August 2019 Mixtape
Happy August everybody. This month we have an extended mixtape which is filled with two hours of songs that were posted to the blog last month.
You can think of this mix like an old school mixtape that has an A-side and a B-side. The A-side is heavily influenced with music found south of the equator. Afro-Caribbean, Brazilian, and music from parts of west Africa that conjure up sunny summer vibes.
For example, we kick the mixtape off with a track by Brazilian guitarist Fabiano Do Nascimento called “Mantis” which is influenced by the Afro-Brazilian culture that arose after the Portuguese colonization of Brazil. The song transports you to The Amazon rainforest with sounds of birds and insects and traditional Brazilian guitar. It’s a great atmospheric track that will ease you into the mix.
Then we move from Brazil to Mexico with a mariachi version of Elohim’s track “Hallucinating” where we continue the horn theme with Inspired & the Sleep’s new single “Getting Through.”
We round off the “A-side” of the mix with 30 mins of Afro-Caribbean music —- and it all starts with a track called “Brand New Revolution” which we were introduced to on last month’s installment of “What We Are Listening To”. If you haven’t heard of “What We Are Listening To” you should check it out. It’s a monthly column that highlights the musical tastes of aspiring artists — people that have a day job but make music as a side hustle. Specifically people in the media and advertising industry. There’s something about people who work in media. Most of us here at The New LoFi work in media or advertising in some shape or form and we’ve found that a disproportionate amount of people in the industry have a secret passion for music. We’re all really just closet musicians, DJs and producers.
The B-side of the mixtape is all about hip hop and house music. We start off with a mixture of two British hip hop artists. I just love the hip hop coming out of England right now and these two artists are a great example of how the Brits are pushing the genre. The first one is a duo from London who call themselves Subculture Sage. Their latest album is called Niccolo’s Dead but I’ve selected a few tracks from all of their albums including an older song called “1=1=1.” These two guys are definitely influenced by the golden era of hip hop but they experiment with other sounds too.
The Subculture Sage tracks are paired with another British hip hop artist based in Brighton called Ocean Wisdom. He’s like the second coming of Wu Tang clan. Similar to Wu Tang, Ocean Wisdom has got a crew called “The Four Owls.” He’s got sort of a niche background as well. Similar to how Wu Tang were from Staten Island while most of the other New York rappers were coming out of Brooklyn and the Bronx, Ocean is from a seaside town called Brighton on the south coast of England while most of the British rappers are coming out of South London and Croydon and places like that. His sound is also pretty niche like Wu Tang’s was back in the day. It’s weird to think of Wu Tang like this now, but back in the day, they were nerdy. They weren’t just rapping about hoes, money and cars all the time and they took a lot of inspiration from counter culture movements like Kung Fu movies and stuff like that.
So when I see Ocean Wisdom spitting lyrics with an owl mask on and making owl noises in the chorus, It reminds me of how much I loved Wu Tang. Then I heard Ocean Wisdoms track “Ting Dun” where he is joined by Method Man and my theory was complete.
But all of this comparison doesn’t mean he’s not a serious lyricist in his own right. Or he doesn’t have the skills. This guy has a wicked fast tongue. In fact, His song “Walkin’” was noted as having been delivered faster than Eminem’s song: “Rap God.” Ocean managed to fit 4.45 words per second in his track compared to the 4.31 words per second Eminem fit in “Rap God.” If you grew up in the 90s and you listened to Jurassic 5 and Tribe and De La Soul, then you’ll like ocean wisdom. So the B-side if this tape features a little hip hop mix off between these two artists, Ocean Wisdom and Subculture Sage.
The B-side of the mix ends with 20 minutes of house, including a sweet track from Harry Wolfman called “SMBC”. I got to see Wolfman at El Dorado last month and this track was the one that transported me back to his set. That’s followed by an absolute corker by Berlin based producer Michael Greene (aka Fort Romeau) called “Secrets and Lies.” It’s one of those 10 minute tracks that switch it up half way through to sound totally different.
The whole mix ends with a remastered version of Brian Eno’s lunar lament: “Like I Was A Spectator” – a track created decades ago to celebrate the Apollo moon landing and reworked this year to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the trip. It’s pretty far out, and it’s a great way to wrap everything up.
- Fabiano Do Nascimento – Baião (13:03)
- Elohim – Hallucinating (Mariachi Version) (17:24)
- Love Migrate – Pippa’s In The Highlands (20:44)
- Inspired & The Sleep – Getting Through (25:53)
- Fabiano Do Nascimento – Louva-A-Deus “Mantis” (29:37)
- Guts – Brand New Revolution (33:54)
- Billy Cole – Mystic Mood (38:54)
- Me and My Friends – You Read My Mind (42:30)
- Me and My Friends – Another Lifetime (42:22)
- Cymande – Brothers On The Slide (49:02)
- Newen Afrobeat (feat. Seun Kuti & Cheick Tidiane Seck – Opposite People (Fela Kuti) (53:22)
- Subculture Sage – 1=1=1 (01:06:27)
- Ocean Wisdom – Eye Contact (01:10:40)
- Subculture Sage – Happy Like The Sunking (feat. Illaman) (01:15:20)
- Ocean Wisdom – Real Smooth (featuring The Four Owls) (01:19:33)
- Subculture Sage – Chances (01:24:20)
- Ocean Wisdom – Brick or Bat (01:29:08)
- Ocean Wisdom – Walkin (01:32:50)
- Ocean Wisdom – Ting Dun (feat. Method Man) (01:36:36)
- Subculture Sage – Overly Dead (01:40:40)
- Harry Wolfman – SMBC (01:44:45)
- Fort Romeau – Secrets & Lies (01:51:35)
- Brian Eno – Like I Was A Spectator (02:00:51)
BONUS SECRET SONG:
Bruce Humphries – The World’s Largest Collection of the World’s Smallest Versions of the World’s Largest Things theme song (02:05:48)