August 26, 2003
title:: Beat Tape Personalities
label:: Soul Jazz Records
Ammoncontact are an instrumental duo from Los Angeles. Carlos Nino and Fabian Ammon refer to their music as hip-hop, but the appeal of their sound will extend beyond that of hip-hop, because of the lack of vocals and the quality of the tracks.
The centerpiece of 'Beat Tape Personalities' is The Stars Are Singing Too. This track has a timeless magic to it. You cannot tell whether it was recorded last month or three decades ago. There are soulful wordless male and female vocals, tons of percussion, lots of flute, and a lack of polish that makes the track sound like a recording of a stream of consciousness jam session.
title:: The Meat & Oil EP
label:: Mush Records
Jel is the beatmaster of Anticon. The Meat & Oil EP is his latest release on the happening label Mush records. It is considered to be underground hip-hop, but that title is misleading as there are no vocals, and there are many types of music influencing the sounds of Jel.
When I bought The Meat & Oil EP I did not know who Jel was. I broke the shrink wrap and listened to the 12inch in the store. I liked what I heard. The production is fairly rough, but it only serves to lend a natural feel to the tracks on the EP.
title:: Travels With A Donkey
Despite first recoding in 1997, 'Travels With A Donkey' is the brand new first full length of Milky. Milky is Shazna Nessa and her ex-husband Momus. Many of you know their famous track The Emperor of Oranges. It is the only track from the past included on this record, though another song from the past makes its first appearance here (Jackie Onasis). Shazna specializes in a Claudine Longet styled whisper, though she sounds decidedly more playful and carefree then Claudine.
'Travels With A Donkey' is a strong record - my favorite Siesta album in some time.
The New Electric Policy 2
label:: Red Antenna
The New Electric Policy 2 collects together recordings artists who record for the Red Antenna label out of New York and includes tracks from fym, Sneak-Thief (from the Intuit Solar label), Candy Chang, sub.q, mental tsp, Karl Zeiss, $tinkworx (from the downlow label), The Juan Maclean (from the DFA label), Dykehouse (from Ghostly International), DFD, Gen_Des_Com, and Self Contained Unit.
According to James Reeves from Red Antenna from an interview: "we have a remarkably wide range of sound on Red Antenna: Candy Chang’s polished electro, Self Contained Unit’s retro-synth melodies, Tomorrowland’s atmospherics, and the distilled house music of mental tsp. We’re interested in artists that don’t subscribe to a particular sound. Such a broad scope makes it difficult to identify Red Antenna with one particular sound, so instead we focus on a certain visual aesthetic and philosophy - and it makes us a more interesting label."
label:: Damaged Goods
I heard rumors about this compilation of Raw Records (one of the UK's first independent punk labels) a couple of years ago, so I'm glad to finally see it available. Damaged Goods out of the UK got the rights to the Raw Records releases, and have fired off some reissues including this tremendous compilation Raw Deal which originally came out back in the heyday of punk rock 1977.
Snotty, kick ass, raw, fiery, punk rock of the first order recorded by The Users, Acme Sewage Co., The G.T.'s, The Bloodclots, The Sick Things, The Psycho's, The Killjoys, and Zhain are all included. These groups sound fresh as the day this compilation was originally released in 1977. I don't know a thing about these bands, except that they are incredible punk rock deserving of our time and attention. 16 tracks in all.