Release Roundup: July 2022
Written by Vocalo Radio on August 12, 2022
Pictured above: Steve Lacy’s album cover for July release ‘Gemini Rights.’
Here’s what Team Vocalo was spinning last month…
Last month gave the phrase “hotter than July” a whole new meaning. Thankfully we had new music from artists like Steve Lacy, Beyoncé and DOMi & JD BECK to chill us out. We’ve once again compiled our favorite releases of last month so you can catch up on the hits you might have missed…
Ron Trent, What Do the Stars Say to You
New LP What Do the Stars Say to You (Night Time Stories) is a soulful offering by Chicago DJ and producer Ron Trent. A nod to his Africa High-Fi party, he drops the tempo and incorporates plenty of live instrumentation, leaving us with more of a jazzy/Afro/World feel. The LP features guest musicians Khruangbin, Gigi Masin and Jean-Luc Ponty, plus Ivan Conti and Alex Malheriros from Azymuth, and was mastered by François Kevorkian. Standout single is “Flos Potentia (Sugar, Cotton, Tobacco),” featuring Khruangbin, the B-side to the LP’s first single “WARM” [which is in rotation on our airwaves].
– Jesse De La Peña
DOMi & JD BECK, NOT TiGHT
I first found out about this duo from a clip of DOMi performing a cover of Kendrick Lamar’s “For Free” on YouTube. Since seeing that, and a few videos of the pair performing together, I’ve been excited to hear what their first album would sound like and NOT TiGHT is exactly what I was hoping for. This album is a hyperactive fusion of drum and bass with elements of jazz, R&B, electronica and much more. The duo’s lightning fast combination of keyboard and drums creates a surprisingly mellow ambience for being as hectic as it is. Just like a rollercoaster, everything goes by so fast but it’s just fun to be on the ride. This does mean some parts tend to blend together, but the addition of guests like Herbie Hancock, Thundercat and Snoop Dogg give many songs a much-needed signature. Listen if you enjoy artists like Flying Lotus, Hakushi Hasegawa and Ronald Shannon Jackson.
– George Chiligiris
Moor Mother, Jazz Codes
Moor Mother’s newest release Jazz Codes is abstractly beautiful. Although it’s musician, poet and activist Camae Ayewa’s second release in the past year, the record does not come across as strained or stale. In fact, Jazz Codes is quite the opposite. While taking influences from jazz, rap and blues, Ayewa’s creation leans toward the experimental. While the album is a genre-bending, experimental sonic masterpiece, Jazz Codes is also societal commentary. The record takes listeners through a journey of Black expression and musical forms. The stereotypical genre sounds gracefully deconstructs into anxious fragments as a commentary on society’s deconstruction and undermining of Black expression. However, it is uniquely beautiful and unforgettable, as the cure to this problem is remembrance and honor: exactly what Jazz Codes is doing for these genres.
– Makenzie Creden
Steve Lacy, Gemini Rights
If you’re on TikTok, I’m sure you’ve heard snippets of this album whether you’ve actually gone out of your way to listen to it or not (in particular, “Bad Habit” and “Sunshine,” featuring Foushée [which is in heavy rotation here at Vocalo], have taken over my For You Page lately). If you’ve been looking for a sign to actually give the whole album a spin, this is it. Lacy said Gemini Rights was written after he broke up with his boyfriend and the whole album is filled with heartbreak woes and past regrets — but with a signature Steve Lacy guitar-filled bounce you can’t help but dance along to. “Sunshine” is definitely my favorite… I can’t get, “Saying ‘my ex’ like my name ain’t Steve” out of my head.
– Morgan Ciocca
Introduction written by George Chiligiris
Edited for length and clarity by Morgan Ciocca
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