What a girl wants

Underground music skilfully takes apart the image of a sweet pop girl posturing in music videos. And not just that: it also sends a clear signal to all members of society who face discrimination because of their sex, origin or sexual orientation.

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Never-ending processions

“Processions” is a contemplative journey through folk music, a lesson in deep and close listening. Because you do have to listen closely to it, capture the sounds, their details, try to discern all the hidden layers. It’s an invitation to deep listening: this is escapist music, you have to let it play out, catch your ear in a trance

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Duos for drums and bass

Last weeks saw the release of two records that may serve as a brilliant example here. Llovage is a peculiar amalgam of ideas and sounds, whose range of uses is as broad as that of the title herb, whereas Black Myths are all about reflecting the emotions, revolt and anger of the African American community through music.

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Branch or Die

Jaimie Branch follows the path marked out on her first album, but adds new horizons to the picture. Her sophomore work is a fascinating collection of vivid and spontaneous reactions to the surrounding reality: whether encountered in the rehearsal room, in a concert situation, or on the geopolitical scene.

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Saxodrones

Two brilliant records that combine the saxophone and drone music: Lea Bertucci generates reverberating pieces by playing in a huge grain elevator, while Julius Gabriel uses added effects to create his narcotic musical visions.

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Imaginary folks

Some refer to it, others prefer to distance themselves from it. In my opinion, Opla and Širom’s latest records sound like contemporary folk made in large cities and their peripheries. Fiery and delicate at the same time, it takes a winding slalom course leading back to tradition.

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Holiday compilations #1

Travel to 1980s Brazilian underground, Peruvian sound-art, French children’s music, Melbourne’s blossoming jazz scene and Wrocław’s futuristic electronica. This is the first in a new series where I describe the most interesting compilations I’ve come across.

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