Bandcamp Pickups From A While Ago To Now

A lot has happened since the last time I wrote one of these posts. We are in a new year! 2021 is half way done and I have built up a backlog of Bandcamp pickups to talk about. I just haven’t been in the right state of mind to actually writing one of these.

Let’s get into it.

The first one is Songs of Supergiant Games by Darren Korb and Ashley Barrett. In my last post of this nature, I mentioned the Hades soundtrack. Well if you liked that, you will love this collection of songs from Supergiant’s games over the years performed with an orchestral arrangement. Just beautiful all around. Every track shines under the light of the orchestra and Ashley Barrett’s voice continues to be just as beautiful as ever.

The second one is Black Pumas by Black Pumas. This soul album has a lot of…well soul. Sorry, I felt compelled to write that. Seriously though, this is an incredible album with gorgeous instrumentation and lush vocals all the way through. Every track is a delight. I’ve had this on regular repeat since I found out about it via a NPR Tiny Desk video on the Black Pumas. I am listening to it as I write it and I want to keep listening to it all the way through.

The third one is Level 11 by Miracle Of Sound. I have been a fan of Gav’s music for a while and what continues to impress me is his improvement as a musician over the years. This album contains his work from 2020 and it is filled with absolute bangers. Personally, I’m a fan of the two Final Fantasy 7 Remake themed tracks and the Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla themed track.

The fourth one is Graz by Nils Frahm. This one is for those quiet moments when all you want is some soft piano to give your brain time to relax. It is indeed the perfect soundtrack for writing blog posts like these. 

The fifth one is Oasis Sky by Tor. This downtempo electronic album gives me cyberpunk vibes. I feel like this is the soundtrack for a cyberpunk themes game waiting to be made.

The sixth one is Bring Backs by Alfa Mist. Jazz is not a genre I listen to much of; I don’t have anything against the genre, it just isn’t my thing most of the time. This album however is excellent. I think my favourite thing about is the guitar in the first track Teki that just meshes so well with the jazz. Just a solid album all around, if you are a jazz head, you should give this one a listen.

The seventh one is Unlearning Vol. 1 by Evidence. This album hasn’t been released yet but I can’t deny the strength of the three single tracks that I’ve listened to so far and I pre-ordered this based on those alone. As a Boldy James fan, that single track with him on it is already enough for me to listen to this. The production on the tracks that are out so far is incredible as well. I am really looking forward to listening this album in full when it comes on the 25th of June.

The eight one is Outside Child by Allison Russell. I found this album via one of Bandcamp Daily’s posts and I am very glad I did. I’ll just quote from the post here:

Many of the songs on Outside Child hearken back to classics like “Love Child” by Diana Ross and the Supremes and Cher’s “Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves”—particularly “The Hunters,” where Russell confronts the parents whose brutality still haunts her. It’s an album that gives voice to the unwanted and the exploited and to those who, like the phoenix rising from the ashes, transfigure their past against all odds

Ad some of the lyrics from the track Nightflyer:

His soul is trapped in that room
But I crawled back in my mother’s womb
Came back out with my gold and my greens
Now I see everything
Now I feel everything good lord
What the hell could they bring to stop me Lord?
Nothing from the earth, nothing from the sea
Not a God Almighty thing

That is all from me this time around. I hope you found something in here that you enjoyed. See y’all around.

Recent Bandcamp pickups (SEP 4 – OCT 2)

Hey friends, I return with another one of these posts. I would normally say that it has been a while since I’ve done this but the flow of time has ceased to have any meaning to me in 2020. Bandcamp has been continuing to do their Bandcamp Fridays after their first one they did which means I have a bunch more music that I picked up and I would like to talk about.

The first one is Live at WOMAD 1985 by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. This is a qawwali album; qawwali is a form of Sufi devotional music. This kind of music is not something that is normally on my radar and I would like to thank the Bandcamp Daily blog for bringing this to my attention because it is a wonderful listen. The sheer ecstatic energy of the performances builds up through each of these tracks and really showcases why Nusrat was a legend of this genre.

The second one is Sufi Dub Brothers by Ashraf Sharif Khan & Viktor Marek. This album combines the sounds of the sitar and the sound of acid dub and industrial to a fantastic effect. The very concept of combining these sounds is something that never occurred to me and now that I’ve heard this, I want more in this style. Truly a unique gem that I also found due to a post from the Bandcamp Daily blog.

The third one is How Can I by park hye jin. I don’t think I have talked about park hye jin before on this blog. Her music is what I call ethereal club music or maybe dark house. Its music you can easily envision being part of a DJ’s set at a club while also having a bit of a melancholic and lonely vibe to it. Her last album is also worth a listen if you do end up enjoying this one. I didn’t realize she had released a new album because it was released under a different Bandcamp account, here’s hoping I don’t miss out on more of her releases.

The fourth one is Reknowing by Lena Raine. This is a remix album containing remixes of tracks from her debut artist album Oneknowing. I love the variety of remixes on offer from different artists, no track sounds the same. I’m a big fan of Lena’s work and I’m glad to see her collaborate with other artists like this. My most favourite remix is the one by Yasunori Nishiki because it has this sort of haunted ethereal feel to it that I really like. It reminds me of a certain haunted section from Final Fantasy 7 Remake.

The fifth one is わたしの小さなGALAXY by ミカヅキBIGWAVE. For those of y’all unfamiliar with Mikazuki Bigwave, they usually make music in the future funk genre which is a very upbeat genre but this album signals Bigwave’s move into a more chill downtempo style. Very much borrowing aspects of the lo-fi aesthetic and combining it with future funk. This is a very nice and soothing album to listen to on a rainy autumn morning.

The sixth one is Hades: Original Soundtrack by Darren Korb. Ever since Hades was released, Hades has been on my mind. What an incredible game. I bought this OST really for just the one track, the Eurydice solo of Good Riddance with Ashley Barrett’s lovely voice on it. That song really just makes me cry a little bit because of how good her voice is. The rest of the soundtrack is another slam dunk by Darren who has done music for previous Supergiant games before.

The seventh one is Seven Times Down Eight Times Up by Elzhi. I haven’t listened to Elzhi in a while, the last time was when he released his Illmatic homage album Elmatic. I am happy to say that this Detroit area legend is still incredible at what he does. His lyricism is on point and the production on this album is some of the best production I’ve heard in a Elzhi record; shoutout to JR Swiftz.

The eight one is Run Away by Tycho and rum.gold. I’ve talked about Tycho before on this blog so y’all might already know that I’m a fan. This collaboration with rum.gold is quite possibly some of the best Tycho that I’ve heard in a while. rum.gold’s husky voice is smooth as hell and it especially shines on the acoustic version of Run Away. If this is the start of collaborations between these two artists I’m excited to see what the future has in store.

The ninth one is Go Bravely by Denise Chaila. Y’all wonder what happens when a talented artist rhymes Irish with English? Well wonder no more, after you listen to this album you will know what that sounds like. I found this via the Bandcamp Daily blog and I instantly fell in love with Denise’s flow and style, the way she uses wordplay in a cheeky humorous way. I’m really looking forward to hearing her over some better production and especially production that is a little more minimal than it already is because I think it will really allow her spoken word delivery style to shine.

That’s all from me this time around. I hope y’all find something that you enjoy amongst the above. I won’t make any promises about having another of these posts in the near future but I really hope I can write one of these again soon as they are truly a lot of fun to write. Stay safe and see y’all next time.

Recent Bandcamp pickups (FEB 6 – APR 21)

Hey everyone! It has been a while since I’ve written another one of these posts and hell it has been a while since I’ve written anything for this blog. As you may have noticed the world is kinda upside down right now. But enough of that, let’s talk about some music I bought on Bandcamp over the last couple months. Maybe you will find something that brings you joy in these troubled times.

The first one is Building a Better World by 猫 シ Corp. & t e l e p a t h テレパシー能力者. Another ambient vaporwave album in the same vein as the sixth album in my last Bandcamp picks post. Just some relaxing sounds on this one, I especially enjoy the sounds of rain which sound crispy. Music like this usually goes into my “writing ambient” playlist for times when I want to write and I don’t want lyrics interrupting my thought process.

The second one is Sendagi Collection by Macroxx 82-99 & Vantage. This one is another really fun future funk collaboration album released on Neoncity Records. Honestly, just listen to the track called “Daddy D”. It’s exactly what you think a future funk track by that name sounds like. Just listening to this album again for this post makes me want to get up and dance.

The third one is Tiny Postcards by Josie Brechner. Like many other people right now I’ve been playing Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Very glad Josie released this set of very nice AC themed tunes. I’ve been following Josie ever since the release of the EXTREME MEATPUNKS FOREVER OST that she did. Purchase of this album also goes towards supporting a NYC based food charity so buy some good music for your Animal Crossing playlist and support a good cause at the same time!

The fourth one is Solitude EP by Amerigo Gazaway. I’ve got some lo-fi beats to chill/study to for y’all right here. These days I spend a lot of time by myself in my own thoughts and the title of this EP hit me right in one of those moods. These are some of the best lo-fi beats I’ve heard in a while. Not really lo-fi in a production sense but in a musical sense. Wait, is lo-fi a term for a aesthetic now instead of actual limitation of physical music storage media? Doesn’t matter, it sounds good and that’s what matters to me.

The fifth one is 1988 by Knxwledge. Another fantastic album from the Los Angeles based producer and Street Fighter aficionado. Immaculate production on every track and fantastic sampling. The little skits in there are fucking hilarious (“I listen to Knxwledge but I prefer trap music”). I also love the way the track names form phrases and sentences. If you are a hip-hop head you owe it to yourself to give this album at least a listen.

The sixth and final one is Resonance by Yumiko Morioka. I discovered this album via the Bandcamp Daily blog and I’m very glad I did. It is a very relaxing piano album. Some of the tracks here remind me of music from the Chrono Cross OSTs, strong Yasunori Mitsuda vibes off of tracks like La Sylphide 空気の精. The story of how this reissue came to be is very interesting as well and I’m glad Métron Records was able to get this album from 1987 (!) the attention and care it deserves and release it to a new audience in 2020.

That is all from me. I hope you found something to your liking here dear reader. I did buy more albums in this period that didn’t make the cut for this specific post but if you want to take a look at those as well, you can take a gander at my Bandcamp profile. If you use Bandcamp’s social feed feature you can follow me there and see which albums I buying without having to wait for me write another one of these posts.

Until next time. Stay safe out there y’all.

Recent Bandcamp pickups (JAN 26-FEB 5 2020)

I was looking at my Bandcamp purchases history and there have been some really fantastic albums that I’ve picked up over the last few weeks.

I thought I should talk about them here. This type of blog post might become a regular thing, maybe, IDK, no promises.

Some of these are pre-orders i.e the full albums aren’t out yet but I figure if I have already pre-ordered them having listened to one track, they are worth mentioning.

The first one is Sept ~ Dec by Eliza Shaddad. Indie rock isn’t one of my usual genres but in the case of Eliza’s fantastic vocals, I don’t have a problem with making an exception. The backing instrumentation sounds really good too and the three tracks here are well mixed.

The second one is On My Ones by Alfa Mist. This is one of the pre-orders. This dropped in my Bandcamp new queue e-mail folder because I bought a Alfa Mist album as a gift for someone a while ago. Withered is the one track that is available now and it is some sublime piano work and I’m looking forward to the full release on February 28, 2020.

The third one is Green and Grey (expanded) by Julia Kent. I first came across Julia sometime in 2019 via her album Temporal. I am a huge fan of the way she integrates the sound of cello with some more ambient feeling field recordings. This album sounds extremely powerful in the way it projects the sound of the cello, so props to whoever did the mixing/production for this. Looking forward to hearing what else Julia releases in the future.

The fourth one is RE PAK 4 by greyl. The future funk genre has recently started becoming one of favourites (thanks Mint! :)) and this album is an exemplary work in it. greyl is nothing sort of a remixing and sampling genius. The way they mix hip-hop into the future funk sound is very clever and never feels unnatural or forced. Work it is one of my favourites in the way it uses the Missy Elliott track by the same name.

The fifth one is Simulcast by Tycho. This is another one of the pre-orders. I’ll be honest: I wasn’t a big fan of the stylistic change that happened with Tycho’s 2019 album Weather, it felt uninspired and I don’t think the vocals really added anything of substance to the music. I don’t think Saint Sinner is a bad singer or anything like that, it just wasn’t working for me on that album. The track I heard from Simulcast, “Stress” sounds like a return to the Tycho style that I really fell in love with, a return to old form as it were, it reminded me of Awake which is my most favourite Tycho album.

The sixth and final one for this blog post is 小圈子 by 輕描淡寫. This one I listened to and bought a hour or so ago before I started writing this blog post. The absolutely gorgeous album art caught my eye on the Bandcamp front page and then I stayed for the beautiful ambient sounds. The album is tagged as ambient vaporwave and I think I’m a new fan of that sub-genre now. I was also informed of another artist in the same vein: 2814. I’m going to be checking them out after I finish writing this.