Well, it looks like I'm not the only one ready for the long weekend — it seems the entire rap scene has checked out for a little R&R. There is nary a new track nor video! And I can't hold it against y'all, because the sun is shining, the air is cool, and it's getting really close to grill o'clock. I mean, why not kick off the summer early? This work shit is for the birds. And since we've all got our priorities — party, party and of course party — why shouldn't we have a dope soundtrack, even if most folks have already cranked up the slack-off knob? Wally Clark of Gummy Soul has dropped a couple of mixtapes in the past month or so — Chicano Rap Oldies and Tim Dog is Alive! — that have the signature GS combination of classic vibes and smooth, smooth sounds. Basically, Wally has your long weekend jams fresh and ready for you, all you gotta do is download them.
And since we're here, I've posted a fine selection of GS mixes from the archives. Download them all, put them on repeat and enjoy the weekend.
* You may know that Taylor Swift practically annihilated last night's Billboard Music Awards, taking home eight of the 11 trophies for which she was nominated and telling fans, "You are the longest and best relationship I've had." Aww. Well, Babygirl Tay-Tay also happened to catch a glimpse of Justin "I Should Be Taken Seriously" Bieber getting his kissy-face on with Spring Breakers star and on-again-off-again boo Selena Gomez. The moment was immortalized in GIF form, and you can see that over there on the left. Hardly worth mentioning, but here we are!
* Locals Diarrhea Planet just debuted their song "Separations" via Pitchfork. It's a brief, breezy and guitarmony-laden punk-pop number that sounds to me reminiscent of DP cohorts Fucked Up — smitten P4k writer Jayson Greene notes that "three of [the guitarists] seem to be playing the same power chords while the fourth finger-taps 'Muppet Babies' versions of Van Halen solos." "Separations" will be featured on DP's forthcoming LP I'm Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams.
* Plastic Visions just debuted their brand-new eponymous EP via Consequence of Sound. The Visions of course dropped their "Kamikaze" video on Friday, and I called the tune "a snotty, blown-out, three-minute fuzz-pop burner that lands somewhere in the vicinity of Flaming Lips' psychedelic art rock" for the second time. The rest of the EP follows suit, redlining and buzzing through punky arrangements and bratty lyrics.
* Logue's Black Raven Emporium is the East Side haunt known for hosting screenings in its Cult Fiction Underground movie theater, not to mention hosting occasional rock 'n' roll shows. Well, they want to build a patio in time for their "Charles Bukowski vs. Hunter S. Thompson Beer Bash," and they're doing the Indiegogo thing (who needs Kickstarter?). If you're feeling benevolent, get your donation on. There are incentives.
* Oh, and Jann Wenner's kid runs RollingStone.com now.
That's everything on the Internet today.
Watch out kids, I've gone crowd-funding ca-raaaazy! While I'm usually averse to digital spanging, it seems like this week there's a lot of good stuff that I can't just ignore like a Contributor on a Brentwood street corner. You guys heard about Trespass, the new street art gallery that's trying to open downtown, right? And you donated, right? Excellent. Now it's time to bust out those check cards again! The fine folks at G.E.D Soul Records in Murfreesboro — one of my favorite local labels, obvs, who DPR mentioned recently — are raising money via a Kickstarter campaign to press not one, not two, but three — Tres! Trois! Drei! — albums. As a proud owner of the complete G.E.D. catalog — including the new extra-dope Sky Hi Reality Check EP — I feel pretty confident in saying that it is worth the investment. G.E.D. is offering a ton of "fabulous prizes" including test pressings, T-shirts and more, so slide them a few clams and maybe the world a funkier place. Goal is $15,000, deadline is June 24.
Now it's time for more pa-har-tay and buh-hull-shiiiit ...
So, are you guys ready for Party & Bullshit: The George Jones Edition? Neither am I. While I'm fine with bending the rules for just about any reason, dedicating my hip-hop column to one of country music's greatest voices is a stretch even for me. Plus, we've got some awesome new records this week. First off, we've been waiting on the new EP from Fyutch, Peace, Love & Fyutch, ever since he dropped the kush-hop lead single "Black Shades," and it totally delivers. It's five tracks of laid-back, psyched-out grooves under Fyutch's masterful, well-researched party flow — you can't really go wrong with that combination. This is a hi-fi trip down the rabbit hole and a really fun listen, especially if you're prone to identify with songs about superheroes. I happen to spend a lot of time with Comixology lately, so this record speaks to me, man.
Now let's do some more partying and bullshittin' ...
So it's been a pretty good week for Nashville hip-hop — there's a new KidDead, a new Perfect Hours, a new 24/7 and a new track from Brian Cameriino — but I've been up all night fielding panicked phone calls and frantic emails from my friends and family back home in Boston, and it's tough to really concentrate on anything else. This situation back north is entirely fucked, and being sleep deprived and strung out isn't helping my state of mind. I apologize to everyone who was hoping for the new local hotness, but my brain is in other places. OK, it's in one place: back in Beantown.
There is a peculiar sort of fear that comes with having your hometown "shelter in place" because there's a psycho on the loose, an intense variety of guilt and shock in seeing your old stomping grounds explode over and over again on the news, an unwavering anger that rises up every time somebody tries to exploit this thing to push their political agenda. It's been a flood of emotions and anxiety, a level of worry that I rarely encounter in my day-to-day life. Everybody I know is safe and unharmed, but it's still a lot to process, especially being so far a way. And so I'm going to deal with it the only way I know how: listening to music. So say a prayer to the deity of your choice, send positive vibes skyward and join me on a quick journey through the best hip-hop to ever come out of The Hub of the Universe.
* Local rock-pop indie outfit States (not to be confused with We Were the States, formerly known as The States, and now basically Echo Group) is making another record, and they need your help. Like their first effort, Room to Run — which was eventually re-released on Tooth and Nail Records — the band is producing and recording it on their own, and this time they've launched a Kickstarter campaign to cover expenses. They've forgone the usual video plea with the above clip featuring some adorable kiddos saying very little, yet everything we already suspected about the music business.
* In similar, nearly identical news, local self-described "orchestrated indie folk" band Honey Locust has a record in the works themselves — their debut full-length, The Great Southern Brood. Like States, they're offering downloads of previously recorded material, but also a Kickstarter exclusive live EP recorded at our own legendary Exit/in. Their accompanying video features a quirky reenactment of their writing process accompanied by a skit that reiterates the fact that they have no money. You can watch that after the jump.
* The Onion A.V.'s "Undercover" series has for some time been inviting notable indie acts into their office to pick from a reader-compiled list of songs to cover. You can now count Nashville's ever-buzzy indie-folkster Winston Yellen (aka Night Beds) among them. Today, the site premiered Beds' off-the-cuff version of Robyn's club smash "Dancing on my Own." As you can guess, Yellen's dynamic croon and typical organic accompaniment transform the tune into what my "Indie Record Review Guide" says you should always describe as "haunting." See that one after the jump, too.
* As noted by contributor Goose Trageser last month, local smooth R&B/highbrow yacht rock outfit Tim Chad and Sherry recently had their self-titled LP — a sort of revamped version of 2011's We Can Work It Out — released by the U.K.'s Tirk Records, even going on to play a few dates across the pond. Well, Zack Hall and Zack Wilson made a video for Tim Chad's "Now That's Love," and it features the visual-effects-laden head of TC&S drummer/vocalist/wiseguy Brian Kotzur. Watch that above.
* On Thursday, April 11, the Spectacle Theater in Brooklyn will host Live on Video Tape: A Night With R. Stevie Moore, which will of course presumably be precisely what it sounds like. Longtime Nashvillian Moore — the godfather of home recording and of course a Cream fave — will perform and take part in a Q&A, and there will be footage "culled from [Moore's] personal archives" that presents a "portrait of an artist with a sure hand and a mature voice who was wracked by crises of confidence and became increasingly desperate and isolated in pursuit of the success that never came." Rad. Maybe we'll get to see it here in Nashville at some point? For now, check out the trailer after the jump or at Spectacle Theater's Vimeo page.
* So, Seattle's KEXP loves local electro-poppers Wild Cub. A few weeks back they invited the Cubbies to the studio to play a handful of songs, going on to invite frontman Keegan DeWitt & Co. to play their SXSW showcase at Mellow Johnny's Bike Shop. You can see Wild Cub's entire set at KEXP's YouTube page or after the jump.
* Local pop rockers Vinyl Thief did a session with OurVinyl.tv, and you can see them playing their urgent and ambitious tune "Faces" after the jump. "Faces" is featured on Vinyl Thief's EP Rebel Hill, and you can hear that — along with loads of other VT tunes — at Vinyl Thief's Soundcloud page.
First off, I want to thank everybody hollered at me after last week's column. It was good to hear from you. I appreciate all the folks who were like, "Nah bro, this town is poppin'," and I appreciate everybody who was like, "Yeah bro, this shit is fucked." That said, this is actually a pretty good week for the ol' rap music in ol' Nashville! The sun is shining and the weekend forecast is impeccable, so we might as well kick this P&B into high gear. Let's kick it off with the new one from Clarksville native Case Arnold and hometown homeboy Petty. The track is a stunner — smooth, groovin' — but I'm a little too hungover to look at those shirts for too long. Whoever invented Hawaiian shirts surely hates my eyeballs.
* As regular Cream readers are certainly well aware, local guitar man William Tyler released Impossible Truth via Merge Records two weeks ago today, celebrating with an in-store at Grimey's. While all of Tyler's rich melodic tapestries are striking and evocative — and, you might say, even worthy of looping in six-second increments for all eternity — "We Can't Go Home Again" is a particular standout. Tyler recently sat down with the American Songwriter folks at his very own watering hole, The Stone Fox, to play and discuss the story behind the aforementioned tune. See that above. AS also just posted a Q&A with Tyler, and you can see that here.
* Speaking of local dudes playing and talking about their tunes, young indie-country songster Andrew Combs recently performed a rendition of his "Please, Please, Please" from last year's Worried Man for the folks at CMT Edge. As Combs — who is joined here by Jeremy Fetzer on guitar and Erin Rae on backing vocals — points out, the song's subject matter is pretty self-evident. It's a tender and well-delivered rendition of a traditional-style heartsick ballad. Give it a look at CMT Edge or after the jump.
* And speaking of traditional-style country ballads, locals Great Peacock recently premiered their video for the song "Family Home" over at Paste. The b&w, Corey Hannah-directed video is a sad, lonesome depiction of a sad, old feller being sad, old and lonesome. No spoilers. See "Family Home" via Paste or after the jump, and hear Great Peacock's self-titled debut EP at their Bandcamp page.
Honest question: If Party & Buillsh*t disappeared off the face of the earth, would you guys even care? Is anybody even reading this column if their friends aren't mentioned in the headline? Does anybody else even care about Nashville hip-hop? Because I'm not sure if I do anymore. It was fun and interesting for a while, but it seems like it hit a plateau in terms of growth and creativity. Same folks doing the same shit, and then a whole bunch of other folks that are trying to do that same shit, only they suck. And then cats think I'm their publicist because I made the mistake of following them on Twitter. Maybe I just thought the talent pool was deeper, but things seem pretty shallow lately. Or maybe I'm missing the point because I'm an old fool from the old school, and 21st century hip-hop is a totally different beast and I should just hand over the reins to some Young Turk who was born with an Ethernet cable built into his or her brain?
God, did that sound really dark and morbid? Sorry about that, I have a massive headache because some fools are still turning their Auto-Tune up to 11 and acting like it's 2000-fucking-7. I apologize, I'm allergic to Auto-Tune. Because it's the worst thing to ever happen to music, ever. It's like throwing gravel at feral cats in a grain silo. It's the worst. And it's entirely too early to start getting nostalgic about the '00s. RawLowB didn't need Auto-Tune. And don't worry, P&B is not going anywhere, unless you all keep using Auto-Tune.
More partying and bullshitting after the jump.
I'm too sexy for my human, as I do my little turn on the manwalk.
Nope, still listed on his Ticketmaster page...
The kingston springs are going to hve to start paying ranch ghost royalties on copying…
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