In the “Fears & The Funk” post Albahooky asked about the Punk Funk revival at the turn of the last millenium so here’s my any-excuse-for-a hastily-thrown-together-playlist playlist. I was still young enough then to be out & about with dancing shoes on, and this stuff was getting caned at the indie joints (as was I). It seems it was called Dance Punk in the states and of course even the name Punk Funk is entirely misleading. Disco beat with noisy guitars and shouty (mainly) men, some cowbell, post punk rhythms, anything to do with DFA records, New York, !!! asking the Glasgow crowd for pills before they started playing, hanging out with Carlos from Interpol on the LES, The ‘Yes New York’ compilation, late period Clash, the kids throwing out their guitars and buying turntables.
The language Yaruba has only been mentioned twice ever on The ‘Spill and both times by GoneForeign, so this one’s for you (if you don’t know them already of course). Ibeyi sing in English and break into Yaruba at various points, when I heard this on the radio I felt the need to find out more about it, which usually means cross-referencing with The ‘Spill. I like the modern jazz/electronic styling and the lack of warbling in the singing. Further research (hi Wikipedia!) shows they’re the twin offspring of a Beuna Vista Social Club member and indeed Ibeyi means ‘twins’.
I fear that Mark Ronson’s recent mega hit may have opened a door to five following years of awful funk funking up the place like a bad funk. A door that cannot be shut easily. What point am I trying to make? Maybe that it’s that I don’t really like funk, or that the majority of funk in the world hasn’t been the best. Maybe I don’t think about funk very often. I suppose everything’s like that anyway, we just need to find the 5% that’s good, or 1% even. Maybe bad things have been done to funk, similar to the horrific abuse of the poor saxophone in the ’80s. Who’s got the funk? Not me.
Lonelady, on the other hand, has cowbell and spanking bass mixed with a taut post-punk edge and ridiculously catchy 80sesque (bunker) pop melodies. Half of her LP “Hinterland” is full of massive bangers that Prince would have been proud of. Love it. Maybe I do have the funk.
**Edit** GF asked about Spotify working embedded in posts, so I’m testing it here, with the Lonelady album.
I have had “Mr Noah” by Panda Bear (his 2007 LP was my fave of that year) on repeat for the last two weeks & is the mpst bizarre earworm as I have no clue at all what he’s singing about, apart from he won’t get out of bed except for chips & egg? Maybe? And it’s definately dog themed….maybe….
I thought it may be fun if we have a guess at the lyrics, without googling (who wants the truth? not me!) and see what comes out of the morass?
This randomly popped up on my Spotify today. I have no clue who Mini Mansions are, but when I clicked through where it said Bri… (the window had cut off the rest) – it turned out to be Brian Wilson himself – exciting!
New household member and French princess Seraphine says she only listens to old school jungle and sometime glitch-step. I don’t quite believe her silky continental sophistications as I’ve seen her secret stash of Serge Gainsbourg, rare groove and booty bass LPs.
2. “Annabel Dream Reader” – The Wytches
I’m a 90s kid through and through. Cut me and I bleed jangly indie, shoegaze and pre-major-label grunge (when it was called alt. rock). I’m pop but Sub Pop. I’m sub Sub pop Pop. Pop.
Some folk might think that the terms wretched, noisy & abrasive are negative words to describe music with. I think things went bad when the only audible influence bands took from Nirvana ended up being Nickleback, Puddle Of Mudd, Creed, et al. There are so many bands influenced by Kurt, Thurston, J Mascis whose music sounds nothing like them, but it was Bleach or Nevermind that made them pick up a guitar.
Rarely a band dares to occupy a space made sacred by Saint Cobain over twenty years ago. Rarer still is a band with the ideas or the chops or the tunes to pull off anything worthwhile.
Filtered through a sixties freakbeat awareness, pre-nevermind rhythm section and a throat shredding south coast accent, The Wytches scream their fucking heads off in memorable pop tunes as distortion reigns supreme. From the fuzz comes transcendence. Touch me; I’m quick.
1. “Soft Friday” – Coves
Noise ridden wall of sound pop melodies fuzzy skygaze shoegaze hazy days; the (beautifully sub-40 minutes 10 tracker) Coves record has myriad sparkling & eclectic psyche pop delights that I haven’t stopped listening to since April.
I just love it so much.
4. “United Ghosts” – United Ghosts
Poppy hooky shoegaze with dual male/female vocals. There needs to be some sort of internet widget where this stuff gets posted straight to my door without me even hearing it first.
joint 3rd. “New Gods” – Withered Hand
Dan’s long awaited follow up to Good News (his first record which was my favourite of 2009) was a worryingly together effort with a backing cast of Scots indie royalty behind him (King Creosote, Eugene Kelly, Frightened Rabbit to mention a few). The old bumbling charm has diminished a bit, the songs are bigger and looking out rather than in. I think the album just lacked a “No Cigarettes” or “Love In The Time Of Ecstasy” and time had increased my expectations to silly levels. It’s a great record, don’t get me wrong.
joint 3rd. “St Vincent” – St Vincent
I like my pop music like I like my coffee: bonkers & unpredictable, taut & skewed, arty & twisted (never ask me to make coffee). It’s Madonna brought up on Talking Heads rather than disco. An incredible record from an incredible talent, and had I picked it up earlier in the year it may well have been higher up the list.