Saturday, December 20, 2008
Hark! In sympathy no doubt, I've been swept up into this one long tour venturing around West Africa for the holdiays. Christmas in West Africa? No rhyme or reason just glad to go. The first stop is Ghana for a few days and then the rest falls in place as it was meant to be. Ivory Coast, Mali, Senegal, I don't really know just yet. But count on a few escapades worth hearing about. Things finished at the International School with ease. Basketball is no longer a thing on TV and I got to read a fair share of books so win*win without a doubt. With college as the exception, I'm actually not doubting the sway of things to come much either. But rumor has it that West Africanism strikes fear in the young hearts of the lost and mapless. So for those that bother, stay tuned. I'm away, but only for a moment's notice. Don't worry. In the meantime, love the Muppet's Christmas Carol and being home for Christmas, two things I miss this time of year (besides City of Palms RIP and high school basketball) Spin Magazine has a great end of the year music deal. Good tiding to you, wherever you are.
at 2:29 PM
Friday, December 12, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
Art is a mirror of the individual and given the fact that people are just about everywhere, the many fashions of self expression can reflect the current state of all things social, political, and cultural. That's a pretty broad association but, right and wrong, it's in mind. I'm using this train of thought to get to know whatever part of the world I end up haunting for a spell, with music as the focus. In short, the music here is fascinating for a thousand different reasons.
Africa, specifically Uganda, is caught in a tryst between tradition and progress, like many places in the world. Such an ordeal is captured perfectly in the local music. The cheery Caribbeanesque guitar sounds and sunny vocals that previously coloured life around town are still around, but hanging by a moment. What's New that is beginning to sweep into the scene is a medley of past influences and everything bad about American Top 40 radio. The difference is electronics. The Beanie Manesque vocals that get watered through Pro Tools then stacked onto recycled dancehall beats is a congregation torn between tradition and modern urbania, something not completely original. But that's just the radio. There are of course quite a few shining moments.
Here are the first of my favorites.
BLK JKS hail from South Africa and the noise they make is glorious. A safe spell would have them as Africa's Mars Volta, but even that is a bit distant. Sun drenched jazz at a metal pace meets waves of reverb. TV On The Radio if they rocked. I can't do it justice, see for yourself.
BLK JKS- Lakeside
at 9:17 PM