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Best of 2017: Kelly's Personal Picks

Posted by Kells, December 22, 2017 07:45am | Post a Comment
kelly best of 2017 new music shit year burn down the past
sometimes the past burns itself down

This year has been, in a word, unbalanced. Thankfully there was a wonderful array of music and movies to take the edge off the chaotic instability. Here are ten or so of my personal favorite new releases that got me over and through this year's peaks and troughs...

 Once And Future Band  self-titled debut album vunyl S/T LP Castle Face Records
Once & Future Band - Once & Future Band
(Castle Face Records)

This molten monolith of masterful musicianship dropped back in January and, dammit, it is without a doubt the best record of the year. Sounding a little bit like a bygone vision of future sounds, I like to think of this album as the melodic equivalent of going thirty years into the future and replacing the plutonium fission reactor on your homemade time machine with Mr. Fusion before returning to 1985. You could wear yourself out trying to dial-in the potential influences that inform the shifting paradigm of sonic cues, fluid syncopation, beyond-the-friend-zone journal excerpts et cetera at work here, or you could just let go and let this progressive psychedelic jazz-rock splitter take the wheel. Either way, you'll be totally taken in by this beast. It rules!

Check out this trippy rainbow Rorschach sponge art video for "Rolando":



Band Crush: Earth Girl Helen Brown

Posted by Kells, June 3, 2011 01:30pm | Post a Comment
Bewitched at the drop of a needle, "nomadic psychedelic folksinger" Earth Girl Helen Brown owns my heart...
earth girl helen brown story of an earth girl ep vinyl cover art heidi sandwitches sonny smith
A customer turned me on to this jam as I was ringing up his purchase, the debut record from one of the fictitious artists associated with Sonny Smith's 100 Records project. Considering that more than a few of my favorite bands began as an inside joke (like the Sugarcubes) or some similar spontaneous venture (hello OOIOO) the scheme beneath Earth Girl Helen Brown's Story of an Earth Girl six song EP (on Forest Family) would be easy to miss if it weren't for the intergalactic, martian-love blues that color this collection of stellar musicianship --- a pleasant oddball mix of doo-wop, (earth) girls in the garage, Muscle Shoals soul, and a heady dose of feminine mystique.

"I Walked All Night" - Earth Girl Helen Brown


Captained by Heidi Alexander of the Sandwitches, with sandy sister Grace Cooper also on board along with a crew of SF local hitmakers (including Kelley Stoltz, John Dwyer and Sonny Smith, of course), this infinitely enjoyable record sets the bar way high for future endeavors. Limited to 500 copies on 10" white vinyl, Story of an Earth Girl dredges memories of some of my past loves and style crushes circa 80's (an obvious influence?), 90's (Meryn Cadell's "The Sweater"!!!) and all points beyond: xoxo!

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