Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Twenty Eighteen

Well, the festive season is over, but it was a good one, for me anyway.  Some nice time to chill and do nothing of consequence, and I had the added benefit of the family leaving town, which meant I was actually on a proper vacation!  I used my time well, I must say -- did some record shopping and listened to some albums that I hadn't got round to, for one.  Christmas and New Year's is also full of great radio programming on 6 music, as well as the best of lists and articles all over the place.  To be honest, so far nothing's really stood out to me on the end of year lists, but I do need to check out some end of year podcasts as those discussions are usually pretty interesting.  And I'll have to try and at least listen to Thundercat's album, Drunk, as 6 music picked it as their album of the year.  If  you're looking for something to check out I recommend the end of year stuff by Jarvis and Gilles Peterson, as well as Tom Robinson's last show of the year, which is where I heard the next track. 

I've not listened to any Can really, but will try to now.  I really like this track, Vitamin C, and was surprised it was by Can -- it seems pretty contemporary, and it doesn't have the sound that I associate with krautrock -- probably cos that term is meaningless, and probably cos all pop music has already been made, or something.  It's from 1972!  That's when Bowie was Ziggy Stardust, and it's not long after the Beatles fell apart.  But it sounds so clean and fresh!  Impressive.

I've recently been opening up to new forms of listening to, experiencing, and enjoying music.  There's lots of ways to do it out there now; I still like my CD's, vinyl, and tapes, but streaming is alright too, and it's easy -- much better than owning or getting MP3's, etc.  So nowadays I might buy something on Bandcamp but then just stream it instead of actually downloading it.  Or I'll do online radio, youtube, see what's streaming at NPR, amazon, itunes.  And now I have yet another option, through my local library -- a service by the name of Hoopla, which is what I've been using to finally listen to Drake's mixtape, More Life.  I don't know what it is about Drake... I don't really care that much for his harder-sounding rap stuff, which mostly leaves me a bit bored. But I really like his more clubby music, and he seems to be really good at a certain romantic nostalgic sound -- the softer pop side in other words.  I like that he's into that, and that he's into different sounds from different places -- so he'll have references to Toronto's Caribbean community on his album, as well as English rappers like Giggs and Skepta.  And he'll give them credit too -- I really like this story about how being sampled for the track One Dance made a huge impact on Kyla.  So here's a few Drake tracks that give me the feels, as well as an amusing cover version (I couldn't find a way put up Get it Together, but check it out -- features an 18 year old singer from the Midlands, Jorja Smith, and housey production from South Africa):