Tag Archive: “Mello Music Group”

It’s been quite the week. I don’t normally share anything personal but the intensity of this week borders on insanity. Medical issues surrounded me but everything and everyone seems to be healing, thank goodness. Situations force you to put things in perspective on occasion but as the week rolls by you have the sound of reality bludgeoning your eardrums, asking you to please pay attention. My life is filled at times with movie quotes an song lyrics because sometimes they just make sense at the moment.

That seems to happen sometimes with Lando Chill whose new album The Boy Who Spoke To The Wind (Mello Music Group) seems to be the resulting product of a systematic problem many have faced throughout the years. While his debut For Mark, Your Son was tribute to his father, his sophomore release is a rallying cry. Where group’s like Public Enemy were at the forefront of establishing a formula of noisy elements filtered in its powerful music along with Chuck D’s clear and precise imagery of oppression and revolution, rapper/wordsmith Lando Chill takes a different approach.  He wants you to take in his words, but he won’t force you to do what he says. That’s not his style. Chill wants you to comply but he’s not going to make you. “Break Them Shackles” is filled with metaphors that tells a story about an oppressed culture but he knows one thing though, and when he shouts, “We about to look good when we break them shackles one day” you know exactly what he’s referring to. It’s all set to straight-forward beat, driven by a few notes on a piano that’s infectious. “The King Of Salem” doesn’t stray far from the theme but when he mentions “…to Malcolm, Martin / and some voodoo from Wakanda / and still they call my tribe people savages…” he’s telling the story of intelligence and power that hasn’t been silenced. All this under a dark and spooky timbre of a backdrop which has a haunting bassline. Chill’s humor isn’t missed on “People Are Evil,” where he sings “All of my people are evil” and “Now why are we so evil? Why they killing all are people.” He uses this catchy laid back joint to draw on images of death because of misconception and perception. Possibly one of my favorite tracks on the album, that is until we get to “No Paz” (no peace) which has a bouncy beat that follows a Family Stone-type intro. It’s interesting how clearly his vision is expressed. It shows his anger without being angry. Lando Chill isn’t strictly about politicizing what he sees on a daily basis as “o sicario e o padre” he raps about struggle with his art and how “Everybody wants to ride that train to Basquiat / but they ain’t about that life / they ain’t never hit that rock bottom.” The gospel of Chill has been edited here where the struggle of the black man takes precedence on The Boy Who Spoke To The Wind but it doesn’t overshadow who Lando Chill is: a fierce artist who gets his point across through the imagery his words display. The album isn’t an easy listen, which it shouldn’t be. It should make you feel uncomfortable at times because as a society and as people, we’re all complex. This release holds 14 tracks; 14 powerful songs.

LandoChill

For some reason I find Terence Ryan to be quite the conundrum. Everything I’ve read about Ryan I probably would have pegged him as something different but the way this 20-something year old does leaves me confused is a good thing. Born to and raised by working class parents, this suburban kid didn’t grow up with anyone else who was musically inclined surrounding him. But that’s of no consequence because with his debut full-length Don’t Panic (3QTR/Kobalt Music Recordings), he’s on a clear path to domination. Ryan seems to have more soul in his blood than one would believe.  From the moment this album begins it reveals nothing but sincerity, hope and strength. “Mean It,” comes across as pop wonder, with so many nods to an R&B culture that came before him.  From beginning to end, even at its quieter moments there’s power within the song. When Ryan sings “I want to mean it/ Lord, give me meaning” he holds nothing back, never wavering. But the power of this one track doesn’t overshadow what follows with the remaining numbers on the album, not by a long shot. “Nothin'” trails off the path, much more laid back but brimming with so much swagger and beauty. But it isn’t as if Ryan is a one trick pony because his quieter moments are just as urging. “Just A Spark” begins with a ballad-esque feel but then morphs into a slower jam with a contained will to explode.  He’s a fascinating character that switches thing up on more than one occasion, blistering through his acoustic guitar on “Agoura CA A Particular Time In Eternity.” This is where Ryan shows his range and it’s scary. When he hits those higher notes, images of Jeff Buckley haunt me.  It will leave you paralyzingly awestruck. I want to say something negative about Don’t Panic because nothing should be so perfectly wound tight, but there’s nothing I can hold against Ryan. “Rock Bottom” showcases that same beautiful voice of his and musically there’s a play on dynamics here and songs like “To Live And Die In New England,” an ode to his home territory, shows how he can just do it all. I’m dumbfounded as to why Terence Ryan isn’t a huge star. He has the talent and the chops to take it all. The world just needs to catch up to him.

Terence Ryan

Rounding out the trifecta of releases this week is Precious Art (SideOne Dummy), the fourth release for Rozwell Kid. The album leaves the band on the precipice of its career. Some group’s have to wonder on occasion if they should regroup, press the eject button, or simply move forward and continue to write and release music.  It’s a good thing the members decided to continue because the album is rife with clever pop songs with a hook at just about every turn, which is what the kids love. Throughout the years the West Virginia act has honed its skill and there’s no argument that all four members are tightly wound together, so much so where I’m sure they know where one’s instrument ends and the other begins. But one thing about Rozwell Kid though, I’m not sure if I’m completely sold on the band. Sure they write those clever pop songs but there isn’t something that makes me want to listen to them over and over again. I’m not discounting Precious Art because it does have happy, cheerful songs that you can dance to around in your bedroom but I can’t easily distinguish this band from any other groups if I heard their songs being played on the radio. In other words, Rozwell Kid isn’t identifiable. In a line-up, I probably wouldn’t know who they were but hey, it’s a well crafted album.

photo - Emily Dubin

 

Lando Chill – Facebook // Twitter // Instagram
Rozwell Kid – Facebook // Twitter // Instagram
Terence Ryan – Facebook // Twitter // Instagram

The One With Nice Songs and Politics

On this episode: Brian starts the episode by giving Luke an update on his butt for some reason, the dear cousins get into some deep topics touching on the Philando Castile verdict, the forgotten America, Art and its impact on empathy and the Patriarchal system of power currently in place worldwide, they also touch on pool parties, Rammstein and how much they disagree about Bon Iver (again). All while playing the eight best songs you’ll hear all week!

Every week Ghettoblaster feature writers (and dear cousins!) Brian LaBenne and Luke LaBenne bring you fresh new songs with the hopes of introducing you to some that you may consider to be the best song ever.  Both Brian and Luke have no idea what songs the other has picked, so what you are hearing is their genuine reaction to listening to the songs together.  Also, if you enjoy this episode, head to ITunes to subscribe and rate our podcast with the highest rating available to you.

ITUNES LINK


Songs Played on The One With Nice Songs and Politics

alt-J – In Cold Blood from Relaxer out now on Infectious Music

Twinsmith – Boji from Stay Cool out July 14th on Saddle Creek

Francis and the Lights feat. Chance the Rapper – May I Have This Dance (Remix) from Farewell Starlite out now on GOOD Music

Mr. Lif and Akrobatic (The Perceptionists) – Hose Down from Resolution out July 28th on Mello Music Group

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit – Last of My Kind from The Nashville Sound out now on Southeastern Records

INVSN – Immer Zu from The Beautiful Stories out now on Dine Alone Records

Son Little – Blue Magic (Waikiki) from New Magic out September 15th on Anti-

Iron & Wine – Call it Dreaming from Beast Epic out August 25th on Sub Pop

The One With Dancing on the Walls

On this episode: our dear cousins broadcast live from a pirate radio ship as Brian brings news that they’ve been cancelled by Ghettoblaster editor Dave Obenour, Luke tells some cheesy music jokes, Brian takes us back to 2013 when pop and indie-rock merged and Luke urges artists not to hang out with Taylor Swift, Brian shows us what the lovechild of Jesus and Mary Chain and New Order would sound like, listeners are reminded of Luke’s fervent Don’t Read campaign and talk about the incredible TV show The Handmaid’s Tale, Brian brings his dancing shoes and dances on the wall like Fred Astaire,  they talk a lot about death and ghosts and morbidly romantic music, Brian hypes the new season of The Bachelorette out May 22nd on ABC, Luke schools Brian on who Rachel ended up with in the Friends series finale and they play eight of the best songs you’ll hear all week!

Every week Ghettoblaster feature writers (and dear cousins!) Brian LaBenne and Luke LaBenne bring you fresh new songs with the hopes of introducing you to some that you may consider to be the best song ever.  Both Brian and Luke have no idea what songs the other has picked, so what you are hearing is their genuine reaction to listening to the songs together.  Also, if you enjoy this episode, head to ITunes to subscribe and rate our podcast with the highest rating available to you.

ITUNES LINK


Songs Played on The One With Dancing on the Walls

Haim – Want You Back from Something to Tell You out July 7th on Columbia

Goodwood Atoms – Dreaming About from Place EP out May12th on Yunizon Records

Fazerdaze – Lucky Girl from Morningside out now on Flying Nun Records

Lando Chill – Break Them Shackles from The Boy Who Spoke to the Wind out June 23rd on Mello Music Group

LCD Soundsystem – Call the Police out now on Columbia Records

Chris Bathgate feat. Tunde Olaniran – Low Hey from Dizzy Seas out May 19th on Quite Scientific Records

Big Thief – Shark Smile from Capacity out June 9th on Saddle Creek Records

Cymbals – Decay from Light in Your Mind out August 25th on Tough Love Records

The One With Sqwings

Every week Ghettoblaster feature writers (and dear cousins!) Brian LaBenne and Luke LaBenne bring you fresh new songs with the hopes of introducing you to some that you may consider to be the best song ever.  Both Brian and Luke have no idea what songs the other has picked, so what you are hearing is their genuine reaction to listening to the songs together.  Also, if you enjoy this episode, head to ITunes to subscribe and rate our podcast with the highest rating available to you.

ITUNES LINK


Songs Played on The One With Sqwings

Damaged Bug – Bog Dash from Bunker Funk out March 10th on Castle Face Records

Thievery Corporation feat. Mr. Lif – Ghetto Matrix from Temple of I & I out now on ESL Music

Beach Fossils – This Year from Somersault out June 2nd on Bayonet Records

The New Pornographers – High Ticket Attractions from Whiteout Conditions out April 7th on Collected Works Records

Aimee Mann – Goose Snow Cone from Mental Illness out March 31st on SuperEgo Records

Quell Chris – BS Vibes from Being You Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often out now on Mello Music Group

Kane Strang – Oh So You’re Off I See from an album due later this year on Dead Oceans

John Andrews and the Yawns – Drivers from Bad Posture out March 10th on Woodsist

The One With So Much So Anyway

On this episode: Brian and Luke have fun with Brazilians, Brian has a first for the podcast, Luke makes Brian shriek, Luke blurts out a spoiler without a spoiler alert, Brian and Luke debate about Ryan Adams, Brian is able to get some things off his chest (against his Doctor’s orders) and some really awesome music is played!

Every week Ghettoblaster feature writers (and dear cousins!) Brian LaBenne and Luke LaBenne bring you fresh new songs with the hopes of introducing you to some that you may consider to be the best song ever.  Both Brian and Luke have no idea what songs the other has picked, so what you are hearing is their genuine reaction to listening to the songs together.  Also, if you enjoy this episode, head to ITunes to subscribe and rate our podcast with the highest rating available to you.

ITUNES LINK


Songs Played on The One With So Much So Anyway

Chicano Batman – Friendship (Is A Small Boat In A Storm) from Freedom Is Free out March 3rd on ATO Records

Tinariwen – Assawt from Elwan out now on Anti-

Oddisee – Like Really from The Iceburg out now on Mello Music Group

Vagabon – Fear & Force from Infinite Worlds out now on Father/Daughter Records

Sam Patch – 100 Decibels from Yeah You, and I out now on Dep Records

Ryan Adams – Doomsday from Prisoner out now on Pax Am Recordings

Tashaki Miyaki – Girls on TV from The Dream out April 7th on Metropolis Records

The Mountain Goats – Andrew Eldritch is Moving Back to Leeds from Goths out May 19th on Merge Records

It’s another Friday and here we are again. The more things change, the more they stay the same. I keep listening to the constant complaint of those who want something better but you know what? You actually have to get up off your ass and work for it! No one’s going to hand you anything. Every week I receive a slew of releases and I’ll randomly grab a handful to listen to. Yeah, sometimes people just do that, and what I find on occasion are those that don’t expect anything to be handed to them, deciding to put together a collection of songs they felt strongly compelled to create. You see that? They’re creating their own opportunities and for better or worse, they’ve landed at my feet here. What do we have here?

POW! - Crack An Egg
POW! – Crack An Egg

I didn’t know what to make of band, the duo who simply goes by the name POW! at first glance. I imagined their  album Crack An Egg (Castle Face Records) would be a gloomy pastiche of work that would probably keep me in a depression for a few years. Luckily that’s not the case. While the duo may play a familiar synth-rock style, they’re here to make you feel their songs deep in your soulless body. The party really starts for me with “Back On The Grid” where they stop and start to a mechanized beat surrounded by synthesizers, noisy powered amps and staccato vocals at points. Did I hear this song right? Yep, just played it again and you can find my ass shaking to it with the utmost abandon. They’ll get downright spooky on the eerie “Castle Of Faith” which is both haunting and robotic with Byron Blum’s vocals sometimes taking a backseat to his musical interplay with cohort Melissa Blue.

But it’s on “Necessary Call” where they let their punk roots show through their highlights, driving it with a 4-chord distorted guitar joint just swallowing everything up in its path. The great thing about POW! is the grittiness in its simplicity. The band doesn’t try to beat you over the head with its musical prowess, instead opting to capture your attention with great songs like “Energy In Motion.” Look for the band to continue fucking up your day in the best of ways when things aren’t going your way.

That leads me to Quelle Chris. People are quick to toss comparisons around to another production genius or utilize easy words like “quirky,” but his brand of Hip Hop is somewhat different. Now while they may be slightly angled towards that direction in a sense, Quelle Chris’ music far surpasses them. Being You Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often (Mello Music Group) is a strange ride, Chris’ music production and vocal delivery sometimes don’t sound like they go together, juxtaposed against one another but seamlessly meld well together. Makes sense? Listen to “Buddies,” where the musical pastiche is layered with his vocals that hops along eventually hitting the beat on point. When the self-absorbed character reference he has on lyrics “I fucks with myself” doubled over but not landing exactly together, it’s clear his attempt to do something different works perfectly. As odd as the song is, it’s perfect. Quelle Chris says everything people want to say with clear braggadocio.  Being You… is rife with guest appearances as well, some well known (Roc Marciano, Jean Grae) to his homies (Big Tone, Cavalier, House Shoes) who all add vocal texture to his tracks. “Fascinating Grass (feat Big Tone, Roc Marciano, 87) moves at a mid-tempo’d pace with Marciano’s low register fitting well against Tone’s quicker rhymes. But on “BS Vibes (feat. House Shoes),” where he and Shoes trade quips is almost hypnotic. The piano line here grabs hold on this one. And this is where things get strange.

Quelle Chris - Being You Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often
Quelle Chris – Being You Is Great,
I Wish I Could Be You More Often

The beat on “Dumb For Brains (feat. Cavalier)” sounds off key at points but both emcees make it work, just like on the rest of the tracks here. Quelle Chris will get a little wicked on the beat though because “The Prestige (feat. Jean Grae)” takes no prisoners. He and Grae, bring that cutthroat heat with vocal deliveries as well, then again Jean Grae could always hold her own against any man, woman, or alien rappers. She’s still that scary good. But with Being You Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often I can fucks with it. It’s a strange ride that you may want to get on.

What we have left is Sinkane. Well the moniker is used by one Ahmed Gallab, a Sudanese singer/songwriter born in London to college professors who moved to the U.S. when he was 5. Life & Livin’ It (City Slang) is his 6th album. I’m not sure if I had some preconceived notions about the album, thinking it was going to be different than his last, which it is. With every album he puts together, Sinkane gets better and better with his song structures, his vocal delivery, the arrangements, etc. Sinkane is more than just a singer/songwriter though, he’s a pop artist that doesn’t receive the accolades and love he deserves. The music he creates differs whereby adding African rhythms throughout a number of tracks. On  “U’Huh” (watch below) you can easily catch it within the song, but it doesn’t pigeonhole Sinkane into a limiting world music genre, instead it gives it more flavor than the average pop song. The same can be said for “Deadweight,” which has a modern R&B appeal to it but remains rooted in having that inclusive international vibe.

Sinkane - Life & Livin' It
Sinkane – Life & Livin’ It

He rarely strays away from what he’s stylistically created. “Passenger,” both lyrically and musically traverses through multi-cultures and sounds. The title track itself here points to what this album could be though; the soundtrack for any road wearied traveler. Listens need to give Life & Livin’ It more attention because it opens the world to a whole new generation of musical journeymen. It’s just a beautiful album plain and simple.

SinkaneFacebook/Twitter/Instagram
POW!Facebook/Twitter/Instagram
Quelle ChrisFacebook/Twitter/Instagram

 

 

Although originally hailing from the bustling streets of Chicago, rapper Lando Chill has grown up in Tucson, AZ and musically, he’s probably the better for it. While the young artist takes his lead from others that have come before him, he doesn’t sound remotely like anyone else. He’s crafted his own vibe and sound with last year’s debut long-player For Mark, Your Son.  It’s an album that was therapeutic for Lando, helping him deal with mortality. “Early In The Morning” is quite possibly one of my favorite tracks off the album and here it’s reworked with a live band for the official video release.

 

 

The One With the Clickies

Welcome back to Ghettoblaster Magazine’s Best Song Ever podcast!  Every week Ghettoblaster feature writers (and dear cousins!) Brian LaBenne and Luke LaBenne will be bringing you fresh new songs with the hopes of introducing you to some that you may consider to be the best song ever.  Both Brian and Luke have no idea what songs the other has picked, so what you are hearing is their genuine reaction to listening to the songs together.  Also, if you enjoy this episode, head to ITunes to subscribe and rate our podcast with the highest rating available to you.  Thanks for checking this out, we hope you enjoy the show!


Songs Played on “The One With the Clickies”

Washer- “Figure Me Out” from Here Comes Washer out now on Exploding in Sound

Leapling– “I Decide When it Begins” from Suspended Animation out now on Exploding in Sound

The Goon Sax – “Up to Anything” from Up to Anything out now on Chapter Music

El Perro Del Mar – “Ging Ging” from Kokoro out now on Ging Ging Recordings

Muncie Girls– “Gas Mark 4” from From Caplan to Belsize out now on Animal Style Records

Jordan Clausen – “Glory B” from Javelin out now on Nevado Music

Moonface and Siinai– “Ugly Flower Pretty Vase” from My Best Human Face out now on Jagjaguwar

Ugly Heroes – “Today Right Now” from Everything in Between out now on Mello Music Group

Special thanks to the band Congress for allowing us to use their song “Pond Fight” from their debut album Ugly Eye for our opening song!

 

The One With Luke’s New Catchphrase

Welcome back to Ghettoblaster Magazine’s Best Song Ever podcast!  Every week Ghettoblaster feature writers (and dear cousins!) Brian LaBenne and Luke LaBenne will be bringing you fresh new songs with the hopes of introducing you to some that you may consider to be the best song ever.  Both Brian and Luke have no idea what songs the other has picked, so what you are hearing is their genuine reaction to listening to the songs together.  Also, if you enjoy this episode, head to ITunes to subscribe and rate our podcast with the highest rating available to you.  Thanks for checking this out, we hope you enjoy the show!


Songs Played on “The One With Luke’s New Catchphrase”

Red Pill- “90s Money” from Day Drunk EP out now on Mello Music Group

Mannequin Pussy – “Denial” from Romantic out now on Tiny Engines

Tallisker – “Salanfe” from the upcoming Heliotrop EP out on November 11

Kadhja Boney- “Honeycomb” from The Visitor out now on Fat Possum Records

Pale Honey – “Real Thing” single from Bolero Recordings

Cakes Da Killa – “Gon Blow (feat. Rye Rye)” from Hedonism out now on Ruffians

John K. Samson – “Fellow Traveller” from Winter Wheat out now on Anti-

The Men – “Crime” from the upcoming album Devil Music out on November 11th on We Are the Men

Special thanks to the band Congress for allowing us to use their song “Pond Fight” from their debut album Ugly Eye for our opening song!

No matter what genre, everyone knows Kool Keith. He’s been a staple in Hip Hop since the 80s in Ultramagnetic MCs he founded and then later with his multiple solo projects like Dr. Octagon, Dr. Dooom and Diesel Truckers to name a few. After releasing over 20 albums he’s on the cusp of dropping his newest, Feature Magnetic on Mello Music Group. Tonight. At midnight. It features a who’s who of Hip Hop like Sadat X, Psycho Les, Slug of Atmosphere, MF Doom, Bumpy Knuckles and many others.

Here he drops his video for “World Wide Lamper (feat. B.a.R.S. Murre & Dirt Nasty)” directed by Nicholaus Goossen.

 

kool-keith-feature-magnetic

ALBUM TRACKLIST:
1. Intro
2. Stratocaster (feat. Godfather Don)
3. MC Voltron (feat. Craig G)
4. Super Hero (feat. MF DOOM)
5. World Wide Lamper (feat. B.A.R.S. Murre & Dirt Nasty)
6. Bragging Rights (feat. Psycho Les of The Beatnuts)
7. Girl Grab (feat. Necro)
8. Bonneville (feat. Mac Mall)
9. Tired (feat. Ed O.G.)
10. Cold Freezer (feat. Bumpy Knuckles)
11. Peer Pressure (feat. Slug of Atmosphere)
12. Life (feat. Sadat X)
13. Writers (fear. Ras Kass)
14. Cheesecake (Bonus Track)