Tuesday, December 30, 2008
You should get to know her. She has an amazing voice and a great ear for production (Nostalgia 77, Quantic, ect). The only thing she doesn't have going is the whole "I'm a crack addict and life is pointless" strain and pain in her voice. Which Amy has dialed and does come through the speakers. Good or bad, it does add a 'lil something.
What Ms. Russell lakes in sucidal-ness she more than makes up for in pipes and sheer range. I mean wooooowwww... White English chicks are on some whole 'nother shit these days. Must be all those crumpets or something (heroine?). Regardless, this is another soulful Brit to add to the list and she deserves a spot towards the tippy [/Jeezy] if not for her production choices, arrangements, covers and whatnot, then I guess her voice will do. One must admit this woman has one of the most soulful set of vocal chords since Aretha. Yes, I do understand the comparison I just made.
Her new album Pot of Gold is all over the place, and I mean that in a great way. She pretty much nails every note, genre, cover and vibe on each of the lp's 11 songs. The production is great and gives her a near-perfect backdrop for the many styles and themes she tackles. My only complaints are it's "cleanliness" and that she almost tries to outdo herself vocally. That may sounds stupid. What do I mean by "cleanliness?" I like the gritty funk of Sharon Jones, the basement vibe of Breakestra/Orgone and the new Saadiq album has that Detroit circa 1961 sound. I know I can't win em all. The stuff she does with Quantic Soul Orchestra is filthy. I'm stuck in a time machine and some types of music are meant to be raw. Also, she just sounds like she's trying to shine a little too hard at times when subtler vocals would fit the vibe better. Not a major complaint cause she can sing WELL but as a producer I'd have told her to lay of a smidge on a few parts. I'm an ass I guess.
Anyways, buy the album...if only for her rendition of 'Crazy' that shits all over Gnarls Barkley's.
Monday, December 29, 2008
The fact you can stream "radio" stations based on your specific tastes, mood, similar artists, genre and then narrow it down using the thumbs up and thumbs down buttons is nothing short of amazing. I have tried everything from DJ Quick, Herbaliser, Donny Hathaway, GangStarr and many others, and each time I find something I've never heard before or hadn't heard in years. I immediately bust out a pen and pad and jot down the important info so I can get the song or album at a later date. I streamed Outkast radio for a 5am poker game last week and the cuts came raining down like the blizzard outside.
I know you can do this on your computer but having these stations at the palm of your hand is pretty amazing. I was on the mountain last week skiing along to some old school funk radio and having the time of my life. I am a huge music freak and the fact that my iPhone only holds 16gb scared the shit out of me. Now I don't even care 'cause everything I could ever need or want is one click away.
Pandora and Last.fm are pretty similar. The one thing I like about Last.fm is that it keeps track of your library and playlists online so you can refer back to your favorites or share playlists with friends. Pandora is a little more user friendly and the results are often more spot on, but I use both equally.
The iPhone is an amazing piece of machinery and is the greatest thing ever for any music fiend. I will go into some more apps in another post. Remote, Simplify Media and Shazam are used regularly and once you use them, you can't live without them. So go get yourself an iPhone and get with the fuckin program people.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Friday, December 26, 2008
These are the days that make it all worth it.
Life has thrown me some curveballs this year to say the least. RIP to those I've lost and get well soon to those that are ill. All you can do is savor the moments that make you feel the most alive and keep on keepin on.
Bring on the new year.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Line Out reported this morning that Colin Johnson is moving to LA at the end of the month. For those of you who have been living under a rock the past few years, Colin was the lead booker at Chop Suey up until about a year and a half ago. Then he was brought on at Nectar and did a stand up job turning it into my favorite music venue in town. He consistently brought in good acts and was really supportive of the local hip hop scene and music scene in general.
The city will miss ya man. You done good.
LA Gear has just released images of their NEW lineup coming out soon. Really? REAAAALLLY?
Peep the full lineup @ sneakerfiles.com
Post-Seattle Subsonic Happy Hour this Thursday I will be walking a few feet west over to Neumos to get with the Program...errr...show? and peep my good friends the Physics tear shit up. They are opening for the Massline tag team of Common Market and Blue Scholars and should be coming with some new stuff since they haven't performed in quite a while. Don't get me wrong, I can vibe out with some CM and BS, but I have seen each of them so many times I've lost track (mostly during my chai tea drinking, political scientist days at UW...zing!).
Each act is sure to bring their A game. The new Common Market joint Tobacco Road is a great album and I haven't seen any of that done live, so I'll take full advantage. Plus, a little bird told me some very special guests from our good friends Sportn' Life Records will be perfroming along side them. Blue Scholars have slowly been bumped farther and farther down my playlist these days, due mostly to the fact that Bayani, while being a solid effort, doesn't get above 80 bpms and tends to make my eyelids heavy. Regardless, the Scholars always come correct live and won't disappoint. BUT the Physics are and have been my shit for the last year or so and I've been blessed enough to have spent a couple sessions in the studio with them and know they've been hard at work.
So get your ass down to MOE Bar Thursday for Seattle Subsonic Happy Hour (!!!!) and then join me for some good ol fashioned hippity hop next door.
Oh and by the way...peep The Physics brand spankin new website/blog @ http://www.thephysicsmusic.com/blog/ and tell em I sent ya.
This is vintage James Brown, Michael Jackson and Prince all on one stage for a charity event back in the early 80's. Watching MJ up there is just sad. To see where he once was and the talent he once had...words cannot describe. Still tho, this shit gives me goosebumps. RIP J.B.
MJ from a different angle...those moves are unfuckwittable.
h/t to sneakerfiles.com
Find this article and more from me at www.seattlesubsonic.com
Grand Funk Railroad is one of my favorite classic rock groups of all time. I know most people either love them or hate them, and I a proud member one of the former. They have such a huge sound for a group consisting of three white guys. The late 60s and early 70s had so many good musical trios but this one stands out to me as being one of the best. Not only do they mesh elements of hard rock, funk, blues, soul and folk music, but they fit so much soul and emotion into all of their songs. I wish I could have seen them live on stage in their prime.
Closer to Home was the first Grand Funk record I purchased and one of the first records I ever sampled. It was first issued in 1970 and contains some of my favorite riffs and change ups in any hard (now deemed 'classic') rock record. The intro track 'Sin is a good man's brother' is nothing short of epic. The strain and emotion in lead singer Mark Farner's voice and the sheer amount of tempo changes and breakdowns really set the listener up for a wild ride. 'Nothing is the same' has one of the hardest bass and drum intros of that era and is one of the catchier rock riffs you'll ever hear. On 'Get it together' the band shows their versatility with downtempo rhodes organ licks that slowly pick up the pace to become full fledged in your face rock. The guitar solo and change up midway through the song are face-melting. Then they throw you into a soul choir extravaganza that screams for a Who-style rock opera. 'I don't have to sing the blues' also comes with an amazing guitar intro and a drum/bass break that would make the Creedence Clearwater Revival jealous. 'Hooked on love' once again starts with such a furious riff that begs to be looped over and over, and has some serious blues influence. You can see a theme here...the riffs are spectacular on this record. Finally we have 'I'm your captain' - probably their most famous song - is just an amazing amalgam of soul, rock and blues. It comes in at just over 10 minutes and the breakdown around 4:30 with the bass, flute and ocean sounds coupled with Farner's croon are the stuff of legend. It's musical storytelling 101. Then they come back with an instrumental section that brings it all 'Home.'
Do yourself a favor and check this record. You'll find one at just about any record shop in the greater Seattle area for under 4 bucks...hell maybe even in the dollar bin. Don't let that fool you though, this LP has some serious cuts and will take you back to a time when people made ALBUMS.
1. Raphael Saadiq - 100 Yard Dash
2. The Roots - Get Busy
3. The Saturday Knights - Motorin'
4. Jake One ft. Brother Ali & Freeway - The Truth
5. Black Milk ft. Royce - Losing Out
6. Busta Rhymes - Don't Touch Me
7. Sir Lucious Leftfoot (Big Boi) ft. Raekwon & Andre 3k - Royal Flush
8. TI ft. Kanye, Jay-Z and Lil Wayne - Swagga Like Us
9. Nightmares on Wax - Bringin It Back
10. The Herbaliser - Can't Help this Feeling
11. J-Live - It Don't Stop
12. Freeway - It's Over
13. Giant Panda - Laser Ray
14. Bun B ft. Pimp C & Chamillionaire - Underground Thang
15. Jake One ft. D Black - God Like
16. Q-Tip - ManWomanBoogie
17. The Roots - Rising Down
18. Robin Thicke - Magic
19. Nas - Sly Fox
20. Jake One ft. Ish, Vitamin D, Maine & C-Note - Home
21. Lupe Fiasco - Paris/Tokyo
22. The Cool Kids - Basement Party
23. N.E.R.D. - Anti-Matter
24. Ludacris ft. Common - Do the Right Thing
25. Estelle ft. Kanye - American Boy
- Top 25 Albums of 2008 -
1. Raphael Saadiq - The Way I See It
2. The Saturday Knights - Mingle
3. Jake One - White Van Music
4. The Roots - Rising Down
5. Black Milk - Tronic
6. Q-Tip - The Renaissance
7. Nightmares on Wax - Thought So...
8. Scarface - Emeritus
9. Ludacris - Theater of the Mind
10. The Herbaliser - Same as it Never Was
11. Robin Thicke - Something Else
12. J-Live - And Then What Happened??
13. Jaime Lidell - Jim
14. Flight of the Conchords - Self titled
15. AC/DC - Black Ice
16. Femi Kuti- Day by Day
17. Lupe Fiasco - The Cool
18. Buckshot & 9th Wonder - The Formula
19. Nas - Untitled
20. The Black Keys - Attack and Release
21. Erykah Badu - New Amerykah Part 2
22. Vampire Weekend - Vampire Weekend
23. John Legend - Evolver
24. N.E.R.D. - Seeing Sounds
25. Santogold - Santogold
Am I missing anything??
I now have a blog.
This is me:
I am a DJ and a producer of fine music. I have a (un)healthy addiction to purchasing fresh sneakers and records. I will use this blog to keep you hip to good music, new kicks and anything else that is on my mind whilst in front of a keyboard (which is most of the time sadly).