Golden Dawn Arkestra, "Mama Se"
Any time you hear the word "collective" in relationship with a band, you know you're in for something. Golden Dawn Arkestra are one of those, from Austin, and are inspired by Sun Ra, trying to do the whole cosmic exploration stuff. Some funk, jazz, Afrobeat, whatever else occurs to them gets thrown in the blender. It's a lot, and I don't know, it seems a little unfocused to me. I only have this one record, and I think as a drop-in here, it works, but the whole album is a bit exhausting.
The Strokes, "Last Nite"
You've got your opinion on the Strokes, and so do I. The very short version is that I think the narrative around the band saving rock or whatever is super, duper dumb. But judged just as tunes, this is fun stuff.
The Suicide Machines, "Permanent Holiday"
The first Suicide Machines record (which saw any real distribution) was a bracing blast of ska-punk, played at blistering speed and with a fantastic sense of fun. The returns kind of kept decreasing on each subsequent record, though. We're now at the third (proper) release here, and this is fine? But not super exciting.
Public Enemy, "2 (resPEct)"
Did you all know that Public Enemy just kept going? There have been a few multi-year gaps in their releases, but they've never stopped putting out records. I wish I could say you've been missing out on some groundbreaking stuff, but alas, I cannot. A lot of what they've released since their salad days kind of sounds like a prelude to something, instead of a fully formed record.
The Dramatics, "In The Rain"
This song has been sampled so much, particularly by the RZA for the Wu-Tang and related projects. But aside from the pleasure of hearing the original source of things, this song is also a proper jam.