Monday, February 24, 2014

Bass lines by Rocklin?

Alana Rocklin w/ STS9 at the Tabernacle, 12.28.13

Alana Rocklin is an accomplished bassist, studio juggernaut, producer and overall shredder. Alana is currently a member of Sub ID and the bassist for the J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League. Most recently she toured with Jim James. In the past she's aided My Morning Jacket, Bassnectar and Andre 300 on tour and that's not even scratching the surface of her recording/studio credits. Her ability to progress as a creative professional, is due in part, by her capacity to thrive in a multitude of musical landscapes. Are you thinking what I'm thinking?
The last time she teamed with Sound Tribe was during their 5 night run at the Tabernacle this past December. On the second night, during the first set, she livened up hidden hand, hidden fist, before engaging the audience on a sped-up cover of shakedown street. Both tracks were tackled with ease as she unfurled the bass heavy grooves. During the encore she dropped fat lines and funky riffs on gobnugget. The duel is chunky and makes me want to move (listen to the track below). Note, Phipps was killing it too.

Sector is in the studio right now laying down fresh cuts. This recording process has been taking place in both California and Atlanta. Whether Tribe has already enlisted her or someone else during the recording is anyone's guess. Alana appears to be, and more importantly, sounds to be more than capable of stepping in. STS9 will be performing live on March 28th in Arizona, when they headline night one at the McDowell Mountain Music Festival. Will Sound Tribe remain a five-piece? Maybe we'll see Alana Rocklin on stage with them, or maybe we won't...

J.U.S.T. saying, eightychoices.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cibo Matto

Cibo Matto 
For the first time in 15 years Cibo Matto dropped a new record. Hotel Valentine houses ten tracks and reminds us how unique their international hip-pop sound can be. This Hotel is not for everyone, and it's not as catchy as 1999's, Stereo Type A (which I loved). Maybe this album was intended to be a bit more indirect, the listener has to glean something richer from the atmospheric lyrics. Make no mistake, these two pop artists fully recognize the impact of a global culture that is constantly competing to stimulate and distract. The aforementioned process often leads to human disconnect or the loss of organic communication skills. Cibo Matto coaxingly gives us just enough, intentionally leaving the connections up to interpretation.

I'll attempt to decipher Valentine's sound. The second song, Deja Vu, collides with a world-beat blend of Sade and 90's Beck. Hard to imagine I know. I dig the upbeat pulse and funky twang of, 10th Floor Ghost Girl. Lounge music got the make over it's needed thanks to the title track. You can catch this duo at Slims on the 26th of this month. Below is a video of the first single, MFN.


Saturday, February 15, 2014

Finish Strong

New Orleans kicked off All-Star weekend last night. With that in mind, I have a former all-star on my radar. Steve Nash is one of my favorite players and one of the Association's best over his 18 year career. He's been chronicling his journey to regain his mobility and return to the court. Hopefully his career can end on his terms rather than having injuries decide when to call it quits. Don't get me wrong, I despise the Lakers, but I have always loved watching Steve orchestrate an offense. Nash's Phoenix teams, the seven-seconds-or-less Suns, were the closest thing to Magic and "Showtime" the NBA has seen. No other player from the 1996 NBA draft has two MVPs. Steve Nash loves the game and I'm rooting for him to stay healthy and succeed.

Hockumentary and Grantland present, The Finish Line: Episode 1, Move Like A Child.


Saturday, February 1, 2014

Space Bomb Records

Matthew E. White, heavy hit'n in historic Richmond. Space Bomb, his record label, is beaming brightly out of Virginia. One of these days I suggest you dive deeper into his music. In the meantime... his latest effort is currently available on vinyl as a 7". Trey Pollard helped out and created the live dub remix on side A, titled, Red Face BoyPillows (Version) is the B side and can be listened to below.

Mr. White is one of the more engaging and eclectic singer songwriters that I have happened upon in recent years. His first LP, Big Inner, was an amazing effort that bled originality. Next he delivered an EP that extended the narrative, Outer Face. Human Style, the video below, is one of its five tracks. Steeped in a kindred magic, he reflects a similarity to Randy Newman and Dr. John. At times, his voice reaches a high pitch of softness, reminiscent of Burt Bacharach. Matthew E. White knows how to entice and his melodic stories are the perfect portal from which to escape through. He's drop'n space bombs.