Weekend Wind Down

Eariler tonight, courtesy of my friend Sarah Cake, I saw the documentary on New York photographer Bill Cunningham, which is only just showing now in cinemas in Australia. What an accomplished and focussed man he is!

The end of 2011 approaches and I’m quietly pleased. It has been a busy year and looking at the amount of annual leave I’ve racked up, not a very fun year. So bring on 2012 I say! The suppose end of days year should be a blast! And who knows, I might even USE some leave and have a bloody break.
BUT before I get too cocky and annoying, 2011 isn’t over. I may be hit by a truck tomorrow and all of my 2012 wishes will be dashed, along with whatever spills out of my body, all over the asphalt.
Unless that happens though, there’s some bizniz to take care of: the top ten albums of the year, as compiled by a LOT of blogs and magazines! I’ll be compiling mine for BMA Mag (and this insipid blog) soon and I’ll say this much, there’s a fair bit of r ‘n b this time!

For now, chilled stuff along with my incessant commentary…

Nina Simone – Black is the Colour of My True Hair (Jaffa Remix)

So this old time crooner has had her fair share of attention, especially when Kill Bill came out. But her music transfers well into a modernised and remixed environment. There’s some nice groove and rhythm in this remix.

Daniel Laufer – Gentleman (feat. Chloe Charles) (Arthaus Version)

Daniel Laufer is a young German who is fairly new to the scene. He grabbed my attention when I saw that he employed the vocal assistance of Chloe Charles (whom I’ve blogged about before). I am told that Laufer “had the pleasure to shoot a music video with her for the original album version of “Gentleman” recently while she was on tour in Germany. I first met her in April at a gig in my hometown where she was the support act and contacted her afterwards for two album songs.”

Submerse – Hold it Down

SBTRKT is likely to make mytop ten list. Ahh, who am I kidding! He’ll probably be my number 1! No surprises everyone! You don’t have to read my top ten anymore because I just revealed my number 1 which means you don’t care anymore!
He did a very cool dj set which you can find here and this song from it stood out. It’s the kind of song that back in 1999 would have found its way onto those Chillout albums or Cafe Aroma from Sanoma or whatever compilations it was my sister got that contained artists like Groove Armada.

Modeselektor – Art & Cash (SBTRKT Remix)

And while we’re ont the subject of SBTRKT, as you will probably read again later when I gush more about him, this guy just has a very distinctive style. It is comparable to others, I’m sure, but none that immediately come to mind. It’s just good dub and I’m not a huge dub person. But he also knows how to remix well and I think this aspect has been overlooked a bit. This remix betters the original by far.

Niki and the Dove – Drummer

Like Alex Winston, Niki and the Dove is perhaps an obvious pick and fresh off the Hype Machine gamut. She sounds a lot like Kate Bush and when Kate Bush has released an album this year already, you might ask, do we really WANT another Kate Bushian artist?
Well, I don’t think she’s quite as Bush as maybe you’d like! Her style is quite tribal and a wee bit silly and childish. Maybe not as teen boppy as Madonna’s new single but more 19 year-old-getting-ready-to-go-out-clubbing boppy.

Skindive – No More Good Guys

I’ve been watching Queer as Folk here and there. I could (and have to my friends) harp on about its inaccuracies and the frustration of watching this homogenised gay world where supporting parents are basically clowns and the gays are all caught up in ridiculous drama (the sub-plot line about Emmett joining a ‘get-well-soon-and-turn-straight-please’ church group was unconvincing, considering the level of queen he usually emits).
But sometimes the music is great.
Skindive is one of the slower songs that despite its dramatic almost Antony and the Johnsons-like approach, contrasts against the usual beat-heavy dancefloor anthems.

Kimbra – Two Way Street

I was pretty disappointed with Kimbra’s emergence this year. I loved Settle Down until I heard her crapping on about how sick she is of seeing people “settle down”. We can’t all afford to HAVE LOTS OF FUN. Some of us actually NEED stability.
Anyway I was a bit disenfranchised once I saw her ego inflating to the same heights as Robyn, but without the back catalogue to support it. So I didn’t bother listening to the album.
But, surprise-surprise, one song reached me, Two Way Street. A simple love-aby song where she states “and there’s no conspiracy behind the way to heist me”. And the strings are worked in nicely. What a beautiful song, Kimbra!
Well, I think my whole ‘her head is up her arsehole’ judgement was made too quickly and too unfairly.
It’s kind of a relief because now I can go back to thinking she’s got a lot of promising talent.

The good thing about Facebook, and really most social media platforms, is that sometimes someone will recommend a song or somesuch to your friend and out of sheer whateverness you’ll listen. This is how this song by Cameras, Defeatist, found its way to me. I always get excited when an Aussie talent sparks up! I’m going to see them live the moment I get the chance. You’ll hear more about this band from me as their movements unfold.

Black Light Dinner Party – Gold Chain

These guys are just incredible! I’ve been playing Older Together sooo much this year, putting it on my friends’ mix tapes and just generally loving it to death. But it won’t “die” like some songs do when you play them too much. And Gold Chain is going to be another Older Together. Plus Small Boxes is a solid song.
If they released an album this year, Black Light would have made my top ten. Instead I will gag for the next musical nugget.

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