Five Songs, 3/19/2022
Five Songs

Five Songs, 3/19/2022

Talib Kweli, "Guerilla Monsoon Rap"

I don't normally list guest artists on the title line, but check it: Black Thought and Pharoahe Monch. Super nice! Kweli is at his best when he's got other top-tier MCs to work with, part of the alchemy of Black Star.

Conlon Nancarrow, "Study For Player Piano No. 14"

As always, there's nothing really like Nancarrow, with music that feels about as alien as possible while still seeming like there's a plan. Even if you can't actually put your finger on that plan.

Shellac, "Copper"

Terraform is the Shellac record I listen to the least. Not because it's a bad record or anything, Shellac has always been excellent. I think just when it dropped in 1998, it kind of got lost in the shuffle for me, and I never really went back and sunk my teeth into it.

Oranssi Pazuzu, "Uusi teknokratia"

Psychedelic space black metal out of Finland, they're surprisingly not sketchy for a band with a dude named "Evil" in it. If you can get over (or like!) the strangled vocals, the scope of the songs here are a lot of fun. It's nice to hear a band borrowing some of the psych sounds and folding them in like this. And "pazuzu" is really fun to say. And some good rippin' guitar sounds in the solo here. What's not to like!

Loss of Self, "The Free Intelligence"

Sunbather was released in 2013, instantly putting hybrid black metal onto a lot of people's radars and introducing tons of people to the pleasures of the genre, if in a shinier than usual package. I bring up Deafheaven's breakthrough because it wasn't the only album in that general area that released that year. Loss of Self's Twelve Minutes also came out in 2013, and also presenting that same kind of slightly adulterated black metal. Loss of Self is maybe a bit more true to the original sound, and it just didn't get the same hype, so it didn't break through. But it's a solid album and definitely a good second step for anybody who liked that pink record.

Joshua Buergel
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