Friday, 19 June 2015

Too Long (A Short Update)

Dear reader,

I hope you're all well.

It's been far too long since I updated this blog. Truth is life just took over and I found myself with alot less time to write more extensively .

So sadly, for now, this might be the last post for a while,  at least until my end of year  'best of' review in December.


I'm super active over at Spotify on the BRISTOL FUNK profile so feel free to  check out this 'Best of 2015 so far' playlist and my others..

Feel free to stay in touch by sending a track and a message on Spotify or to my twitter @simonmusic and I WILL reply!

Bless you all,

Simon.




Recent tunes i've really been enjoying include..


















Thursday, 5 February 2015

Ray Gun

Came across this interesting video recently, by Ghostface Killah ft. MF Doom.

As well as sampling an old soul or soundtrack record, MF Doom guests and appears as an integral part of an 80's styled, blade runner esque video - see below. Let me know what you think!

The song is also in the 'approved' playlist.. Follow Here



Saturday, 17 January 2015

Approved Music for 2015

You can follow this playlist on Spotify to hear my picks during 2015!

So far the start of the year has been punctuated with super indie rock from Chastity Belt (Hardly Art), Waxahatchee, Swearin', Natalie Prass and Brandi Carlile!


Sunday, 14 December 2014

Albums of the Year 2014


Well it's been a crazy year! Apologies for not updating this blog more, but i've lacked the time, life just kinda took over. As Lennon didn't say, "life not blogging is what happens whilst you're busy making doing other plans things."

So to my fave records and gigs of this year then, in no particular order..
You can listen to some of the music here in this playlist too

Thanx





Emma Tricca- Relic Straddling a line somewhere between folk, soundtrack and indie, Tricca’s softly spoken east-end melancholy create a perfect soundtrack on which to pause to and consider, or to happily idle away an hour in the afternoon. A beautifully written second album from Hackney's ‘Giallo Princess'.

Honeyblood- Honeyblood
Stina Tweeddale and drummer Shona McVicar are two lasses from Glasgow making some pretty catchy and addictive indie music. Tracks like Fall Forever, Killer Bangs and Anywhere But Here lead the way.
Shabazz Palaces- Lese Majesty Not the easiest of hip hop albums but like Egyptian Jazz legend Pharoah Sanders, you can't just stick this on and let it slip into the background. As the Seattle duo of Ishmael Butler and Tendai Maraire put it themselves the album is "a series of astral suites, recorded happenings". This 18 track odyssey  more than stakes a claim as the 8th wonder of hip hop

Orlando Julius & The Heliocentrics- Jaiyede Afro The Heliocentrics have been busy this year,  and this album recorded with afro-jazz legend and pioneer Orlando Julius has only enhanced his reputation.  Another high calibre release on Strut who had a great 201.

Damien Jurado- Brothers & Sisters of the Eternal Son A real renaissance album from  Jurado, with my personal highlight Silver Timothy.

Jennifer Castle- Pink City
Her sweet pitch is steeped in the spiritual folk of Carol Kleyn and akin; the Toronto singers heartfelt album will have you yearning for the simple life. Highlights include Down River and Sailing Away.

Space Daze- Follow My Light Back Home Delightful, sweet and this years perfect summer record from Seapony's Danny Rowland. A super little album of dreampop - watch out for remixes next year.. 

Jane Weaver- The Silver Globe Picadilly records described this in their end of year list asn " analogue synth-laden pop-krautrock-folk epic." and i don't think i can better that description!

Taylor McFerrin- Early Riser Emotive basslines, zappy moog play and good toplines make this album work to a deeper level, whilst Decisions with Emily King has been on repeat. 

Matthew Halsall- When The World Was One “Grooving through time on the spiritual sunship.” (Mojo), this album of modal, spiritual jazz echoes of Coltrane and the greats that have gone before. A real highlight from A Love Supreme Jazz festival too.

Just missed the list: SZA, Mr Twin Sister, Sharon Van Etten, Merchandise, Alvvays

Re-Issues/ Catalogue









Eddy Giles- Southern Soul Brother (Kent)
2014 saw a bit of a renaissance and focus on Northern Soul, and when i heard Roger at my local record store play this, I had to buy it- super super soul from the singer who is became a preacher man. There's a nice video of the CD here .

Brothers & Sisters- Dylans Gospel (Light In The Attic)
Alongside Strut, Light In The Attic had a good year with this the highlight for me, the 1969 recording by Sam Cooke's longstanding producer Lou Rawls and featured Mary Clayton, Glora Jones and others all taking on Bob Dylan's most stirring songs.

Marshall Allen Presents Sun Ra
Have you heard the latest news from Neptune, Neptune, Neptune? Marshall Allen has and put together this excellent double comp of highlights from the Jazz legends extensive catalogue. Also my favourite artwork of the year.

V/A Too Slow To Disco As purchased from Rise in Bristol this is a fine selection of AOR/Yacht Rock.


LIVE HIGHLIGHTS- Top 6 Gigs
Daptone Soul Revue- Academy Shepherds Bush
Beck- iTunes Festival
Courtney Barnett- Islington Assembly Hall
Sharon Van Etten- Koko
Matthew Halsall Band- Love Supreme Festival
Smashing Pumpkins - Lauren Laverne 6Music Session (Bonus)

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Mr Twin Sister



With an odd name like Mr Twin Sister (They used to just be called Twin Sister but had to revise), you can expect something a little arcane..

The impassably cool 5 piece are from Long Island , and boy have they crafted a record with some good night groove, perfectly balancing beach-certified moments such as the ambient Blush alongside tracks that borderline house records from Detroit circa 1990 onwards - as evidenced In The House of Yes. With it's subtle disco strings, floor welcoming beat and moody bassline this could well be a keeper.

Opener Sensitive has a hint of Sade with  twinkling keys, brushed percussion and the lyrics 'Romantic Dreaming' topside. After Sade, we go to Rah Band who had a hit with Messages In The Stars in 1983, which could well be the influence for Rude Boy. The pull was so strong that I actually checked with one of the band but they hadn't heard of Rah Band, so maybe a bit of musical osmosis here!

There's a Berlin nightclub moment on Out of The Dark which is a little more DFA but it gives vocalist Andrea Estella another chance to hold everything together with perfect quasi robotic information delivery. The pace picks up even further by Twelve Angels which edges the album closer towards techno and Karl Hyde territory but that intensity they so easily gear up to, is effortlessly let go on the ethereal Medford, which acts as a short interlude before a lovely album closer in 'Crime Scene'.

A beguiling and worthy follow up to 2011's In Heaven, this should appeal to fans of Nite Jewel, Mazzy Star, Gardens & Villa, Rah Band and Cocteau Twins.

Follow & Subscribe to my updated set of Yearly Highlights below!


Saturday, 13 September 2014

ORLANDO JULIUS

Afro-Jazz legend Orlando Julius has just teamed up with the Heliocentrics, who previously released with Lloyd Miller to create a new album called Jaiyede Afro, out now. I can't wait to pick a copy of this.

Check out this mini doc on the album at The Ransom Note, or just click play below.

There's also an afro futurism exhibition at the Watershed in Bristol in October which will be well worth a visit.


Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Relic (100)

Wow, post #100 , happy birthday me! Do I get a card from the internet? Either way it's been a blast to write and share some of the music I love and am thankful for. Thankyou for reading.

And with that thought in mind, here's a super little album to check out from Emma Tricca.


Relic straddles a line somewhere between folk and indie, with Emma Tricca’s softly spoken east-end melancholy creating a perfect soundtrack on which to pause to and consider, or to happily idle away an hour in the afternoon. A beautifully written second album from Hackney's ‘Giallo princess’ and one that deserves to garner her more attention.

One of my top 10 albums so far this year.

Key tracks: Sunday Reverie, Coffee Time and Distant Screen.



listen here or click play below to listen alongside some of my other faves