Bandcamp is continuing its promotion of Bandcamp Friday through the rest of 2020. If you aren’t aware, on the first Friday of every month, Bandcamp does not charge their usual collection of revenue for digital sales (except for digital subscriptions). In general, this means an extra 15% goes to artists or labels on these days. If the Bandcamp model is interesting and useful to you, this is a fun day to interact with artists who utilize it & share direct support with those musical artists.
These were the digital releases I bought on Bandcamp Friday in September 2020.
Nick Keeling – “A Slow Dance With Someone Who Is Leaving You” ~ A family member had told me about Nick Keeling’s music & show organizing in Ohio. This was a few years ago, and I noticed that Keeling and I had mutual social media contacts who booked DIY shows and did experimental / interesting music. This Bandcamp release really stuck with me. I find something warming about the loop practice employed here & the way it invokes affecting feelings. The music rises & falls but always presses on. Each listen exposes this tape’s unique creation and layers of the listener’s thoughts.
St. Lorelei – “Beast” ~ Available for pre-order, St. Lorelei shared a few singles from their upcoming album ‘Beast’ prior to the October 2020 release. This New Orleans band, fronted by Jo Morris, has spent time perfecting the body of songs for their new album. Having seen Morris perform in Saint Louis years ago & picked up a debut EP “Ghost Queen” under her name, I’m excited to hear this new project & the vocal and thematic range it might present. God is in the TV gave an exclusive premiere of the track ‘Outside the Green’.
Rosie Tucker – “Ambrosia” ~ Released about a year ago, this track was welcome relief to fans longing to hear Rosie Tucker’s voice and musical ideas. Though it hadn’t been that long since their last full album, this single release gave another taste of the metamorphosis going on in the studio. A lyric video from New Professor’s YouTube channel further hints at the culinary aspect displayed in this single’s cover image.
Rosie Tucker – “Brand New Beast” ~ Another short track that makes the most of every second thanks to Rosie Tucker, Wolfy, and crew using their creative powers. I vaguely recall hearing that this track has some lyrical underpinnings from years ago, and it also seems to tie in the three-eyed frog on Rosie Tucker merch and social media. What does it all mean?!?
Big Step – “Focus” ~ I think I saw Big Step play for the first time about a year ago at Foam in Saint Louis and had a really good conversation afterwards. Since Foam is permanently closed and many venues in the city are temporarily closed, I am thankful to be able to relive some of the experience of Big Step’s creativity and supportive ethos via a Bandcamp release. As much a personal stance as it is an encouraging call to join in collective support, this track moves between major and minor chords to acknowledge that oppressive situations won’t hold us down forever. We will get through these hard times if we focus and join in each others’ struggles.
Bad Moves – “Untenable” ~ This far into the COVID-19 lock down, I was really energized by a work that reflects on systemic oppression and our personal stresses and responds with such heart. The music is athletic, and the lyrics (which include a brief riff on “The Ballad of John and Yoko”) are incisive about topics like pay inequality and the attention drain of social media engagement in a way that lodges phrases in your mind. “You think that poverty’s a role play, baby?” is one that sticks out to me. Give it multiple listens!
Bad Time Records – “Ska Against Racism” ~ I got put onto this album because I chipped into a Kickstarter project of one my favorite bands of younger years, Five Iron Frenzy. Like any fans of a music genre, enthusiasts of the current wave of ska benefit from continuing to learn about the roots of the genre. Gladly, this compilation does service to that history and makes me feel like these ska kids are alright (okay, there are mostly adults on this comp). Anyway, I think rudies should always be against racism & this is a really good listen going into the fall election season in the USA & all the vitriol it brings.
Various Artists – “Good Music to Avert the Collapse of American Democracy” ~ This compilation was only available for a limited time as a fundraiser. There are some hits and misses, but overall, it was worth it to me to kick in some money to assist with voter’s rights via Fair Fight. I was excited to see tracks from Bhi Bhiman, Jay Som, and several others. This is an overview of the album from AllMusic.com.
That wraps up my purchases for this month. Stay safe & share some love for musicians!