Eclectic Vibes - January 2015
CD/DVD Micro Reviews by Andrew Frey
Tops of 2014
For a variety of reasons, I managed to attend fewer festivals and shows in 2014, but I would like to think I chose some of the best out of the offerings available. Big Gigantic, Paper Diamond, Dan Deacon, Particle, Ziggy Marley, Trevor Hall, Wookiefoot and Beats Antique were shows that, for one reason or another, etched themselves into my memory of 2014. As in 2013, Nahko Bear and Medicine for the People registered high on my list, but with no new releases, didn’t capture my top spot this time around. In the recorded arena Too Many Zooz, Androcell, Entheogenic, Kognitif, Paris Djs, Dub Kirtan All Stars and Zebbler Encanti Experience tickled my fancy repeatedly.
THE POLISH AMBASSADOR WINS!
My top slot this year goes to The Polish Ambassador. In his music, The Polish Ambassador (aka David Sugalski) weaves world-infused glitch grooves with bass-fueled breaks crossed by psy-fi lullabies to create unique flowing experimental funktronica. When I saw him and his crew at the Majestic Theater in Madison on 10/23/14, I was quite impressed with the ease and flow of the whole evening, which once started, flowed seamlessly and was uninterrupted by any band or set breaks during the several artists that performed. Also, thanks to visual artist Liminus, the show was host to highly mesmerizing non-stop improvisational video projection.
The Polish Ambassador also rated highly for me for his carbon-neutral Permaculture Action Tour itself, which offered a permaculture action day on the morrow following his show. The aim was at raising awareness for the what permaculture is, as well as spreading the word about key players and offerings in your area. Connecting the electronic music realm of consciousness with grassroots efforts at ecological awareness is pretty keen in my book. Additionally, he took his record label, Jumpsuit Records, and relaunched it as Jumpsuit Collective with the new mission statement of being, “A cooperative of artists aligned in a common vision to utilize our music as a vehicle for visible, positive change; for our planet, for our growing community and for the beauty of our creative spirit.” What will this visionary dynamic artist co-create next? thepolishambassador.com
Freezing your ass off in the cold may not be funny, but thankfully you can laugh off the winter chill this January with a steady stream of top-notch comedians coming through our area. Start out on 1/9 with Jerry Seinfeld at the Overture Center For The Arts and continue on 1/14 with Patton Oswald at the Orpheum Theater and then Frank Caliendo on 1/15 at the Overture Center For The Arts. Toss a coin as to who you want to see on 1/24 when Lewis Black is at the Orpheum Theater and Kathy Griffin is at HoChunk Casino (in Baraboo), but make sure to get out on 2/6 for Demetri Martin at the Barrymore Theater.
Record Label: Ubiquity
Review published: January 2015
Take the Austin-based Latin funk band Brownout, add congas, horns, zest and psychedelics to choice catalog selections from Hard Rock and Heavy Metal godfathers Black Sabbath and you get Brown Sabbath, their funky, salsafied cousins. They make it surprisingly hard to decide whether to bang your head or dance your ass off to these 7 classic tracks.
Record Label: Redeye Records
Review published: January 2015
Immediate affection! Whimsical expressions of disco found mingling with loungy cocktail exotica are key to the significance and fluidity of the first full length release from Norwegian DJ, songwriter, and record producer Terje. The album manages to time travel between several eras while garnering the kitschy, catchy, quirky, quaint and queefless aspects of each, which is not an easy task, but it sure is fun!