Classic Melting Pot

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It was sooooooooo nice to be back on this air this past Sunday! I hadn’t been on the air since January 25th and I was worried I might not remember what to do, but thankfully it is more or less just like riding a bike. As is often the case when I haven’t been on the air for a while, the releases pile up. With only two hours, there’s a lot more music that I could have played, but overall, I think it’s a pretty solid return. Lots of new tunes, but the show starts off with a little tribute to one of my musical heroes, Sly Stone, who celebrated his 72nd birthday on Sunday. I’ll be sure to keep things on track here at the blog (playlist up tomorrow or Friday) and hopefully I’ll be on the air for a good amount of time here throughout the rest of the year. Enjoy!

Melting Pot on KPFK #190: 1st Hour
Melting Pot on KPFK #190: 2nd Hour

Playlist: 3-15-2015

{opening theme} Booker T & the MGs – Melting Pot – Melting Pot (Stax)

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Sly & the Family Stone – Underdog – A Whole New Thing (Epic)
Sly & the Family Stone – Color Me True – Dance To The Music (Epic)
Sly & the Family Stone – Remember Who You Are – Back On The Right Track (WB)
Sly & the Family Stone – Can’t Strain My Brain – Small Talk (Epic)
Sly & the Family Stone – Just Like A Baby – There’s A Riot Going On (Epic)
Sly Stone – Africa – I’m Just Like You: Sly’s Stone Flower 1969-1970 (Light In The Attic)

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Rongetz Foundation feat. Gary Bartz – Marshmellow Throne – Kiss Kiss Double Jab (Heavenly Sweetness)
Zion I feat. 1-Oak – Last Nite – Sun Moon and Stars (Mass Appeal)
Tropics – Hunger – Rapture (Innovative Leisure)
Romare – Jimmy’s Lament – Projections (Ninja Tune)

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Swervedriver – Setting Sun – I Wasn’t Born To Lose You (Cobraside)
The Amazing – Broken – Picture You (Partisan)
Emmy The Great – Swimming Pools – S EP (Bella Union)
Ibeyi – Faithful – Ibeyi (XL)

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Prhyme feat. Jay Electronic – To Me To You – Prhyme (Prhyme Records)
Harvey Mandel – Light’s Out – Cristo Redentor (Phillips)
Dom La Nena – Menino – Soyo (Six Degrees)

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Zomba Prison Project – Women Today Take Care Of Business – Zomba Prison Project (Six Degrees)
Bappi Lahiri & Chorus – Taqdeer Ka Badshah – Bombay Disco 2 (Cultures Of Soul)
Paradise Bangkok Molam International Band – Lam Tang Wai Yook Pattana – 21st Century Molam (Zudrangma Records)

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Nedelle Torrisi – Fool Boy – Advice From Paradise (Ethereal Sequence/Drag City)
Portico feat. Jamie Woon – Memory Of Newness – Living Fields (Ninja Tune)
David Korevaar – Le Tombeau De Couperin II: Fugue – Maurice Ravel: Le Tombeau De Couperin (MSR Classics)
Charles Mingus – Duke’s Choice – A Modern Jazz Symposium Of Music and Poetry (Bethlehem)

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{closing theme} Dungen – C. Visar Vagen – Tio Bitar (Kemado)

Mandel

Harvey Mandel – The Snake
Harvey Mandel – Bite The Electric Eel
Harvey Mandel – Peruvian Flake

I wasn’t really planning on posting this record anytime soon, but when Harvey Mandel turned 70 years old on March 11th, there was a beautiful and touching appreciation for the man posted to Aquarium Drunkard that detailed the terrible times that Mandel’s been going through over the last several years. Just calamity after calamity, in recent years Mandel has been diagnosed with Nasal Cancer, lost both his mother and his son, and even his dog has come down with cancer. Josh Rosenthal’s post mentions that if you appreciate Mandel and have the ability to help him during these trying times, you can donate directly to his paypal account via harveysnake[at]comcast.net or via the Help Harvey Mandel website.

Snake1Mandel is one of my favorite guitarists, though he’s been fairly overlooked, his sound is so iconic and so repeatedly fantastic. From his debut along with Charlie Musselwhite, to his many varied and adventurous solo LPs, to stints with Barry Goldberg, Canned Heat and John Mayall, he’s laid down some of the most beautiful guitar lines and gorgeous sustains of any guitarist since the 1960s. This particular album that I’m sharing is the one that carries his nickname, “The Snake.” In contrast to the more psychedelic sound of 1968’s Cristo Redentor (which was one of the first records I shared on this blog back in 2009) The Snake features a more muscular and funky sound, in a slinky groove on the title cut to more upbeat tracks like “Peruvian Flake” and “Bite The Electric Eel.” It’s a sound that’s well known by Hip-Hop and beat heads and one that I can’t imagine never have hearing. Felt the need to post something and maybe direct people, not only to the music, but also to help out this extraordinary musician in his time of need.

Peace,

Michael

TheAmazing

The Amazing – Broken

It’s no secret that one of my all-time favorite contemporary bands is the Swedish neo-psych group Dungen. In the same way that I’m always eager to hear new music from them (which hopefully will be coming sometime soon, since we haven’t had anything since 2010), I love hearing projects from some of the people associated with that sound. Picture You is now the third album from Sweden’s The Amazing, once again featuring Dungen guitarist Reine Fiske and also the magnificent drums of Moussa Fadera (whose style is eerily similar to Dungen’s drummer Johan Holmegrad). While the Amazing shares many qualities with Dungen, it’s frontman Christoffer Gunrup’s breezy vocals that separate the group, giving the band a sound that’s a bit more ethereal than it is psychedelic.

In addition to the lead track “Broken” posted above, here’s a video for the title track, one of the centerpieces for the album:

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Until this past Sunday, this had been the last time I’d been on-air at KPFK, by far my longest hiatus from the show since coming over in 2010. This was the end of the month all-vinyl thang we always do. As the year has begun I haven’t bought nearly as much vinyl, mostly connected to adopting a new dog who now takes up all of my loose change. Pretty soon though I’ll be getting back to my diggin’ ways and I’m looking forward to being back on the air to be able to share it all.

Melting Pot on KPFK #189: First Hour
Melting Pot on KPFK #189: Second Hour

Muddy

Muddy Waters – I Am The Blues
Muddy Waters – Bottom Of The Sea
Muddy Waters – Blues And Trouble

Had originally planned on posting this just after we’d had a spell of multiple days of rainy weather in water starved Los Angeles. But a quickie storm rolling through today gave me a chance to have this record be timed perfectly (after all, who knows when it will rain again out here). After The Rain was the follow-up to the much more well-known and more controversial Electric Mud. In some ways the fact that they crafted a follow-up, with essentially the same group (featuring the other-worldly guitar of Pete Cosey) should have dispelled some of the controversy surrounding Water’s feelings on this sound. It’s clear that after the sonic freakout of Electric Mud, Waters exerted perhaps a bit more control over these proceedings, as the record has a more conventional sound (though “Bottom Of The Sea” sounds like it could have been an out-take from the first session). But dialing it back from the previous effort still gives this album a sound all it’s own. While not as overtly psychedelic, with more slow groovin’ songs, After The Rain has a bit more ooomph to it.

I’d been looking for a copy of this for years and years, and finally ran into one at Gimme Gimme Records new location at 5810 N Figueroa St, essentially down the corner from my other favorite record store (at least in the Record Store heavy Highland Park) Avalon Vintage. If you haven’t been, he’s got more space and more records, and that is a mighty good thing, just like this album.

Cheers,

Michael

SupremeJubilees

The Supreme Jubilees – We’ll Understand

There’s been a recent trend towards tracking down funky and soulful gospel music. Helping a whole lot of people out is this reissue from Light In The Attic of the Supreme Jubilees super rare Gospel Boogie burner, originally released in 1980. Though the overtly funky bits might be the reason people will pay big money for a record like this, it’s the slower songs that I find more appealing to the ears, especially “We’ll Understand.”

swerve

To say that I was overjoyed would be a massive understatement, when word came out that Swervedriver was not only reformed, but here in 2015 would release a brand new album of brand new material AND tour the US! Swervedriver for me was the crown jewel of the “shoegazer” sound out of the UK, with a sterling emphasis on quality of sound perhaps best exemplified in the swirling twin guitars of Adam Franklin and Jimmy Hartridge and the propulsive beat of the many, many drummers associated with the group. This week the band will land here in Los Angeles on March 5th, for one of their earliest shows here in the states at the venerable Roxy. If you’d like to see this band, and get lost in the sound, make sure to e-mail me at michael[at]meltingpotblog.com before 5pm Wednesday, March 4th for a chance to win.

My first experience with the band was watching this video, jaw agape in shock, on a recording of 120 minutes back in the early 1990s. No other song compares to the thrill of driving on a clean stretch of highway to this song:

Here the band performs “Deep Wound,” the song that would eventually be the first single from their latest release, I Wasn’t Born To Lose You, from a recent performance at KEXP. This gives you a sense of what you’ll experience on Thursday if you make it to the show:

While the first single from the new album gave us the impression the band was focused on a tough “Mustang Ford” return, the second single, “Setting Sun” gives a better representation of the sound of the current band. A song that could have easily found it’s way onto any of the other previous albums from the band, representative of the classic sound and many joys of Adam Franklin’s songwriting, singing and playing:

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