Stream this nearly indescribable album from Czech music duo DVA titled NIPOMO. It seems to mix elements of jazz, noise, and indie pop with and a general sense of absurdity that makes this collection of tracks a fun listen. And as over-the-top as they may be, I find the vocals really cute at points. It’s like DVA has been able to embrace the quaintness of Belle & Sebasian or kawaii j-pop without losing sight of adventure. Enjoy!
German gloom jazz quartet Bohren & Der Club of Gore have a new album out of some more of the moodiest “fahrstuhlmusik” (elevator music) you’re likely to ever hear. It’s called Piano Nights, and above you can check out the fittingly surreal and noir-style music video for cut “Ganz leise kommt die Nacht,” starring sax and keys player Christoph Clöser. Good night.
Toronto jazz fusion trio BADBADNOTGOOD is getting ready to drop their third full-length album this year, and they’ve just sounded the alarm with the release of a new track titled “CS60.” Even the description box attached to this new song is virtually empty–well, except for ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)”–which drives me absolutely nuts. It’s only because the song leaves me with so many questions, though. For example, where did all of these fantastically lush sounds come from? Is the band working with a slew of guest musicians now? Who is producing?
All I know right now is I’m excited to hear the band approach instrumentation more ambitiously, because the results are sounding great so far!
Most tribute albums don’t go over that well, and I can’t make a promise that you’ll think Xiu Xiu’s Nina is an exception. However, from where I’m standing, this collection of recordings is incredibly twisted, bizarre, beautiful, and moving.
Divisive experimental pop act Xiu Xiu recently announced that it will be putting out a whole album of Nina Simone covers, simply titled Nina. Above, you can stream the opening track, an astonishing cover of “Don’t Smoke in Bed.” Xiu Xiu’s take on the song eschews the original’s powerfully dour piano, and instead juxtaposes frontman Jamie Stewart’s whispered and throaty croon against peppy, intermittent brass arrangements to breathtaking effect. The result is an almost paradoxical balance of cheeriness and despondency.
Nina is due out December 3 and will be Xiu Xiu’s debut on Graveface Records.
On her latest album, Loud City Song, CA singer-songwriter Julia Holter maintains her dreamy aesthetic while bringing some beautifully arranged horns and strings.
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When it comes to the more creative side of hip hop beats, Ras G is one of the oldest sonic alchemists on the West Coast today. He’s got a new album on the way via Brainfeeder Records this year, and from the sound of this first track from it, I think we’re in for a load of grooves, spacey synths, and instrumentation I suspect is live.
Though there isn’t a strong, memorable progression to the track, the linear direction is pretty hypnotic with the alluring instrumentation it delivers. Enjoy!