Suddenly Flying Saucer Attack appears again, nearly 15 years after last contact, with a set of unnamed instrumentals. It’s gorgeous, droning guitar music that makes no apologies for its obliqueness and doesn’t try to reach out to the uninitiated.
This slab of ashen dream is ready and waiting for anyone interested.
Vince Staples dropped one of the best albums of 2015 with Summertime ’06 a month ago. It’s one of the best hip-hop albums I’ve heard in years, up there with Kendrick and Killer Mike and Future and anybody else who’s had a mad flash of love on the internet in the 2010’s.
I’ve already shared the full album and the stunning (and fucking gut-punching) Señorita video, but a short drive today convinced me that Lemme Know needed to be singled out. Listen:
Thundercat dons some samurai armor in this exquisitely weird clip for the instant classic funk tune Them Changes.
This song is on the brief but brilliant The Beyond / Where The Giants Roam, a mini-album that manages to nearly render the man’s prior music obsolete. In a mere 16 minutes he manages to fuse his latent Isley Brothers and Parliament influences into the sharpest iteration of his unique space funk sound yet. The above song is the most pure pop moment of Thundercat’s career but the remainder of the set veers into more progressive, fluidly jazzy territory.
You can pick up the album Since I like making things convenient, I’ve got the full mini-album streaming below, courtesy of Spotify.
Because sometimes it feels like this.
My mom would have been 65 today. She liked Black Moth Super Rainbow, said it often sounded pretty, reminded her of The Beatles, “but way weirder.”
This tune always felt oddly touching. The combination of sweetly nostalgic melodies and an alien vocoder masks the deep sadness of the lyrics. I feel like my mom would wish the singer felt better.
Sitting in the humid blur of the summer, on a day that’s stormed twice between bouts of unflinching sunny splendor, this tune hits the spot in a way nothing else can.
I don’t want to live through winter
I can’t stand to see everything ending
I’ll just stand on the meadow
I’ll be taken by sunbeams
I’ve been on a weird nostalgia binge lately. Instead of wallowing in the shallow pleasure of reminiscence though, I’ve been trying to hear my old favorites with fresh ears. What’s new about it? How has my perception changed? Does it still hold up?
For a lot of my music choices past age 18 or so, the answer to that last question is yes more often than not. I present as evidence the first Gorillaz single, Tomorrow Comes Today:
You need to hear this fantastic live band cover of Flying Lotus‘ brilliant collaboration with Kendrick Lamar, the incredible Never Catch Me.
The band is absolutely on point; every player nails his or her part, from the pair of alto saxophonists to the trio of backup singers. Special mention should go to the drummer and keyboardist for really adding that swing. While the rapper is no Kendrick (and no one else is), he pours his heart into the rapid-fire delivery of the song, nailing the cadence and approaching the breathless energy of the original.
Thanks to a tweet earlier today, the whole world gets to enjoy this sublime take on an instant classic song from last year’s incredible You’re Dead. I feel like I haven’t heard a cover version this good in years. These guys show a ton of potential, and I’ll be following their moves in the future.
They say people never change / but that’s bullshit; they do
Tame Impala‘s new album Currents is flat out fantastic. You can hear the synth-laden psych rock epic before it’s officially released or stick with the official singles for a couple weeks.
Or you can check out one of the best tracks from the album right now. It’s a deep cut called Yes I’m Changing, and it gives me some serious feels.
Edit: found a new video centered on the gorgeous Audrey Horne of Twin Peaks!
The backing synth pads remind me of Avalon-era Roxy Music, while the hum-worthy bassline is one of those timeless earworms that dives through pop music history, from girl groups to modern hip-hop. The lyrics evoke that goosebump-raising, optimistic-yet-spiritually-heavy yearning that the Beach Boys perfected with Pet Sounds, almost 50 years ago. The couplet posted at the top of this page, obvious as it is, puts a chill down my spine when heard in the context of this tune.
I’ll probably share more about this album once it’s released, but in the meantime, remember that you can still preorder it right from the band!