Apparently I don’t need to tell you a whole lot about Courtney Barnett because word on the street is that she’s about to blow up in a huge way. Her debut album Sometimes I Sit and Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit just dropped to rave reviews. Mixing hard-hitting guitar with equally hard-hitting clever lyrics, Barnett has a powerful sound that’s destined to carry her places.
You gotta love an all-female garage rock band whose press photos look directly inspired by awkward internet memes and who refer to themselves as “a real band” in their Bandcamp page description. The good news is that behind the strong personality of the group lies plenty of musical talent and potential. “Joke” caught me off guard after three minutes had elapsed, thinking I’d just heard a solid garage rock song, when it broke down into a needling, exploratory jam session for the last two minutes. That, for me, added a lot of character to the track and made it a standout. They’re also Hardly Art Records labelmates of personal lo fi favorite Colleen Green, so it’s easy to see how they fit in there. Enjoy.
Remember how great Moby’s Play was? Despite what a caricature that the man become, that album was not only a classic but also likely the first time anyone had heard a southern folk/blues sample turned up into a house mix. And well, that’s about the last time we heard a great effort along those lines until now. Bakermat might not be the biggest name cranking out tropical house jams at the moment but he’s certainly experienced and knows his craft well. The key is that he maintains the integrity of the source material and simply presents it in a different light. You have to be respectful with sources like this and he pulls it off masterfully here.
He’s from London and his solitary original track on his Soundcloud is about the only thing I know about this guy, but I would wager to bet that will change over the next year or two. “Her” by Cold Courage is devastatingly beautiful, and somehow uses rich tropical textures to evoke winter emotions. The slightly-chipmunked vocal sample is delicately placed to pile on the wistfulness. Basically this song is fucking incredible and I can’t wait to hear what else this guy comes out with.
Some people like to bemoan the current hip hop zeitgeist as it continues to move away from poetry and consciousness, and more toward the abstract and raw emotion. The DJ/producer, originally the main act in hip hop, has returned to prominence with the rapper shifting back towards their role as emcee, the ringmaster of the moment. In this instance, DJ Carnage fully harnesses ILoveMakonnen’s style in an electrifying fusion of massive production and abstract delivery. There may not be a message, it’s certainly not conscious, but god damn it feels fucking fantastic. I LIKE TUH!