Review: Supremely laid back funksters Khruangbin are having a busy close to the year - not only have they put together a fine entry into the iconic Late Night Tales series, due in December, but now they've served up a sizzling festive 7". 'Christmas Time Is Here' is a serene dn starry eyed as usual from this Texan outfit, with glassy eyed chords and sweet, subtly funky bass. There are vocal coos on the a-side to add depth and warmth, and on the flip a dub is a little more paired back. Both tunes fill you with seasonal cheer and then some.
Review: While most of us will (sadly) not be going anywhere this holiday season, we can still get a musical taster of what it would be like Chilling at Christmas in the St Petersburg studio of modern funk apostles the Vicious Seeds. Their festive offering is a drowsy, deep, slow and laidback affair - the kind of jazzy instrumental soul and funk that would probably go well with a few mince pies and a needlessly large glass of port. A-side 'Meeting at Flea Market' is particularly lovely, with trombone and trumpet-heavy riffs and leisurely jazz guitar solos making themselves comfortable atop crunchy, deep (filled) funk drums. 'Shades of Pale', meanwhile, is even deeper, warmer and more bass-heavy, with some of the laziest and jazziest electric guitar solos we've ever heard. Delicious!
Review: There must be a place in everyone's heart for passion projects. In art and music these endeavours often push boundaries we thought immovable, throw curveballs in directions we didn't realise existed and prove that just because we don't initially see something doesn't mean it isn't there, or isn't worth exploring. Los Angeles' Damaged Bug have outdone themselves on those terms here. 'Bug On Yonkers' is a suitably strange ode to the inimitable Michael Yonkers, taking his 'Goodbye Sunball' record and reworking it in a way the he'd appreciate. Known for oddball pop-folk-jazz-rock mutations, here we're given that but with fresh ears on task. 'Sold America' is a cacophonous, brass-fuelled punkish hoedown. 'In My Heart' is a tear-inducing, all is lost slice of sombre yet serene balladry, strings apparently crying over the record itself. 'I Tried' brings the psychedelic funk in generous, drummy helpings.
Review: If you've ever examined King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard's back catalogue, the fact they've only been active as a band for eight years might surprise. Releasing an average of two full length records every 12 months since 2012, the fact each of those LPs showcases different, new and often daring sides to the outfit is probably even more reasons to stand up and take notice.
Fittingly, KG, which was first unveiled in November 2020 and now sees a special edition land on the proverbial plate, is laden with surprises - it really just depends with which side of the Gizzard you're already familiar with. 'Automation' sees the Australian group call on their heavy metal and progressive rock roots. 'K.G.L.W.' sounds like it might steal you away to a woodland lute performance. 'Honey' is a garage-y slice of primo rock 'n' folk. 'Intrasport' is like (wait for it) Eastern-hued synth pop.