You've got a passion for Brazilian music but you live in Europe. How do you usually stumble upon undiscovered Brazilian stuff there?
When I moved to Portugal back in 2006, I was improving my passion for the rich sounds of my country. I wasn't into MPB (Brazilian Popular Music), but rather electronic music like micro house of the late 90's/early 2000's. In Portugal, I felt that peculiar melancholy one feels when far from home, so I decided to dive into Brazilian music in order to ease that feeling, but it just got worse, haha. People from Portugal love everything from Brazil, especially its music. So it's not hard to find new stuff from Brazil here. You can also find rare CD's and vinyls in any flea market you go. Anyway, I am always attentive to new artists, releases and news from many record labels such as Mr. Bongo or Far Out Recordings, and Dj's like Gilles Peterson.
How's the current music scene in Brazil and Portugal? Anything special you want to recommend Viva listeners?
I think we're through a very poor musical moment worldwide—Brazil and Portugal are no exceptions. All that brightness from 50's, 60's, 70's (which introduced us to musical and artistic movements such as Bossa Nova, Clube da Esquina and Tropicalia) just got lost in time. In Brazil there is a new movement (not so new, it's from the early 2000's but now it's trendy) called Tecnobrega: the style mixes electronic music with traditional popular genres (carimbó, lundu, calypso etc). Here in Portugal there is a new generation of Fado singers trying to refresh the scene. Both examples are not my kind of stuff, but I have to say they have their merit.
Given the climate of the country, when I usually think of Brazilian music I think of summer. Do you have any Brazilian songs that sound especially enjoyable in the winter?
I'm used to saying Bossa Nova is for sunny days. For winter time, I think Clube da Esquina is perfect. It's beautifully nostalgic, sometimes melancholic, yet bright. Milton Nascimento was one of the leaders of Clube da Esquina and his music has extremely great arrangements. Elis Regina once said: 'If God had a voice, he would sing like Milton Nascimento". I can suggest a short nostalgic playlist:
Milton Nascimento - Encontros e Despedidas
Lô Borges - O Caçador
Toninho Horta - Serenade
Beto Guedes - Paisagem da Janela
What do you hope to accomplish via your show?
I hope I can show the real essence of Brazilian music (and also world music inspired by the sounds and artists from Brazil) to Viva's listeners. Not everybody has been introduced to MPB yet, but I'm pretty sure nobody stays indifferent when listening to it. It's magical. I think there's still some preconceived ideas that must be left behind. Brazil is producing some shit stuff recently. Despite that, there's still good music being alternatively produced but it's not commercialized by the big media. Change those ideas and make people smile is my main objective.
What drew you to Viva?
I am a longtime fan of Viva Radio. I'm used to spending hours listening to it, discovering some nice old and new music I've never heard before. I'm not only into Brazilian music, I also DJ electronic (disco, balearic, house, leftfield, re-edits) and there are/were great contributors that became references to me: Sebastien Tellier, CFCF (his show was my favorite), JAZ (awesome selector), Eamon Harkin, Daniel Roversi etc. It is such an honor being part of the team.
Do you think your personal music taste mirrors what you play on Onda Nova?
Yes, I think so. Although I have prioritized MPB, I am a very eclectic person and it is evident in my DJ sets. Last saturday, for example, I played Mutantes, Christy Essien Igbokwe, Fingers Inc., Arthur Russell, Goblin and Fever Ray.
Anything else you want readers to know?
Well, I DJ twice a month in the best club of Porto. It is called Plano B, so, fans of MPB (and more) can come and have some fun. I have a soundcloud for my Brazilian mixtapes and a tumblr for rare brazilian music videos. Also this is my personal tumblr.
Onda Nova airs at 1 p.m. every Wednesday, only on Viva Radio
This here Lee Noble album (that came out in June but slipped under my radar) is no exception. It sounds like Noble recorded this thing in a dorm room in a cathedral in a barren dystopia, matryoshka style. Casios unwind next to church organs, sometimes harmonious but more often not. Noble tends to establish a nice melody and then plunge it into atonality—it legit made my stomach nosedive with the melody, rollercoaster style, the first time I heard it, which is medically unsettling but aurally impressive. If you like the anxiously-rambling drone of Set Fire to Flames, the purty ambient washes of Grouper, or you just can't get ahold of your dealer, give Ruiner a spin.
Stream the entire album on Spotify and if you like what you hear, buy it here.
Long-time listeners may remember our interview with living legend Bruno Wizard way back in 2008. For those who don't and haven't heard of the man before: Wizard was the frontman of 70's punk groups such as the Homosexuals and the Rejects, a champion of the British DIY scene, and a man that shared the stage with groups like Wire and the Damned.
Fans of early British punk or tenacious old guys will find plenty to love. New York residents can get tickets here.
This nonet (!!) plays a perverted style of rock'n'roll/doo wop that's equally indebted to Scott Walker, The Gun Club, and any part of a Tarantino film with a long take of a character walking down a street (e.g. any song that sounds like this).
Whereas the forefathers of soul titled songs like "Everybody Wants to go to Heaven (But Nobody Wants To Die)," Jail Weddings have opted for "(Do You Ever Get Tired of) Keeping the Faith?"; in a move that would make Andrew W.K. shed tears of beer, the band closes their album with a trifecta of songs respectively titled "Party Girl," "Dead Celebrity Party," and "Don't Invite Me to Your Party."
Stream their new LP Meltdown: A Declaration of Unpopular Emotion in its entirety below, and if you like what you hear, pick up the cassette via the always phenomenal Burger Records. In fact, buy two! These guys have nine members to feed.
A friendly hello, Ohio visitors! Guided By Voices! Drew Carey!
That's really all I know about Ohio. Fortunately for me, the 13th anniversary of the Midpoint Music Festival is happening this weekend, and it's a festival proving that there's more to Ohio than just guys drinking beer and saying things into microphones.
There's going to be bands from all over North America (and let's face it, most of them are going to be drinking beer and saying things in to microphones), and the lineup is slammin'! You've got Potty Mouth!
Metz! Kurt "Yes, That's My Real Name" Vile! Dent May! Dead Gaze (careful saying that one out loud)! WYNW alumni Bleached! Saturday Looks Good to Me!
On top of that, the Breeders, one of thee best bands of the 90's will be performing Last Splash in its entirety. On top of THAT, we're giving away tickets to it! Follow us on Twitter for a chance to win those.
Midpoint takes place this weekend, Sept. 26-28. More info about the fest, including the full line up, is available here>.
This week's WYNW comes straight from Brooklyn via Carrie Ashley Hill. Hill recently enlisted Barb Morrison (producer of Blondie/Rufus Wainwright) and Jeff Berrall and Sam Hopkins of Caveman to craft a four song EP, and the result is some classic Americana that channels the likes of Neko Case and Stevie Nicks. Like Nicks, Hill's arrangements walk the line between dirgy and dreamy, creating some fitting sounds for the fall season just around the corner.
Stream "Never Say Never" below, and if you like what you hear, stream the rest of the EP here:
Straight from Bologna, Italy comes our newest contributor, the 20 year old Matteo Ciambella. Ciambella's a literature major and it shines through on his show, with each episode of Yokopoko crafting an aural adventure (the rock and roll themed "Teenager's Night Out," the yacht-rock heaby "Fields of Tennis"). We chatted with him via e-mail to find out more:
Matteo! What exactly is Yokopoko?
In Italian, "Yokopoco" is some sort of a pun about a mediocre soccer player from Japan. But "Yokopoco" was also the name of an EP single that my uncle released in 1984 under the name of Robin Echo. It was quite a fiasco back then, but some time ago I was in a record store scrolling through a section called "Rare Italo Disco" and there it was. I'm hoping to play the song on the show as soon as I get a hold of a decent mp3 version.
How's the current music scene in Italy treating you?
I'm not very fond of the Italian music scene right now. We've got lame rappers, some lame pop singers busted out of some TV show, and average indie rock bands. Of course there are some exceptions, but if I had to suggest anything, I'd say go for the classic stuff. Lucio Battisti, Area, PFM, Franco Battiato, Le Orme. Some of these are well-known, but there's a lot of italian music from the 70's and 80's that's ended up in some dark place.
As far as my personal taste, on the show you can listen to the music I like. It's mostly stuff that I listen to every day, but I also do some research when I need songs that go well in a particular playlist. I love anything that's done with a bit of soul, be it in the form of anger or be it tenderness. So I'm a big, big fan of Iggy Pop, but I also like the delicacy of French and Brazilian singers throughout the 40's and 60's. Recently Iggy has been covering Serge Gainsbourg and this kind of stuff, so that really closes the circle.
How did you come across Viva? What do you hope to achieve with your show?
I came to know about Viva about two or three years ago, thanks to my brother Marco. He walked into my room and said I had to check this radio out. At first I was a bit suspicious, 'cause he always does that. He walks into my room, sits on the pillow on my bed- something that I just can't stand - and takes over the computer with some excuse. But then we tuned in and James Brown was playing on 'Fauves in Abyssinia'. "What a great name for a radio show!", I thought. Then we listened to some other stuff and shortly after I was just thinking, "What a great radio!"
I try to convey a different setting with each episode. It can be a whole scene or just a hint to an atmosphere, like the episode "Fields of Tennis" depicting the way I imagine tennis and pool clubs to be like in the 70's. But sometimes it's just a raw feeling, like the playlist scheduled for next Thursday ("New Jean Jacket"), all about walking down the street with a bold look on your face.
What's next for your show
In the next weeks I'll be uploading a playlist dedicated to Buzz Aldrin and another one called Espionage. The latter contains some wonderful, long jazzy pieces, all with a very mysterious, shady aura to them. My imminent future is also much of a mystery to me right now. So I guess the two go well together!
Catch Matteo's Yokopoko show every Thursday from 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. on Viva Radio.
The film is screening at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, August 6, with a Viva-curated afterparty immediately following.
Our Christiane F screening is just one part of a larger Bowie series that Lincoln Center is undertaking—check out the entire schedule here.
For those unfamiliar with the band, the Samps are 75% Soul Train and 25% the Postal Service, with Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti-member Cole MGN trading beats with Gloriette owner Jason Darrah via the USPS. Their sole release was a 2010 EP of chopped-and-screwed disco, at which point they went silent until they found this album in their toilet. So let's enjoy these two songs, filled to the brim with sexy funk samples and keys—as it might be awhile longer 'til we hear anything else from them.
Stream A-side "Plans" below:
Condominium's name alone evokes images of suburban lethargy, and their new 7" "Carl" reinforces that. Yes, Condo have eschewed the "Punk's Dead, You're Next" rhetoric of yesteryear for a song simply called "Carl," presenting a recording of a band completely run down and spent. The guitarist is playing the least melodic two-note guitar lead he can think of, presumably with his eyes closed and his feet propped on an ottoman while the vocalist is on his 30th take of the song, completely over whether or not his vocals make it into the microphone. It's a mid-tempo headbanger and if it's the way I described it sounds absolutely miserable, well, yeah, it kind of is. But know the A-side contains two fast-rockin' songs!
Buy it here!