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SnC 201 – Wed 06 January 2010

Music this week from London, Minneapolis, Cairo, Paris, Tiblisi, somewhere else in France, California and Toronto.The world around the barn seems to have become a black and white movie in the past few weeks but at least I didn’t waste money on colour film for this weeks picture taken from the back window of the barn. The pond is very frozen, indeed there were rabbit footprints in the snow on top of the ice this morning!(Hey You) The Rocksteady Crew – The Voodoo Trombone Quartet (London)The Voodoo Trombone Quartet are a cult 8-piece band from London whose unique sound skillfully blends the influence of old ska 45s, exotica and a 60’s feel with contemporary beat-driven production and a wry lyrical humor. 

The band were conceived in 2004 by producer, record collector and multi instrumentalist Paul Thorpe. The first tracks were made freely available on the internet by their creator as supposedly ‘rediscovered’ originals. The joke backfired however when the tracks became immensely popular in their own right and each one clocked up thousands of downloads. Newly formed independent Freshly Squeezed Music duly took note and signed Paul for the bands eponymous debut in 2005. A live band was put together and festival dates through 2006 culminated in near disaster when the single Medium Wave almost blew the bands cult credentials by entering the fringes of the UK Download Chart. Fortunately it was a near miss and the band retain their underground status to this day. 

The VTQ can now be heard sound tracking numerous TV shows including Ugly Betty, feature on many CDs including the festival tribute Lost Vagueness (RIP) compilation and as the theme tune to several BBC Radio 4 comedy sketch shows. Medium Wave was also chosen as the theme tune to MTV’s recent series The Paper.
The Voodoo Trombone Quartet "(Hey You) The Rocksteady Crew" (mp3) from "The Voodoo Trombone Quartet …Again" (Freshly Squeezed Music) Stream from Rhapsody Buy at Amazon MP3 More On This Album

Dark Horse – Bella Ruse (Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA)Kay Gillette and Joseph Barker are Bella Ruse. Based in Minneapolis they tour extensively and, having produced an EP do six songs recorded in their home studio in north Minneapolis. Now they are working on a full album and planning a tour. Thanks to Joseph for loading a couple of songs onto the Suffolk’n’Cool Drop box. www.bellaruse.comwww.myspace.com/bellaruseCigarettes – Digla (Cairo, Egypt)Originally formed as a cover band, it was not long before Digla realized the qualities of their own material through their growing fan base in Cairo after their first few gigs.   This was encapsulated when they became the first band to perform a sold out concert at the Sawy Cultural Center in Cairo.  Since then, the band has been interviewed and performed an acoustic set on Egypt’s number one hit music station 104.2 and have released their debut album Free Your Mind which is available on iTunes and a number of other musical outlets.  Keep an eye on their website for more gig dates soon to be announced.   www.diglamusic.comwww.myspace.com/diglamusic Oriental Blues – Garth Knox (Paris, France)Garth Knox now lives in Paris playing recitals, concertos and chamber music concerts all over Europe, the USA and Japan. His recently released solo CD with works from Ligeti, Dusapin, Berio, Kurtág and others (MO 782082) won the coveted Deutsche Schallplaten Preis in Germany, and his latest CD Spectral Viola (edition zeitklang) has been highly acclaimed. He is currently professor of viola at Musikene in San Sebastian.www.garthknox.org/The viola d’amore has multiple strings and an infinite number of possible sound worlds. I was happy to explore some of there here, in a mixture of pre-meditated scenarios and free improvisations.On this track, tuning the third and fourth strings to the same note and using them together gives a nice doubling feeling to the sound and suggests something little oriental, Gently strumming the sympathetic strings when they’re in a bluesy tuning takes us somewhere else. A litle musical journey from one set of strings to the other set.The SHSK’H Netlabel was created in 2007 in New York by the musicians Jody Pou and Igor Ballereau with the purpose of promoting their work through exclusive recordings to be found on the site, shskh.com.SHSK’H is also an audio-gallery of diverse music. They promote the work of other musicians by commissioning new pieces from composers and by producing personal recording projects by selected musicians of many different styles. These works, again, are exclusive to shskh.com and are not distributed anywhere in disc format.All music on shskh.com is free. You do, however, have the opportunity to participate in the development of these projects by choosing to pay the sum of your choice for the works that you download, if you so desire.  Would you cry? – Buddhuza (Tbilisi, Georgia) SNC dropBuddhuza [but’huza] is a Georgian, English-singing musician and song-writer. His music is a mixture of indie rock, alternative and world, and is much influenced by the music of the sixties.Buddhuza quit his music class after three years of torture, when he was 9. Since then he rarely touched any musical instrument, until his father brought him a guitar that completely changed his life. Now the major reason for skipping school became guitar practice.Buddhuza and brother Lexo soon started to write songs and formed a duo called Fire Bricks. Their music was pretty much a reflection of their record collection and interesting period of time and place they lived in. The first ones to hear them perform their songs were neighbors and close friends.In 2004, soon after he moved to Tbilisi, Buddhuza started a home studio, where most of his music is recorded.www.buddhuza.comThe Seals – No More Babylon (France)From the album Roots Meeting on IODA.This album of NO MORE BABYLON & FRIENDS includes 10 featurings : EARL 16, Ken BOOTHE, Josie MEL, Brother MARCUS, Maryse CHASTAN, Kenny KNOTS, Jah MARNYAH, U BROWN. The digital release of the album offers full length versions and some bonus tracks, featuring MADU and Brinsley FORDE.www.nomorebabylon.com/www.myspace.com/nomorebabylon

No More Babylon "The Seals" (mp3) from "Roots Meeting" (A la Folie Music) Buy at iTunes Music Store More On This Album

Three fingers – Buckethead (California, USA)Buckethead’s work has spanned many musical genres, including drum and bass, funk, thrash metal, ambient and minimalist music. Although a capable multi-instrumentalist (also able to play bass guitar, banjo and piano), he is best known for his virtuosic electric guitar playing, characterized by blinding speed, advanced harmony and idiosyncratic lead lines. He has recorded several solo albums, as well as collaborative albums with Les Claypool, Bootsy Collins, System of a Down’s Serj Tankian and perhaps most notably with a great many Bill Laswell-directed projects. The Buckethead backstory begins with a kid named Brian Carroll growing up in a Southern California suburb not far from Disneyland. He’s a shy kid and spends a lot of time in his room, which is filled with comic books, video games, martial-arts movie memorabilia, slasher-flick stuff, all the usual youth-culture detritus. He also spends a whole lot of time at Disneyland. As a teenager, Brian takes up the guitar, plonking away under the sway of such metal masters as Angus Young of AC/DC; the late Randy Rhoads, of the Ozzy Osbourne band; and Swedish overdrive virtuoso Yngwie Malmsteen. What makes Enter The Chicken unique among all other Buckethead albums is the contribution of different singers throughout the body of work. Both producer and guitarist recruited some of today"s brightest musical talents to lend their voice including Saul Williams, Efrem Schulz (Death By Stereo), Maura Davis (Denali, Bella Lea), Azam Ali (Vas, Niyaz), Bad Acid Trip, Maximum Bob (Deli Creeps), Gigi, Shana Halligan and Ani Maldjian. Even Tankian himself lends his vocals on the album. When all was said and done, a total of 11 different vocalists specializing in musical styles ranging from opera, metal, rap, indie rock, grindcore, world and everything in between found their way onto Enter The Chicken.Do check out the website if you fancy a quick flip out of mundane realityhttp://bucketheadland.com

Buckethead & Friends "Three Fingers" (mp3) from "Enter The Chicken" (Serjical Strike Records) Stream from Rhapsody Buy at Amazon MP3 More On This Album

Buckle Up – NLX (NYC / Toronto)BITCH GET FIT is the much anticipated, first full-length offering from NLX, but to call it a debut would be somewhat misleading. It’s taken two years of preparation, collaboration and one tiny lawsuit to make this masterpiece. Recorded in both NYC and Toronto, NLX joined forces again with acclaimed producer/composer Byron Kent Wong to create an extraordinarily distinct, vibrant and compelling album. In a time of one hit wonders and copycat artists, NLX stands alone.
Raised in the icy shadows of Canada"s steel city smoke stacks, NLX hails from the proud tradition of BS-free northern songwriting women. She continues to carry the electronically edged dark pop torch with BITCH GET FIT … 16 tracks of blow your mind and open your heart lyrical and musical smack. It is "fists in the air, tears on the floor, don’t look back but close the door" kind of music.www.nlxmusic.comwww.myspace.com/nlxmusic

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