Vince Staples – Big Fish Theory

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

Electro rap

Moods

Vince Staples best? Rap that incorporates the interesting parts of electro

Thoughts

I admire hybrids where artists take sounds from a genre's fringes and incorporate them into a popular format. Kanye gets a lot of credit for that with Yeezus but I like this better. Production is what makes Big Fish such a worthwhile record with Staples leveraging a variety of electro producers to create a quilt that is intense, booming and always engaging. His rhymes are direct in delivery, creating a steady presence and interesting juxtaposition against the variety.

The result is a great modern Rap record with a youthful but wise energy. It's uneven but one that's bursting with provoking ideas on what makes effective music. I prefer that to the world of over polished pop without soul and have rewarded it with reslistens.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Vince-Staples-Big-Fish-Theory/release/11271320

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0l9kzS_B7gg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YLpH78k5A9A

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YeUOvrnOCVY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6iAzyhm0p0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xa4vBlzMaeQ

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Vince Staples – Big Fish Theory

Description: Album Review of Vince Staples – Big Fish Theory


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Ahmad Jamal – Blue Moon – The New York Session

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

post bop

Moods

A modern, rhythmic post bop delight played by a master

Thoughts

I feel like Ahmad Jamal is one of the best kept secrets in jazz. Of course jazz fans know him, but outside not a brand name.

Here we have a decidedly modern jazz record compositionally played with a heavy rhythmic focus by the awesome Herlin Riley which interplays nicely with Jamal's expert piano playing – melodic and with a natural swing, quick if the band pushes him, easy if not.

There's a lot to like here. Worthy of deep listening as well as energetic atmosphere if more removed settings.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Ahmad-Jamal-Blue-Moon-The-New-York-Session/release/3624058

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcUvkO4A5Vo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7qkaEf4C6FI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sS2Lvw8HV84

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOAepSLbohs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezYchfPLkno

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Ahmad Jamal – Blue Moon – The New York Session

Description: Album Review of Ahmad Jamal – Blue Moon – The New York Session


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Four Tet – Anna Painting

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

solid electro techno

Moods

Four Tet at his most accessible and danceable on this tight EP

Thoughts

Four Tet has such an admirable discography as he's able to cover a range of styles well. Here he's more accessible than his sometimes  experimental self delivering tracks that you can't help but move too. Slight long individual track durations keep you locked in with their hooky movement. Rhythmic, loose feel due to his organic production methods. I always find a lot to enjoy on his releases.

Ends with a nice ambient number.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Four-Tet-Anna-Painting/release/14099064

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hBxmnfI4ryk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8v2Wra-YoU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCuPRW0P74s

Spotify


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Four Tet – Anna Painting

Description: Album Review of Four Tet – Anna Painting


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Louis Cole – Live Sesh And Xtra Songs

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

quick funky synth pop jazz

Moods

A distinct capture of Louis Cole's live magic

Thoughts

Louis Cole has some of my favorite musical moments on YouTube. He uses the "broadcast yourself" mentality in the best way. To get a sense check him out on YouTube with his solo project, the synth project knower or Jacob Mann big band.

Some of this set is on YouTube accompanied by a large horn section and backup singers. The unfriendly acoustics of the house this was recorded in give it a DIY quality. Usually I would dislike this as the levels are a little fucked up but here it adds charm. He's coming out swinging with a highly energetic set of songs that displays the 'fun' of his songs which can only be captured in a live setting as opposed to the studio where his tracks can feel awkward.

I realize none of this describes the sound, just gotta hear it.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Louis-Cole-Live-Sesh-And-Xtra-Songs/release/13450294

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2kLHN29qorg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxEIQQkhyeI

Spotify


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Louis Cole – Live Sesh And Xtra Songs

Description: Album Review of Louis Cole – Live Sesh And Xtra Songs


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Aretha Franklin – Young, Gifted And Black

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

 Sounds like?

Aretha in a slightly subdued vibe. Modern, gospel roots but doing r&b.

Moods

It's as if Aretha took a tiny hit off a joint and recorded a soul album

Thoughts

Great album part of Arethas awesome period in the early 70's. So many of my favorites are on this, I'm not sure why I've never listened to it end to end. On tracks like 'day dreaming' the harmonies just emerge out of the background like true spiritual gospel. Groovers like 'rock steady' provide a nice fun change of pace.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Aretha-Franklin-Young-Gifted-And-Black/release/1884391

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qFidgjq9rIo

Spotify


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Aretha Franklin – Young, Gifted And Black

Description: Album Review of Aretha Franklin – Young, Gifted And Black


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Aretha Franklin – Young, Gifted And Black

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

 Sounds like?

Aretha in a slightly subdued vibe. Modern, gospel roots but doing r&b.

Moods

It's as if Aretha took a tiny hit off a joint and recorded a soul album

Thoughts

Great album part of Arethas awesome period in the early 70's. So many of my favorites are on this, I'm not sure why I've never listened to it end to end. On tracks like 'day dreaming' the harmonies just emerge out of the background like true spiritual gospel. Groovers like 'rock steady' provide a nice fun change of pace.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Aretha-Franklin-Young-Gifted-And-Black/release/1884391

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qFidgjq9rIo

Spotify


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Aretha Franklin – Young, Gifted And Black

Description: Album Review of Aretha Franklin – Young, Gifted And Black


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

The Crusaders – Gold

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

jazzy funk rock

Moods

Don't usually like best of's but this is a fantastic 2-disc set

Thoughts

hard to go wrong with the crusaders and this is a great collection. Lots of funk and jazz flavors but they feel very much a rock band especially on disc 2, I'm guessing the band changed directions. I tend to prefer looser styles but it's hard to deny this band.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/The-Crusaders-Gold/release/5971189

Listen!

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The Crusaders – Gold

Description: Album Review of The Crusaders – Gold


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Thomas Fehlmann – Lowflow

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

bassy dub minimal electro

Moods

A slight euphoric buzz graces these minimal dub tracks / a quiet glee while pregaming for a night-out in Berlin

Thoughts

these productions are super crisp and rich, no surprise from Thomas Fehlmann. Little textural flourishes everywhere elevate this from standard minimal mood techno to a well crafted album. It has a heavy dub influence with enough bass to give it a pleasant bump throughout, sounds very much like the orb.

Quiet and stoned, it takes it's time.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Thomas-Fehlmann-Lowflow/release/338329

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zHxJJPmTiTs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1iqD389dss

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MuTBCjJTN2M

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLryCyusjOQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tJFXhinVu8k

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Thomas Fehlmann – Lowflow

Description: Album Review of Thomas Fehlmann – Lowflow


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Sonny Rollins – Saxophone Colossus

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

Urban hard bop

Moods

Damn fine hardbop, one of the best 'saxophone' records ever

Thoughts

Rollins playing is fantastic on this. His solos consume most of the tracks and he plays with an impressive amount of variety. Consistently dexterous and light, it's engaging and a must hear for bop fans.

The first couple tracks are alright, Rollins early solos compliment Roaches quick percussion.

'Strode rode' is what got me into the record. Impressive

Rollins is delicate on solos like 'moritat', almost samba like in his agility.

'Blue 7' is a nice finish, nocturnal hip and cool.

All around good session if nothing incredibly inventive, the playing is fantastic and the tracks are memorable.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Sonny-Rollins-Saxophone-Colossus/release/3934932

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCMNWVTxZI4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UA2XIWZxMKM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oDagrq6hcYU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L7G4DciALDs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ChOkkdT2zw

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Sonny Rollins – Saxophone Colossus

Description: Album Review of Sonny Rollins – Saxophone Colossus


Rating: 4 out of 5

 

Koushik – Be With

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

Sounds like?

60s psychedelica with a hip hop bend

Moods

hauntology psychedelica

Thoughts

There's an effort here to make this sound old with vinyl record crackle and surface noise as well as low fidelity mics. It's effective and compliments the scattered instrumentation to create a spectral hazy psychedelica that's interesting and true to original influences (not the watered down modern 'chill' stuff).

Works well, rivals caribous early catalog who does a very similar thing ( honestly you could've told me Dan snaith made this as it's a dead ringer to some of his work).

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Koushik-Be-With/release/484910

Listen!

Youtube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bs1inZNRlKw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZqZCiW5pGlM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FikemItj6tI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsVy6a7dl7I

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxfz8TmJ8gs

Spotify


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Koushik – Be With

Description: Album Review of Koushik – Be With


Rating: 4 out of 5