French artist Wendy Killmann has a new EP, Top To Bottom, out next week under his Rose Tiger name. A romantically vicious image, the music also uses beautiful synths and new-wave inspired pop to create aggressive, sometimes frantic sounds. And there are dinosaurs.
“ROSE TIGER is the brainchild of French artist Wendy Killmann, a young man who dreams of a parallel world where humans coexist with dinosaurs and whose musical taste is inspired by 80s British new-wave (Tears For Fears, Depeche Mode), 90s video games (Final Fantasy VII, Pokémon Blue) and favourite Manga theme music from his childhood (Dragon Ball Z, Gundam Wing).
His first EP/Comic titled « From Top To Bottom » will be released November 17th along with an 8-page comic book by famous Instagram artist Sibylline Meynet. A video for the song Submarine (Where Have You Been?) will be released on the same day as the EP.”
This Ma-Te Lin song is so delicate I’m afraid it’s going to break in my hands. What a gorgeous song. Lead singer Asha whispers in Mandarin and English over a simple composition over someone she wishes to come home. She sounds sad but grateful to know such a person. His or her return would still be bittersweet, but at least a good memory. The group’s last full album came out in 2015, so hopefully “Please Come Home” is a sign towards the next release.
Another winner from Berlin’s Habibi Funk label is its Abdou El Omari & Naima Samih release from February. Omari’s psychedelic organ plays with Arabic strings and rhythms to excellent results, made better by Samih’s beautiful vocals.
“First issue (LP+DL) of this previously unreleased Oriental psych monster from the organ king of Casablanca, combining traditional rhythms with spaced out modern sounds. Second part of Abdou El Omari’s Nuits-trilogy. This album contains heavenly compositions for the Moroccan diva Naima Samih and some moody instrumentals in a similar vein to the first album.”
Raft is (sort of) a j-pop band with a purpose: to establish and promote “Liberal Music,” where music can be made across great distances and overcome any cultural barriers. With members from Japan and Thailand, these self-proclaimed ambassadors of worldly music make sweet and catchy Asian pop.
“We are developing a free music concept named ‘LIBERAL MUSIC’ where the music is not limited by boarder, language and style. A music that attracts anyone, anywhere with combination of rock, pop and all other sorts of music.”
May 2017 in music: -Finally made my Beatles Black Album (I’m a John guy, Paul has some killer late-career cuts, I don’t hate George as much anymore, Ringo is still Ringo) -Rediscovered Cass McCombs (again) -Realized that The 1975’s first record is just as bizarre and almost as great as their latest one -Pretenders’ ‘The Singles’ – criminally underrated collection, or am just an idiot? -I finally began watching Twin Peaks (synnnnnnnnths) -RIP Chris Cornell and Gregg Allman
An oldie but a goodie, El Morabba3 has been making some of the most consistently interesting alternative music in Jordan for a couple of years. “Asheek,” a personal highlight, wouldn’t sound too off on the new National album.
“The more an artist attempts a truthful reflection of the human condition the more conflicts and paradoxes will appear in their work, that’s why the music of El-Morabba is euphoric and deliciously dark; it fills you with an acute sense of elation while the lyrics crash down on you with their intense reality and truth.
It is rebellious music that lends a voice to the thoughts, concerns and anger of the people towards the reality they are living today, yet most of all it lends a voice to a dream that is dormant within us all, nudges it sometimes, or shocks the hell out of it onto the surface in other instances of pure intensity. All of this is translated through music that is uniquely structured; the rhythm, while always holding a firm base of ergonomic structure with the simple yet efficient heartbeat of the bass, it manages to float within it’s own spheres alongside the heavily transformed guitar expressions like two astronauts floating individually away, or towards their shuttle, winking at each other in the realization that they will always reach their destination simultaneously because they’d timed it that way, and they’d done it a billion times before.
And during this dance of rhythm and atmosphere between the drums, percussion and guitar, the vocals of either Muhammad Abdullah or Tareq Abu Kwaik floats massively on the surface giving purpose and clarity to a dreamlike state without awakening the listeners, they come with the intensity of words half sung or half spoken, sweet and sour melodies doubled by indistinguishable screams of ecstasy and anguish.
The combination defies definition, yet is awash with purpose, it is also uniquely vulnerable and holistic, very human.”
Almost one year old and Damakase‘s ‘Gunfan Yellem!’ still sounds just as fresh and exciting and manages to respect heritage without sounding stuck in the past. The foursome from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital, mixes traditional Ethiopian themes with West African grooves, banjo riffs, and funk.
“Endris Hassen (The Ex, Ethiocolor, Imperial Tiger Orchestra, Nile Project, MistO-MistO etc) and Cory Seznec (Groanbox, Seznec Bros, solo, MistO-MistO, etc) joined forces in late 2014 to fuse sounds from east and west Africa. Hungry for a fuller sound, they brought in Misale Legesse (Ethiocolor, Addis Acoustic Project, etc) on kebero and Cass Horsfall on bass (Black Jesus Experience, Jazmaris, etc) to flesh things out and create Damakase, a name which comes from a plant used in traditional medicine in Ethiopia to heal “gunfan” (cold/flu) and other ailments.
By late 2015 they had enough songs for an album, and asked Kenny Allen to come in as producer.
Gunfan Yellem! (translated roughly as Fever No More!) is an album recorded live in Cory’s Glasshouse Studios. Guest artists were invited to add a little spice here and there, and Kenny fine tuned and tweaked the mix to perfection.
The music is comprised of 6 originals and two covers (Wuba by the Eritrean composer Tewelde Redda, and Mother’s Love by the Ethiopian pianist Emahoy Tsegue-Maryam Guebrou).”
“Shika Shika is a record label without owners for music without borders. We want to bring together producers from around the world exploring the line between organic and electronic music. The platform aims to foster global collaboration between artists, designers, videographers, product designers and creative minds across continents.”
And a full statement on the label’s latest release ‘Mare Insularum’:
“Today marks the dawn of a new era in the politics world and 2016 saw monumental shifts in how the world is shaping up for the future. Inspired by an atmosphere of desperation, frustration and a lack of hope we went to music to seek solace, inspiration and a reminder of the incredible things humans are able to do if they are open minded, work together, cross borders and get creative.
Mare Insularum translates as Sea of Islands and also the name of one of the many lunar seas. In line with Shika Shika’s vision, the album not only showcases music that is blurring borders and genres, seeking inspiration from past and present, but also music that offers hope, escape, inspiration.
We believe in the power of music and we believe in the power of collaboration. Despite the shift in the white house and the apparent slide into a dangerous new world, at Shika Shika we also believe 2017 is going to be a year of resistance and of hope.
We want to say thanks to all the artists for contributing new tracks, edits and pieces directly written for this compilation.”