New Year’s Reso-tune-tion #2 — Get By With a Little Less Help from the Grid
Another thing about my top 10 albums from last year stands out in retrospect — I walked down some pretty well-traveled roads in 2011. Awesome roads, but well-traveled ones, nonetheless. I can just feel Robert Frost’s disapproving glare from the afterlife. And even though I refuse to fetishize obscurity and can’t claim to be an expert in any esoteric genre (aside from editing the semiannual Journal of Postmodernism in the Underground Hip Hop of Botswana), I could probably stand to stray a little further from the recommendations of major criticism sources. Besides, finding out about music from friends is way more fun and doesn’t come with arbitrary, distracting and dehumanizing rating systems. My resolution to get by with a little less help from the grid started unofficially on New Year’s Day, when I saw a Facebook post authored by Greg, a fellow writer/musician (we prefer to be called wrisicians — don’t we, Colin Maloy?) who has shared some excellent recommendations in the past. Greg’s post was about an artist named Jesca Hoop (NO, it’s not Jessica. It’s Jesca. Stop being so mainstream), and I couldn’t be more glad I Spotify’d her. Hoop’s album Hunting My Dress offers a staggeringly beautiful mix of darkness and light, with songs that feel tempestuous one moment and fragile the next. As you listen to the full-album stream below, I recommend closing your eyes and imagining yourself lounging in a screened-in porch as a summer thunderstorm passes violently overhead. If you enjoy the ride, click here to buy her album on iTunes; and if you’re interested in submitting a scholarly article for the next issue of Journal of Postmodernism in the Underground Hip Hop of Botswana, please mail a copy of your manuscript to Botswana. I’m sure they’ll find it very interesting, and they… um… actually exist.
Jesca Hoop — Hunting My Dress