Thursday, July 3, 2008

Casual Listening 7-4-08

Casual Listening

a review of cool new music

by Jeff Pinzino

July 4, 2008

* The Locos – Energía Inagotable (ska)

Horns and guitars balance frenetic, party-spirited songs en español. Third-wave ska fans will have a ball with this group.

Craig G and Marley Marl – Operation Take Back Hip Hop (rap)

These guys were recording ten minutes after the birth of hip hop, and more than 20 years later are trying to redirect an art form they feel has spun out of control. They’ve added in the multi-layered production style that’s evolved since their early days, and pull in guests such as KRS-ONE and Talib Kweli among others. As much a manifesto as a comeback album.

Rose Hill Drive – No Paid Holidays (rock)

A true-blue American rock record for the 4th of July. Power chords and hook-driven tunes give you a perfect excuse to open up the t-tops on your Trans-Am and rock out.

Adron – Adron (folk)

Bossa Nova channeled through a next-generation American songwriter. Adron’s voice has a pinch of Nora Jones and easily shuttles back and forth between northern and southern hemispeheres, resulting in a smooth, mellow mood.

Nels Andrews – Off Track Betting (rock)

Andrews conveys a deep Americana, anchored by poetic songwriting. Acoustic guitars up front blend with textures of accordion, pedal steel, banjo and even some well-placed electronics.

Kofi – Rocking Eternally (reggae)

Top-shelf contemporary reggae. Kofi’s expressive vocals are easy to love, and a mostly electronic background works to drive a slow, urgent groove with an occasional dose of dub psychedelics.

In The Blog: Los Lonely Boys, South.

* highly recommended

! highest recommendation

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