Slow Focus

In an effort to expand my horizons I have begun looking at other avenues to get ideas for music to listen to. Friends will always have their opinions and streaming services can sometimes do okay but regardless of what seed you start with, you’ll hear Kings Of Leon at some point in the mix. Online music forums seem to be a circle jerk of the latest Top 40 / Hip Hop drivel and the one kid that suggests a band with an audience of one (two at the maximum). I’ve stumbled upon a great web series put out by the folks at Amoeba Records called What’s In My Bag? Touted as ….[An] award-winning series featuring artists and tastemakers sharing what they found shopping at Amoeba.”

To be honest, I am unsure if the artists that go around the store with a shopping bag actually use their own money to pay for the records or if they are given gratis as an appearance fee. No matter, the series has different people from all different genres and time periods. In one episode you can watch Buzz Osbourne of The Melvins talk about his love of John Huston films and listen to Saul Williams discuss why Thelonious Monk was a genius and Miles Davis wasn’t.

It was through finding What’s In My Bag?  I began to do a little digging myself, looking for artists that I enjoy listening to in order to find out what they enjoy listening to. One of the artists that I had really been getting into as of recent was Manuel Gagneux of Zeal & Ardor. He described them as “…not metal, not rock, but it’s definitely kicking your ass…it’s metal in it’s own way, that doesn’t really make sense but as soon as you listen to it, it does.”

He was right. I didn’t know what to expect. I was waiting to hear some harsh guitars and screaming vocals. Nope. Instrumental from start to finish and the tracks blend seamlessly from one to the other. Manuel was right, it is harsh but in its own way. It’s a great album to listen to or just throw on in the background as the music has a forward momentum. When listening to it with headphones you can really feel the different textures of the music and how it can move from the right ear to the left and then back again.

2.Year Of The Dog4:38
3.The Red Wing7:48
5.Prince's Prize4:22
7.Hidden Xs10:13