The Fortnightly Playlist, March 24th, 2019

Well, someone has to be willing to champion some of the weirder music, right? This edition of the playlist does really go all over the place stylistically. It kicks off with a double shot of Ibibio Sound Machine, and twists and turns its way through Funk, Afrobeat, Electro, Thrash, Balkan Folk, Americana, Modern Rock, Math Rock, Indie Folk-rock, Hip-Hop, R&B, and Desert Blues.

Listen Here!

Seattle-based, gypsy-thrash band, Kultur Shock have released their latest album, D.R.E.A.M. Kultur Shock have never been a band to shy away from their roots or their message, and this record is no different. It kicks things right off with “Refugee”. A driving punk song railing against the selfish and prejudiced treatment immigrants receive in the US, and no one escapes the scathing indictment… “And what about you, my correct friend on the left? Would you like to hang out or see our children on a playdate?”  Musically, this is a relentless record. Driving guitar, screaming fiddle, a wide array of vocal stylings, and a tight rhythm section.

Rosie Tucker’s new record is beautiful. It’s an emotionally rich album that feels personal, but it also is full of humor and wit. I have to say her work has an honest feel to it. Throughout the tracks you’ll find embarrassing admissions, feeling laid bare, opinions that couldn’t be said in person and ended up in songs. It’s a bold and sincere Indie-rock effort, that is really finding its way into my go-to albums this year.

Other favorites this edition are Wintersleep, Strand of Oaks, the new collaboration between Iron & Wine and Calexico, and Hatchie. Oh yeah, and I think Ibibio Sound Machine has my favorite album so far in 2019. Enjoy!

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Tracklist:
Ibibio Sound Machine – I Will Run
Ibibio Sound Machine – Just Go Forward (Ka I So)
Panda Bear – Dolphin
The Chemical Brothers – Got To Keep On
John Vanderslice – Spectral Dawn
The Claypool Lennon Delirium – South of Reality
Kultur Shock – Haram Para
Fontaines DC – Roy’s Tune
Strand of Oaks – Final Fires
Calexico, Iron & Wine – Father Mountain
Rosie Tucker – Fault Lines
The Tallest Man On Earth – The Running Styles of New York
Hatchie – Without a Blush
Wintersleep – Forest Fire
Foals – Exits
Vel The Wonder – Deep End
Gifted Gab – That Way
Solange – Almeda
Tartit – Afous Dafous
Kultur Shock – Refugee

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The Fortnightly Playlist, March 10th, 2019

Looking at this finished playlist makes me realize I’ve been really into upbeat groove-based music lately. Blues and funk elements all over the place. New albums from Chaka Khan, Galactic, Kel Assouf, and Gary Clark Jr. certainly steer things in that direction, and new singles from The Black Keys, Ibibio Sound Machine, and Mdou Moctar keep up that trend.

The playlist is here

Chaka Khan’s new record came out last month, and it has some seriously good tunes. It’s her first release in 12 years, and it blends together various eras of pop music including funk, disco, and hip-hop. By now, of course, Chaka Khan is a legend known as the Queen of Funk. Her career spans back to her first release in 1973 as the lead singer of the band Rufus, and now includes 9 Rufus albums and 13 solo releases. While the new record is quite short, it is very good to know that Khan — turning 66 this month — is still giving us new material of such high quality.

One of the albums I’m really looking forward to is Ibibio Sound Machine’s upcoming third full-length release, Doko Mien. The London-based group draws on many different style of traditional and modern music in an absolutely fascinating way. There’s a reason that all three singles so far have found their way onto these playlists. I find them to be a highly unique group that manages to blend West African funk and disco with electro and post-punk like no other group I’ve come across. The band takes its name from the family history of singer Eno Williams. Though she was born in London, she spent much of her childhood in Nigeria where her mother’s native language was Ibibio.

Other favorites this week include Kel Assouf, this incredible Shakiah tune, the new Filthy Friends single, the new Black Keys single, and the new Wintersleep single.

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Chaka Khan – Don’t Cha Know
Galactic – Already
Galactic – Everlasting Light (feat. David Shaw and Nahko)
Shakiah – 3718
Vel The Wonder – Luck
Dessa – Grade School Games
Nicola Cruz – Obsidiana
Ruben Blades, Making Movies – No Te Calles
Filthy Friends – Last Chance Country
Strand of Oaks – Ruby
Hiss Golden Messenger – Watching the Wires
Cochemea – Mitote
Mdou Moctar – Kamane Tarhanin
Kel Assouf – Tenere
Gary Clark Jr – Low Down Rolling Stone
The Black Keys – Lo/Hi
Ibibio Sound Machine – Guess We Found A Way
Hiss Golden Messenger – Everybody Needs Somebody
Wintersleep – Into The Shape Of Your Heart
Black Mountain – Future Shade
John Vanderslice – Will Call