Picks of the Week – May 17th.

I haven’t been writing that much, but I think it’s time I do so.  There have been a lot of releases I’ve liked since I last posted, so I will take you thru some new joints and some albums I liked since the last past went up.  No real order in genre or release date….just stuff I’ve been feeling.

Various Artists – Afro-Rock, Vol. 1 (a Kona Records compilation)

I got this from a dope world/vintage music site – Sounds of the Universe – that I frequent.  This isn’t really ‘rock’, but guitar-driven Afro funk/R&B.  It’s amazing how they find these little gems, and in such good quality.

Rusko – O.M.G.!

Party dubstep album, if there ever was one.  This is kind of Coldplay-level dubstep…..not that technically proficient, critical stuff, but the arena level brand of dubstep, meant to be all-encompassing and non-threatening, which usually isn’t my thing.  But I’ve enjoyed this album for the most part – a few tracks just aren’t that hard, or just glorified dance bits…and I skip those.

The Dead Weather – Sea of Cowards

Dope album – really enjoyed this one lately….there is always a good deal of press for Jack White-led albums, so I’ll those speak for themselves.  I will say that I like this fuller sound, and the use of electronics (or at least the appearance of it).

Flying Lotus – Cosmogramma

Not as dope as Los Angeles, an album in which he set a very high bar, but dope nonetheless.  I like the Amon Tobin feel to the album, with him experimenting with his expanding sound.

Caribou – Swim

Somewhat jazzy psych-pop from one the best at it.  Some kinda seedy club music….that you can listen to at home.  A well mixed collage of …random stuff.  Hard to really explain, without just basically rehashing the reviews that are already out there in cyberspace – this is why I’ve been using the videos.

Little Brother – LeftBack

I will reserve this review until Dave listens to it.

Erykah Badu – New Amerykah, Pt. 2: Return of the Ankh

Probably one of my favorites of the one I have up today.  A typical Badu album: soulful, truthful, heavy basslines….with that slight head-nod appeal.  It does seem a little sketch-like with some of the songs, but I appreciate that for the raw feel.

Christian Scott – Yesterday You Said Tomorrow

Love this kid….to me, one of the new legends in jazz, with Glasper and company.  I mean who is even really thinking about re-visualizing The Eraser…and like this?  Amazing album.  If you are not up on him, you need to be.

Raheem DeVaughn – The Love & War MasterPeace

The new Marvin….yeah, seriously.  How he was able to get his label to push out that many songs on an R&B album…I’d have to ask him myself.  An excellent, straight forward R&B album.  This is what I like most about him – he pretends to be nothing else but who he is.

Gonjasufi – A Sufi and a Killer

Probably the oldest release up here.  Yes – I, too, am on the Gonjasufi bandwagon.  It’s just such a unique sound, the mixture of sounds he bounces back and forth from.  Even after the initial listen, each track surprised me…it’s refreshing.  Super dope – recommended to people looking for a high end curve ball, if they have boring musical lives.

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