The Fortnightly Playlist, September 24th, 2017

There’s so much new music to go through once again. We’ve got a fantastic collaboration from Kronos Quartet and Trio Da Kali, as well as new records from Matt Cameron (Skin Yard, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam), Rostam (Vampire Weekend), and Hiss Golden Messenger.

Give it a listen here!

There’s been a lot of buzz around the new Foo Fighters record. Particularly, the collaboration of Dave Grohl and Greg Kurstin on the production side has generated a lot of attention. What does Concrete and Gold sound like? Well, like the Foo Fighters, but with a different producer. When a band as big as the Foos does something to change it up there will always be some division among fans as to how it is received. In this instance, the Foo Fighters have positioned themselves as one of the most prominent rock bands in the last 20+ years. They’ve managed time and again to strike a balance between hard, modern rock, grittiness and mainstream pop appeal. This record takes a mellower tone overall. It is more atmospheric. They are covering ground they haven’t before, and they are leaving behind some of their familiar territory. It may be what is expected with Kurstin turning the knobs, and guiding the sound. Kurstin has been behind some of the biggest cultural touchstones of the past several years. You’ve heard his work whether you realize it or not. Most prominent would be Adele’s Hello and Beck’s Dreams. Some fans will like that, and some won’t. This record simply takes a different tone than they have in the past. It’s hard to say how fans will look at this record 10 yrs from now. It’s good, but it’s different.

In the last few years, I have gotten much more into hip hop than I used to be. I’ve come across some great artists that are challenging both lyrically and musically. This time I’m highlighting Open Mike Eagle, and his new record Brick Body Kids Still Daydream. What I love about good hip hop is the that it draws on so much other material. Sometimes it does this very obviously. It’s a shout out, and it directs your attention to another artist. Other times it is more low-key, subtle and intimate. This record draws on a lot of jazz music. Open Mike does this in a lot of ways. One of the more subtle ways that I love to hear is his working in jazz scales in his vocal lines. Rap is often about the rhythm and cadence of the lyrics, to layer melodic scales on top of that is really difficult and this record does it so well.

Personal favorites in this list are the Kronos Quartet & Trio Da Kali cover of Mahalia Jackson’s God Shall Wipe All Tears Away, Hiss Golden Messenger, Wolf Parade and Morrissey.


1. Wolf Parade – You’re Dreaming
2. Morrissey – Spent the Day In Bed
3. Bully – Running
4. Hiss Golden Messenger – Jenny of the Roses
5. The National – Empire Line
6. Rostam – Never Going To Catch Me
7. Open Mike Eagle – Hymnal
8. Vel the Wonder – Pursuit of…
9. Sotomayor – Tierra Viva
10. Arcade Fire – Mind Games (John Lennon cover)
11. Teen Daze – Echoes
12. Matt Cameron – Through the Ceiling
13. Prophets of Rage – Living on the 110
14. Da Cruz – Virose
15. Ibeyi – Me Voy
16. Pheobe Bridgers – You Missed My Heart
17. Declan McKenna – Isombard
18. Hiss Golden Messenger – Gulfport You’ve Been On My Mind
19. Trio Da Kali & Kronos Quartet – God Will Wipe All Tears Away (Mahalia Jackson cover)
20. Foo Fighters – Concrete And Gold

The Fortnightly Playlist, September 10th, 2017

Welcome once again to another edition of the Fortnightly Playlist. This fortnight, I’m featuring a lot of new collaborations and new projects from familiar faces. Lee Ranaldo (Sonic Youth) has a new solo record, and, coming soon, so does Matt Cameron (Soundgarden, Pearl Jam). Kurt Vile and Courtney Barnett are collaborating on a new record, and the first single, Over Everything, is excellent. Also in this edition are the new supergroup Filthy Friends, another single from Shredders, and a track from Bomba Estereo’s new record that features Balkan Beat Box.

Listen Here on Spotify

Another collaboration this edition is one of my favorite songs in this collection. Ibeyi’s new single, Deathless, features composer and saxophonist, Kamasi Washington. Ibeyi are twin sisters Lisa-Kainde and Naomi Diaz, whose father was a member of the famous Buena Vista Social Club. Blending Afro-cuban roots and electronic music, they produce something really beautiful and soulful.

One of my personal favorite new discoveries in the last couple weeks has been El Buho. The new EP, Chinampa, strikes that perfect balance between always keeping my interest and having a laid back, relaxing feel. The track I included here, Temporada de Lluvias, exemplefies what I mean. It’s music that you can just get lost in.

The playlist closes with a track from the new LCD Soundsystem album, american dream. What I noticed specifically when I first hear this song was the vocal style. James Murphy often leans toward the Talking Heads influences with his vocals, but here he changes things up and sounds more like Bono than I think I’ve ever heard before.

Let’s talk about this new Filthy Friends project now.  This is the real deal that grew one song at a time. Peter Buck (R.E.M.), Corin Tucker (Sleater-Kinney), Kurt Bloch (The Fastbacks), Scott McCaughey (The Minus 5) and Bill Rieflin (King Crimson) began by playing covers, then a set of Bowie songs, then contributing a song for a compilation, and now here we are being treated to an excellent debut record, Invitation. 

Other noteworthy releases include a couple local, Seattle releases from ODESZA and Tomo Nakayama, as well as a cut from the upcoming Polyrhythmics release.


1. Pains of Being Pure at Heart – My Only
2. ODESZA – Show Me
3. Beck – Dear Life
4. Filthy Friends – Windmill
5. Matt Cameron – Time Can’t Wait
6. Kurt Vile & Courtney Barnett – Over Everything
7. Alvvays – In Undertow
8. Ibeyi – Deathless (feat. Kamasi Washington)
9. Bishop Nehru – Introvertz
10. Otis Reed – Growing Pains
11. El Buho – Temporada de Lluvias
12. Daniel Caesar – Best Part (feat. H.E.R.)
13. Lee Ranaldo – Thrown Over the Wall
14. St. Vincent – Los Ageless
15. Shredders – Flipping Cars
16. Mega Ran – Form School of Feng Shui
17. Vel the Wonder – Woman in the Crowd
18. Bomba Estereo – Quimica (Dance With Me) (feat. Balkan Beat Box)
19. Polyrhythmics – Spider Wolf
20. Ela Minus – Ceremony
21. Daughter – Hope
22. Tomo Nakayama – Fourth of Julivar’s
23. Lina Tullgren – Get Lost
24. Noah Gundersen – The Sound
25. LADAMA – Compared to What
26. Onra – Loyalty
27. LCD Soundsystem – how do you sleep?