The gospel according to Rapsody

SERvin’ Up! – w/c October 23, 2017

The Weather Station – The Weather Station (2SER Feature Album)
Torres – Three Futures
Four Tet – New Energy
King Krule – The Ooz
Rapsody – Laila’s Wisdom
Jess Locke – Universe
Courtney Barnett & Kurt Vile – Lotta Sea Lice
The Kid – Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith

St Vincent – Masseduction
Crepes – Channel Four
Chicago Afrobeat Project featuring Tony Allen –What Goes Up


Four Tet’s productions over 20 years worth of work have always been fluid in their absorption of a variety of influences from post-rock to jazz and techno. On recent work his Indian heritage has come into play, where the Bollywood music that soundtracked his youth and drifting feel of raga have lent a different spirit to his sound. On his first full-length album in four years, New Energy, his interest in Indian Classical music remains, but also finds a natural alignment with new age music, that seemingly no longer maligned genre now seen as purposeful waft with atmospheric heft. New Energy is not tritely named for this very connection to pursuit of a spiritual journey, and the dancefloor pulse it also maintains is similarly framed in transcendental pursuit. Boundaries are not common in Four Tet’s music, and on New Energy there’s a skill in taking such formless, open-ended sound into electronic music territory. It works, whether you believe in a higher power or not.

Known for his bewildering use of untraceable samples, Sydney producer Purdy has done a turnaround on his latest opus In Transit in choosing to forgo much of his sampling tricks and techniques for a more traditional band recording. However, there’s nothing so traditional about In Transit – this is supremely evocative, widescreen music with Purdy’s beautiful ear for arrangements working on a minor symphonic level. While circling around the orbit of late 60s and early 70s progressive rock with Purdy’s beloved strains of folk and psychedelia flowing through, the greatest thing Purdy has in his bulging trickbag is the fact that In Transit sounds very much like a record made for right here, right now.

As Rapsody, North Carolina rapper Marianna Evans was the only rapper to guest on Kendrick Lamar’s epic To Pimp A Butterfly album. That’s some high esteem right there, and Lamar has returned the favour on the second Rapsody album, Laila’s Wisdom, along with a heady cast of cameos including Busta Rhymes, Anderson Paak and The Roots’ Black Thought. Evans seem particularly driven by the power inherent in gospel music in the way she tells a story that winds up with her telling her own truth through hard-won insight. With many beats here provided by ever-punchy producer 9th Wonder (Jay-Z, Erykah Badu, Kendrick Lamar), Laila’s Wisdom is tough and soulful – one hand is healing, the other is clenched defiantly in a fist.

Also, more new tunes including the first posthumous release from the dearly departed Sharon Jones with her band the Dap-Kings as well as the likes of L-Fresh The Lion, Madlib, Jess Cornelius, Shoeb Ahmad, Fonke Knomaads, Totally Mild, Raven, Sampa The Great and Floating Points.

Enjoy it all on 2SER,


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