Earthling Society – Ascent to Godhead

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3rd post in a year. Well, it turns it they ARE that good.

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Earthling Society – England have my Bones

zenbonesWell it isn’t often I post about the same band more than once in the same year , but this Earthling Society outfit are proving to be quite the find.

As is so often the case with music like this, words completely fail me. I’ve come to the conclusion that the easier something is to put into words, the less of an effect it has on you. But that may just be due to incipient stupidity on my part. What am I, a music critic?

As the blurb on the bandcamp page says, the centrepiece is definitely their take on the Alice Coltrane classic, but the accompanying material is also worth the price of admission on its own, which should tell you how highly I’m rating this. This is mighty, mighty music.

And it is also testament to those so many artists who keep plugging away and doing what they gotta do regardless of recognition. With no need to please a fanbase you have the space to grow truly. There’s loads of artists like this around who just keep getting better and better by simply remaining true to themselves, and the internet’s continuing decimation of the mainstream music industry* allows more and more of these to find some appreciative ears. Long may it continue.

*the mainstream music industry is now probably better decribed as the spectacle soundtrack industry. Music always seems to be of secondary concern to the visuals.

Joshua Abrams & Natural Information Society – Simultonality

simultonalityThe last time I was aware of Josh Abrams making an album, I had a bit of a grumble about how it wasn’t that easy to get hold of, at least for me. Well, that seems to have been fixed now, and I found that out by finding out that he had a new thing out. Not only that, but he’s also collaborated with the Soundbergs-approved Bitchin Bajas in the meantime.

This is the groovy end of jazz, the type I like, where the music does a number on me hypnotically. It seems to be a natural progression from the above-mentioned Magnetoception, nice long grooves with a motorik pulse. There’s nods to the spiritual jazz tradition of the Coltranes and Pharoah Sanders, but also a mellow, laid back feel. This music isn’t in a hurry; after all, there is no need to hurry to make an eternal point.

A few words have been typed making mention of the fact that this has been credited to Josh Abrams AND Natural Information Society, which suggests that this may be more collaborative than previous efforts. Whether that’s the case, or whether this is simply a more explicit acknowledgement of the collaboration, this is an excellent addition to Abrams output.

 

Phil Cohran & Legacy – African Skies

Despite the fact that I don’t think I need to discover anything ‘new’ for at least 16 years now to give me time to absorb all the music I have come to know, I nevertheless find myself being a sucker for lists of other artists recommendations, even if I don’t really listen to the music of that artist in question. Case in point – the recent listed feature by Rhyton over at Dusted in Exile contains some good tunes, but it introduced me to this beautiful album by Kelan Phil Cohran, alumni from Sun Ra’s majestic school of thinking freely who composed this tribute after Sun Ra’s death.

I am at even more of a loss for words than is usual with this album. It is simply stunning. One of the albums I would play to any visiting alien as the an example of the superlative best that humanity can offer. Big words, I know, and I don’t usually like that sort of hyperbole. It sounds completely timeless, genre-less – a meditation on life, perhaps.

The nearest frame of reference I can give you from things that I know would be Alice Coltrane, perhaps the Journey in Satchidananda, which I have just discovered features Pharoah Sanders, whose work I cannot recommend too  much – if this cosmic jazz vibe that I’m laying on you is to your taste then seek out his work too.

The CD is available here, although you can’t actually listen to any of it there which is odd for bandcamp. Maybe a licensing thing. So here’s another youtube: