Returning to a recurring theme, May focuses on our ears’ tendency to identify sound with places. Not only do our seven releases’ titles refer to location but each play with our ideas of where music comes from, culturally and historically. Deceptively eclectic, some offer music’s disguises to appear authentically as themselves while others adopt differently displaced genres and end up belonging to none of them. Move to the beat and across the world with new eyes set on familiar horizons.
Rupa and the April Fishes - Extraordinary Rendition
Album title: Extraordinary Rendition
Record Label: Cumbancha Records
A collective of multi-lingual flings, teasing beats, pouty polkas and tangled tangos – Rupa’s basket of salty and sultry mingles the sad with pizzazz and elegant despair with can-can chicanery. Novelties surrounded by melancholy, hot jazz laced with sad fiddles and muted trumpets, “Extraordinary,” hops, skips and tumbles into the heart.
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Hayden - In Field and Town
Album title: In Field and Town
Record Label: Fat Possum/Hardwood Records
Ambling piano, far-away guitars, trusty harmonicas and Flaming Lips synths - “Field,” testifies, witnessing fresh injections into home-grown alt-folk idioms. Whether playing casual toe-tapping social observer or humble, hum-able broken-hearted tumbleweed, Hayden stamps his grizzly delivery over badlands ballads, newspaper narratives and space-age emo. Simple yet sumptuous, “Field,” offers sadly hopeful relief.
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Charlatans - You Cross My Path
Album title: You Cross My Path
Record Label: Self Released
Loaded with juiced dance grooves, hyperbolic bass and crashing grandeur, “Cross,” elevates earthly relationships to Valkyrie dimensions forging legendary status in classic rock fashion. Courtly rock that takes no prisoners, the Charlatan’s unsubmissive mission snarls with glam, gung-ho struts and game, come-hither glories, triumphantly butting heads against soul-drenched working-class and kick-ass new wave.
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Skybombers - Take Me to Town
Album title: Take Me to Town
Record Label: Albert Production
Swinging from tasty bluster kicking apart adolescent frustration to thunderous raspberries, this precocious Aussie quartet shows Outback belligerence via sometime in L.A. - howling through rockabilly garage toss-offs and knocking out pitch-perfect, stomping mad scowls. Walloping pop-rock, “Town,” produces scuffling, amped-up six-string skiffle, jammed inside El Kabong riffs and brief, greasy hooks.
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Lili Haydn - Place Between Places
Album title: Place Between Places
Record Label: Nettwerk records
Drawing from her Philharmonic upbringing to a blossomed activism, P-Funk sessions, Page and Plant reunions and Herbie Hancock face-offs, Haydn’s violin and voice soar over ghostly poked solos and feather bed productions. Patience, playful and predatory, “Place,” adds gypsy mystery, oriental weaves and industrial steam to cosmopolitan lullabies, evocative fantasies and slicked-back jive.
(2593) Page Views
South - You Are Here
Album title: You Are Here
Record Label: Bluhammock
Bristling British brass, foreboding atmosphere, decisive drums and shimmering harmonies, “You,” boldly positions itself between love, life and logic, quietly announcing no clear winner. In South’s articulate and nuanced chamber pop, graceful melodies and boyish bravado simmer in jangle-y electricity, leaving smart first impressions and lingering after-thoughts as dreamy illuminations sail among military shadows.
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Babylon Circus - Dances Of Resistance
Album title: Dances Of Resistance
Record Label: Mr. Bongo
French Rastafarians concocting klezmer cabarets, high-stepping ska and hard-hitting horns, BC’s happy madness conjures politics and polygraphs around a roadrunner’s bar mitzvah. A frothy, funky frenzy of zany syncopation and mellow patois, “Dances,” is a high-octane carnival of concern juggling jungle fevers and spiraling calliopes, gypsy sunshine, festive traditions and revolutionary spunk.
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