Thirty Hertz Rumble

A bl-g about movies, music and nostalgia by James David Patrick

Author: jdp (Page 10 of 57)

30Hz New Music Radar 2/3/17: Sampha – Process

30hz new music radar

Welcome to February 2017.

 

At least there’s always new music.

 

Another rotten week of the upside-down. But at least we have Besty Devos. God save you, Betsy, for giving us all hope. Hope that in this brave new world, nobody is unqualified for any job. Like just today I decided I’d become Nickelback’s new tour manager. One would have though that my well-documented tweets about how Nickelback’s music causes hemorrhaging in deaf children would have precluded me for consideration! But thanks to Betsy Devos, I’m convinced that my constant attempts to undermine the terror that Nickelback has brought to the general populace in now way prevents me from becoming the person most in charge of Nickelback’s career. In fact, before coming here to tell you about some amazing new music (that’s not made by Nickelback), I stopped over at LinkedIn to declare my candidacy for the position.

And when I get the job, for which I’m totally qualified, I’ll have to stop writing all this nonsense and start on my memoir — On the Road with Nickelback: Aural Regurgitation and the Blood of Bleeding Baby Brains.

Anyway, while we wait for that, let’s check back in with the New Music Radar. This was supposed to be the week we all got time to digest the handful of solid records that came out last week. But what ho?!? No rest for the weary. The first week of February has offered up a trio of records that require your attention.

 

30Hz Playlist on Spotify: Every New Music Radar Recommendation.

 

30Hz New Music Radar: Sampha – Process

Sampha’s first full-length LP Process had been on my list of most anticipated records of 2017 after his track “Blood On Me” stormed onto my Best of 2016 list.  Sampha Sisay — singer/songwriter, keyboardist and go-to producer for Drake and Beyonce — blends pop and R&B with subtle, almost seamless electronic production. His soundscapes envelop the listener, yet his vocals are present but largely unremarkable. They hover in a narrow but well-trodden band of traditional, breathy soul singers. That would normally be a criticism, but Sampha uses this predictability to his advantage. Note how he uses his upper range on “Blood On Me” to shake the listener’s cobwebs of complacency, inspiring a “call to action” or more appropriately a call to intent. Conscious music appreciation relies on intent. To be present and accountable. Divided attentions account for the majority of our listening. Which is why I’ve returned to vinyl as my preferred listening source.

After “Blood On Me” switch gears and sample stripped-down Sampha on “(No One Knows Me) Like the Piano.” It’s a moving portrait of family and nostalgia. He again uses his upper range to float his chorus along with the notes on the piano before again bringing both down a level for the verse.

Just when you think you’ve got the artist pinned down midway through the record, he increases the electronic production, adding blips and bloops for tracks that would likely normally linger as tossaway B-sides on a lesser record. The more overt production causes the listener to adjust and recondition. Process grounds the listen, reminds of the importance of intent and consideration. It will no doubt hang on to become one of the finest records of 2017.

Sample tracks: Blood On Me, (No One Knows Me) Like the Piano, Incomplete Kisses

Buy on Amazon

 

 

Also highly recommended this week:

 

Communions – Blue

 

Ten Fe – Hit the Light

 

 

30Hz New Music Radar 1/27/17: Julie Byrne – Not Even Happiness

30hz new music radar

Welcome to January 27th, 2017.

 

At least there’s always new music.

We’re living in a world of the waking nightmare. We can’t wake up. It won’t go away. The upside-down time. The boogie-monster in the emperor’s clothes continues to disassemble forward progress. If we keep marching backward, slipping against time, we’ll soon be back in the 1950’s. And as much as that thought haunts me… at least there’ll be good music. I could see all of those original icons of jazz up close with a glass of gin in hand. We could witness the birth of rock and roll, like Marty McFly. Believe in harmony. Believe in the power of time travel to fix all that ills us. We’re in the future with the Gray’s Sports Alamanac.

Silver linings, I suppose.

I had this week marked as a prime-choice release week. January 27th did not disappoint. Though I found myself facing four fantastic records, all worth your time and needing to pick just one. And quite honestly, I’m still digesting some other releases that weren’t even on my radar at all. Those sleeper picks that will reveal themselves as the year carries on, ceaselessly.

Here’s a link to my Spotify New Music Radar Playlist with every record I’ve recommended so far in 2017.

 

30Hz New Music Radar: Julie Byrne

Julie Byrne is a bit of an anomaly. A singer-songwriter with bombastic, breathy range. She can scar and she can heal simultaneously. One minute she’ll drop down into fragile, seductive Julie London come-hitherness before pulling herself gradually up, up, up, hope breaking through the haze of modern disillusion and moral distrust. The power of her voice overcomes, a fragile warble warm enough to remind you that she’s indeed a human folk singer and not an ethereal being waiting for her call back to her mothership docked in the Horesehead Nebula.

I cannot recommend this record more highly — which is why I’m placing this record at the top of your listening pile. Ahead of the new Cloud Nothings (which disappointed), ahead of the new Japandroids (which did not), ahead of — yes, indeed, the new Bell Biv Devoe (which just exists and that’s pretty cool).

Julie Byrne will seduce you. When you fall in love and stop listening to other records, I’m sorry.

 

Sample tracks: Follow My Voice, I Live Now As a Singer, All the Land Glimmered

Buy on Amazon

 

 

Also highly recommended this week:

 

Japandroids – Near to the Wild Heart of Life

 

Rose Elinor Dougall – Stellular

 

Tift Merritt – Stitch of the World

 

Priests – Nothing Feels Natural

30Hz New Music Radar 1/20/17: Cherry Glazerr – Apocalipstick

30hz new music radar

Welcome to January 20th, 2017. Welcome to the future.

I believe music offers the power to heal scars, ignite fires, prop up lost and weary souls. I’ve always resisted doing a weekly recommended column because there are just so damn many. Everyone has a record to recommend. But I’m not everybody. You’re not everybody else.

I’ve consistently promoted the notion that Pitchfork is not the quality controllers of the alt-whatever music business. Now more than ever, in fact, I believe that Pitchfork is off it’s f’ing rocker. Find the voices in music blogging and bl-gging that resonate on your frequency. Discovering new music is not a solitary exercise done in the dark corners of your room while nobody is looking. Discovery is a collaboration between dozens… nay… hundreds of different voices. I read three or four blogs every week. From those investigations and my own haphazard listening, I’ll bring forth at least one record per week that’s worth your time. Maybe it’s not your new favorite. And that’s perfectly fine, but I guarantee it’ll be at least worth the time. You won’t have to be that person wandering around lamenting that nobody releases good music anymore. They do. It’s here. I’ll share it with you.

 

30Hz New Music Radar: Cherry Glazerr

 

cherry glazerr - apocalipstickL.A. noise pop outfit loves a good guitar drone with splendid cacophony, but Cherry Glazerr also can’t resist a great hook when the mood strikes.

Cherry Glazerr released a debut album in 2014. Since then, however, Clementine Creevy’s bandmates jumped ship. The new lineup consists of Creevy, Tabor Allen on drums and Sasami Ashworth on synths. The revamped trio brings a more focused brand of self-aware cherry-stained punk-pop that totters on the bring of self-control. It’s loud, guitar-driven music for square-ish punks.

Sample tracks: Nurse Ratched, Trash People, Humble Pro

Buy on Amazon / Buy on Bandcamp

 

A writer’s manifesto on January 20th, 2017

Today is a day. Today is a day like any other. In Pittsburgh, the sky is overcast with intermittent rain shows. The temperature hovers around 40 degrees. This is what happens in January. Sometimes it snows and wrongly convinces us all that January is not always gloomy in Western Pennsylvania.

a writer's manifesto

 

 A Writer’s Manifesto

 

Right now, just a few hours south, the inauguration of our 45th President of the United States ushers in an era that more closely approximates something out of George Orwell, Aldous Huxley or, well, Mike Judge — who perhaps most correctly predicted this day in the prescient documentary Idiocracy. Somewhere Three Doors Down is playing in celebration of something. That alone warrants concern.

But I’m not here to engage in any kind of political or ideological discussion. Not right now. This is more about how we react as artists. We’ve probably Tweeted and Re-Tweeted, shared Facebook posts, and even made some of our own. Is that the best use of our talents? Is that the best use of our creative energy?

In the time since the election, I’ve been wading through a swamp of disbelief. Guess what? There’s no drain in a swamp. A swamp just is. I’d love nothing more than to pull the plug on this shitshow. It’s not that easy. We can’t bury our head in the rising tide of muck and filth. And we can’t just hope it all dries up.

Tend your garden.

As artists, we cannot be sent into a tailspin of malaise. Use this anger and anxiety. Use this hatred and passion. CREATE. WRITE. PAINT. Do whatever it is that poets do. (I kid.) Use this to inspire yourself to pick up your pen and do what you love. What you set out to do. Exact change through your artistic contributions. Now for a writer’s manifesto, a personal statement about how I plan to endure.

a writer's manifesto

 

So today, on January 20th, 2017 and for the foreseeable future, I vow to do the following:

 

  1. Write.
  2. Read more.
  3. Respect the Presidency but refuse to respect the man elected president. And for the record, I did not like George W. but I still respected him as a man that always intended to do right by his country.
  4. I will not say his name. I will call him Captain Cuntmonkey or Senior Pendejo. Coming up with the most creatively derogatory names as a regular mental exercise.
  5. I will not legitimize. Never legitimize. The man is a cartoon gerbil and should be treated as such. This is not normal.
  6. When all this gets you down, write more.

 

Put something of yourself out in this world rather than retreat inward. Be bold. Allow yourself freedom from your inner critic. Trust your instincts. Surround yourself with good people and trust their instincts. Collaborate.

Join me in ushering in an era of personal accomplishment and creative entitlement. Our collective, creative renaissance begins today. This is our Resistance.

 

 

2nd Annual 30/007Hz 2016 First Watch Hertzie Awards

2nd Annual 2016 First Watch Hertzie Awards

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The 2nd Annual 30/007Hz First Watch Hertzie Nominations

According to my Letterboxd.com stats sheet, I watched 245 movies last year, give or a take a bunch of live tweets I forgot to log. 74.7% of those viewings were new to me. My first new watch of 2016 was Melvin and Howard, my final — Gods of Egypt.

Last year, inspired by my growing malaise during Hollywood award season, I started my own annual tradition. I created nominations and awards dedicated to any movie I watched during the past year. Any year, any genre. The First Annual Hertzie Awards became an Interweb sensation! All of approximately four people eagerly awaited the results, which I broadcast on Twitter during the actual Academy Awards. That big Hertzie victory for Slither (1973) really surprised the pundits and turned the tables on a number of sure-thing Hertzie pools.

I apparently had enough fun with my Oscars counterprogramming that I’m back for more in 2017. That said, I’m still rather tired of the hoopla and noise over films made largely to win awards. Also self-perceived and false-fronted bl-gging fame. I’m driven by all those things. And just like last year, let’s kick off the festivities with our very own Hertzie girl, Myrna Loy, looking divine, ready to read the 2nd Annual 30/007Hz Hertzie Award nominees.

 

2016 First Watch Hertzie Awards Girl - Myrna Loy

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