Shishko Disco – Shishko Disco
Berlin’s Middle-Eastern funk crew Shishko Disco was a pretty and nice surprise in May. Their full-length debut combines the traditional and recognizable melodies of Arabic music with Western and modern jazz. The result is truly impressive and endlessly replayable. Listen to a few seconds of it to succumb to its charm!
Sloth Racket – A Glorious Monster
Sloth Racket is a band bringing forth a slow burn type of jazz, almost akin to doom music. The saxophonist’s compositions are complex and quite close to free jazz, which is really impressive and interesting. The four songs on record make up over forty minutes of material that is dissonant, disjointed, and rather gloomy. I love it!
Rytmigeneraattori – Ikiliikkuja
I never imagined a didgeridoo-and-drums duo could sound so compelling and diverse as this, but Finland’s Rytmigeneraattori opened my eyes! Didgeridooist Erno Kettunen uses circular breathing to pull through four, five, or even seven minutes of almost incessant blowing on the duo’s varied songs definitely crafted to party. The whole EP is very upbeat and almost entrancing, and it’s a valuable addition to anybody’s music collection!
Tim Garland – Weather Walker
Tim Garland‘s cinematic, lush jazz is on display on Weather Walker, the London saxophonist’s most recent release. The album feels like a romantic soundtrack, and was recorded with a full orchestra, giving body to the exquisite compositions. It’s a fantastic album that warrants a close listen!
Echo Pearl Varsity – Future Lens
Somewhere between indie rock and jazz fusion lies Portland’s Echo Pearl Varsity. While some tracks are decidedly more fusion (“Lens of Truth”) or more indie (“Solitude”), there is a certain level of blend within each of them, which gives rise to something I don’t think I’ve heard before! This is a really cool and nice sound, I would like more of this!
Mimika Orchestra – Divinities of the Earth and the Waters
World fusion always cheers me up: the moving rhythms are usually quite fast-paced and slightly delayed–see microtime–, the melodies are memorable and intricate, and the singing is always refreshing, even when in a foreign language–perhaps especially, in fact. All these ingredients and more can be found on Mimika Orchestra‘s recent album, which bridges the gap between jazz fusion and traditional musics of different places, with a certain progressive rock, almost zeuhlish touch!
Spurv – Myra
Spurv‘s new album, Myra, is a memorable and weighty post-metal album with post-rock sensibility. The compositions have a clear and distinctive style that really is Spurv’s own. There’s a strong feel of tension and vague urgency that seeps into you as you progress through the record. It’s really a stellar album.
Actias Luna – The Bernoulli Effect
All-bass projects don’t often get much love from me, even if I’m a bass player myself! Too often, I find them timbrally boring–and that’s when the compositions themselves aren’t asinine–since the choice of tones for the instruments is usually pretty narrow. Actias Luna defies this by adding many layers of keys–synthesized strings, pianos, and other instruments–, thus increasing the sonic spectrum available. The result is something that you wouldn’t even qualify as a solo bass project. Bass is the only physical instrument on the EP, but it does one hell of a job to remain centre-stage, thanks to Nigel Li’s incredible chops!
Anicon – Entropy Mantra
This mini-review set has been awfully lite™, but let’s change this right now. Anicon‘s upcoming album, Entropy Mantra, out on June 19, is going to be an absolutely disgusting atmospheric black metal one. Melodic, dark, and progressive, this is a record that you’ll want to listen to.