Otis Redding, "Try a Little Tenderness"
One of Redding's iconic hits, this is actually a much older song, more than thirty years old when he recorded what is by now the definitive version. The very slow build up throughout the song is such a delight, a masterclass in pacing.
After a couple albums of relatively accessible music in The Hunter and Once More 'Round The Sun, where Mastodon kind of stepped away from their most elaborate tendencies, they made something of a return to the style with Emperor of Sand. Part of that is the return of the same producer who helped them make Crack the Skye, part of that is the desire to make a concept album again, but whatever it is, it's my favorite of the latter-day Mastodon albums. Although I haven't really fully digested the most recent one, so I don't know about that record yet.
The Jesus Lizard, "Bloody Mary"
Before they became the best rock band on the planet for a few years, the Jesus Lizard got started with an EP, Pure. It's very much the product of the same aesthetic they would later perfect, one that draws on the previous bands of the members, such as Scratch Acid and Rapeman, and presents a bracing version of noise rock. While it's not as good as their heights, it's still an excellent EP, and well-worth seeking out.
The Wailers, "Stir It Up"
What can I say but enjoy? A little slice of summer here.
Antibalas, "Lai Lai"
Afro-beat band Antibalas released Fu Chronicles in 2020, adding some martial arts influences to their usual Fela Kuti imitation. It's very well done, helped by having largely been recorded live in the studio, which gives an immediacy to things that helps drive it home.