Zizi Raimondi, “Bad Body Disco”
This enigmatic singer/synth whiz/nostalgia artist makes bedroom-beat excursions that’d come off as kitsch if she weren’t so keenly committed. As heard on a handful of recent Bandcamp releases, Raimondi applies layers of vocals over a wide swath of ’80s-inspired Casiotone minimalism, from digi-dub to industrial goth to this slinky slice of roller-rink electro.
Head Band, “Blown Away”
With this upstart outburst, the four shaggy dudes of Head Band pack a lifetime of AOR awareness into 2:50. “Blown Away” contains the DNA of all the long-past but ever-righteous choogle-rock demigods—the Faces, Steppenwolf, Thin Lizzy, Creedence—recorded with a meticulous reverence for the tactile ambiance of analog tape.
The Trashies, “The Octagon”
The Trashies have always been playful provocateurs, but their new album veers from drug-damaged garage rock into straight-up Beefheart-esque dysmorphia. This title track is its driving force—like the liquid magma inside planet Earth, be glad that it exists; but don’t get too close unless you’re OK with singeing off your eyebrows.
Polyrhythmics, “Spider Wolf”
As heard on Caldera, their brand-new fourth album, Polyrhythmics have transcended their Afrobeat origins and expanded deep into the cosmos, exploring mysterious velvety realms of beat-drunk soul jazz. The longer the massive, multiculti collective exists, the more excellent it gets.
Bassist/keyboardist Rob Castro, formerly of Seattle hip-hop crew Grayskul, partnered with a San Antonio beatmaker Erik “Progeny” Frias for this collection of 12 moody, dusky instrumentals—compact sonic cinema embellished with piano, guitar, strings, horns and digital effects. We might call this stuff trip-hop; they call it #sadbangers.