Jammo’s Music Report No.15
Hi De Hi Campers, it’s time for another rip-roaring-never-ever-on-time Jammo’s music report. It’s been a weird old month, that wheezing bag of custard quit but not quite, and the weather in Berlin is bipolar at best. But it’s summer and life is OK, really. So, without further ado, here’s a little rundown of the inspirational music I’ve been listening to recently.
Equiknoxxx – A World of Welsh
It’s muggy as fuck in Berlin at the moment. The air is soup, my brain is like a runny egg, and I’ve been ragging Jamaican mega crew Equiknoxxx’s Colón Man album non-stop (DDS, 2017). More specifically, “A World of Welsh”. Now, it’s not just the track title I like, I mean, there’s that too, but “A World of Welsh” sounds like it’s been dipped in treacle. The sound of heat exhaustion, woozy, mycelic Dancehall of the kind that only Equiknoxxx can get away with.
Gwenno – N.Y.C.A.W
Still on a Cymru tip here, but I tell you what’s a lovely thing: Songs in motion. Now, my life’s pretty dull, I suppose. Basically, it’s me sitting here scribbling nonsense, cleaning, cooking, and picking up or dropping off the kids in an endless loop, punctuated with the odd synth moment. Within that circuit lies a rich inner world of weird and wonderful music which transports me through space and time. From nasty 90s Jungle to Turk Psyche and Zheul, I’m astral travelling every day.
“N.Y.C.A.W” (Nid yw Cymru Ar Werth meaning Wales is Not for Sale), taken from Gwenno’s latest album “Tresor” (Heavenly, 2022)*, is one that’s carried me around a lot lately. Its haunting melodies and shimmering guitars transport me. Of course, physically I’m still a cuddly dad-type, bumbling through the backstreets of Berlin, but spiritually I’m back in Borth, navigating the river Leri, tottering past the Animalarium, and greeting the capybaras before climbing the hills toward Talybont. Funnily enough, a lot of the video was filmed in what’s now my back garden, Tempelhofer Feld, which somehow completes the circle in my mind.
Glenn Astro x Hulk Hodn – RX5
Taken from the duo’s forthcoming “Ghosts” album, this wafting digi-dub number has all the jazzy swagger you would usually associate with Glenn Astro and Hulk Hodns output, but with a deft clinical edge that would give early noughties Timbaland a run for his money. 100% pure kiffensexmusik.
Wayne Smith – Life is a Moment in Space
This one brings a tear to my eye. I may have included this one on a list somewhere before, but being the ever-professional person I am, I can’t be arsed to trawl through the things I’ve written over the last few years. So, here it is, possibly again: A stunning Jammy production of Wayne Smith in full romance mode. This one’s getting played at my funeral. “Life is a moment in space, When your dream is gone, It’s a lonelier place”.
Time Wharp – ETGSS
Taken from Time Wharp’s Sehr Koschmishe two tracker “Ingenue” (2021, Leaving Records), “ETGSS” takes its cue from artists like Neu and Moebius & Plank. Mechanical rhythms form a scaffold for guitar and piano vamps to circulate, while dreamy slide and e-bow effected guitars soar like astral birds overhead.
FFT – 3 Sided
I was listening to this one in the middle of a biblical rainstorm the other day, and I tell you what, it was the perfect soundtrack; chaotic electronic funk, epic orchestration and soaring melodies that make the brain turn to mush and the jaw elongate. I had to go home and change in the end, but it was well worth it.
Mariah Carey – Emotions
It’s a fucking disgrace that supposedly cool people ignore this stuff. Yes, it’s a multimillion-selling pop record, but this ain’t no manufactured pop shite, you can’t fake this. Mariah is a proper legend. I hope generations to come will recognize the immensity of her genius. She’s not just a great singer who gets murdered at every karaoke bar across the globe. Mariah is a vocal athlete, quite literally the diva from Luc Besson’s “The Fifth Element”. Casually hitting G#7s throughout without even breaking a sweat — don’t believe me, stick this on or this. Mariah is life and, if we are talking desert island discs, Autechre and Aphex Twin can do one. I’m taking ‘Emotions’.
Dogpatrol – Granular Memory Experience
From Queen Mariah to the Marquis of Mannheim. It’s Dogpatrol with “Granular Memory Experience” taken from his latest offering “Low Poly Life (Level 1)” (2022, 777 Records). An absolute stand-out track from an artist I’ve been in love with since his early releases. A mind-melting combo of lost computer game soundtracks, hazy pads and Dorf-Gabber beats twirl around a snaking bassline. This is everything I think dance music should be, reflective but futuristic, relentlessly funky and full of personality.
Zafer Dilek – Tulum
This dreamy Anatolian banger, taken from Zafer Dilek’s 1977 album “Oyun Havaları”, has soundtracked my early morning Neukölln flânerie for weeks now. Atmospheric Düdük flutes and weird time signatures fill my head with magical visions as I stroll past the shops opening up on Sonnenallee. “Tulum” is guaranteed to turn any dull metropolitan stroll into an all-out psychedelic quest.
Patrick Conway – Spring Sonnet
A luscious, warped electro track from international man of mythstery Patrick Conway. Taken from his soon-to-be-released “Vertical Society EP” on Exotic Robotics, “Spring Sonnet” is brimming with melancholy and melody. A real beauty when traipsing up and down Templehofer Feld, watching the skylarks and falcons flying free (I’m not Bill Oddie).
I’ve not included a clip for this one. I’m not sure if I’m allowed to, and I don’t want to be a twat. I’m sure you can find it somewhere, maybe on that Google site they have now.
—/// Bonus Bits ///—
Telly: The Umbrella Academy Season 3 (Netflix, 2022)
I know, it’s not high culture, is it? But I fucking love this shit, and, in comparison to my usual fare of dating shows and shit German crime shows, it may as well be La Traviata. I won’t lie, it’s not been my favourite season thus far. Klaus’ stint as a cult leader was far and away my favourite moment, but Season three has delivered some good moments too. I cried like a baby when Elliot Page’s Vanya character became Viktor. In many ways, the ‘coming out moment’ was treated as a non-event, which was stunning. Instantly accepted as the state of things, by the other characters as if to say “he was always Viktor”. Perfect! As with all Netflix nonsense, I’ve binged it and am now hanging off a virtual cliff face for another season.
Telly: Italo Disco, the sparkling sound of the 1980’s (Arte, 2022)
A lovely little German language documentary about the pop revolution Italo-Disco created in Europe and quite specifically Germany. It didn’t dive as deeply into the space disco side as I’d have liked, preferring instead to stay with the big pop hits. Nonetheless, it was a good watch, featuring interviews with La Bionda, Sabrina and DJ Hell, plus amazing footage that made me want to step inside the tellybox.
* Not named after the legendary Berlin rave cave Tresor (Vault in Inglish). It turns out Tresor is also Cornish for Treasure, which is nice
Achtung!!! All clips are cut to 1 minute, mega low bitrate. I do not own the rights to these recordings. If you see my shitty blog as a big risk to your gold medallions, jacuzzis and Ibiza beach houses, then contact me and I'll take it down!