and upbeat number, and the rest of the album is pretty darn lovely as well. Go ahead and ask me if I care if this has been on a million blogs already or whatever.
The next track is the oldest of the bunch and it’s from my main homegirl Jessie Ware. She doesn’t really know she’s my main homegirl but believe me, she is. This track has been floating around the interwebs for months now but I didn’t actually hear it until I listened to her debut album Devotion a few weeks back, surprising to me since I’ve posted her a few times over the last few months. This is certainly a standout track from that album, and I’ve surmised that at the right volume, this could even be woven into your friendly neighborhood dance party playlist. I literally had 2 near sleepless nights last week because this song and the song above it refused to leave my thoughts no matter what I tried. Ms. Ware is such a fresh voice in the quasi re-emergence of some true R&B and she’s got the voice and the style to make it happen. You should also check out the full album because, just like the new Grizzly Bear album, it is also pretty darn lovely.
And the last of the tracks you’ve probably heard that I’m sharing with you just in case is one that’s rather hot of the press, just released this past Friday but already logging in 130k+ plays on Soundcloud. It’s from the UK’s Disclosure (the UK has been EFFING KILLING IT THIS YEAR MUSICALLY, by the way) and our first taste of their upcoming debut LP to be released next year. This song sort of has the same vibe/beat as Sam Sparro’s “Black and Gold” from a few years ago, a track I loved, but the chorus of this song is undeniably huge, due in part to Disclosure’s heavy beats and in equal part to Sam Smith’s impressive vocals. After Disclosure’s The Face EP earlier this summer and this track, this is definitely high atop the most anticipated albums of 2013 list. Especially since I don’t really know of many others yet. But man. Just turn the volume way up and let this one rip. You don’t get the full impact of the huge chorus without that volume. I normally turn off the comments on Soundcloud but I just flipped back over and caught a comment pop up that said, “You guys just understand dance music.” So true. So true.
And last but CERTAINLY not least, let’s take a stroll to perhaps the greatest audiovisual experience I’ve witnessed in person in some time. Yes, I’m talking about none other than Amon Tobin’s ISAM 2.0, which I saw live in the flesh last night at the Royal Oak Music Theatre. The funny thing is, up until a few days ago, Amon Tobin was nothing more than a name I’d heard a bunch of times, but then a friend posted a preview of ISAM 2.0 and I knew instantly that I had to see it for myself. Imagine a giant three dimensional game of Tetris on stage with some high tech projection mapping creating some of the coolest visuals I’ve seen at a show, all atop heavy, heavy beats. And because these projections were so perfectly placed on each and every angle of this structure, it often looked as though the structure was see through, or moving, or opening and closing, or doing one of a million other actions. Some straight up cool ass shit, to be quite technical about it. And Amon Tobin lives in the middle of it all, appearing from time to time to remind you that it is not all a machine.
**DISCLAIMER: There is no way any photograph (or video, for that matter) could ever do this any justice. So I just posted a few pics. But use the internet and find more videos of this beastly set, and if it comes to a town near you, you go see it.
Also, I made an animated gif, as seen at the top of this post. That means I know how to make animated gifs now, so every show I shoot from here on out will feature at least one animated gif.
Since I know how to make gifs now, I just made this one of my friend (and Audiovole.com editor) Sarah walking in front of a Palm Springs estate during our recent Coachella adventure 5 months ago.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this rare September digest. The tunes may not have been the rarest, but they are all of the highest quality. See you next week/month/year/never.