Bandcamp Friday: September 2022

Like we never left, y’all.

There’s a bunch of non-bloggy writing I’m working on at the moment, so I didn’t get to write up a ton, but I did want to spotlight some music that’s near and dear, in addition to sharing a longer list of stuff I have my eye on today.

Lean Year — Sides

Happy release day to one of the most moving albums you’ll hear all year. I had an opportunity to speak with the folks from Lean Year for Style Weekly, and I walked away with so much respect for their poise, their artistry, and the way their music looks unflinchingly at the big, deep, difficult stuff in life, particularly pain and loss. Here’s a passage of that conversation that has stuck with me:

“There’s so much content that is so complete and compact and digestible and it isn’t messy,” Alverson says. “There’s a trend toward that clarity. Everything is ‘What’s the story? What’s the narrative?’ It needs to be able to be bought and sold and compact and moved, and it’s really unlike living. That’s a shame.”

“We’re both atheists,” Rex says, “and we talk a lot about the power of music bridging that space between the body and the mind, and taking you outside of your head, and tapping into this very secular spiritual space. I do feel like it is the perfect state to process those liminal emotions, where you’re seeing someone make that transition from living in the world that we live in, to not, and not knowing where they’re going.”

Click here to read the rest of the article, and I highly recommend setting aside time — on a long walk, or in the car on a quiet drive — to get to know Sides. You’ll be glad it’s part of your life.

Piranha Rama — “Placate

Piranha Rama’s new album , Omniscient Cloud Cover, is out in late September, and while the preorder isn’t up yet — vinyl coming via Brokers Tip Records, the label run by Bob Nastanovich of Pavement! — the first single, “Placate” is indeed Bandcampable. Omniscient Cloud Cover is dynamite from start to finish — half psych-pop escape, half determined walk through difficult times. Two of the band’s founders, John Sizemore and Chrissie Lozano, were kind enough to chat about how the album came together — one step at a time — and you can read all about it in my Style Weekly piece, which went live this week.

Other fun stuff I have my eye on, updated throughout the day:

ScottClark4tet — A & B
Dori Freeman — Songbook Vol. 1
DJ Mentos — The Maxell Tapes Volume 3
Dogwood Tales — S/T
Horse Lords — Comradely Objects
Ohbliv — Raw Power Vibrations Extended Play
Mali Obomsawin — Sweet Tooth 

Bandcamp Friday: Juneteenth 2022

Bandcamp is holding its third annual Juneteenth fundraiser, whereby the platform is pledging its share of sales to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. I’ve included my own wishlist below, but I want to take a moment to highlight an artist I spoke to recently for Style Weekly. If you’re a regular YHT reader, this won’t be the first time you’ve seen Shormey’s name. (I wrote about her 2020 release entitled God Bless Bob Ross: A Collection Of Low Fidelity Recordings almost exactly two years ago.) The Chesapeake-based bedroom pop auteur will be performing with her band tonight in Richmond at Friday Cheers as the opener for Snarky Puppy alum Cory Henry — might I suggest downloading her most recent release, thegarbanzobeanmixtape_v3, as a soundtrack for your drive/walk/ride down to Brown’s Island? You might also consider checking out my Style Weekly interview with her? Whatever your plans for this evening are, it’s a great day to snag some new music on Bandcamp.

An overly ambitious list of other items I have my eye on:

Oren Ambarchi / Johan Berthling / Andreas Werliin — Ghosted (Narrowly missed out on a copy that a store here in Richmond had. Bummer.)
Charles Stepney — Step on Step
Ernie Francestine — Character of Light
Whitney — SPARK
Time Wharp — Spiro World (I’ve only listened a little, but what I’ve heard is incredible.)
The A’s — Fruit (Alexandra Sauser-Monnig! Amelia Meath! 2/3s of Mountain Man! Hell yeah!)
Skyway Man & Andy Jenkins — Nothing No. 1 (Another one where two favs are joining forces, coincidentally with the help of the Molly Sarlé, the 1/3 of Mountain Man who is not part of The A’s.)
Daniel Villarreal — Panamá 77 (Had this on my list for ages. It’s so good.)
Bartees Strange — Farm to Table (Happy release day!)
Cameron Ralston — Isfahan, Two Ways (Listened in the car while waiting for storms to pass before the Bright Eyes show on Brown’s Island. Made the wait 100% better.)
Revelators Sound System — Revelators (More to come on this one…)
NO BS! Brass — “That’s a Wrap

Bandcamp Friday: April 2022

This Bandcamp Friday is shaping up to be a great one, y’all. No foolin’. Here are a few things I have my eye on:

No BS! Brass Band — “Applause!

I’m one Bandcamp Friday late with this one, but there’s no bad time for new No BS! Brass Band. There’s no bad No BS! Brass Band, for that matter, so it’s no surprise I’m loving “Applause!”

L’Rain — Fatigue

I’m even later to this party, but I saw L’Rain open for Animal Collective at the National in early March and made sure to pick up a copy of Fatigue on the way out. It hasn’t been far from my turntable since.

Elkhorn — Lionfish

The reissue gods have blessed us on this day. Finally getting to spin this on vinyl is a wish fulfilled. Thank you, Eiderdown Records.

Opin — Hospital Street

Speaking of reissues, Hospital Street was a highlight of the April 2021 Bandcamp Friday. WarHen Records swooping in and releasing it on cassette to kick off their WarHen/Ten anniversary celebration is more wish fulfillment. As I said to the digital version almost exactly a year ago, “Yes plz.”

syndays by ao — “drip drop

Speaking of non-bloggy writing, I’ll have more to say about this soon, but Adrian Olsen’s syndays by ao series is some of my favorite music to come out of Richmond this year. A new synth exploration drops every Sunday, and I highly recommend getting in the routine of downloading them. He’s 13 weeks in, but Week 9’s track is a personal favorite.

More fun stuff:

81355 + Spacebomb House Band — “Flip a Light On
Charles Stepney — “Step on Step
Rob Clearfield & Quin Kirchner — Concentric Orbits
John Calvin Abney — “Full Moon Friend

Bandcamp Friday: March 2022

Vibes are off a bit this Bandcamp Friday, eh? Yeesh. Only time will tell how damaging or beneficial Epic Games’ acquisition of Bandcamp will turn out to be. I’d like to hold out hope for a glass-half-full version of this where Bandcamp picks up some great new capabilities while continuing to be this haven for community and consciousness around the idea — the fact — that artists deserve to be fairly compensated for their work. It’s hard not to be pessimistic, though.

All the same, it’s Bandcamp Friday. They haven’t taken that from us yet, and there are a quite a few things I’ve had my eye on of late. More vinyl than in past months, for whatever reason. Whether you’re picking up records or .mp3s, I hope you find something fun to listen to below while they’re still throwing this fee-free shindig.

Asher Gamedze — out side work | two duets

I absolutely loved South African drummer Asher Gamedze’s 2020 album Dialectic Soul. 10/10. Would recommend in the strongest terms. No hesitation whatsoever picking up a copy of this new set of improvised duets. (Well, I hesitated in the sense that I’ve waited until Bandcamp Friday to put my order in, but you get the idea.)

Justin Golden — Hard Times and a Woman

I’ll have a bunch more to say about this one soon — Incoming Article Alert™ — but for now I’ll just say that Richmond-based blues artist Justin Golden released the second single from Hard Times and a Woman this week. It’s called “Can’t Get Right,” and it’s been stuck in my head ever since he performed it at the 2021 Richmond Folk Festival. Calling it now that this album will be one of my favorites from 2022, and not just in the realm of Richmond music.

Dead Billionaires — Dead Billionaires EP

Speaking of incoming articles, I had a great chat with Warren Campbell of Dead Billionaires not long ago about his upcoming unofficial SXSW tour and a recording project that’s just over the horizon. Really excited to hear more from them, as the three-song self-titled EP they released in 2021 is excellent. Great day to download it.

John Calvin Abney — “Holy Golden West

Tulsa-based singer-songwriter and kickass multi-instrumentalist John Calvin Abney has a new album due out later this year entitled Tourist, and the first single dropped in February. Count me in for the single, the album… all of the above. Abney’s on tour with John Moreland at the moment. That’s how I first encountered his music — Abney was accompanying Moreland at a show here in Richmond at the Camel, and I took a chance on a copy of Abney’s Far Cries and Close Calls without having heard a single note. I’m so glad I did, and I can’t wait to hear the rest of Tourist.

Sarah White & the Pearls — Married Life b​/​w I​.​L​.​Y.

Speaking of recent articles, when I spoke with Warren Parker, who runs WarHen Records, he included Sarah White’s Married Life b​/​w I​.​L​.​Y. 7-inch among a list of the most pivotal releases from the label’s first 10 years. (Only natural, since it was WarHen’s first official release.) As part of the “WARHEN/TEN” anniversary celebration, Parker managed to dig up 10 copies of the single. You can bet I’ll be ready when those go on sale at 10 a.m.

Other items I have my eye on today:

Tennishu — “It’s Too Late
Hotspit — “Wane Mouth
Bartees Strange — “Heavy Heart
The Dead Tongues — Dust
Daniel Bachman — Sycamore City & Other True Stories
Tyler Meacham — Into the Fray

Bandcamp Friday: February 2022

No matter how many times I warmly eulogize it, Bandcamp Friday keeps coming back, and I couldn’t be more thrilled. Long live fee-free Fridays. Long live Bandcamp.

Coincidentally, I’ve had a few articles published within the last week or so that I’m excited about, and I thought I’d share recommendations related to those. I hope you find some fun potential purchases for your Bandcamp Friday, and maybe some fun reading as well.

Adam Hurt — Earth Tones

I wrote a piece for Style Weekly about Renan Banjos, which are made in Varina, Virginia by self-taught builder J. Tyler Burke. I even had the opportunity to stop by Burke’s garage and see the operation for myself, which was such a joy. Not only was Burke generous with his time and conversation, he also sent me on my way with a number of top-notch listening recommendations, including this album of tunes played on the gourd banjo by fellow Virginian Adam Hurt. Now it’s my turn to recommend it — particularly if you’re looking for the perfect soundtrack for a trip back to Richmond from Varina along the James. That’s a drive I won’t soon forget. (Another killer album he’s recommended since: the beautifully atmospheric self-titled album of banjo, guitar, and bass from West Virginia-based duo Wizard Clipp.)

Butcher Brown — AfroKuti: A Tribute to Fela

WarHen Records is turning 10 this year, and I got to chat with the great and good Warren Parker about his journey leading the Charlottesville-based label over the course of the last decade. Read the resulting Style Weekly article here — at the end you’ll find a playlist of some of the albums that Parker says were especially pivotal along the way, with a few words from him about the personal significance of each. Here’s what he had to say about Butcher Brown’s brilliant Fela Kuti tribute, AfroKuti:

That one is a high-water mark. I think any label would feel that way. That record to me is the ultimate vibe. It’s so masterfully done, it’s super-tasteful, it sounds great, it’s funky as hell. That record is phenomenal. I don’t want to say this, but I’m going to say it anyway: It might be my favorite that I’ve put out, ever. It brings me a ton of joy. All of them do – everything I’ve done holds a special place – but that one is undeniable.

Side note: Everything on WarHen’s page is 15% off today!

Fruit Bats — Sometimes a Cloud Is Just a Cloud: Slow Growers, Sleeper Hits and Lost Songs (2001–2021)

I loved getting to chat with Eric D. Johnson of Fruit Bats for this Style Weekly article previewing his new 20-year retrospective compilation and the two shows he has coming up in Richmond this year. The comp is great for new fans and old heads alike, with one disc of songs that have caught on over the years, and a second disc of rarities — some that have quickly become top-tier Fruit Bats songs in my book. “WACS,” from the sessions for his 2011 album Tripper, is one of them. (To the Dinosaur Jr. fans out there: J Mascis appears on it!)

Hotspit — CC

I had the great pleasure of FaceTiming with Hotspit for this RVA Magazine Q&A, and I’m more in awe than ever at the powerful sense of poise in their music. I’ve mentioned their 2021 EP entitled CC in a previous Bandcamp Friday post, but since their next single won’t arrive until March, I’m asking you once again, Bernie Sanders-style, to listen to these four excellent songs, especially the slow-building final track, which singer Avery Fogarty mentioned is a go-to tone-setter when they play live.

Bonus: Curt Sydnor — Heaven Is Begun

So my Style Weekly story on Curt Sydnor ran in July of 2021, so not as recently as these others, but I can’t resist shouting from the mountaintops about his new album, which just went up for preorder. These songs carved out permanent real estate in my brain while I was working on the article, as Curt was kind enough to share a preview of the album in conjunction with our interview. The album is full of indelible moments — the tense titular lyrics of “Not Even Past,” the impossibly graceful opening of “Covered in Clover” — and I can’t tell you how much I’m looking forward to soaking these moments in while a copy spins on my turntable at home.

More fun stuff I have my eye on today:

dhemo — “Motion
Afro-Zen Allstars — The Buzz and the Bells
Ryley Walker — Charlottesville 01​/​23​/​22
syndays by ao — “bouncer” (These weekly modular synth tracks from Adrian Olsen are easily my favorite running musical subplot of 2022.)
Daniel Bachman — Lonesome Weary Blues
Deau Eyes — “Moscow in the Spring

Buy from Bandcamp today… again!

I know, I know, I’ve said it before: “This could be the last Bandcamp Friday,” and “Let’s buy mp3s like it’s 1999,” which doesn’t even make sense, because nobody was buying mp3s in 1999. (The iTunes store didn’t launch until 2003. Wild, right?)

ANYWAY, given the very real possibility this is the last of these, I do think it’s a good moment to look back at what Bandcamp Friday has meant. This is my 19th post on a fee-free Friday, and I can honestly say these events have changed my listening significantly. I fell back in love with having music files on my computer, and with curating a digital library. I started sharing mix CDs with people again — whether or not they could play them. (Sorry not sorry.) I bought a whole bunch of great songs and albums that I’ll listen to for the rest of my life. I’m pretty sure I have enough Ohbliv and DJ Harrison tracks to soundtrack a trip to the moon, which sounds like a pretty awesome time, now that I’ve typed it out. And while these events haven’t necessarily revolutionized the landscape of how we pay for and consume music, I do think there’s meaning and progress in the way we’ve been able to regularly rally around the idea of supporting artists directly. Whatever 2022 has in store, I’m going to keep seeing the Bandcamp Friday glass as half full.

Enough retrospection. You can live in this very moment by checking out and supporting the artists below — I certainly plan to.

Opin — Hospital Street II
I’m pretty sure “Another batch of improvised live jams recorded at our practice space 2020-2021” is my love language.

Poison Joy — Life On The Shelf Takes On New Meaning
I really dug Poison Joy’s Fortune Passes Everywhere tape. Looking forward to getting similarly ensconced in these 17 tunes.

Kate Bollinger — “Yards / Gardens
So excited Kate is the mystery guest for the December 11 Benét/Matthew E. White show at the Broadberry!

ragenap — “piper (intro)
ragenap has been a true Bandcamp Friday MVP. So many drone-y, drawn out gems. Check them out if you haven’t already.

DJ HARRISON — Tales from the Old Dominion
I included this in last month’s post, but today’s release day, so it bears repeating. So excited for this. Be sure to check out his HearRVA Liner Notes episode, if you haven’t already.

PJ Sykes — “Fuzz Off!
Guitars! Guitars and more guitars!

A New Dawn Fades — I See The Nightbirds Deluxe Reissue
More instrumental Cherub Records awesomeness. The reissue includes unreleased recordings from the Nightbirds sessions and live tracks from the group’s final show in 2008.

Tyler Meacham & Margox — “Winter Song
A Sara Bareilles & Ingrid Michaelson cover, with proceeds benefiting CancerLINC.

roadkillroy — “This Time Next Year
So I know it’s tacky to plug your own band in your music blog, but it’s for another good cause! Last year we donated proceeds to Mutual Aid Distro Richmond, and that’s the plan this year as well.

Buy from Bandcamp today… again!

I won’t sugarcoat it — it’s not been a great week. Virginia’s politics taking a hard right turn sends an ominous signal to those living both inside and outside the commonwealth, and only time will reveal the cost and implications. I will say that working on this post has lifted spirits significantly, as there’s so much wonderful music made here, whether by Virginians or by those stopping to perform on their way through. There’s a little of both below, and I hope you find something that helps you end your week on a positive note. As a reminder, it’s Bandcamp Friday, so your dollars go directly to the labels and artists who made this music possible.

Tonstartssbandht — Petunia

Before Tuesday the week was going great! I got to see these folks at Richmond Music Hall on Monday night, and I left feeling so grateful that they came to town. It’s a true you-need-to-see-it-to-believe-it situation, given all the sound and intricacy Tonstartssbandht is able to achieve with a lineup of two. I’m posting Petunia here, since it’s their latest LP, but I left the show with multiple Tonstartssbandht albums in tow, and would recommending exploring all the nooks and crannies of their Bandcamp page. I certainly plan to.

DJ Harrison — Tales from the Old Dominion

Any new DJ Harrison release is always reason to celebrate, but Tales from the Old Dominion will be the omni-talented Richmonder’s second full-length for Stone’s Throw Records, giving this one an added sense of anticipation.

Selfish side note: Did anyone see if there’s going to be vinyl for Tales from the Old Dominion? The Stone’s Throw site says “SOLD OUT,” but it’s hard to tell what had been for sale. All the more reason to pre-order digitally via Bandcamp today!

Tennishu — Three Sides

DJ Harrison isn’t the only multi-faceted member of Butcher Brown with an exciting new LP on the horizon. Tennishu’s latest, entitled Three Sides, is due out 11/19 on Subflora Records (formerly American Paradox). I’ll have lots more to share on this one soon, hopefully, but for now, enjoy the outstanding second single, “Ngoni.”

Spacebomb House Band, Sinkane — “Happy Together

Sinkane is now part of two Spacebomb serials: the “Alive at Spacebomb Studios” series (I spin Gettin’ Weird regularly, and you should too) and now the collaborative singles series in which the Spacebomb House Band enlists guest vocalists when covering classic songs. Given how great Gettin’ Weird turned out, it’s a thrill to hear more from this well-suited partnership, and this take on the Turtles’ “So Happy Together” is yet another reason to be happy Sinkane and Spacebomb got together.

Abby Huston — AH HA

If you haven’t had a chance yet, I hope you’ll take a few minutes and check out my RVA Magazine interview with Abby Huston. AH HA may be the album I’ve spun most often in 2021, and I consider myself so fortunate to have been able to speak with Huston about their path in music so far, and how this dynamic collection of R&B-leaning indie pop songs made its way out into the world. I know it’s November, but there’s still time for this to be your own Most-Spun-in-2021.

E 33rd — E 33rd

Speaking of Abby Huston, I started that RVA Magazine article off by describing a video in which three bandmates of Huston’s perform inside a second-story room while Huston strums and sings outside on the roof. (It’s such a cool video. Check it out here.) Those three bandmates — brothers Alec and Ryan Gary and Nathanael Clark — are also three quarters of soul/jazz/R&B group E 33rd, which released a self-titled debut EP a few weeks back. It’s stunning all the way through, with excellent vocals throughout from Sydney Murray, but I couldn’t resist highlighting “Side of Your Face,” on which the brilliant Benét is featured. And did I mention Abby Huston is credited with a lyrical co-write on four of the seven songs, “Side of Your Face” included? And did I mention that Benét is also featured on the Huston song I embedded in the last section?!? I’m now realizing that this post has turned into a musical version of the meme where Spidermen are pointing at each other.

Other releases on my radar today:

Bradford Thomas — Healthy Shenanigans
Christian Lee Hutson — “Strawberry Lemonade
Dogwood Tales — Too Hard To Tell (new pressing on snazzy translucent gold/orange wax!)
Pelt — Reticence / Resistance (some silver vinyl copes available!)
Elkhorn — The Golden Lag
Jonathan Rado — PEACHPLANETHOLLYWOOD
The Mountain Goats — The Jordan Lake Sessions: Volumes 3 and 4

Buy from Bandcamp today… again!

Fall is in the air, y’all. You know what else is in the air? mp3s — flying via WiFi from one spot on the interweb to another, payments bypassing Bandcamp’s bank account completely owing to the fact that it’s another bright and beautiful fee-free Friday.

Here are a few recommendations to start your October off right. Keep scrolling for a list of more releases I have my eye on, which I’ll keep updating as awesome stuff comes out of the Bandcamp Friday woodwork:

Poison Joy — Fortune Passes Everywhere

Kicking things off with a crucial heads up for the cassette crowd: $5 will get you this wonderfully wooly set of jams from Poison Joy, which I can confirm make for excellent walking-around-at-night-with-headphones-in accompaniment. I’m especially fond of “Discovery,” a nine-minute exploration in which low end takes center stage via an ascending motif that sticks with you long after the song is over.

Angélica Garcia — Echo Eléctrico

Another cassette heads up: As a writing this, just five tapes of Angélica Garcia’s upcoming Echo Eléctrico album are left on Bandcamp. The EP consists of reimagined traditional Mexican ranchera songs, and you can hear the first one to be released, entitled “Malagueña,” below.

Bartees Strange, Ohmme & Eric Slick / Anjimile — Province​/​Ever New

The stunning second installment in the new Psychic Hotline singles series has me falling back in love with “Province” from TV on the Radio’s Return to Cookie Mountain album, and falling in love for the first time with Beverly Glenn​-​Copeland’s stunning song “Ever New.” Speaking of Bartees Strange, if you didn’t pick up a copy of his Live Forever album at his recent show at the Camel, click here to fix that. (A snazzy new vinyl pressing is on the way.) And click here to snag his new single, “Weights.” Bartees is busy, y’all.

Spacebomb House Band, Deau Eyes — “Send Me No Roses

Spacebomb House Band and Deau Eyes pair perfectly covering country classic “Send Me No Roses,” which was on Tammy Wynette’s 1967 debut album, Your Good Girl’s Gonna Go Bad. I love where SHB is going with these takes on country classics; the previous entry in the series was an also-excellent version of Patsy Cline’s “Back in Baby’s Arms,” with Erin Rae providing vocals. Crossing my fingers for a collection of these covers down the road.

Landon Elliott — “Bigger Fish

I was so thrilled to see Landon Elliott had a new tune out, and I was incredibly moved by the accompanying video, which was directed, produced, and filmed by Landon himself. The song and video are unflinching in their own ways — two distinct vantage points from which to view Elliott’s honest and precise artistry.

Punch Brothers — Hell on Church Street

Punch Brothers paying tribute to Tony Rice is a whole heaping cup of “Yes plz.” Can’t wait to hear more of the album. The orange vinyl version has already sold out and been replenished once on Bandcamp, so if those copies are gone again and the vinyl color matching the plumage of the bird on the album cover is your thing, keep checking back, maybe?

Various — 20 Years of Cherub Records

Bonus! I’d expected to see this go up next week, but the Cherub Records 20th anniversary comp is live now!

Other releases I have my eye on today:

DJ Harrison — Route 10 Mix
Justin Golden — “It Ain’t Much
Sylvan Esso — Soundtrack for MASS MoCA
DarkTwaine_ — Wilderness

Buy from Bandcamp today… again!

I’m celebrating this sunny August Bandcamp Friday in Bay Head, New Jersey, on a family vacation just down the street from where my grandparents lived. Beach badges. Coffee cake. Lots of pizza. Lots of bagels. (Too many bagels. I didn’t realize that was possible, but it is.) And lots of Springsteen, Bill Evans, and Screaming Females being spun in celebration of the Garden State.

We’re heading back to Richmond tomorrow, and while we won’t be able to avoid sitting in traffic, we’ll at least have a great soundtrack for the drive, courtesy of the artists below. As a reminder, Bandcamp Friday means the sales platform is waiving its cut of sales, so your financial support goes directly to labels and artists.

FONVILLE — VIBES FROM HOME

Another exciting expansion of the Butcher Brown Universe™.  Drummer Corey Fonville released this new set of VIBES FROM HOME just last week, and outside of a couple of guest contributions (from current and former Butcher bandmates DJ Harrison and Keith Askey), it’s his own work on drums, bass, rhodes, keyboards, and organ. Love this new window into just how complete Fonville’s skill set is.

Pace! — “Brass Villain” (Doom Tribute)

Reggie Pace of No BS! Brass Band and the Hustle Season pod released this excellent MF DOOM tribute back in July, on the late, great metal-faced rapper and producer’s birthday. Mm..Brass.

Doug Richards Orchestra — Space & Sound, Vol. 1

Recorded at Spacebomb Studios in August of 2019, arranged by VCU jazz program driving force Doug Richards, performed by so many Richmond luminaries that listing them all would stop this post in its tracks, engineered/mixed/mastered by Adrian Olsen and Trey Pollard… there is nothing not to like about this four-song collection, which just hit the ‘camp the other day. Absolute can’t-miss stuff.

Amelia Meath & Blake Mills – “Neon Blue

So excited the Sylvan Esso crew has started a label, and what a way to start a singles series — with an Amelia Meath/Blake Mills collaboration, and a Sam Gendel alternate version on the flip side.

The Modern Folk — Primitive Future II 

You may be shocked (shocked!) to learn that the guy who is simultaneously wearing a WarHen Records patch hat and a WarHen Records “Steal Your Hen” t-shirt while typing this sentence is psyched about the Charlottesville label’s newest offering — an instrumental album called Primitive Future II from The Modern Folk. Very much enjoying the two tracks that are streaming so far, “Essie and Lynlee” and “Club Sequence.” Very different moods, both wonderfully evocative.

More fun stuff on my radar for today:

Christian Lee Hutson — The Version Suicides, Vol. 3
Ohbliv — Not Of This Earth
Philip James Murphy Jr — guillotine
Dori Freeman — Ten Thousand Roses
Various — Habibi Funk 015: An eclectic selection of music from the Arab world, part 2

Buy from Bandcamp today… again!

As they did last year, Bandcamp is commemorating Juneteenth by hosting a fee-free Friday. 100% of the platform’s cut of sales will go to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, so it’s a great day to pick up some new music.

I had a quick quartet of recommendations I’d like to throw out there, in case you’re looking for some inspiration:

Ohbliv — LewseJoints 9

New Ohbliv. If you rilly know, you know.

William Tyler & Luke Schneider — Understand

Leaving Records just announced this one, and I would very much like one of the 250 cassette copies to be sent to my house. Two guitarists I dig a great deal joining forces.

Charles Owens Trio — 10 Years

Charles Owens on sax, Andrew Randazzo on bass, DJ Harrison, drumming — excellence all around. This whole album is killer, but I must ask you to take five and a half minutes out of your day to give their version of “Rainbow Connection” a listen. It’s so wonderful. I’m especially fond of the interplay between Owens and Randazzo — how they team up to convey the song’s timeless lyricism. I think I’ve listened to it a dozen times since last weekend. Hoping to hear it when the Trio opens for Butcher Brown (long night for Randazzo and DJ Harrison!) at Friday Cheers next weekend.

Butcher Brown — ENCORE

Speaking of Butcher Brown, I had the pleasure of interviewing the band for Style Weekly, and the article went up earlier this week. I hope you’ll give it a read. Butcher Brown is as close to the beating heart of Richmond’s music scene as a band could be, and it was an honor and a joy speaking with them about their path through and out of 2020.

Also very much recommend giving their new ENCORE EP a listen. These five tunes were recorded during the #KingButch sessions, and while they may not have fit the scope of that album, they form a top-shelf 15 minutes of listening, every bit as varied and vibey as the tracks that did appear on the LP.

BONUS: tangent — The Great Society

Speaking of varied and vibey, I’m a big fan of the music Kelli Strawbridge has been releasing as tangent. He shared a four-song EP entitled The Great Society in May, and its greatness is rooted in Strawbridge’s versatility. All instruments and vocals done by Kelli.  It’s such an impressive skill set, and I love how “northerneck” explores the areas of his expertise.

BONUS: Pace! — “Coast City” feat. Lydia Adelaide

Speaking of Hustle Season podcast hosts with incredible skill sets, this tune from Reggie Pace featuring Lydia Adelaide has been a constant car ride companion since it was released in May. Amazing how it manages to evolve and unfold over the course of just two and a half minutes.

Side note: If you’re not yet part of the Hustle Season Patreon, click here to fix that immediately. I listen a little each night while I’m doing dishes and putting the house to bed, and I can’t tell you how much of a difference it makes having that last part of the day be so enjoyable. As far as podcast routines go, I’d give it a resounding SLAP.