When You’re Ugly
Adding to the Flying Lotus and Thundercat lineage that Brainfeeder has been birthing, it’s time for another LA soul salvo. Step up Louis Cole, co-founder of Knower, sometime DIY filmmaker and now modern yacht casual. ‘When You’re Ugly’ is a tongue-in-cheek, two-fingered salute for those who register as aesthetically challenged. Slap bass, exported from Mark King, Art Of Noise-style synth stabs and brilliant kooky brass interjections pepper this simple groove, that bubbles with style and panache. Gonna be big when it’s live.
It’s hard to keep up with Tru Thoughts's busy release schedule, and while their QC levels are high, it’s impossible to cover each and every emission from the label. From time to time though, one particular release will shine through, and this single from LA-based producer and acclaimed drummer Te’Amir Sweeney is one such example. Endorsed by the likes of Aloe Blacc, Kamasi Washington and Kendrick Lamar, there’s clearly no doubting his credentials, and judging by this Ethio-inspired soul/beat driven EP, there’s no doubting his own productions, either.
'Black Noise 2084'
On The Corner Records
New music from the irrepressible Khalab, who continues his quest for the perfect global beat. Making a happy marriage of electronics that subtly blur recognisable dancefloor forms while looping field recordings, live vocals from the likes of Tenesha The Wordsmith, Shabaka Hutchings and Moses Boyd, and keeping an eye on interesting arrangements, it’s a truly unique and original spread. No wonder Peterson, and BBC 6 Music have championed his sound. Progressive stuff that challenges the norm. Investigate.
Full Time Hobby
Given his preoccupation of late with all things LUMP, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Mike Lindsay may not have the time for another Tunng album. Not so. Not only are Genders and Lindsay back, but they are back with the original band lineup, for the first time in nearly 10 years. ‘Crow’ is actually the second single from the new album, and is definitely a more sedate, pastoral, folky affair than its synth driven predecessor ‘ABOP’, but it’s still classic Tunng. Super lovely. Welcome back folks!
The Leaf Label
Described by the label as “spontaneous explorations in repetition, alternate tuning systems and, for the most part, tempered minimalism”, this new release from Portland-based artist and composer Luke Wyland certainly won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, and if the concept of 'tempered minimalism' has you reaching for your copy of Ed Sheeran’s greatest hits, then look away now. For those of you open to a bit of experimental brilliance, then this is for you. Unsettling, individualistic, synthesised, electronic excellence.
Love the ethos of this label right now. Releasing on double cassette (yeah, beat that) alongside the digital forms, Quiet Time have refused to succumb to a physical format-less society, and offer an old school approach to releasing music where package, information and design are valid and crucial attributes to contributing to an artist's overall impression. Musically, this stacks up: ambient-meets-field recording-meets-music made for purpose. Shut down your laptops and phones for a mo, and get some Quiet Time.
Mixhell & Joe Goddard Ft. Mutado Pintado
'Strong And Wrong'
We loved ’Crocodile Boots’, the precursor to ’Strong And Wrong’ with the insistent and optimistic vocal poetry of Mutado Pintado. This next offering from the foursome follows suit, with Pintado taking a lead vocal role again. However, the amps are turned up for the self titled opener, leaving the more beguiling moods to filter through on the gentle ‘Bella’, while the ace in the pack reveals itself in the form of ‘In Our Sleep’, a cover of Laurie Anderson’s and Lou Reed’s electronic lullaby from 1995. It definitely rivals the original, with plenty of panned, rolling drums adding a beefed up sonic.
Big Crown Records
Born into a musical family that drew on the diverse sounds of Latin America, Bolivia, Cuba and US jazz and soul, Finnish percussionist Bobby Oroza’s music definitely has a sense of the 'outernational' about it. Not only that, it has a certain timeless quality to it too, not just in terms of Cold Diamond & Mink’s production, but also in terms of his phrasing, delivery and subject matter(s) of the heart. No wonder seasoned soul collectors have been jumping on each and every release.