:Episode One Hundred Seventy-Five: 2.14.2020
|Kanaan||Of Raging Billows Breaking on the Ground||Odense Sessions|
|Meteor Vortex||Ceres Highway||Spiraled Beyond the Reach|
|Sunburned Hand of the Man||Born Clever||Headless|
|Kedama||Zugabe||Live at Sunrise Studios|
|Amirtha Kidambi & Elder Ones||Kali Yuga||Holy Science|
|Snekkestad / Guy / Fernandez||The Swiftest Traveler (Live)||The Swiftest Traveler|
|Moses Boyd||Y.O.Y.O.||Dark Matter|
|Albert Ayler Trio||Spirits||Spiritual Unity|
|Pedro Magina||Everybody's Boogie||Olímpia|
|Jacoti Sommes||Mars||Travel Time|
|Sign Libra||Sea of Tranquility||Sea to Sea|
|Kelpe||Meridian Palindrome||Run With the Floating, Weightless Slowness|
Open playlist in Spotify
* Not on Spotify:
Amirtha Kidambi & Elder Ones - Kali Yuga
We begin this week with Kanaan, a Norwegian neo-prog trio who are joined on their most recent album by Causa Sui member and El Paraiso label head Jonas Munk, whose presence on guitar complements the somewhat more classically metal-leaning sound on display (it wouldn't surprise me if they were listening to a lot of Captain Beyond, or some other heavier 70s prog, at the time they recorded it). Following this are Finns Meteor Vortex with some stoner prog (and if you're a fan of loo-oo-oong songs, like me, this ten-plus minute epic is one of the shorter numbers from their latest album), and the long-dormant Sunburned Hand of the Man with some ambling freak-folk. Concluding the set is Swiss Krautrock obscurity Kedama, whose early discography (i.e. one album and a whole bunch of unreleased tracks) is being issued as a box set by Castle Face Records. It's not hard to see how they caught the ear of label head John Dwyer, as their frenetic, lo-fi take on 70s European prog mirrors that of many of his garage-oriented imprint's more recent releases.
The middle set is usually reserved for jazz, world, and avant-garde, and leading it this week is a song that, across seventeen minutes, manages to incorporate elements of all three. Amirtha Kidambi is the artist responsible, a composer and performer from NYC, whose sprawling, classically-Indian influenced song-suites I recommend with the following caveat: she has a tendency (unfortunate, in my mind) to stray into Norah Jones-ian easy-listening pop-jazz, using a sultry-voiced scat-singing style that modern advertising has conditioned me, in a Pavlovian manner, to associate with blended coffee drinks. Next is the Snekkestad/Guy/Fernandez trio, the latest export from the free jazz hotbed that is Oslo, Norway (seriously: somehow, the two primary Norwegian musical exports are ultra-grim black metal and ridiculously far-out free jazz), followed by a track from the excellent solo electronic-music-influenced jazz debut of UK drummer Moses Boyd. Ending the set is free-jazz legend Albert Ayler, whose Spiritual Unity has been reissued yet again, so every aspiring young jazzbo can have their requisite vinyl copy of this avant-garde holy grail.
Speaking of necessary reissues, the final, electronic-oriented set leads off with a track from Heldon, the tremendous French synth/prog/Kraut band whose final three albums have been repressed by Bureau B. Aside from their debut, their three record career coda is the most essential part of their discography, as it coincides with Richard Pinhas forming a live band (it had been a strictly studio-based project prior) to give some oomph to his Frippian noodlings. After this is Portugese, former Not Not Fun label artist Pedro Magina with some tropical pop ambience, and Ohioan Jacoti Sommes with a very spaced-out, vintage-sounding analog synth piece. Next is Latvian composer and artist Sign Libra, on whose most recent release, for vowel-hating label RVNG, every song is titled for a lunar mare (and, as I've mentioned before, while giving your music space-related names doesn't automatically guarantee I'll play it, it definitely doesn't hurt). Then, closing the set, and the show, is Kelpe, the alter ego of producer Kel McKeown, with an Another Green World-ian sound sketch.