Jul 2019

Tuxedo III (CD)

Mayer Hawthorne (aka Aquarius) and Jake One (aka Taurus) turn up the heat on the dance floor on this soulful, silky third outing from their Tuxedo project, aptly named Tuxedo III. The ultra suave duo channels funky influences from the likes of Chic and Parliament; the result is a polished gem of throwback R&B/soul perfection. The pair enlists top caliber talent like MF DOOM, D?M-FunK, Leven Kali, Benny Sings, Gavin Turek, and a handful of others. There’s lots to love on this bouncy, brilliant LP, the first on Tuxedo’s new Funk on Sight imprint. Turn it up loud and soak up the summer vibes.

Read more
The Quanta Series (CD)

Syrian-American producer/singer K Á R Y Y N’s compelling Quanta Series brings together several previously-released singles along with newer works. K Á R Y Y N works her way through a number of genres, including dance floor exciters, elegiac meditations and soaring, strange-layered compositions. You’ve got to hear this one to believe it. Experimental and electric, in short, it’s a masterpiece. Few releases you’ll hear this year sound as immediate, powerful and haunting as this gorgeous LP.

Read more
Voyager (CD)

For 311's eclectic thirteenth album, the group merges the pop/reggae/rock they invented in the '90s – influencing newer acts like Twenty-One Pilots – with some updated pop soundscapes, aided by John Feldmann (Blink-182, Panic! At the Disco) who produced four of the tracks. “Good Feeling” is an infectious summer party jam, in the vein of The Black-Eyed Peas' “I Gotta Feeling.” “Don't You Worry” brings back the band's distinctive grungy ska guitar sound with some spaced-out soloing, while “What The?!” revels in some psychedelic funk. “Crossfire,” in turn, is a high-energy rock song with rapping vocals that ought to appeal to fans of Linkin Park.

Read more
Amoeba Gig (CD)

Paul McCartney's incredible in-store performance at Amoeba Hollywood on June 27, 2007 was a magical moment shared by the seven hundred lucky people who made it in, along with a handful of celebrities including Ringo Starr himself. For those who missed it – and for those who want to revisit it and reminisce – the full concert is now available for the first time! The 21 song set includes energetic renditions of hits from across McCartney's legendary career, such as “Drive My Car” and “Back In The U.S.S.R.,” as well as a solo acoustic version of “Here Today.” It's an absolute must-have for Beatles fans everywhere.

Read more
III (CD)

Jillian Banks continues her obfuscation of R&B with III, which is, all things considered, easily her most out-there production yet. That might be a striking description for an album that would release the crowd pleasing, tried-and-true gospel satisfaction of “Look What You’re Doing To Me” as a single. Sure, Banks’ work is not as uncanny valley pop as others who tread in similar territory (whether that be serpentwithfeet or Jessy Lanza), but nevertheless she prefers to coat sunny and unabashedly accessible songwriting in surreal sonic manipulations which leave plenty of lingering abstract angles to revisit. There’s her inscrutable voice, for one, frequently electronically treated and digitally distorted to a degree that would make Jai Paul proud. Those classic Daft Punk songs where you can’t tell whether it’s a guitar, synth, or some weird vocoder hitting that sweet spot? Shades of that are all over a bold production that isn’t afraid to play with timbre and texture mid-song.

Read more