19 year old London artist Anna Straker has been showing some major promise on several tracks over the past year, however we are really vibing hard on her latest named “Serious.” The song’s production pushes out laid-back club beats pulling elements from dance music varying genres over the last 20 years and turning it into a modern twist on pop music. It is easily her most complete song to date.
Being named Cemeteries, the Kyle Reigle-fronted project should be obligated to release a new track every Halloween. It has been a little over a year since we last had new material from him, but the eerie and autumnal “Carnivores” is a nice reminder how consistently good the output from Reigle has been over the years. There is no indication that this is anything more than a one off, but we wouldn’t be surprised to hear more new music from him in 2017.
Last week, Chris Stewart, aka Black Marble, released undoubtedly one of our favorite albums of this past year with his sophomore effort, It’s Immaterial. Outside of its emotional depth, there is a spiritual otherworld quality that overcomes us every listen where we come out mentally cleansed. The video for “Woods” produced by Libre’s Alberto Berrizbeitia and director Theo Sixou further captures the emotion and spirituality with beautifully choreographed movements and imagery in a forest. Stewart says of the video:
I spoke with Theo awhile back about his initial concept for the piece. At first I was not sure what I thought of all these people running endlessly — sometimes stopping to speak directly to camera — this strange tableau. Having worked with him previously on “A Great Design” though, I knew I should just trust him. Had it been anyone else I might have thought twice about the idea but I’m glad I didn’t.
Somehow, as visual allegory to the spirit of the song, these people running from something, but sometimes it seems, just running because there’s nothing else to do, fits perfectly with the underlying theme of the music, the sort of tension that exists when you already know the ultimate outcome but cant bring yourself to extricate yourself from something that has just been in place for so long. That liminal space between wanting and doing can seemingly last forever and I think this video perfectly represents Woods in that way.
I think Theo is one of the most talented people I’ve had the pleasure of working with and I’m so pleased as always that he chose to dedicate some of his time to creating an amazing visual story for “Woods.”
The Katie Stelmanis-fronted project Austra have their third full-length, named Future Politics, dropping on January 20th via Domino Records. The album is a commentary not only on the current geopolitical environment, but a call to change and, according to Stelmanis, “a commitment to replace the approaching dystopia.” It was influenced by her time spent living in Montreal and Mexico City and economic and philosophical literature she had been reading. With the album’s announcement comes a visual for the track “Utopia” directed by THAT GO depicting Stelmanis trapped in an apartment by technology. The album is available for pre-order here.
Here’s the playlist from today’s My Old Kentucky Blog Radio on SIRIUS XMU, Channel 35! Also, available anytime via OnDemand online and via the app.
Jim James – Here In Spirit
Charly Bliss – Ruby
Kadhja Bonet, RJ, and Mark Maxwell – Latenight Munchies
Our Girl – Being Around
Her’s – Marcel
Still Corners – Currents
Sure Sure – New York New Dog
Tunji Ige – Bring Yo Friends
Chance The Rapper & Knox Fortune – All Night (Kaytranada extended joint)
Jidenna – Long Live The Chief
Dream Chief – Can’t Shake U
Foreign Air – Better For It
Darcys – Coming Up For Air
Black Marble – Golden Heart
Many Voices Speak – Blue Moon (cover)
Part Time – Seashells
Muuy Biien – Mara
Forth Wanderers – Slop
EZTV – Racing Country
Devendra Banhart – Fancy Man
Baloji – Spoiler
Sibylle Baier – Tonight
Yellow Days – Your Hand Holding Mine
L’Orange & Mr. Lif – Antique Gold (ft. Chester Watson)
Reva DeVito – The Move (prod. by Kaytranada)
Lazy Day – Disappear
Stef Chura – You
Nutrition – Lost
LA duo Ruby Haunt (fka Haunt) have dropped two of our favorite releases this year with their Crush EP and Sugar LP just a couple of weeks back, however they can’t seem to stop creating. Last week, on the heels of skateboarder Dylan Rieder’s death following a battle with Leukemia, they dropped a touching, mournful song titled “Prayers.” In addition to Dylan, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention the passing of another fantastic talent highly regarded to us as well last week, lo-fi bedroom musician Fergus Miller, aka Bored Nothing. Listen below.
We weren’t really feeling the first single “Same Old Lie” from the new Jim James album, but we are really liking this new one, “Here in Spirit.” The beautiful, feathery production compliments James’ soulful southern vocals blending a retro and modern aesthetic sonically. Eternally Even is out on November 4th through ATO/Capital Records and available for pre-order here.