No social commentary this week, jumping straight in to the music, this week we have a bunch of greatness for your appreciation including some Soul, Chicago House, Hip Hop and Indie plus loads more.
Let’s get things started:
DJ Dez, Natural EP, 5 track 12″ EP from 2004 on Hipnotech. Features the tracks Hollywood, Pull Out The Nine, Word, Daennalude, Detroit Detour. DJ Dez is an alias for the Detroit DJ Andrés from Rotating Assembly, this release is on the underground Hip Hop, Detroit based label run by Keith Butts and George Taggart.
Rage Against The Machine, Rage Against The Machine, absolute classic metal album from 1992, politically charged and angry, this is a reissue in lovely condition. This album saw Rage quickly hitting their stride and running with everything they had. It’s incredibly powerful and still entirely relevant. 2009 saw the ‘Get Rage Against The Machine to Christmas Number One in The UK’ campaign that was entirely successful, performing Killing In The Name on BBC Radio 5 Live promised to omit all swearing but obviously didn’t!
The Black Heart Procession, Blood Bunny/Black Rabbit, limited edition 2010 release on Temporary Residence Limited. BHP’s most recent release from a career spanning almost 20 years. This mini-album features remixes by Lee Scratch Perry and Eluvium. This on-again-off-again band actually played two shows this year! Could that mean more on the horizon for this band of moodies? Lets hope so.
The White Stripes, De Stijl, reissue of the White Second album on XL Recordings from 2000. This album is dedicated to the memory of blues musician Blind Willie McTell and furniture designer Gerritt Rietveld who was involved in the Dutch art movement.
The Horrors, Strange House, original UK pressing of this LP on Loog/Polydor from 2007. Gatefold sleeve with original hype-sticker on the front. This album consists of mostly of previously released material although a lot of it had been re-recorded or remixed for this release. The tag line for this album is too good to not mention “Psychotic Sounds For Freaks And Weirdos”
John Martyn, Solid Air, UK Pink-Rim Island original pressing with the hand-etched matrix and gatefold sleeve. This is the earliest press of this wonderful LP so a real corker of a find for whomever chooses to purchase it. The title track of this album is dedicated to Martyn’s friend Nick Drake (was anyone ever really friends with Nick Drake?) and is profoundly moving considering that Drake took his own life only 18 months after this album’s release.
Sculpture, Toad Blinker, a limited edition German picture disc with a trippy-ass mandala on it. from 2011 on Dekorder. Sculpture are an “opto-musical agglomerate is the pairing of British musician Dan Hayhurst (media devices, electronic instruments) and New Zealand animator Reuben Sutherland (video zoetrope turntable, animation, optix)”…. sounds, uhh, interesting.
Nerf Herder, American Cheese,
rare US copy of this LP on Honest Don’s from 2002. I just discovered that Nerf Herder had an album out this year!?! Anyway, Nerf Herder are a wicked Pop Punk band from Santa Barbra, their debut album Nerf Herder is a lot of fun and this album continues in the same vein of silliness and perpetual-adolescence. Their songs are full of catchy nonsense with dumb lyrics that’ll make you chuckle, my favourite (not from this album) “she’s the kind of girl who you would give up eating meat for; no more salami, no more steak or potatoes. Yeah, you would walk on down to the health food store and buy hummus, and tabbouleh, and babaganoush and rice cakes, rice cakes, RICE CAKES”
Genius/GZA, Liquid Swords, reissue of this classic GZA album from 1995. This is GZA’s second studio album it’s sample heavy, in typical Wu-Tang style, featuring dialogue from the film Shogun Assissin with lots of dark atmospheric material concentrating on the themes featured in many Wu albums like chess, crime and religious philosophy. All Wu-Tang members feature on this album too including Killah Priest. This album is considered not only the best solo project by any Wu-Tang member but also one of the greatest Hip Hop albums of all time.
Various Artists, Cosmic Machine – The Sequel, a voyage across French Cosmic and Electronic Avantgarde (70s-80s). 2016 compilation on Because Music, compiled by Olivier Carrie/Uncle O.
Michael Jackson, Off The Wall, rare UK copy of this album from 1979 on Epic. It comes with the much sought after 7inch picture disc. This is one of the biggest selling albums of all time and widely considered Jackson’s best work (pre-craziness) as it’s so accomplished and packed full of bangers. Jackson was the first solo artist to have five hit singles from one album with this record and definitely paved the way for him to become the biggest recording artist of all time… and then all that stuff happened and things got creepy/weird/misunderstood/sad.
Minnie Ripperton, Les Fleurs – The Minnie Ripperton Anthology, a double LP compilation of some of Ripperton’s finest works selected by Dean Rudland and Frank Tope. She’s one of few who truly had a five-octave vocal range which enabled her to reach those crazy high notes known as “whistle range” and she utilized it in outstanding fashion in many of her recorded works, most famously in 1974 hit Lovin’ You. Minnie Ripperton died incredibly young, from cancer, at the age of 31. The actress and comedian Maya Rudolph is her daughter, in a 2013 interview with NPR she had this to say about her mother
“… My mom was music. Music poured out of my mother, and I’m sure I heard it before I even got here when I was in her belly… It was a different time for people being famous and being recognized for what they do. I always make this case because I feel like my mom was part of a generation of people who [had] incredible gifts. There was no sweetening of vocals. There was no Pro Tools then. So I feel like people like her really shone because they were just so incredibly gifted and one of a kind. She was very revered for that reason and very well-respected. My mom was a special, cool lady.”
As always, a playlist of all of the tracks featured on this week’s blog can be found here.