Though we’re all still processing the loss of our beloved Jonathan Gold, this week is a bit better than the last, and next week will be a bit better than this one. And so, on to some music. As we’re right in the thick of summer now, there are a few new releases to enjoy on this first weekend of August. Yeah, August…I feel weird even typing it.
Fat Freddy’s Drop – “Trickle Down”
I have been a HUGE fan of this Kiwi collective ever since I heard Tom Schnabel play “This Room” on Cafe LA one Sunday afternoon in 2006. FFD has had a monopoly on fusing dub, reggae, soul with electronic and psychedelic flare unlike any other act we’ve ever heard. If you aren’t hip, get hip. They recently surprised us fans with a brand new single, “Trickle Down,” which is a heavy, electronic song that is a critique on the economic principle of the same name.
Santigold – I Don’t Want: The Gold Fire Sessions
Santi White is back! Though this time a bit different than how we’ve become accustomed to expect. But don’t worry – I Don’t Want stays true to the pop sensibilities that put her on the map in the first place, but this time, with the help of Dre Skull (Mixpak/Popcaan), she has given us ten dancehall and Afro-Caribbean inspired tracks. Santi’s fourth album was largely recorded in just two weeks and plays as a fun mixtape. When asked about the inspiration behind the upbeat feel of the album, she said, “Right now it’s hard enough to get people to listen to anything that feels heavy and dark…Nobody wants to feel that way all the time.” Take a listen to one of my favorite songs from the album, “Wha’ You Feel Like.” Try feeling down listening to this!
Astronauts, etc. – Living In Symbol
If you’re a fan of The Whitest Boy Alive, Kings of Convenience, Andy Shauf or Michael Franks, then you’ll like Astronauts, etc.. This project is the brainchild of classically trained musician Anthony Ferraro, who also happens to be the keyboardist for Toro y Moi . Living In Symbol is quite the clever contrast. The music is mostly gentle and delicate in tone, layered with Ferraro’s soft, falsetto voice, while the overall themes on the record explore the strangeness of the Information Age and serve as an ode to ambiguity and the future. The presentation of the music and lyrics in this format creates a affirmative lullaby that lulls you into agreement with everything he says. Quite impressive for his sophomore effort. Take a look at the visuals for my favorite song on the record, “The Border”