Hello there, in this volume we begin where we left off in volume 209 with the very impressive October And The Eyes the talented artist from New Zealand, now based in London. The cut is titled Dark Dogs from her Dogs and Gods EP. Next, a dash on over to the city by the bay, San Francisco to hear from French Cassettes with Santa Cruz Tomorrow by way of their album, Rolodex. Here is a band I wanted to find fault with for no other reason than they sound so accomplished. Good work, French Cassettes. Over in London, Dominic Wolf says this, “I write songs, press buttons, sing and play instruments”. Nothing to argue with there. His song Perfect suggests we should keep a lookout for more from Dominic Wolf. Dublin is a thriving center of creative energy where Pillow Queens is based. About their album, In Waiting they say, “It’s an album about the in-between; the transitionary period of an adulthood that never seems to arrive, while you wait for that lightbulb moment when everything makes sense, even though part of you knows deep down it will never come”. They have a lot more to say, but first, you need to hear their music, so we give you two in a row, A Dog’s Life and Holy Show. Staying in Ireland, here is a captivating performer, Denise Chaila from County Claire. From her latest album, Go Bravely, I selected, Chaila where the Limerick-based, Zambian-Irish rapper, singer, poet, grime, and hip hop artist chides us for not knowing how to pronounce her name. Denise has a number of videos available including a couple of dazzling live performances of Chaila. And, yet another video I came across of Denise Chaila features an Irish singer-songwriter we focused in on about three years ago, Sorcha Richardson. Back then she was based in Brooklyn, but now she appears to be back home in Dublin, once again making perfect, but albeit sad love songs. Sorcha’s latest is The Starlight Lounge, proving she has a keen ear for what makes a good love song work and how to perform it exquisitely. From the Emerald Isle, we travel south to Spain where four young musicians are displaying their considerable talent with the new album, Self Worth. They are Jazz Rodríguez Bueno, Carla Pérez Vaz, Leia Rodríguez Bueno, and Victor Álvarez Ridao who together are known as Mourn. We first played Mourn when they were exceptionally young, they still are young and This Feeling Is Disgusting will explain why you need to investigate more of their music. Sparky is the title of Nuha Ruby Ra’s latest single. It shouldn’t take you long to determine if you identify with the title. And by that I mean it depends on if you are in the position of giver or taker. Nuha Ruby Ra is based in London and enjoying a lot of well-deserved attention recently. I prompted you over a year ago to keep a lookout for her, this is an artist I’d like to get your feedback on. And, Nuha Ruby Ra is a talent I’m positive is quite splendid live. How awful is it that we are still in this horror-story of a pandemic, so the likelihood of enjoying Nuha Ruby Ra in concert could be a long way off? The same goes for any of the artists I feature on Life Elsewhere Music, not least of all a trio who have managed to release an upbeat, danceable track based around how Covid is effecting us all…yes, it’s Josh Idehen, Shanaz Dorsett & Tom Leaper, AKA Benin City with Get Your Own. Big favorites here at Life Elsewhere Towers are Benin City. Once again they demonstrate how good they are at conjuring up a delicious mixture of commentary and danceable beats. We stay in London for the next cut, a new one from Dry Cleaning with Scratchcard Lanyard. A band that has been around for a little while and continues to release exciting new music. You are advised to check out their back catalog and the video for Scratchcard Lanyard. I’m not sure if it’s homemade, but it’s definitely worth a look. Deliberately mixing up the genres, next we go to Austin, Texas to hear from Alex Maas with Been Struggling. His album, Luca is a solid collection of mostly plaintive songs, finely represented by the video for Been Struggling. The mysterious images evoking a sentimental mood, perfectly in keeping with Alex’s music. El Perro del Mar is the musical project founded in 2003 in Gothenburg, Sweden by its sole member, Sarah Assbring. Her album is titled Free Land, the cut we play is Dreamers Change The World. A fascinating album, some might say difficult or hard to categorize and I say that’s just what we need. Holiday music is not up there on my list of music to select for you, id fact I’ll be honest, I usually avoid anything that has a hint of jingle-jangle. There are exceptions, of course, the enterprising folks over at Memphis Industries have come up with an intriguing compilation of mostly original holiday songs in aid of Crisis’ Home for All Campaign. Titled, Lost Christmas: A Festive Memphis Industries Selection Box, I’ve selected a cut by Rachael Dadd (with Rozi Plain & Kate Stables with We Build Our Houses Well. That one takes up to the closing credits and as always, we wish you well and ask that you stay safe and, always be nice. Thank you for listening.
The artwork for this volume is by O. E. Mason “Rotting Fruit” 1999 4’ x 5’ (detail) Giclée print on archival paper. Courtesy of Norman B’s collection
LEM Vol 210