Sorting Through Browser Tabs: Danny Brown/JPEGMAFIA, Ky, Swans

Good morning,

Midweek. Spring is officially here. I've opened the windows. 

First thing I checked out today was the title track of the upcoming new collaboration between Danny Brown and JPEGMAFIA, Scaring The Hoes

The distinct and character-rich voices of each artist aside, the snare beat sounds like it was mic'd in a crawlspace, scratchy tenor sax scribbles across the track like a kindergartner enthusiastically dragging a marker across paper with a tight fist. Add a simple bass groove and claps. 

I love it. 

When thinking about minimalism in terms of production, the tinniness and sonic anemia of trap/drill beats and the ubiquity that this sound has had over the last decade or more across a multitude of artists hasn't had consistent appeal for me. That said, I get it: soundtracking a club, the bass drops are effective and the vibe is the draw. 

But, "Scaring The Hoes" is minimalism done well. Looking forward to this album.


The Laurie Anderson allegiant may find Ky appealing. 

An established figure in Montreal's underground, Ky Brooks's role as Lungbutter's vocalist a notable entry in their memoir, this subtracted-last-name solo venture has produced Power Is The Pharmacy, which will circulate via Constellation Records on 5/12/23. "Dragons" is the album's newest single. 

"This is a song… about… loving… the ocean…"

The rhythm is anchored well enough to maintain enough of a steady (and appropriately) seasick sway that the scattered percussion doesn't throw the track off-kilter. Multiple synthesized drones and lengths of distortion run throughout the track's 7+ minutes as Ky deviates from spoken verse to melodic stanzas. A saxophone howls, its aural distance offering confirmation of space. 

"Dragons" was on repeat today. 


From the desk of Rarely Unable:





Ky is the new ‘solo’ project of Ky Brooks, best known as vocalist and lyricist of noise-punk trio Lungbutter and a slew of other Montréal-based out-music projects, including 8-person queer punk collective Femmaggots and experimental/improv trio Nag. Ky is a long-standing and shining figure of Montréal’s music underground: they co-founded essential Montréal DIY space La Plante a decade ago, and have since become a recording a front-of-house sound engineer about town and on the road with acts like Big|Brave. Power Is The Pharmacy is their debut album under the Ky moniker.

Power Is The Pharmacy is an album of cerebral and visceral outsider artpunk “mainly about grief, death, the fear of loss, losing dreams, losing youth, people, public space, ultimately oneself”—an emotionally electrifying, genre-spanning collection of songs fuelled by Ky’s piercing poetry, both spoken and sung, that delivers an acute blend of incisive socio-political observation and spiritual sadness, swirling through vortices of disenchantment and re-enchantment.


"Paradise Is Mine" is the new single from Swans' upcoming sixteenth album, The Beggar, scheduled to release via Mute/Young Gods on June 23rd, 2023. 

Following 2019's leaving meaning., an album that was meant to rep a new phase of Swans' music, (but kind of didn't), "Paradise Is Mine" continues with what has become, since reviving the band in 2010, a reliable and well-trodden compositional style, Michael Gira successfully finding strong melodic ways to expand upon his penchant for subtly mutating loops. This latest iteration of the 21st century Swans, (Kristof Hahn, Larry Mullins, Dana Schechter, Christopher Pravdica, Phil Puleo, and Ben Frost), ably constructs tension through repetition, which does eventually culminate in heightened percussive payoff. 

The track is absolutely engaging, but doesn't offer much of an indication that The Beggar will do anything more than confirm that Swans has settled into its musical niche. 


Letters From A Tapehead


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