viernes, 29 de enero de 2016

Natalie Merchant: NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert

In the summer of 2014, Natalie Merchant came to Washington, D.C., to perform her first album of all-new material in 13 years. She was supposed to play here at my desk the day after that evening's performance. Instead, she fell ill, wound up in a D.C. hospital, and canceled her upcoming dates.

Now, Merchant has rerecorded her first solo album Tigerlily, complete with strings and different instrumentation. That album is called Paradise Is There: The New Tigerlily Recordings, and she recently came back to town to make a documentary film about that record. And so it was with abundant joy that Natalie Merchant finally made it to the NPR Music offices. This was truly one of the most warmhearted Tiny Desk performances I've ever seen. She sang the title track from 2001's Motherland, "Texas" from that self-titled 2014 release and something from Tigerlily, and then Merchant had the NPR audience join her for a beautiful hymn heard on The House Carpenter's Daughter — so have a tissue handy.

BOB BOILEN, January 12, 2016 

lunes, 25 de enero de 2016

FACT Focus: Stereolab

FACT Focus is a very special mix series.

Regular FACT readers may have noticed that occasionally, to accompany a large feature or list, the author has provided a mix summarizing the article in handy-to-absorb MP3 format. Well, we’ve decided to flesh this out into a series.

Episodes of FACT Focus focus on a specific artist, label, scene or sound. The mixes aren’t weekly, but they’ll always go the extra mile in terms of highlighting hidden classics and mapping-out specific eras or sounds.

This particular installment comes from regular FACT contributor Jon Dale, who has put together a bumper blend of all things Stereolab. Some of you will no doubt already be familiar with the Gallic neo-kraut troupe, and their influence can be witnessed throughout the musical spectrum.

From the obvious acts that took their cues from Stereolab’s space-age electronic flair, such as Brummie loungers Broadcast, to those you’d never expect, like Tyler the Creator (seriously), Stereolab have made waves since their birth back in 1990. Now you have the opportunity to hear some of their finest moments in one place.

jueves, 21 de enero de 2016

Arabs with Synthesizers

Arabs With Synthesizers isn’t the name of the release but the name of the dudes who mixed these tracks by Egyptian Electronic band Zaed Naes but I loved the way it sounds and so I included it as part of the main heading.
Zaed Naes say this about themselves:
“Our music does not sit in any time zone or on any map.
It is an ever evolving melting pot mixed by us and our
collaborators, we add a bit here and subtract a bit from there.”
They feature a variety of vocalists including Maii Waleed, the subject of our previous post. I love the tracks they have done with her, they are unbelievable, sounding like Future 80’s Middle Eastern New Wave!  Some comparison with Lebanese Trip Hoppers “Soapkills” and Middle Eastern Electro Pop pioneers“Yas” are inevitable!
They create an intoxicating blend of Electronica with Indie Dream Pop and Shoegaze sensibilities fused with the gorgeous Middle Eastern tongue.  Sounds like a delicacy and it is!!!

miércoles, 20 de enero de 2016

Andy Hart

One of Australia’s best selectors brings the party

Around five or six years ago, Melbourne was entering a golden age of house music, led by a crew of now-globally recognised artists like Tornado Wallace, Francis Inferno Orchestra and Fantastic Man, AKA Mic Newman. Andy Hart, although a little further from the limelight, played a pivotal role in the development of the city’s signature deep, groovy sound. In particular, this was thanks to his Melbourne Deepcast podcast-cum-label (co-run with Myles Mac), which showcased the city’s new wave of talent in its early releases. While plenty has changed since those records, Hart has continued to support Melbourne’s emerging artists. His current label, Voyage, launched in 2014 and has championed acts like M5K and Harvey Sutherland, whoseBrothers EP was a breakthrough for the Victoria synth wizard.

Hart moved to Berlin 18 months ago, following a migration trend that’s seen a number of his peers setting up in the German capital, as well as London. Aside from working on Voyage and dropping solo EPs on Heist and Sleazy Beats Black Ops, he’s spent time among the OYE Records family, particularly with frequent studio collaborator Max Graef. The likeminded pair have been releasing music together since 2012 on Melbourne Deepcast and Box Aus Holz, complementing one another’s love of jazz-infused dance music. Those influences and more are laid out in Hart’s inviting two-hour RA podcast, which spans smooth soul and funk, bright disco and classic ‘90s house. 

martes, 19 de enero de 2016

Leon Bridges: NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert


We probably should have shot this Tiny Desk Concert in black-and-white. Listening to Leon Bridges, I hear a sound with its heart and soul rooted in 1962. There's purity in his voice that's unadorned, untouched and unaffected by 21st-century pop. It's just soul.

Still, the songs from this 26-year-old Fort Worth singer feel refreshing in the context of the day. Surely there's touches of Sam Cooke's spiritual sound, but Leon Bridges has a way of making the familiar feel adventurous and new. It may be because this is all new to him. He only picked up the guitar around the age of twenty and only began listening to classic soul music after friends told him he sounded like R&B musicians from long ago. What Leon Bridges has tapped into on his debut album with fellow Fort Worth musicians including Austin Jenkins from White Denim is a universal sound, an undeniably heartfelt sound which transcends age, race and musical tastes. He's easy to love and tough to resist and his performance at the Tiny Desk with his fabulous band is a testament to what it means to sing from the heart.

domingo, 17 de enero de 2016

Benny Sings: NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert

For more than 10 years, fans have been drawn to Dutch singer-songwriter Benny Sings' ability to layer R&B, jazz and pop over hip-hop foundations. While it was only a matter of time before he'd play behind the Tiny Desk, we never expected the performance to be his very first in the U.S. This is also where he performed with background vocalist Jennah Bell for the first time. As a bonus, his beat machine was miraculously repaired following a malfunction minutes prior to showtime.

All that should have revved up a fair amount of paranoia, but Benny Sings quickly shed any evidence of nervousness and jumped into action like a veteran, performing a song from his latest album ("Beach House," from Studio) and an old favorite.

- Bobby Carter

sábado, 16 de enero de 2016

Matt McDermott w/guests JM Moser & Call Super – En Plein Air

"Matt McDermott works his way through a diaspora of musical discoveries, sometimes plaintive, often odd and usually shuffling their way to the outskirts of the dancefloor. Some of what’s played will be plucked from the pages of the electronic music site Matt writes for, Resident Advisor. He’ll often have friends dropping in to tell him what they’ve seen and more importantly, heard. Above all, the show attempts to capture the vivid, headstrong feeling which occurs upon combining travel and fresh air."

martes, 12 de enero de 2016

Nico Muhly and Ira Glass on Composers and the Internet

By Tracy O'Neill

Nico Muhly is the youngest composer ever to have his work performed at the Metropolitan Opera. Recently, he joined Ira Glass, best known as the host of This American Life, to discuss his new opera Two Boys. This week, for the New York Public Library Podcast, we're proud to present Nico Muhly and Ira Glass on composing music, Bach, and the Internet. 

sábado, 9 de enero de 2016

Ah, hipsters

Edgar Froese - Specific Gravity of Smile

Froese founded Tangerine Dream in Berlin in 1967 and was the only constant member. Early in their career the group were associated with the scene known in the UK as “krautrock”, and their debut album was comprised of tape collages.

But as they developed they had little in common with the “motorik” sound of Neu! and Harmonia, the challenging experimentalism of Faust or the free-flowing improvisations of Can. Instead they developed a spacey, synth-driven sound that was profoundly influential on electronic and ambient music.

Tangerine Dream released more than 100 albums and wrote music for numerous movies including Tom Cruise’s breakthrough 1983 film Risky Business and Legend.

The band enjoyed a break when it caught the attention of John Peel, who named their 1973 album Atem as his album of the year and were soon signed by the then-upstart Virgin label of Richard Branson.

Virgin Records gave Tangerine Dream free rein in the studio and the result was 1974’s Phaedra, which became one of electronica’s seminal works.

The album pushed the limits of the era’s sequencer technology to create a psychedelic atmosphere that some critics likened to space travel.

viernes, 8 de enero de 2016

Mild High Club - Windowpane

C Duncan

"Architect showcases a huge breadth in Christopher’s songwriting abilities. Lead singles ‘Say’ and ‘For’ are characterized by their gentleness and warmth, while ‘Garden’ (released as a single with the album) is bright, sunny, irrepressible. On the other side, ‘By’ and ‘Novices’ draw more overtly from Christopher’s interest in electronic music and modern composition. He references The Knife and Arvo Pärt as willingly as Burt Bacharach and The Carpenters. Add to that shades of Talk Talk, Fleet Foxes, Grizzly Bear, The Ink Spots and the classical and choral compositions of Maurice Ravel and Gabriel Fauré, and a picture of the record collection that informs Christopher’s music starts to become clear."

jueves, 7 de enero de 2016

The Disco Boys - For You

Jose Feliciano - "Chico And The Man" theme - stereo

10 de febrero 2014

Esta canción del compatriota José Feliciano es una de las memorias músicales más antiguas de mi niñez. Por muchos años creí que Chico and the Man era una película, y hasta me imaginaba que a lo mejor era un filme de acción a lo Serpico, una especie de drama policiaco. Pero después me enteré que no era una película sino una comedia televisiva clásica de los 70. El protagonista de la serie era el actor Freddie Prinze, boricua por su lado materno. Prinze terminó su vida trágicamente cuando se suicidó de un tiro en enero de 1977.

martes, 5 de enero de 2016

Manfred Mann's Earth Band - For You (Original Album Version)

Like "Blinded By The Light" and "Spirit in the Night" (on The Roaring Silence), this song was covered byManfred Mann's Earth Band for their album Chance.[6] As with Manfred Mann Earth Band's previous Springsteen covers, they used a more forceful, rockier sound in "For You" than Springsteen did.[6] The Earth Band version built from a more temperate beginning to an explosion of sound in the bridge, and incorporates five guitars and an impressive keyboard solo by Manfred Mann 3/4 of the way into the song.[6] The song was also included on the compilation albums The Best of Manfred Mann's Earth Band and Blinded by the Light & Other Hits.[6] However, the single release did not achieve the success of their other Springsteen covers.

lunes, 4 de enero de 2016

Bruce Springsteen - For You

"For You" is a song written and recorded by Bruce Springsteen in 1972 for his debut album Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J., released in 1973. It was later included on the compilation album The Essential Bruce Springsteen. The song has been covered by Manfred Mann's Earth BandThe Format, and Greg Kihn.

"For You" was recorded at 914 Sound Studios in Blauvelt, New York on June 27, 1972, the same day as the rest of the album except "Blinded by the Light" and "Spirit in the Night".[1] Musicians participating in these sessions included future E Street Band members David SanciousGarry Tallent and Vini Lopez.[1] It is a climactic, percussion-driven song. Unlike many other songs on Springsteen's debut album, it takes the time to pace and build.[2]
The lyrics[3] are about a woman who has attempted suicide.[4][5] She does not need the singer's "urgency" even though her life is "one long emergency" as Springsteen sings in the chorus (along with "and your cloud line urges me, and my electric surges free"). The singer is committed to doing anything to save her, and admires her ability to hang on.[4] Once again, the lyrics are evocative of images and not details, and little can be said in description.
In many live concerts, including the critically acclaimed Hammersmith Odeon London '75, Bruce transformed the song into a tender piano ballad without accompaniment.

sábado, 2 de enero de 2016

Peter Baumann - "Repeat Repeat"

Baumann, veterano de Tangerine Dream y fundador del sello disquero Private Music.

Peter Baumann (born 29 January 1953) formed the core line-up of the pioneering German electronic group Tangerine Dream with Edgar Froese and Christopher Franke in 1971. Baumann composed his first solo album in 1976, while still touring with the band, and embarked on a solo career in 1977.
Since the early 2000s, Baumann has devoted his time to studying and promoting initiatives in science and philosophy that shed light on the human condition.

viernes, 1 de enero de 2016

Star Wars Holiday Special - Review and Discussion

Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin - Henry and James


Serious pop from the other Dave Stewart
In 1985 I was attending college in New York, and in the great tradition of young people wasting the best years of their lives “experimenting,” I developed an addiction—to synthesizers. I bought what was to be the first of many keyboards and spent countless hours tweaking sounds when ordinary people my age were busy getting drunk and forming bad social habits. I wasn’t very interested in writing songs; what fascinated me most was the process of creating interesting timbres.
I subscribed to Keyboard Magazine, which encouraged my habit in two different ways. First, each issue convinced me that I absolutely needed the latest electronic musical gadgets, thus ensuring a state of perpetual credit card debt. But the magazine also taught me a number of practical skills for making music. One of the magazine’s features at that time was called a Soundpage—a tear-out plastic phonograph record. Each month, some well-known keyboard player would put together a special recording, along with an article describing the music and the techniques used to create it.

- From the Interesting Thing of the Day blog