From the Heart: Orquesta Akokán

Here’s to another big week of music on 2SER! In the new music review, we compile some of the best from around the world for your enjoyment so click play on the Spotify playlist, take a read and discover some new favourite albums.

SERvin’ Up! – w/c March 26, 2018

Caroline Says – No Fool Like An Old Fool
Orquesta Akokán – Orquesta Akokán
Jorge Elbrecht – Here Lies
Courtney Marie Andrews – May Your Kindness Remain
Nick Batterham – Golden Boy
Sunflower Bean – Twentytwo in Blue
Cosmic Child – Blue
Michael Seyer – Bad Bonez
Darren Sylvester – Touch a Tombstone

Better known as a funk and soul label, and custodians to the catalogues of late greats Sharon Jones and Charles Bradley, Daptone Records goes Latin and record their very first Spanish language album. The Daptone team, alongside Cuban vocalist Jose “Pepito” Gomez, producer Jacob Plasse and arranger Mike Eckroth, have put together a new 16-piece band called Orquesta Akokán. Akokán is a Yoruba word used in Cuba meaning “from the heart”, and also an apt description of the way some of these ferocious musicians out Cuba and New York play. On their debut self titled record, we hear a throwback to the mambo sounds of 1950s Cuba and Benny Moré, but with a distinct soul touchpoint. Recorded at the legendary Estudios Areito in Havana, this album gives us nothing short of seductive rhythms, explosions of brass and saxophones, tightly blended vocal harmonies and gorgeous, cascading melodies to sway to.

Caroline Says is one of those artists who I’m surprised doesn’t have a larger following. The woman behind this project is Caroline Sallee and her second album, No Fool Like An Old Fool, is folk tinged pop with atmospheric guitars, pastel harmonies and swooning rhythms. Sallee’s inspiration is a mixed bag, drawing from her experience of relocating from Alabama to Austin, films like Panic in Needle Park and Badlands, and Charles Starkweather, a 1950’s spree killer!

Lastly, we have Here Lies, the debut solo album from producer and multi-instrumentalist Jorge Elbrecht. Bringing together a collection of songs from various projects, the result is a widescreen album that veers from pulsating, new-wave inspired electronica to washed out and acoustic driven guitar pop, to noise. Elbrecht is a frequent collaborator with Ariel Pink and boasts production credits with Japanese Breakfast, No Joy and Chairlift.

Plus new singles from Okkervil River, 77:78 and Plutonic Labs, newcomer El Tee, Pascale Barbare, Demon Days, and the return of Laura Jean and Gabriella Cohen.

Enjoy it all on 2SER,

Monday 26th of March, 2018

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