In brief, L-R, each row:
Little Richard: The Georgia Peach
Don’t forget: wotta band!!! Especially Lee Allen on bulldozing tenor and Earl Palmer inventing rock and roll drumming.
Sacred Flute Music from New Guinea
The thought of “sacred flute music” gives me the fan-tods, but, lo and behold, but this stuff is not only inventive, but also a little catchy and fairly varied (for folk music).
Rosalía: Los Ángeles
A debut album of uncommon vocal intensity and focus, augmented almost solely by acoustic guitar. It isn’t quite flamenco, it’s not really pop, but it means business.
Hamid Drake & Joe McPhee: Keep Going
The highlight is the title opener, inspired and partially written by Harriet Tubman and offered to the growing number of us who are demoralized. I’d accept; it works. Elsewhere the two fond and familiar free masters make joyful racket with their drum and horn, respectively.
X-Ray Spex: Germfree Adolescents
I’ve been asked to present at a local high school’s seminar on identity, and given my choice of topics. I’m doing the whole hour on my favorite record ever written by a teenager. A teenage prophet, for teenagers 40 years later to discover.
Charlie Parker: The Complete Savoy & Dial Master Takes
Any day’s a great day to listen to Bird, but The Sound of Redemption, a neat documentary on the art and trials of the Parker-inspired saxophonist Frank Morgan, sent me in his direction. The film’s built around a Morgan tribute concert held at the man’s former home: San Quentin.
Superchunk: What A Time to Be Alive
The best rock and roll album of 2018, partly because it nails the time. I played “Reagan Youth” 5 times today–then I played the very best of Reagan Youth.
Parquet Courts: Stay Awaaake
Instrumentally, these guys know every rock and roll move, sometimes constructing a crazy-quilt out of several in one song. Lyrically, like Superchunk, they seem to be taking a necessary piss (both albums have great songs about fights or fighting). But the “dumb,” affected vocals have built a wall between they and me.
Not so brief after all.