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humana

Where’s the Beat? Live in the WFMU Studios [coll] – [Wfmu]

humana   7/13/2008   A Library, CD

Compilation: This special premium for WFMU???s 2008 fundraiser has something for everyone–it begins with Lau Nau???s unique brand of Finnish folk (CD1, 1) and ends with Marissa Nadler???s high-pitched folk crooning (CD2, 13), with a variety of genres sandwiched between. There???s an abundance of rock, with standouts from Sloan (CD2, 9) Kelley Stoltz (CD1, 6), and Armitage Shanks (CD2, 11). There are fine electronics from Antiguo Automata Mexicano (CD1, 9); some cool jazz from Slow Six (CD2, 4); and some stellar international conga and island flavor from the Budos Band (CD2, 5) and Extra Golden (CD2, 12). Give it a try–you won???t be disappointed. PGM: CD2, 4 gets very quiet at 0:20, and CD2, 10 basically ends at 0:17 with irrelevant talking.

-humana

Daby Tour??: Stereo Spirit (2007)

humana   8/11/2007   A Library

World music: A breath of fresh air from a musician who refused to listen to his father’s negativity about how no one could be successful as a musician. Clearly Daby Tour?? has the heart of a musician and this CD proves his father wrong. Defying ethnic categorization, Tour?? mixes his African roots with his exposure to the “bubbling Parisian jazz scene” to compose, arrange, sing, and play all of the musical instruments on this album of positive, upbeat songs. “What I’m trying to do is to give people the best moment possible whilst listening to this album.” With his lovely vocals and skillful guitars, he succeeds. They’re all under 5:50, they all end at least a few seconds early, and they’re all great, but try 2, 5, and 9.

Sun Ra & His Astro-Infinity Arkestra: Strange Strings (2006)

humana   8/3/2007   A Library

Free improvisation jazz recorded in New York circa 1966 and 1967. Apparently Sun Ra’s only directions to his Arkestra were when to start playing and when to stop. “Lost in Space” best describes this music, thanks to close proximity of a microphone that amplifies horns and strings through reverb and distortion.
1 (10:17) Full of energy, loudness, chaos. Not calm at all, but persistent in its noise. Pauses at 0:44, then the metal percussion serenades us until the song ends at 0:07. Horns dominate.
*2 (12:47) Percussion dominates. A piece of sheet metal is used to accompany other-worldly, wordless vocals described as “gargling” in the liner notes. A plucked string signals the end at 0:11.
3 (20:23) First half of song features a ukelin, which is a bowed and strummed zither from the early 1900s. Dutar and bandura are the strings featured in the second half of this song. Ends at 0:10.
4 (10:29) Sun Ra plays squeaking door (with Mini-Moog) as accompaniment to strings and percussion. Gives new meaning to what liner notes calls “musical uncanny”.

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