Life Elsewhere Music Vol 296

As we are curating LEM Vol 296 the talking heads across cable news are eagerly pontificating on the fate of 45. While over on the Twit machine, hoards of rabble-rousers are demanding, “Off with his head!” Or the more subtle, “Lock him up!” Who knows how this will all end? Yet as frustrating as it is to see in broad daylight the crime(s) and still no conviction, we here at Life Elsewhere Tower will not be distracted from bringing you sixty minutes of the finest carefully curated new music. And so, we begin with Check Out Your Mind from The Veldt. Performing since they were children, the Chavis brothers’ musical roots lead back to the church and southern juke-joints and listening to music that included gospel, Motown, and Pink Floyd. The Veldt formed in the late ’80s in Raleigh, North Carolina, leading to a chain of major-label relationships (and major-label failures). After a brief hiatus, the band is back with the release of the new album, Entropy is the Mainline to God, and embarking on a headlining tour. Check out to see if they are playing near you. | Coincidently, here is another outfit who have been around for some while, it’s Black Nite Crash with The Take. Formed in Seattle twenty years ago, Black Nite Crash has, over the years, involved more than 30 members around Jim Biggs, the last remaining original member. Their latest long-player, Washed In The Sound with Black Nite Crash, says, Jim Biggs, “More subtle dynamics and stretching our sound to include different stylistic flourishes”. Nice production. | Hudson, a lovely old town, in upstate New York has undergone a decidedly cool makeover in the last few years, a place well worth visiting. It’s here songwriter Maya Bon with collaborator Ryan Albert present as Babehoven. Their debut LP, Light Moving Time showcases an interesting array of songs, including, I’m On Your Team, a poignant love song, beautifully executed. Top marks for the interesting if not strange sleeve artwork by Danielle Norris. | That Someone is from the new album, Above The Water by Elk City based out of Montclair, New Jersey. The band revolves around its founders, artist/vocalist Renee LoBue and producer/drummer Ray Ketchem. “We’ve never used this much improv before,” says Renee LoBue of this initial single and the forthcoming album. “The stuff you hear is happening in the moment, while the tape was rolling,” says Ray Ketchem. Well done. | On the last volume of LEM 295, I played a cut from Lady Lips. This caused immediate interest from a number of listeners who asked to hear more. Fourth of July is another cut from their agreeable Cat Eat Dog album. | Our good friends Mammal Sounds continue to send us music we cannot resist like Munan a new project from South Korean-Australian artist Peter Lee. “My first single is a mix of soft rock and indie pop, which actually started out as a disco beat with a funky bass line,” Says Peter, adding Your Life is about enjoying your own company and following your dreams. It tells people to never give up and to love each & every moment of their life.” Love it! | Ollie Cook hails from Wolverhampton, a place widely known for its soccer team, Wolverhampton Wanderers. (Great name). But we urge you to check out Ollie’s long-player, The Boy With Pearls For Eyes to help put Wolverhampton on the musical map. Listen to Bell Tower Blues and let me have your feedback, I think this is quality work. Ollie Cook says, “This is my second full-length project. My most honest to date. My most cared for.” I love the double-tracking on his voice, the organ, the over-dubbed guitars – the whole production. | I make no excuse for loving compilations, especially if they are for a charity. Inside Out – Vibronica Festival, Kyiv, Ukraine is such a worthwhile project, the people involved say, “This is a compilation of moods, energies, and music created by Ukrainian artists during these horror war times.” Adding, “We give music for free. Donate as much as you can and feel necessary.” We selected Young Warrior from OK Selekta, a tasty cut from an album packed with top-notch electronica. | Underground Sound is out of Leeds, a label specializing in wonderful Electro/House/IDM, check out Ethan West’s Get Deep 12” double A-side. I couldn’t resist, I had to give you both massive sides, Candy & La La La. So good! Plus, excellent label graphics. | OK, I know, I know, I’ve raved on about them a great deal, but be honest, they deserve the enthusiasm, they are Maram & Con. Ocean from their superb debut LP, marCo. Learn more about these two lovely people by listening to my conversation with them, it’s LEM Vol 295. | As loath as I am to do a little name referencing, I cannot help it in the case of Vincent Christ. Who am I hearing on Heart On A Chain? Gary Wilson? Suicide? The PR blurb for this London-based artist says otherwise, Christ’s soulful yet sinister croon, lurking somewhere between Dave Vanian of The Damned and Jeffrey Lee Pierce of The Gun Club.” Interesting comparisons. Vincent Christ’s debut LP, Truant is available now. | The name Jah Wobble seems to make people sit up and pay attention. The legendary bass-man will be joining me soon for a chat via Zoom. Meanwhile, Mr. Wobble has a new release, Dim Sum. Recorded recently with members of his family. In addition to John Tienchi on drums and Chinese zither, the track features Zi-Lan Liao on  Chinese Harp and Anglo-Chinese rapper GZ Tian (aka Charlie Wardle, Jah Wobble’s son) on Chinese Violin and vocals. We selected the remix by Kevin Sharkey. Thank you for all the feedback and your sound files. I promise I listen to everything that comes in. Till next time… 

The Playlist

  1. The Veldt – Check Out Your Mind
  2. Black Nite Crash – The Take
  3. Babehoven – I’m On Your Team
  4. Elk City – That Someone
  5. Lady Lips – Fourth of July
  6. Munan – Your Life
  7. Ollie Cook – Bell Tower Blue
  8. OK Selekta – Young Warrior
  9. Ethan West – Candy
  10. Ethan West – La La La
  11. Maram & Con – Ocean
  12. Vincent Christ – Heart On A Chain
  13. Jah Wobble & Family – Dim Sum feat GZ Tian (Kevin Sharkey remix)

Artwork by Aubrey Keighly-Smith “Stairway to Henotheism” 3’ x 3’ giclée print on archival paper. Courtesy of Norman B’s collection