Posting may suffer a bit as I work on year-end/top-10 stuff. I never used to be this interested in making lists (and the whole concept of ranking art is more than a little objectionable), but looking back at the songs and albums that stood out and why seems to be getting more fun and important to me with each passing year. Maybe because it gives me an excuse to go back and write about albums I already wrote about and would write about over and over if I didn’t think it would be annoying. Maybe I’m just getting old. Maybe both.
ANYHOO, I thought I’d share some whistle-while-I-work music.
There were two albums I turned to in the second half of 2014 when I wanted to put earbuds in and power through some writing/editing. One was Aphex Twin’s Syro, which I’m not sure I even like. I think I use it more than I enjoy it, though I listened to it as often — if not more often — than any other album this year. I’m still not sure what my relationship to that album really is or means. It’s confusing.
How I feel about the second album, Butcher Brown’s All Purpose Music, is not confusing. I love it. It’s built for both active and passive listening — there are heaping helpings of the intricate, creative virtuosity that rewards attentiveness, yet it’s arranged with a groove-making fluidity that makes you nod your head subconsciously regardless of what you’re focusing on. For me, it truly has been all purpose music. Knowing that it’s a Jellowstone release adds an extra layer of inspiration. The burgeoning empire has been producing quality music at a mind-boggling rate (the Trio of Justice tracks I’ve heard are dynamite as well — still getting to know that one) and watching/hearing the label thrive makes me want to do what I do with the same passion and dedication. It’s a safe bet that Butcher Brown will show up on one or more of the lists I’m working on now.
Sample “Jellowstone Room” below and click here to buy All Purpose Music over at Bandcamp.
Butcher Brown (ft. Nicholas Payton) — “Jellowstone Room” [Spotify/iTunes]