• Music

    Minimal Compact – Statik Dancin’

    Minimal Compact was an Israeli band which left a sizable imprint with their music during the 1980s and 1990s, and both Malka Spiegel and Samy Birnbach continue, as far as I know, to record great music. An unbelievable post-punk shuffler from 1981, by Tel-Aviv-Brussels band Minimal Compact! This tune is one of our favorite tracks ever and we’ve been wanting to reissue it since day one. But this is no ordinary reissue! The 12” includes an unreleased instrumental version plus a spaced-out extended dub mix by the living legend, Mad Professor! Members of the band recorded for such legendary labels…

  • Music

    Galaverna – Wagdans

    I would have expected an album like this to come from England, the Netherlands or even somewhere in the Scandinavian realm, but to think that such a wonderfully played (and sung – in English!) album comes from Verona, Italy, of all places, shows that Galaverna are true students of such amazing bands as Tudor Lodge, The Trees or Kebnekajse.  This is progressive folk which looks back fondly to the masters of the genre and builds on their work.

  • Music

    Liraz – Azizam

    Persian-Israeli pop singer Liraz will have a brand new album called Roya in October, but she’s seen fit to release an early single which is in parts psych-ish and sensual.  Definitely for fans of Israeli pop and even Googoosh fans!

  • Music

    Samo Salamon, Arild Andersen & Ra Kalam Bob Moses – Pure and Simple

    This is some fine jazz improv.  The trio of a friend to this blog, guitarist Samo Salamon, working alongside bassist and ECM Records legend Arild Andersen and Ra Kalam Bob Moses, and this group have an incredible way of flowing with each other’s vibes. Samo, of course, absolutely shreds on this album, and Arlid serves as one of the best anchors in the history of jazz, but for me, the one stealing the show is the utterly mad percussion of Ra Kalam Bob Moses, who gives this album a frantic heartbeat.

  • Music

    Jeff Gburek – Tamarind Winds: Songs for Javanese Rebab, 2022

    Tamarind Winds has to be the best album of 2022 for me to get lost in.  Composer and friend of the blog Jeff Gburek continues to awe with the magic he imbues in each instrument he touches, spinning haunting drones, field recordings and soothing the senses with his rebab.  From his Bandcamp site: Various parts of the traditional Javanese rebab are made of tamarind wood, hence the flavor, the aromatic suggestion of the title. These are spontaneous compositions, duets and trios created in thye studio among me, myself and I. There are no effects or plug-ins used other than reverb…

  • Music

    Various Artists – La Souterraine: Vallée du Don

    La Souterraine are one of France’s coolest indie labels.  They frequently release compilations of alternative music influenced by chanson, bedroom pop and post-punk.  Some of the ditties on offer are almost Beatlesque in their pop perfection.  Vallée du Don is one I stumbled upon, but the whole catalog is worth exploring.

  • Music

    Adrian Belew – Elevator

    Legendary King Crimson and David Bowie guitarist Adrian Belew returns with a brand new progressive rock album that emphasizes rock loudly.  It sounds like a very complicated version of power-pop if the song a13 is any indication of what the rest of the album sounds like.  The only off-putting thing is the VERY high price tag for what is a normal-sized album.  The economy back home must be getting ever more brutal, I guess.