You'll find a cornucopia of tasty tunes to bounce off your eardrums. I update with new tunes, art and photography every week, depending on what I'm doing and listening to at the time, old and new. I'm based in London UK but I love to travel and discovery new music along the way and share my musical journey on neoloop.
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After much deliberating here is the top 50 albums of 2011…
Key Tracks: The Look, The Bay, Corinne
Key Tracks: Gold On The Ceiling, Lonely Boy, Nova Baby
Key Tracks: Ice Cream, Futura, Sundome
Key Tracks: Santa Fe, The Rip Tide, East Harlem
Key Tracks: Too Many Kids Finding Rain In The Dust, Space Is The Only Noise If You Can See, I Got A Woman
Key Tracks: Natalia's Song, A Devil Lay Here, Riding With Death
Key Tracks: House Of Balloons - Glass Table Girls, The Morning, Wicked Games
Key Tracks: My Cloud, NY Is Killing Me, I'll Take Care Of U
Key Tracks: Head For The Country, Hey Moon, Matter Of Fact
Key Tracks: Holocene, Calgary, Towers
Key Tracks: Glass Jar, Adult Goth, Romance Layers
Key Tracks: Wild Fire, Right Thing to Do, Pharoahs
Key Tracks: French Exit, Every Night My Teeth Are Falling Out, Parentheses
Key Tracks: Anything New, Light Seep, K is For Kelson
Key Tracks: Jesus Fever, On Tour, In My Time
Key Tracks: Niggas in Paris, Murder to Excellence, Why I Love You
Key Tracks: Dirt, Heavy Pop, Summas Bliss
Key Tracks: Interplanetary Music, Close To Everything, We'll Meet Again
Key Tracks: It's Real, Easy, Kinder Blumen
Key Tracks: Headlines, Take Care, The Motto
Nearly made it...
St. Vincent: Strange Mercy, Oneohtrix point never: replica, Iron & Wine: Monkey Uptown, Wild Beasts: Smother, Crazy P: When We On, Pantha Du Prince: XI Versions of Black Noise, Neon Indian: Era Extraña, Friendly Fires: Pala, Washed Out: Within and Without, SebastiAn: Total, Thundercat: The Golden age of the Apocalypse, Martyn: Ghost People, Justice: Audio, Video, Disco, Mastodon: The Hunter, Kuedo: Severant, Feist: Metals
This is just one of the freshest tracks to come out of 2011, New Yorker Azealia Banks self-released track has caused quite a stir since it surfaced in October, and not just because she's a filthy-mouthed lyricist dissing Nicki Minaj "I'ma ruin you, cunt" Banks genuinely is a multi-talented singer/rapper, on 212 she covers all basis delivering numerous styles with no seams. It's basically three different songs fused together featuring a filthy rap about cunnilingus over bouncing electro beats, before the beat drops out around the halfway point giving Banks a chance to show off her singing chops before it all goes mental in a mass of tweaked synths.
The 20-year-old Harlem rapper is hip-hop's most talked-about new sensation and has been at the centre of an intense industry buzz ever since the release of her first recording, Seventeen, three years ago. Now she's top of NME's recent Cool List. Time will tell if she becomes a huge star, she's over here in the UK in Feb on the NME tour with Two Door Cinema Club and Metronomy.
I love the percussion in this track, minimal but melodic. Taken German producer Robag Wruhme's (AKA Gabor Schablitzki) album Thora Vukk released this summer. A great album full of well crafted compositions created with self recorded samples over celestial piano progressions and rushes. Taking in haunting soundscapes and killer deep house grooves. Pnom Gobal is one of the more chilled out moments with a beautiful hypnotic vibe. Prognosen Bomm is equally as captivating, The title track, Wupp Dek and Brommsen Böff are also standout tracks. Harmonic rhythmic swagger that's highly recommended.
Found this tune on the latest Nova Tunes 2.4 compilation. A cheerful tune from a collective of London-based musicians and a group of Kenyan's musicians jamming in the middle of Nairobi. Signed to Gilles Peterson's Brownswood Records Owiny Sigoma Band released a full album back in April, Damon Albarn adding Farfisa organ on a couple of the tracks.
Reviewing the albums of the year is a tough task, and it's been a busy year. While considering what will make my top 20 this album crops up. Bill Callahan's Apocalypse has been a slow burner over the year since it's release back in April. Callahan's almost spoken word style of singing has a lot of similarities with Gil Scott-Heron, specially on the track America!. This track Riding For the Feeling is a gorgeously enchanting slow waltz with Callan's strange subversive lyrics and the centre track to one of his best albums to date.
Seven tracks at just 40 minutes - Apocalypse is his third studio album released under his own name, and fourteenth overall when including LPs released as Smog. Already featured in many best of year charts its a recommended late night chill out. That artwork is a painting by the artist Paul Ryan.
The Black Keys - El Camino
Ten years and seven albums down the line The Black Keys latest long player strikes solid gold. Out last month El Camino has rarely left my speakers or headphones since. It's another pummeling throb of retro-blues-rock-stomp of course, but having Brian Burton (AKA Danger Mouse) back to co-produce and co-write the entire album The Keys are primed and aimed for the mainstream. I can highly recommend all the previous 6 albums, the early LP's are naturally rough and raw with grimy rhythm and blues. The last three, Magic Potion, Attack & Release and the breakthrough Brothers have been edging towards big arena domination the world over.
All El Camino's songs are written and composed by Singer/guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer/producer Patrick Carney and Brian Burton. In contrast to some of the slower, quieter tracks from Brothers, the songs on El Camino are more uptempo and riff-driven. It has been said that during the tour for Brothers, Dan and Patrick realised that many of Brothers songs were too slow to translate to a live setting, which led them to write more uptempo material for El Camino. Carney said, "This record stemmed from that, the fact that it's easier for our songs to come across well live if they are fast. So we were just trying to make a guitar rock album that was more upbeat than anything we've ever recorded"
So we find ourselves with one hell of a heavy slab of rock here, first single Lonely boy kicks off the album in full throttle with a Duane Eddy 50's rock foundation before it absolutely bulldozes into the next track Dead and Gone with a new found fury. The sound then goes head first into this track Gold on the Ceiling, which sounds like T-Rex jamming in a dirty strip club. All glam-nasty rock and big bombastic choruses with plenty of Bolan Boogie. Little Black Submarines slows things down to a blues ballad, until two minutes in that is, then it bursts into a distorted Tom Petty-esque riff. The last three but one tracks are sure fire crowd pleasers from Hell of a Season, a big arena-rocking tune, to the shimmy shimmy pomp of Stop Stop and the standout track Nova Baby which will have the crowd singing in unison with their hands in the air.
The Black Keys are determined to reinvigorate rock’n’roll from the roots up and with El Camino they are succeeding. The best rock record of 2011 Highly Recommended.
The Electro-pop pioneers storm back from the massive success of their self-titled 2009 debut LP. The Devil's work is the first piece of new material in what seems like ages, good to have them back and sounding well on form. Looking forward to a new LP next year.
Toronto project The Weeknd are back with the third mix tape of the year following the boundary-shattering debut House Of Balloons and the follow-up Thursday, and now they’ve released the much-awaited third to complete the trilogy, Echoes Of Silence is now ready to download from the bands website.
It kicks off with this tune D.D. a freaky dark version of Michael Jackson’s Dirty Diana.
I heard that you like the bad girls, honey, is that true?
Undoubtably one of this years most blogged tunes, Lana Del Rey has made her mark in 2011. Seemingly coming from nowhere, the power of the internet launches another star, the gangsta Nancy Sinatra has earned a faithful following and deservedly so as the B-side Blue Jeans and forthcoming single Born To Die proves she's not a one hit wonder. There's a good few versions of Video Games, Chicago house legend Mr. Fingers mesmerising house mix, Kasabien's live cover and Bombay Bicycle Club. So far my favourite mix is from the night-stepper Jamie Woon. Lana's vocal never sounded better over Woon's intense dark beats, a pop-noir delight.
This is a wicked tune, taken from the French band Deluxe's new EP called Polishing Peanuts. Easy does it, a cool laid-back hip hop beat with some old skool jazz flourishes and lush vocals. Yeah!
OUT NOW on Chineseman Records.
Currently enjoying the new debut album from Mickey Moonlight right now, a mad title that completes his band name… Mickey Moonlight and the Time Axis Manipulation Corporation. Kind of like a cross between Jimi Tenor, Sun Ra and Sebastian Tellier, the whole album is a cosmic jam, a mellow space warp into interplanetary music! Close to Everything is a deep house ballad that exudes style and class with a strong vocal from George Lewis Jr. A cool collection a songs, perfect for chilled-out late night grooving. Recommended.
The band comprises of an impressive array of artists that include: George Lewis Jr, Marina Gasloina (ex Bonde de Role), Susumu Mukai (Zongamin), Tim Sparke, Suzy Silver, Sandro Perri, Bishi, Lou Hayter (The New Sins & New Young Pony Club), Tahita Bulmer (New Young Pony Club), Anita Blay (TheCocknBullKid), Deborah Howell, Fimber Bravo (20th Century Steel Band), The Fullfat Horns (Jake Painter, Carl Sterling and Robin Harris), Sonny Akpan (The Funkies).
Desecration or genius?
An interesting version of Jamies xx's remake of Gil Scott-Heron's I'll Take Care of You. Being a massive fan of the original, I wasn't so sure on the first listen. Is it desecration or genius? Drake makes the song his own by adding new verses, and a guest slot from the global megastar Rihanna takes on Gil's chorus. He does keep some of Gil's original vocal in and out the background and Jamie's unique steel pans are still the best part of this track which Drake advisably keeps in tack under the supervision of Jamie Smith's production.
The title track from Drakes new album, I still can't decide if it's sacrilegious but since Jamie xx had a hand in production and I keep listening to it I guess it all good. Doesn't quite cut it as a better version than the original it's just different in a good way.
This tunes been around for a good while now, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs (or TEED) [AKA Orlando] are extensively touring the uk and beyond. This little electro-pop tune bounces along with a tripy beat and video-game riffs. signed to Hot Chip's Joe Goddard's Greco-Roman label, TEED certainly do have a Hot Chip vibe about them.
NYC's Escort Caméleon Chameleon is the lead track from their self-titled debut LP, modern day lush disco that sounds like Kid Creole and The Coconuts have made a new tune.
Totally tropical and feel good, Escort are a 17 strong disco orchestra, and although it's got a classic disco sound, it still sounds fresh and nu. Feel the groove and soak up the beats!