Tuesday, December 18, 2012

2012: This is a list of music from this year.

Scott wishes you a nurturing, compassionate, caring holiday season!

Come December, I just can't help but be bit by the year-end-list-making bug. This bug - a spider, if you will - weaves its way across the world wide web, and... I can't keep up this awful metaphor (is it a metaphor? Whatever...). Anyhow, let's just say that year-end lists are ubiquitous, and it's fun, albeit in a moderately narcissistic way, to make your own. I encourage you to do so, too. So keep on reading - assuming I haven't turned you off already - to find my favorite albums (fifty of 'em), songs (seventy-five!), EPs (twenty-five), and reissues/compilations (ditto) of 2012. Ah, 2012! Ah, humanity!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

My Favorite Music of 2011

So someone hasn't blogged much recently, huh? Anyways, there are plenty of reasons for that--namely that I just don't really want to--but I still feel compelled to share my favorite music of the past year with you all over the internet. I'm not gonna write fancy writings telling you why I like this music--just suffice it to say that I like all this stuff because it's good, in some way or another.

These lists were especially tough to compile because, while there weren't any songs or albums that jumped out as being "the best", there was a veritable buttload of really nice releases in 2011 that deserve mention on this here blog (and on other blogs and magazines and stuff). There's not really an overarching theme to the music--we're post-genre, aren't we?--and there wasn't an exact science in choosing what albums/songs went in which order. Mostly I just picked the things that I listened to the most and provided the most intellectual/fun/emotional fodder for me in 2011 (which is why it's not a coincidence that my number one song and album are by the same artist). So, anyways, after the jump you'll find my sixty favorite albums, ninety favorite songs, thirty favorite reissues/compilations, and fifteen favorite EPs of 2011. They all rule. Happy new year.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

My Favorite Acts at ATP

So I went to ATP Asbury Park a.k.a. All Tomorrow's Parties a.k.a. I'll Be Your Mirror a.k.a. whatever on Saturday. It was unbelievable. Best festival I've attended. I don't want to write much on account of I'm currently taking a break from an Iliad essay I'm writing, and I don't want to start, you know, like, typing "Geoff Barrow" instead of "Achilleus"... Okay, so here were my favorite acts. (You'll notice I saw a ton of people; this is because ATP makes it easy to at least see, like, twenty minutes of almost everyone, which is awesome. (Also, I'd like to state that everyone I saw was good, so the rankings are a little arbitrary.))

1. Portishead (pictured above)
I mean, it was their first East Coast show since 1998--their mere presence was going to make this the best set of the day. But they also sounded really freakin' great: heavy, dark, soulful, and with plenty of turntable breaks and a truly goosebump-inducing rendering of "Wandering Star." Beth Gibbons sounded great and looked like she was having a ball of a time, which was pleasant to see. The fact that they curated the amazing lineup earns the band another handful of bonus points.

2. Swans
Unfortunately I had to cut out after an hour of Swans to get ready for, well, Portishead--but an hour of Swans is an hour well spent. This is assuming your definition of "well spent" involves getting blasted with a wall of distortion and chimes by a band that looks as ugly as it sounds (seriously, the band members all look like escaped convicts, Gira (wearing a cowboy hat) included). Truly, though, they just sound so damn good.

3. The Pop Group
I had kind of forgotten how much I love The Pop Group until about ten minutes before their set. And then I was like, "The band that made Y is about to play their first show in thirty years..." Play a show, they did. They were manic and angry and fun and LOUD. Mark Stewart is one of the most imposing--he's humongous!--and awesome frontmen I've seen, and the band was able to recreate the dub-punk-jazz sound they helped pioneer very well live.

4. Battles
Battles is only this low because I'd seen them before. Even without Ty Braxton, though (who was present last time I saw them), the band was absolutely incredible. They're able to be more precise than everyone while still being heavier than everyone (except, well, Swans). The energy emanating from a Battles show could power my computer, which, coincidentally is in dire need of power right now...

5. Colin Stetson
Like I said, my computer's running low on battery, and I need to write at least a little more of this essay--so I'll keep it short. Colin Stetson plays a mean saxophone, but what struck me about his show was it felt more like a Steve Reich thing than a Peter Brotzmann thing.

6. Marc Ribot's Ceramic Dog
Ribot is one of the best guitarists I've ever seen live, and Shazad Ismaily is in his band--and that dude just rules.

I also saw Beak>, The Horrors, Silver-Qluster, and Ultramagnetic MC's--all of whom were quite good. Mazel Tov, Portishead and the creators of ATP. I'll be back next year.

Oh yeah! I also met Jim Jarmusch on the train ride there. Damn!

Friday, September 30, 2011

My Favorite Things (9/30)

Hello, all. So, Spotify is still really cool--but in somewhat accordance to the Slow Listening Movement, I've vowed to stop downloading so much until I've actually, you know, listened to everything. This means I've been doing a lot of listening. A lot of this lot of listening has been directed, though, at finding songs for my new radio show--that's right: my radio show (well, my and my friend's). It's called That Thing, and it's on WBAR from six to eight EST every Friday morning. (The shows'll be archived in case you don't feel like waking up...) Anyways, the show essentially just plays soul from the mid-50s to mid-70s. You should listen one time.

Betty Davis - "If I'm In Luck I Might Get Picked Up"
Brian Eno - "Windows 95 Startup Sound (11 Minute Loop)"
David Bowie - Stage (Live, Boston 1978)
Disco Inferno - The 5 EPs
Hawkwind - Space Ritual

Ike & Tina Turner - "Funkier Than A Mosquita's Tweeter"
Iron Butterfly - "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida"
The Last Poets - The Last Poets
The Meatmen - We're The Meatmen... And You Suck
Mikal Cronin - "Apathy"

Twin Sister - In Heaven
Ty Segall - "Finger"
Ultra Vivid Scene - "It Happens Every Time"
Van Dyke Parks - Discover America
Various - Eccentric Soul: Twinight's Lunar Rotation

Sunday, September 18, 2011

My Favorite Things (9/18)

"Did she say there was other guys there? Did she say there was other guys there? Were there other guys there? Well, tell me this: how the fuck she know I was with them other girls then?"

I rediscovered R. Kelly's under-appreciated masterpiece, "Real Talk," this week--but my most important musical find is much more earth-shattering, believe it or not. It's Spotify. I got it a few days ago, and it's changed everything; all I have to do is click and drag to get all the free, legal music I want on my computer. It's overwhelming, but it's beautiful. Anyways, it's resulted in a lot of new Favorite Things for me, so this edition of My Favorite Things will include not fifteen, but thirty selections. Enjoy.

The Angels of Light - Everything Is Good Here/Please Come Home
Curtis Mayfield - "(Don't Worry) If There's A Hell Below, We're All Going To Go"
Cybotron - Clear
Dalek - From Filthy Tongues of Gods and Griots
Danny Brown - "Monopoly"

Deerhoof - "Goin' Up The Country (Live)"
Depeche Mode - Ultra
Don Cherry - "Brown Rice"
Essential Logic - Fanfare In The Garden
The Fire Show - Saint The Fire Show

Fire! with Jim O'Rourke - "Are You Both Still Unreleased?"
The Flirtations - "Nothing But A Heartache"
Girls - Father, Son, Holy Ghost
Henry Cow - "Guider Tells of Silent Airborne Machine"
Jackie Wilson - "Higher and Higher"

The Jesters - "Love No One But You"
Jocy de Oliveira - A Musica do Secolo
Kevin Drumm - Sheer Hellish Miasma
Lightnin' Rod - Hustlers Convention
Minutemen - Paranoid Time EP

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Tender Prey
R. Kelly - "Real Talk"
Slim Harpo - Raining In My Heart
Thee Oh Sees - Castlemania
Tom Ze - Estudando A Bossa

UGK - "Underground"
Vandermark 5 - "Further From The Truth (For Walker Evans)"
Willis Earl Beal - "Blue Escape"
The Wonders - "That Thing You Do!"
Youth Lagoon - "July"

Saturday, September 3, 2011

My Favorite Things (9/3)

I've been in college nearly a week at this point, and while I have plenty of time to listen to music, I don't have plenty of time to acquire new music. So my favorite things of the past fortnight or so are things we've all heard before--but that doesn't mean they're not good. Anyways, these are them. (I don't feel like including YouTube links anymore...)

Alice Coltrane - Journey In Satchidananda
Alvarius B. - Baroque Primitiva
Amen Dunes - Through Donkey Jaw
Balam Acab - "Oh, Why"
Bonnie "Prince" Billy - The Letting Go

Crass - Stations Of The Crass
Curtis Mayfield - "Pusherman"
Cut Hands - Afro Noise 1
Eagles of Death Metal - "San Berdoo Sunburn"
Expo '70 - "Close Your Eyes And Effortlessly Drift Away"

George Harrison - "Isn't It A Pity"
Laurel Halo - Hour Logic
Prurient - "Palm Tree Corpse"
Terius Nash - "Wake Me When It's Over"
Sun Araw - Ancient Romans

Saturday, August 20, 2011

My Favorite Things (8/20)

I haven't been blogging. That's okay; there's more to life. But I still like music, don't you worry--and this, listed below, is the music I've liked most recently. Some of it has just come out, some of it is old but I'm hearing it for the first time, and some of it is music I've liked in the past and am now revisiting. It's just fifteen pieces of good stuff.

Perhaps this is a feature that will pop up with some frequency on Il Buono, but I don't want to make any promises, because broken promises are disappointing, and I don't want to disappoint my legions of faithful readers... Anyways, here's some great music (listed in alphabetical order).

Autechre - Tri Repetae
Bobby Beausoleil & The Freedom Orchestra - Lucifer Rising OST
Chet Baker - Chet Baker Sings

Eternal Tapestry & Sun Araw - Night Gallery
The Germs - G.I.
Lightning Bolt - Hypermagic Mountain

Missy Elliott - "Work It"
Ricky Nelson - "Fools Rush In"
Rip Rig & Panic - God
White Mystery - "Overwhelmed"