Monday, November 19, 2012

Fela/Lightnin' + Howlin'/Soulsavers/Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats/Like Rats


So, we've made a first round. Pretty cool! I just wanted to say thanks to you all for contributing. I can't tell you how stoked I am every week for the small bit of connection/discovery our corner of cyber-space (do people still use that term?) offers us.

So, to celebrate, let's kick things off with a little somethin' somethin' from our distinguished African friend Mr. Kuti:

(Important Note: Please play at maximum volume, preferably with headphones or through big speakers. Your computer speakers can't handle a groove this wide and until you give this it's due you will develop a total-body sensation not unlike having to urinate really badly. Trust me. I just want what's best for us all.)

Martin's GOAT post inspired me to get back to listening to some more Afro-funk. This album (featuring Ginger Baker of CREAM fame) rules. But so does a lot of Fela's stuff. I love the way Fela introduces a tune: "Let's start what we have come in to the room to do....". You know he's talkin' 'bout S-E-X ( momma's listening).  And no matter how many times I've heard it, the intro/outro groove kicks so hard it makes me giddy.  Anyway the whole album kicks, birth-place-of-humanity style.

Kris can probably offer a better starting point if you're unfamiliar with the Afro-funk Force of Nature that is/was Fela Kuti. His catalogue can be a bit daunting....

Moving right along. Two records that are in constant rotation at the ol' Bozman homestead are:

Lightnin' Hopkins' "Double Blues"

And Howlin' Wolf's "Blues From Hell"

**Side note: I understand that often compilations are frowned upon, but, especially in Howlin's case, these are "Career Retrospectives / Compendiums". It says so right on the box. I know I feel better about myself...**

No matter what mood I am in these are exactly what I want to listen to. I will never get sick of these records and they probably get more play in the house on a weekly basis than anything else I own. My personal favorites are:

"I'm a crawlin' Black Snake" from Lightnin', and

"I asked for water, she brought me Gasoline" from the Wolf.

I want to be a really old black dude when I grow up. In a suit.

Last up while we're in Pseudo-Blues Territory is the "SoulSavers" album "Broken" (sorry no pic, I couldn't find the CD).

While not really Blues at all, but certainly not absent of Blues influence, these guys are a bit strange:

Two British electronica artists that write mostly gospel-inspired old Americana with guest artists like Mark Lanegan handling most of the vocals. I've gifted a few albums to my friend James over the years and he claims this as his favorite because "it makes me (James) feel like I'm the last man on Earth when I listen to it". Sweet.

Next on the block is a band that is just plain ol' fun. Take one part low-fi, one part old Italian horror movie, add in a dash of zesty satanism/occult worship and you've got Uncle Acid + the Deadbeats.

I ran across these guys about a year ago on some lame music blog, downloaded their promo album for free (right before leaving for Australia) and didn't think much of it. Passed over them on the ol' portable electronic music device during a trans-continental flight with an "oh yeah, I downloaded that...let's give it a listen" and that was it: I couldn't stop awhile! Highly habit forming. I then promptly tried to order their CD only to find out that they had developed a ravenous mini-following and I was out o luck. Luckily, they decided to step it up with a vinyl re-release some months later and now I'm a happy camper.

Check out "Ritual Knife" to know everything you need to know about this band.

To finish it off, I've got to give a "shout out" (do people still do those anymore? In Cyber space, no less?) to an acquaintance's band "Like Rats" from Chicago.

I know their guitar player Todd through the ever-growing CrossFit universe and he sent me their just-finished self titled album. Lots of classic 90s metal themes here with some pretty brutal tone. Not bad! This may restore Ross' faith in metal from the current generation...

I like the gutteral opening grunt of "Fire", but you guys can check out the whole deal here:
God Bless you, Bandcamp

Alright. I'm done. How're we all doing with the weekly rotation? Everybody still in it? Leave some comments and let me know what you think of some of these sonic-slices.



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  2. FYI - both Goat and Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats are playing Roadburn 2013. Martin! You could see Goat and hang with the Bozzy's?

    Ah Afro-Funk...I'm just too square. I respect Fela. His music makes me the way sound does when you are terribly hung over. Its not him. Its me.

    Which prompted the discussion, which is the least funky of the races? Input anyone?

  3. Oh man. Fela is the best. I cannot get enough. His music makes me want to dance until the world ends or transcends itself maybe. Cheesy for sure,but that's how it is. In my opinion Fela has about 37 essential records and picking favourites is not easy. I would recommend Roforofo Fight, Sorrow Tears and Blood, Afrodisiac and Expensive Shit but the more time I spend thinking about I also want to recommend Gentleman, He Miss Road, Zombie, Open and Close, Shakara...oh man...

    In your post Uncle Acid somehow comes off way cooler than I recall them ever being. Strange. I may have to give them a second chance. It certainly wouldn't be the first time you've set me straight boss.

    You know how I feel about Lightnin' and the Wolf. Great picks.

    I'm struggling with Soulsavers a bit. I feel like I should love this band but I don't, and I have no good reason why. All the components point to awesome but...I don't know. I suspect it may hit me in flash like divine inspiration someday.