Last month we brought you a song from an album inspired by John Milton’s epic – Paradise Lost – and this month we have Hiatus Kaiyote’s ode to Japanese master of animation and storytelling – Miyazaki – and France’s Ibrahim Maalouf and Oxmo Puccinno’s reimagining of Lewis Carroll’s classic, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
We also have hip-hop instrumentals – Zomb, Noza and Poldoore. Fresh hip-hop – Peebs The Prophet and Phoniks, BADBADNOTGOOD feat. Ghostface and Doom. Latin and Afrobeat inspired joints – Onom Agemo & The Disco Jumpers, iZem (feat. Segun Akano). Jazz and funk rhythms – The Baker Brothers, 7 Days of Funk. Deep house – Matches. And instrumental goodness – Steve Cobby, Bassilus C. and DJ Oil.
Hiatus Kaiyote – Laputa
‘Laputa’ – taken from their EP, By Fire – is a taste test for the release of Hiatus Kaiyote’s second album, Choose Your Weapon – out in March. From Melbourne, Hiatus Kaiyote draw influences from everywhere yet somehow make a cohesive sound greater than the sum of its disparate parts. Riffing on their many talents, they trade their skills and futuristic soul experimentations into a tribute to Japanese animator, Hayao Miyazaki – with specific reference to his brilliant film, Laputa: Castle in the Sky.
Noza – Silvaplana
Brussels based beatmaker Noza gets inventive with a heavily effected vocal chop and some choice drum sounds. This one comes from the Unlog Complex 5 compilation, which you can snag here and features the work of some great emerging artists.
Onom Agemo & The Disco Jumpers
Hard to categorise but not hard to listen to – Berlin-based quintet, Onom Agemo and The Disco Jumpers play with retro psychedelic synth sounds and Moroccan, and Ethiopian-inspired beat goodness on their new album, Cranes and Carpets. From their bandcamp page – “The band even travelled to Morocco for playing and recording with a quartet of percussionists/ singers in the Issawa tradition, a Sufi Trance Brotherhood in central Morocco.” COOL! Out through Agogo Records.
Poldoore – Ain’t No Sunshine
Poldoore, from Leuven, makes a brave move in attempting another re-imagining of ‘Ain’t No Sunshine,’ considering what’s already out there. But he takes on the task with a genuine love of his source, drops a Biggie sample or two and comes out with a soulful piece. This one’s up for the special price of free on his Soundcloud.
Peebs The Prophet – Dead Calm (Prod. Phoniks)
Speaking of Biggie samples… From the Ills Of The Earth EP – available here. Peebs’ flow is coloured by a New England accent and some proficient wordsmithery. Backed by some precision nineties style, soulful hip-hop beats from fellow Maine resident, Phoniks and Hungarian producer, Blunt One, this is the 2nd release from Phoniks’ own Don’t Sleep Records. – “Pray to Rakim when I’m in churches.”
Ibrahim Maalouf & Oxmo Puccino – La porte bonheur
French heavyweights; trumpet virtuoso, Ibrahim Maalouf and rapper/spoken word artist, Oxmo Puccino have worked together previously but here they tackle Lewis Carroll’s magnum opus, Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland with their own masterpiece, Au Pays d’Alice. All 12 chapters receive their own inventive musical interpretation, spanning jazz, rock, hip-hop and classical. It is as ambitious as it is moving, fun and awesome.
Baker Brothers – Intercontinental Flower Power
The Baker Borthers “Hear No Evil” album, out on Fish Leg Records, fuses soul, jazz, rock, hip-hop and funk. The crew sharpen their best basslines and lively swinging sax hooks on this jam.
7 Days Of Funk – It’s Not A Secret
Snoopzilla and Dam Funk get together again on Stonesthrow. Snoop always sounds his sleazy best over funk and the warbly bassline and claps has has this one kicking with a soupy retro feel. Grab this one for free here.
DJ Oil – Beetlejuice
Taken from Marseille native and former member of electronic group The Troublemakers, DJ Oil’s sophomore album, Phantom, on BBE Records. Despite his DJ epithet, everything on the album is live instrumentation and featured joint ‘Beetlejuice’ trades on some jazzy snare rolls riding over a simple, rolling Moog loop, while rapper Josh and singer Hope Malik from Zimbabwean group, Monkey Nuts, do their thing. For some reason I can’t stop imagining I’m listening to them perform this in a cafe by the beach.
iZem – Water (feat. Segun Akano)
iZem’s beats represent his globetrotting tendencies as he draws inspiration from Latin and African grooves and instruments while craftily adding the right amount of electronic ingredient. This one is available as part of Dutch community INI Movement’s end-of-year compilation series De Gulden Snede on Bandcamp. The connoisseurs of electronic curate examples of the balance between the electronic and organic in music so listening to their other compilations is well worth your time.
Matches – Dreaming ft. Kaidi Tatham
From the Detroit house-inspired Burnt EP. Dreaming coasts through familiar grooves with a fresh faced outlook. Out through Arkhive London, the four track EP is their first vinyl release.
Steve Cobby – Settling Days
Normally found under the pseudonym, The Solid Doctor, Steve Cobby has been making and remixing for over 25 years with some impressive names on his C.V, including Radiohead and Busta Rhymes. His first solo release in 18 years, Saudade has been receiving a boatload of praise. On track ‘Settling Days’ he settles on some unobtrusive electro drums and dreamy strings, synths and piano, it pays off to triumphant effect as some orchestral strings arrive late in the track to piece it all together. Grab Saudade from Cobby’s Bandcamp page. Check also Steve’s exclusive mix for LDBK.
Bassilus C – As Giants Fall
Also from the UNLOG Complex 5 comp, the Soundcloud page for this one explicitly mentions the influence of Hisaishi, the famed Miyazaki composer behind the aforementioned Laputa – we keep it intertextual here at LDBK. Full of roomy reverb, echoed strings, inspired piano and backed by a complex ¾ beat – ‘As Giants Fall’ is an atmospheric trip.
BADBADNOTGOOD & Ghostface Killah – Ray Gun (feat. Doom)
How does Ghostface still manage to sound so hungry after all these years? It’s one of the reasons people keep wanting to work with him. Toronto jazz outfit BADBADNOTGOOD have gone and done just that with a whole album featuring Mr. Tony Starks himself, as well as other rap guests, eg. Danny Brown and Elzhi. Ghost teams up with one of hip-hop’s most imaginative lyricist’s – Doom – for this one. Oh, and considering Doom’s involvement, the video is predictably fun too. The album, Sour Soul is due to drop on Feb 24th.
Zomb. – Rockit
Brussels based beatsmith, Zomb just dropped his Distraction EP containing 10 tracks which you can cop for whatever price you want over on his bandcamp. Navigating through a post-Dilla palette of broken sounds and beat sketches, Zomb has an ear for sound collage and tasty sound textures. Rockit Fans of Samiyam or Knxwledge will definitely find something here that they like. Check also Zomb.’s exclusive mix for LDBK.