Anenon | Tongue

Released on Friends of Friends Records, the fourth LP from the musician and composer Anenon born Brian Allen Simon was created in just under a month far away from his native Los Angeles near the small town of Palaia in Italy’s Tuscany region.

If its backstory sounds almost absurdly picaresque, it’s a reflection of Anenon’s drive to find a setting staggeringly gorgeous enough to match the iridescence of the compositions. It was born inside a makeshift attic studio on the third story of a 16th Century Tuscan villa, during April of 2017.

Available on Bandcamp.

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The Lightmen | Fancy Pants

Drummer, bandleader and activist Bubbha Thomas had toured America with R&B revues, served as a session musician for Peacock and Back Beat Records, and played straight ahead jazz with legends before the political and social upheaval of the late 1960s led him to a path first charted by Coltrane. “Fancy Pants” is his second LP with his Lightmen band and, like the deep-set, maverick jazz issued by the likes of Tribe and Strata East, is amongst the best of the 1970s jazz underground, a collective voice of resistance to the musical and cultural status quo.

This is the first time that “Fancy Pants” has seen reissue, and it is presented in both the issued stereo and previously unissued mono mixes as a double LP. This reissue was remastered from Bubbha’s original master tapes. Bubbha and his band’s story is told in great detail by Houston music and cultural historian Lance Scott Walker and Now-Again’s Eothen Alapatt, in a booklet that contains dozens of unpublished photographs.

Available now on Rappcats.

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favourite things | 1.18

favourite things 1.18 – Nils Frahm, GoGo Penguin, Laurent de Schepper Trio, Poppy Ackroyd, Black Flower, Anenon, Fiium Shaarrk, Laurence Pike, Joe Armon-Jones, 2 Times Nothing, Jackson Milas, Mast feat. Brian Marsella, Laqueus, God.Damn.Chan feat. Fadeaway J, Buttering Trio & Free The Robots, Run Child Run, Bahla, Harry Griffiths, Horatio Luna, Theo Parrish, JD. Reid feat. Henry Wu & Venna, Dabrye feat. DOOM, Evidence feat. Jonwayne, FloFilz feat. Rejjie Snow, Black Milk, B.Cool-Aid, Rejjie Snow, Oscar Jerome, Lando Chill & The Lasso, Khruangbin, Malik Abdul Rahmaan, Summers Sons, The Mouse Outfit feat. Iamddb & Fox, Hector Plimmer & Reginald Omas Mamode IV, Chris Dave and The Drumhedz feat. Anderson .Paak, Kali Uchis, QNA feat. Bush Tea, LayFullStop.

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VA | We Out Here

A primer on London’s bright-burning young jazz scene, this new compilation brings together a collection of some of its sharpest talents. A set of nine newly-recorded tracks, We Out Here captures a moment where genre markers matter less than raw, focused energy. Surveying the album’s running order, it could easily serve as a name-checking exercise for some of London’s most-tipped and hardworking bands of the past couple of years. Recorded across three long, fruitful days in a North West London studio, the results speak for themselves: they’re a window into the wide-eyed future of London’s musical underground.

Out February 9th on Brownswood Recordings, via Bandcamp.

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Khruangbin | Con Todo El Mundo

Formed of Laura Lee on bass, Mark Speer on guitar, and Donald “DJ” Johnson on drums; Khruangbin’s sounds are rooted in the deepest waters of world music infused with classic soul, dub and psychedelia. Their 2015 debut album ‘The Universe Smiles Upon You’ was heavily influenced by 60’s and 70’s Thai cassettes the band listened to on their long car journeys to rehearsal in the Texan countryside. ‘Con Todo El Mundo’ takes inspiration not just from South East Asia but similarly underdiscovered funk and soul of the Mediterranean and the Middle East, particularly Iran.

Available now via Bandcamp.

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Black Flower | Intermediate State

Having released their critically acclaimed second album ‘Artifacts’ in early 2017, Belgium’s Black Flower return with a new 10” vinyl entitled ‘Intermediate State’.

The inspiration of came from Salvador Dali’s creative dreaming ritual. With a pair of scissors in his hand, he sat back, closed his eyes and slid into sleep. The moment his body and mind enter deep sleep, the scissors dropped and waked him up. Dali then started painting using the inspiration he gathered from his dreams. These paintings can be considered the result of an intermediate state between consciousness and subconsciousness, a zone between being awake and sleeping.

Available now on Bandcamp.

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Mast | Thelonious Sphere Monk

MAST’s Thelonious Sphere Monk is a cosmic journey reinterpreting the great Thelonious Monk Song Book in celebration of his 100th birthday. MAST tackles sixteen Monk compositions, including the acclaimed “Round Midnight,” “Blue Monk,” “Straight No Chaser,” “Epistrophy” and “Well You Needn’t.” As well as more obscure titles like “Misterioso,” “Pannonica,” “Friday The 13th” and “Bemsha Swing.” MAST, aka Tim Conley, pays homage to the significant history of Thelonious Monk and his esteemed compositions while bringing them into the future using modern electronic bleeps, bloops, and beats. This is done in concert with the Low End Theory, Los Angeles beat culture Conley is a part of. Harmonious with the mystical and metaphysical hand painted cover art by Japanese artist Tokio Aoyama, each track created is a unique world unto itself and the listener travels from one musical planet to the next on the spaceship Monk.

Out on Bandcamp.

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Dabrye | Three​/​Three

All this changes in 2017 as Dabrye makes his long-awaited return with “Three/Three”, a razor-sharp rap album that brings to completion a prophetic trilogy. Mullinix’s incisive productions provide the backdrop for equally acute rhymes that run the gamut from intergenerational observations and being your best self to back alley deals and having fun in the ride. Guests include indie rap legend DOOM, whose previous collaboration with Dabrye remains a point of reference for many, Wu Tang storyteller Ghostface Killah, L.A word fanatic Jonwayne, and Long Island’s rugged surrealist Roc Marciano. Most importantly Three/Three is, much like its predecessor, an unfettered celebration of Detroit-area talent with Guilty Simpson, Phat Kat, Kadence, Quelle Chris, Danny Brown, Shigeto, Clear Soul Forces and more all lending their touch to Dabrye’s return.

Available February 16, 2018 on Bandcamp.

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