Listen: Flock of Dimes builds on solo success; Muhammad & Younge pay tribute to Oakland forebear

Listen: Flock of Dimes builds on solo success; Muhammad & Younge pay tribute to Oakland forebear

Flock of Dimes builds on Jenn Wasner’s 2016 solo debut with “Head of Roses.” Picture: Rick Kern , WireImage 2017

The Chronicle’s information to notable new music.


Flock of Dimes, “Head of Roses” (Sub Pop)

The second launch from Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak’s solo undertaking fantastically builds on the muse of her 2016 debut, “If You See Me, Say Sure.” The place her first album was a superb singular effort, “Head of Roses” is co-produced with Sylvan Esso’s Nick Sanborn — and it’s the most effective materials from the North Carolina artist’s prolific musical universe in years.

Opener “2 Heads” has heat auto-tuned vocals within the spirit of Bon Iver, the indie people band Wasner joined in 2019. The music particularly speaks to the album’s central theme of the duality of heartbreak and the way we course of the feelings of the comings and goings of affection. The multifaceted frontwoman sings and performs bass, synths and acoustic and electrical guitars on the beautiful “Value of Blue” and all through the file is joined by Bon Iver drummer Matt McCaughan, Hand Habits’ Meg Duffy (guitar), Landlady’s Adam Schatz (saxophone) and others.

Ali Shaeed Muhammad & Adrian Younge, “Gary Bartz JID006” (Jazz Is Useless)

In a profession that has spanned six a long time, celebrated alto saxophonist Gary Bartz has steadily remained an necessary determine in Black music actions. In his early days, Bartz performed with jazz icons McCoy Tyner, Artwork Blakey and even Miles Davis. He additional established himself within the Nineteen Seventies with the pioneering Afrocentricity of his Ntu Troop group’s “Harlem Bush Music” collection after which cemented his legacy when hip-hop creators like Warren G, Jurassic 5, Informal (of Oakland’s Hieroglyphics crew) and A Tribe Referred to as Quest started sampling his jazz spiritualism on new productions.

Now, two of in the present day’s pre-eminent jazz and hip-hop fusion musicians in Ali Shaheed Muhammad (previously of A Tribe Referred to as Quest) and Adrian Younge have linked with Bartz — who lives in Oakland — for the most recent of their jazz revivalist Jazz Is Useless collection. “JID006” sees the trio enacting new compositions that spill over with the soul of Bartz’s adorned timeline. “Religious Ideation” options Bartz’s sax floating atop electrical bass-, Hammond organ- and Mellotron-studded preparations by Younge and Muhammad, with drummer Greg Paul pacing the beat. The JID collection’ earlier editions included Roy Ayers and the Brazilian psychedelia of Azymuth, amongst others. This sixth installment rounds out the uncompromising aesthetic that the bold undertaking has sought to create, and it couldn’t have been achieved with out Bartz’s sound and affect.


Hiatus Kaiyote that includes Arthur Verocai, “Get Solar” (Brainfeeder)

Following the discharge of 2015’s Grammy nominated “Select Your Weapon,” the Melbourne neo-soul quartet have been using excessive. The band was touring the world  — together with stops on the Outdoors Lands and Treasure Island Music festivals within the Bay Space — and lent their music to tracks by Anderson .Paak, Drake and Kendrick Lamar. However after Hiatus Kaitoye began engaged on its subsequent album and laid tracks down in mid-2018, issues got here to a screeching halt later that yr when singer Nai Palm was identified with breast most cancers whereas on tour within the U.S. Palm instantly returned to Australia and underwent a lifesaving mastectomy. Quickly, nevertheless, she was targeted on getting again to her life’s work.

“I made a decision that I wanted to show to life that the providing I’ve is real,” she mentioned in a press release. “My solely want is to stay and supply my expertise of time and wonder.”

So the group traveled to Rio de Janeiro in 2019 for a session with legendary Brazilian musician and arranger Arthur Verocai. One of many ensuing tracks is the colourful “Get Solar,” the place Verocai contributed strings and horns. Palm’s vocals on the shimmering quantity are bursting with gratitude, with a palpable exuberance for music, life and the world. It’s the lead single to Hiatus Kaiyote’s third album, “Temper Valiant,” out June 25.

Aesop Rock and Jeremy Fish, “Lengthy Legged Larry” (Rhymesayers)

North Seaside visible artist Jeremy Fish and Portland rapper Aesop Rock have labored collectively on quite a few album covers, movies, kids’s books and murals. Now their newest joint effort, “Lengthy Legged Larry,” is an audiovisual idea a few well-meaning frog who makes use of his evolutionary items to assist these round him.

Fish created the visible concepts for Larry, who in Rob Shaw’s stop-motion animation video is seen utilizing his leaping means to avoid wasting a princess from a tower, a cat from a tree and a poodle from a excessive wire, and Aesop Rock gives the whimsical story line. That is an extremely inventive collaboration that can enchantment to each growing old hip-hop heads and their youngsters.

Fish additionally designed the accompanying merchandise, which features a Lengthy Legged Larry beanbag toy, operating shorts, sweatbands and child onesies.

Damani Rhodes, Tongo Eisen-Martin and Somadhi, “Not a Poem” (self-released)

Tongo Eisen-Martin, a San Francisco-born and -bred poet, educator and activist, wrote the 2018 California E-book Award-winning “Heaven Is All Goodbyes” and is an ever-growing influential presence within the metropolis. To acknowledge his contributions, S.F. Mayor London Breed introduced Eisen-Martin as town’s eighth poet laureate in January. However his star doesn’t cease there.

For “Not a Poem,” he linked up with Sacramento multi-instrumentalist Damani Rhodes and drummer Somadhi Langford, who each just lately appeared in Washington, D.C.’s distinguished Kennedy Middle Attain collection. The 2 musicians create a masterful canvas for Eisen-Martin, who channels the essence of the nice jazz poet Gil Scott-Heron in a dizzying supply on the monitor as he proclaims: “I’m a tall story on earth/ However right here’s to the angel that by no means appeared to America/ And an evening of canine paddle/ And in a batch of hangovers on the lookout for a house/ A liar wouldn’t have stay this lengthy.”

There’s a full undertaking from the trio that’s presently slated to be launched this yr.

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