Saturday, April 18, 2015

Leo Kottke - A Shout Toward Noon (1983)

One of my favorite releases from one of my favorite fingerpickers. I think this came out on Private Music, a "new age" label that was at the time releasing stuff by everyone from Suzanne Ciani to Yanni. Highlights include his cover of "Little Martha," "The Ice Field" and the beautiful closer "First to Go."


Saturday, April 11, 2015

Isabelle Antena - En Cavale (1986)

Total escapist (en cavale >>>"on the run"), French chanteuse pop by way of Rio bossa nova feel/Mediterranean sun. Some tracks are reminding me of Chic too. Smooth jazz is a good thing. "Seaside Weekend" is like the thesis statement of the whole work (forgive me, I'm grading papers and dreaming of the beach/no responsibility). Pastels on the horizon, breezes, endless summer...


Friday, April 10, 2015

Bora Rokovic - Ultra Native (1972)

Don't know too much about this guy, but I found him after realizing this morning that the Fender Rhodes sound is one of the loveliest sounds ever concocted and subsequently downloading everything Rhodes in sight. Here's a nice list if you're jonesin' like me. "Soft Hands Had the Rain" is hitting the spot today.

Oh, and if you like this stuff, go over to OPIUM HUM and get all the choice Lonnie Liston Smith albums he's been posting over there, and check out this list too.


Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Ghostwriters - Objects In Mirrors Are Closer Than They Appear (1981)

Heard about this duo when "Swizzle" was featured on Jason Urick's excellently curated Fly Room mix.

"Swizzle" is a great example of what these guys were able to do: make totally locked-in yet exploratory, funky melodic music using modular synths (I believe Charles Cohen is a Buchla man).

This is arpeggiated music that doesn't feel repetitive; there's a new idea, a shift around every corner.

And silly! The Peter Gunn intro to "Sleedermauseman" before things get really "out" at the halfway mark.

It's a real pleasure to listen to. That's all I have to say.
Oh yeah, "Emotional Momentum" is also utter joy.  
Amuse-toi bien!

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Inga Humpe - Planet Oz (1990)

I first encountered the Humpe sisters, Annette and Inga, via the excellent Dustin Wong/Takako Minekawa mix over at Portals (by the way, if you haven't checked out their collaborations out on thrill jockey, do yourself a favor and do so). Apparently, "Yama-Ha" is a pretty well-known track, and what's not to like about two German ladies singing Japanese product names over some pretty inventive pop production?

This album doesn't really fall into the same vein of synth pop - think European club music of the time and you've got a good frame of reference. When that house beat isn't pounding (and even when it is), there's some lovely double-tracked harmonies and plenty of  production ear-candy. I wish the rest of the album sounded like "Cowboy Song," but what you end up getting is pretty good too. 


Saturday, April 4, 2015

Friends of Earth - Sex, Energy and Star (Non-Standard, 1986)

This one seemed too fun not to share right away. The Godfather of Soul and genre-hopping whiz dude Haruomi Hosono, together at last with F.o.E.! It sounds like what you'd expect - which means you probably want to get down with it. The rest of the album is a treat too, all over the place in terms of style. "Total Eclipse" is an electro-tribal burner with some great female vocals, "Opera" is old-school Hosono MIDI spazz shit. There's a nice Dr. John cover. For my $$$ though, check out "In My Jungle," an exemplary sexy synth jam with some lovely piano touches halfway through...