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Marbin "Fernweh"

The progressive jazz fusion group Marbin are taking a more conventional approach on their forthcoming album Fernweh.

For this album, their 12th, the group has stripped down to a trio consisting of Dani Rabin (guitar), Danny Markovitch (saxophone), and Jon Nadel (bass), and have recorded a collection standards.

The album takes it title from the German for wanderlust, and according to Rabin "It was important to us to arrange and play the music in a way that is faithful to the original spirit of the songs, and at the same time push the boundaries of how this music was played.”

You can help Marbin celebrate the release of their album at Reggie's Banana's Comedy Shack (2105 South State St) with Lord Waffle on July 2nd.

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shalloboi "Untangled"

shalloboi recently released a new album called untangled. This is the latest offering from the prolific and immensely talented Tyler Ritter. This collection was recorded by Ritter between April 2019 and June 2020, and finds Ritter exploring the furtherest corners of ambient and drone music.

However, through the album he layers near pop melodies on top of the experimental sounds to create a wonderful sonic hybrid.

Below is the video for the album's lead single, "200 mph dream like state".

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Tomu "富む"

Ambient music composer Tomu has released visuals for "富む" from his debut album, Lonesome Valley, which is due out tomorrow, June 25th, via American Dreams.

The video is beautifully directed by Clay Mills, and follows Tomu and hit baseball on a dramatic adventure.

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Cookie Tongue bequeath a "Soggy Miracle"

I can't claim to know why Cookie Tongue are called Cookie Tongue. But in my imagination they took it from the title to an ancient fable, or a long lost Grimms' Fairy Tale, about a child granted three wishes with her first wish being for her tongue to be turned into a cookie because how great would that be. Except her wish backfires horribly because having a cookie in your mouth that you can’t swallow would be torture. Needless to say the girl nearly goes mad and ends up biting off her own tongue off to end the torment. So she can't communicate her next wish (“I’d like to have my old tongue back”) which is a pretty harsh way to learn a basic lesson like “be careful what you wish for.”

This is no doubt completely off base but much like a Grimms' fairy tales the Brooklyn-based combo are made up of equal parts playful/fanciful and twisted/demented. And it’s not an easy balancing act to pull off which is why not many people write good fairy tales and not many people are in Cookie Tongue. Another parallel is that Cookie Tongue clearly appeals to children and adults alike, a fact I can verify first-hand having just seen them perform live on the opening date of their upcoming (now ongoing tour) summer tour—SEE HERE for dates—because the adults at the show were rapt and the kids were losing their minds they were so into it.

The show was held outdoors on a perfect equinox evening with plenty of little rug rats running amok as their parents drank beer and cocktails no doubt happy to be given a break thanks to the Cookie Tonguers and their exquisitely ramshackle songs playing on a Ren Faire style stage decked out with flowers and mannequins and an array of glockenspiels and puppets and Casio keyboards and other implements of their trade. Rest assured Cookie Tongue know how to put the “freak” in freak folk with an extra helping of dollop of freak on top while providing suitable entertainment for the whole family.

A Cookie Tongue performance feels like if the roustabouts tied up the clowns and took over the circus; and then went on an afternoon-long drinking binge and raided the wardrobe/makeup cabinet and put on a crazy pastiche of stuff; and then went on stage and performed a surprisingly coherent set of calliope-inspired music with bizarrely poetic lyrics sung by a male-female combo in warbling, breathy tones that you're not sure if it's funny or disturbing or just different. But really that’s too easy an explanation, better to just go listen to their music like their last full length, Dream Seed Ceremony (2020), on which Omer Gal and Jacquelyn Marie Shannon inhabit a rogue’s gallery of vocal personas. So you can see why these two would be into puppetry with all the voices they clearly have trapped inside.

On their new EP from earlier this month, Soggy Miracle, Cookie Tongue continue to refine their quaint yet ornate junk store aesthetic forming a bed a sonic fertilizer for the lyrics and their sinuous twisty trains of thought and mantra-like repetitions--like the one sung from the perspective of a ten-year-old child tempted to eat his own baby teeth out of a cereal bowl with milk on them along with his friend but they don't know if they'll be soggy or crunchy.

Soggy Miracle closes with “Orange Sky” which is centered around a rousing yet doom-laden melody that'll make you wanna raise your mug in the air and toast the impending end--a song about taking “the back road out of here / away from the orange sky” which certainly sounds more than a little apocalyptic--especially at the end when the song turns into a swirling miasma of breathy vocalizing and megaphone man ranting and rat-a-tat snare drumming before concluding with a dramatic almost a cappella epigram or epitaph take your pick. (Jason Lee)

n.b. Credit must be given to Michele With One 'L' whose weekly Tuesday afternoon WFMU radio show called "Feelings" first turned this writer on to Cookie Tongue and to several other artists featured on this blog.

 

 

 





ZRL "Telling the Difference Between Us"

ZRL have released the second single and closing track, "Telling the Difference Between Us", from their forthcoming album, Our Savings, which is due out via American Dreams on July 30th.

This is the work of Zachary Good, Ryan Packard, and Lia Kohl.

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