Land of Kush’ Against the Day is a passionate, adventurous & rebellious masterpiece of mystical electrified big-band compositions, inspired by the surreal novel of the same name by Thomas Pynchon. Bilocal oudist & composer Osama Shalabi (Montreal/Cairo) bravely leads this 20+ member orchestra through a progressive suite of long form arrangements that synthesize sounds of spiritual jazz, Arabic folk & experimental rock into a sound that’s overwhelmingly unique and gripping.
Style: Spiritual Folk, Outsider Folk
Vibe: Mystical, Pantheistic, Contemplative, Uplifting, Enchanting, Intimate, Heartfelt, Forest, Ritualistic, Meditative, Morning, Warm, Storytelling
Musical Qualities: Acoustic, Suite, Spoken Word, Melodic, Lyrical
Instrumentation: 12-String Banjo, Acoustic Guitar, Marimba, Vibraphone, Vocal Harmonies, Gong, Percussion, Shakuhachi,
Style: Avant-Garde Jazz, Country-Jazz, Jazz Theater
Vibe: Rural, Historical, Sombre, Resolute, Intertwined, Passionate, Storytelling, Determined, Resolute, Heartfelt, Complex, Theatric, Conceptual
Musical Qualities: Suite, Acoustic, Progressive, Collective Improvisation, Polyphonic, Dynamic, Technical
Style: Brit-Folk, Chamber Folk, Jazz-Folk
Vibe: Flowing, Morning, Breezy, Warm, Medieval, Sentimental, Rootsy, Mellow, Pastoral, Uplifting
Musical Qualities: Vocal Harmonies, Acoustic, Traditional, Melodic, Improvisation
Instrumentation: Acoustic Guitars (Fingerstyle), Vocals, Upright Bass, Sitar, Dulcimer, Banjo, Recorder, Harmonica, Electric Guitar, Drums
On this mournful offering, Cave’s poetic reflections on loss, longing, and loneliness slowly float down a river of gloomy synth drones, somber strings, and sparse piano. While not exactly uplifting, the album has a sense of peace and beauty that continues up through the repeating final refrain, “and it’s alright now”.
Style: Experimental Songwriter, Spiritual Folk, Avant-Folk, Outsider Folk
Vibe: Spiritual, Adventure, Alienation, Cathartic, Cryptic, Eccentric, Existential, Loner, Poetic, Psychedelic, Storytelling, Tribal, Tropical, Warm
Musical Qualities: Homemade Instruments, Acoustic, One Man Band, Percussive, Spoken Word, Progressive
Style: Post-Rock, Math Rock, Post-Hardcore, Slowcore
Vibe: Angsty, Angular, Cold, Heavy, Impressionistic, Suspenseful
Lyrical Themes: Alienation, Existential, Poetic, Storytelling
Musical Attributes: Dynamic, Slow, Dissonant, Raw, Repetitive
Originally released in 2003 on Merge Jealous Butcher Indie Exclusive Reissue (2019) Format: LP, Blue
Released in 2005 on Drag City Format: LP
Released in 2000 on Stones Throw Records Format: LPx2
Released in 2015 on Sub Pop Records Format: LPx2 Deluxe edition Overview Josh Tillman is an open book; while his last album (Fear Fun) dove into his story of personal transformation and self discovery, I Love You, Honeybear explores his relationship with his wife and the effect she’s had on his life. In other words, this is …
Released in 1999 on Drag City Records Format: LP
Released in 1968 on Elektra Records Format: LP
The apocalyptic chamber-folk of Bethpage soundtracks multiple chapters of cryptic storytelling, mixing one’s darkest thoughts with religious imagery and allegory through banjo sing-alongs and haunting spoken word passages. The heavy climaxes are whirlwinds of bombastic drums, driving bass, fiddle, clarinet, and banjo that often recall the communal chamber-punk of Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra. While many tracks feel seeped in shadow and darkness, a heavenly light occasionally floods in through some truly serene and beautiful passages.
Released in 1991 on Touch and Go Records 2000’s pressing Format: LP
Exuma’s first album is a powerful and ritualistic masterpiece of spiritual folk from the Bahamas. Exuma, the Obeah Man, is a master storyteller and preacher, sharing visions, myths, and prayers. His expressive, soulful voice takes on many tones as he delivers his musical sermons, from smooth to raspy, soft to confident. A group of singers, percussionists, whistlers, and toads join him and his acoustic guitar, making me imagine them all circled around a large fire in communal worship and grateful that they let us listeners in on it.
Released in 2017 on Domino Records Format: LPx2
Released in 2018 on Columbia Records Recorded September and December, 1974
“What I’m asking you to do is take some risks. Stop paying war taxes, refuse the armed forces, organize against the air war, support the strikes and boycotts of farmers, workers and poor people, analyze the flag salute, give up the nation state, share your money, refuse to hate, be willing to work…in short, sisters and brothers, arm up with love and come from the shadows”
Information: Originally released in 1963 on Columbia This pressing was released in 2001 on Sundazed records Format: LP, 180g, Mono
Kendrick travels through the history of African-American music and into the future, taking inspiration from P-Funk, G-Funk, jazz, trap and everything in between. His lyrics display an acute awareness of someone battling with the weight of fame, institutional racism, and his own depression. This album is simultaneously personal and universal, and nothing short of revolutionary.
Released in 2009 on Frenchkiss Records Format: LP
Album Information: Released in 2000 on Motown Records 2016 pressing on Motown Format: LPx2
Album Information: Released in 2017 on Sub Pop Records Format: 2xLP on gold and silver vinyl, Deluxe Edition with 4 alternate covers, includes fold-out poster with lyrics/liner notes on back