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See the New Music section for all the of tracks and albums featured this week.
Have you ever heard a rap song about trans issues? Because this beautiful Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers highlight (among many) does just that. Kendrick tells his experience of his perspective of his relatives who transitioned, recounting the confusion and the use of offensive words. Kendrick goes from a show of ignorance to a growing understanding of identity and its importance.
Demetrius is Mary-Ann now
As Kendrick edges out of the shadow of religious teachings that cast his relative in sin, he choses love and humanity, but not without throwing us a last line that poses further questions.
Referencing a gig in 2018 when he brought a white woman onstage to perform ‘m.A.A.d. city’ and she rapped the N-word, Kendrick juxtaposes his own early ignorant use of the F-slur as a boy.
On the day that the debut album A Light For Attracting Attention from The Smile arrived (Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood and Sons of Kemet’s Tom Skinner’s new band), it’s a pre-release single that was released a few months ago that resonates the most upon my first album listen. It’s down to that snaking Radiohead bassline and the subtle brass and instrumentation.
This Is Not A Photograph
The title track from US singer-songwriter Kevin Morby’s new album, written in Memphis, is an encapsulation of all that Morby is great at – songwriting, storytelling and getting fresh notes from old sounds. It’s also a fine indication of the album’s busier sonics after 2020’s relatively quieter Sundowner, brass and backing vocals from Stax Academy of Music alumni and all.
Morby plays the Academy, Dublin on September 7th.
Danger Mouse, Black Thought
No Gold Teeth
Producer Danger Mouse and The Roots’ rapper Black Thought have a joint album coming out on August 12th called Cheat Codes. Purported to be Danger Mouse’s first hip-hop album since Dangerdoom with MF DOOM in 2005.
‘No Gold Teeth’ has me excited for what’s to come.
Indeed, DOOM features on the album along with A$AP Rocky, Run The Jewels, Michael Kiwanuka, Kid Sister, Joey Bada$$, Russ, Raekwon and Conway the Machine.
Aoife Nessa Frances
Among the news of Aoife Nessa Frances signing to Partisan for her new album is this beautiful song accompanying it.
Emptiness Follows’ is about the intimacy and deep emotional connection of friendship. The song captures these moments – the water as the weight of the emotional connection we share, the small details we remember ‘the shape sits beneath your earlobe’. The movement and colour of the music, the harp constantly flowing throughout, are emphasising a profound importance in acknowledging an eternal kind of love. I wanted my voice to be close and up front and vulnerable like Serge Ginsberg’s ‘ Histoire de Melody Nelson’’.Aoife Nessa Frances
Lydia Wears A Cross
Those who listen to the Nialler9 Podcast know how much we stan Australian songwriter Julia Jacklin.
Along with a Dublin gig in November and new album Pre Pleasure on August 26th, Jacklin shared this preview single.
“A lot of the time I feel like I need to do all the work before I can enjoy my life,” says Julia Jacklin of her third album, PRE PLEASURE. “Whether that’s work on songs or sex, friendships, or my relationship with my family – I think if I work on them long and hard enough, eventually I’ll get to sit around and really enjoy them. But that’s not how anything works is it. It’s all an ongoing process.”
Post Punk Podge & The Technohippies
The Living Wake
Limerick’s Post Punk Podge delivers a rousing sermon over rumbling violin-assisted ambience about Irish emigration, and its effect on the Irish psyche.
Just one old forest stands now, as the rest are hewn for lumber.
As our youth were cut from the register to let the leaders slumber.
No more can we lose our shining children.
The minds of poetry and science.
The hands of art that none can mimic.
Let us rise together and take our places.
Join our hands and many faces and look with wrath upon the Dáil.
Then take action to save us all from the boat, the plane, the endless drain.
The family’s broken, a nation’s stain.
The title track from Welsh artist Gwenno’s forthcoming third album (July 1st on Heavenly), is dreamy and psych-leaning.
‘Tresor’ is a song questioning what makes us human, and the conscious choice that we have to either have a positive or negative impact on our environment and everything around us. We live in a chaotic world and what impacts on our ability to make positive decisions is largely circumstantial, the song is about trying to connect with our ability to do the right thing at a point where everything is in-flux, in crisis, and the foundation of our society is changing. How do we connect with our responsibilities and instinct to commit to the collective in a largely individualistic society? ‘Tresor’ is an homage to an older, analog world, the soundtracks to European cinema, and a final fair farewell to the 20th Century.”
The Break Up (Emma-Jean Thackray Remix)
UK jazz artist Emma-Jean Thackray remixes a song from the duo formerly known as Detroit Swindle. Peep the original.
Wonky glitchy hyperpop style from French/Moroccan/American producer Adam Abdelkader Lenox aka Zouj. ‘On!e’ is released on City Slang and the video is by Julie Amouzegar Kim.
“One!“ tells the story of a torn digital avatar looking for it’s final identity – the adventurous computer generated character lurks through claustrophobic digital maps, mutates into various skins and props, and travels through aesthetics of different times in hopes to find unity within itself. It looks for a perfect map to call home and the perfect props to be it’s own. Unsuccessfully.”ZOUJ