Meerkuts’ Musical Musings – March 2013
Hi Beat Boffers, Harmony Humpers, Lyric Lovers & Melody Maters,
It’s been a whole month since the last one of my musical musings because they’re a monthly blog so logically there’s a whole month in between each of them as noted by the different dates in the title’s of the seperate blogs but just in case you didn’t know, there’s been a whole month since the last one! Also the Glastonbury 2013 line up was announced today, WHOOP!!
It’s been a bitterly biting month (I know I sound like a broken record but anyone living in the UK will testify that every month as been bitterly cold, wet, windy and miserable and sometimes all three at once so I’m not just copying and pasting the same gripes about the weather it really has been shitty). Luckily music is always here to warm our cockles, get our joints wiggling or get us feeling frisky between the sheets and boy has this month delivered. So here we go with five new tracks from March 2013 for your libidinous lugholes;
1. Damian “Junior Gong” Marley – Dem Neva Mek It (Taken from the album Set Up Shop Vol. 1 released on Ghetto Youth Intl. LLC)
Damian (son of Bob “Tuff Gong” Marley) “Junior Gong” Marley is kind of reggae royalty so you could write him off as a cash in kid trying to get his fifteen minutes from the Legend (see what I did there) of his Dad but I’ll tell you now, this is not the case. Jr. Gong has been pumping out solid reggae riddims for years including the none more famous scorcher ‘Welcome To JamRock‘ as well as other classics like ‘Road to Zion‘ with Nas or “Make it Bun Dem‘ with Skrillex and this new song continues this catalogue of solid rythmn, bouncy melody and instantly classic chorus. His music not only proves he’s inherited his father’s ear for Jamaican music but also his passion for it too, as shown by the fact that this track is from a collaborative album produced on the Ghetto Youth Crews label which he set up (with his brother Stephen) to help unprivileged children facing poverty, broken homes and other difficulties, ‘One Love’ indeed. I’m not sure exactly when this song was released in the UK but have only seen it as a single in March so it deserves inclusion this month in my eyes and if you don’t start wiggling to this one, there’s something wrong with you!
2. C2C – Happy feat. D Martin (Taken from the album Tetra released 2nd March 2013 on On & On Records Intl.)
Turntablism has becometh Pop… and it’s fucking amazing! C2C have been around on the DJ circuit for years obliterating all group competition at every DMC without fail and doing so in such a fun, boy-band style that even your Nan could get down to their scratching, beat-juggling and N-Sync inspired cross-fader antics! If you haven’t seen the footage of them winning the DMC’s then check it out now and then imagine seeing that live performing classic routines, new visual treats and all the songs from the new album, it was more than a treat! No point was more ecstatic though, than when they proceeded to blow the roof of Koko in London by playing ‘Happy‘, it was literally like a million volts had coursed through the crowd and nobody could control their limbs just like in the video we had all become possessed, not by the devil but by the ridiculously swinging tune! Some songs are beautiful, some songs are sad, some make you want to revolt and others make you want to fuck, some songs however just make you insanely happy and the whole world feels right. This, is one of those songs.
3. Dizraeli & The Small Gods – Never Mind (Taken from the album ‘Moving in the Dark’ released 17th March 2013 on ECC Records Ltd)
I’m going to be honest, I wasn’t into Dizraeli in the early days of ‘Bad Science‘, I was a relative latecomer to his politically charged, honest and humorous lyrics only hearing him once at ‘The Cowley Club‘ an anarchist bookstore in Brighton whilst I panicked about following his set on the decks. It was only when I saw him play BBC Introducing at Glastonbury with his new band ‘The Small Gods‘ that it hit me, and it hit me very fucking hard! I snapped up the album immediately from the stand by the stage and it was an instant classic for me and over the last few years ‘Dizraeli & The Small Gods‘ have now become the band my partner and I have seen the most for one good reason, they’re brilliant! This track exemplifies the band as they are now; clever lyrics, jubilant melodies, catchy choruses, political awareness, top knotch musicianship, hip-hop production with a folk feel and after hearing ‘Never Mind‘ live for years it’s lovely to have a recorded version. I’ve only had the album for a short while but it’s brilliant and it’s nice to hear the development from ‘Engurland: City Shanties‘ a Dizraeli album with a band to this album which is much more of a showcase for how the band sound live and plays to all their strengths. If I’m not mistaken this album will be joining ‘Gil Scott Heron‘ & ‘Public Enemy‘ on the ‘Every Home Should Have One‘ racks of ‘Resident Music‘ in Brighton very soon. PS: If you haven’t seen these guys live then hurry up and get in there, it’s a fucking blast!
4. Sufjan Stevens – Give A Little Love (Taken from Sufjan’s Tumblr page on 3rd March 2013 and Asthmatic Kitty records)
I first got into Sufjan Stevens upon hearing his majestic cover of ‘You Are The Blood‘ and have been amazed by his orchestral genius ever since from the folk americana of ‘Illinoize‘ to the beautiful ‘All Delighted People EP‘ and especially the incredible ‘The Age of Adz‘. This single was released on 3rd March to Sufjan’s Tumblr with the description stating that it was just a little song he’d found on a hard drive somewhere and so was now giving to the world. How someone can mislay a track as well orchestrated, produced and generally lovely is beyond me but then I’m always gobsmacked by the myriad of layers he manages to wield in his songs and the balance of sadness, joy, darkness and whimsy he conjures in each track too. The style and sound of this track seem to place it more in line with his later work using the autotune and building up from a simple synth and vocal to full blown choirs and electronic madness. I was very happy that Mr. Stevens found this little gem and hope he’s got more exciting music and another euphoric live show on the horizon, maybe you could check a few more of your hard drives now?
5. Sigur Ros – Brennistein (Single released on March 22nd 2013 taken from the album Kveikur on XL Recordings due to be released June 2013)
Well this track definitely caught my attention, Sigur Ros have bought a bit of a punch to their new album! I love Sigur Ros and have enjoyed their music to varying degrees over the years especially ‘Agaetis Byrjun‘ and ‘Takk‘ but all their albums are magical, even ‘Von‘ is an interesting work of art if not as listenable or sumptuous as their subsequent works. Recently, however, I’ve been thinking that I know exactly what to expect from their music and in the same way as someone like Ludovico Einaudi categorising their music as neo-classical with grandiose moments. I think MasterChef and other reality programmes are to blame for stripping away some of the truly gorgeous aspects of new classical music because the style has become synonymous with people crying and hugging in aprons whilst two semi qualified judges look at them like they’re children winning a medal at sports day, it takes away the nobility and beauty of the music. Luckily Sigur Ros have come out guns blazing with this new single pairing their harmoious arrangements with raw power and an almost Radiohead angst which brings a whole new dimension to their sound. It’s not going to be for everyone but I really enjoy this song and I’m really intrigued to see how the new album out in June matches up to their seminal work from late nineties to mid 2000’s!
That’s it for this month everybody I hope you’ve enjoyed it! As always a few doffs of the caps to people who inspire me and turn me onto new tunes; Smallimus, HoboJobo, Kid Karcinogenic, Hooting Miss Owl, Comics Shut Up , Attack/Panic , NPR: All Songs Considered, Ram Jam Rodigan, Small Godcasts, Resident Brighton & BBC Four’s Storyville
PEACE, MK xx