Playlist: January 15, 2010

Click here for the full KZSU playlist for Jan. 15, 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

Very odd feeling being on at this time.  I’ve done 6 a.m. before but not a post-sunrise show.  And being on on Friday again took some adjustment (it feels like Tuesday!)

For the Winter quarter (through April 8), I’ll be following DJ Fo‘s show, “No Cover, No Minimum,” which spins blues, world music, and especially jazz.  My goal is to make a smooth transition between the two, since our shows do overlap.  That didn’t quite work out this time, as noted below, but in the future, it should make for a good 4-hour block combined.


* Jim Black/Alas No Axis — “Inkionos” — Houseplant (Winter & Winter, 2009) … As noted here, this is a catchy, relaxed little groove of a track, the one I’ve been thinking of as the hit single, so to speak.  Made for a nice transition from Fo’s show (which ended with a short track from that terrific White Rocket CD).  (Btw, more on Alas No Axis here.)  This track is what started the show, followed by:

* Tony Passarell 5tet — “Points Out” — The Path (self-released, 2008) … A quintet from Sacramento, influenced by the more progressive side of the giants (Monk, Coltrane, Dolphy, etc.)  This track went a bit further out than expected, though: It’s a thoughtful and fairly slow exercise led by shards of piano chords. Great track, actually, but it too quickly shifted the show into a quieter mode.

* Monroe Golden — “Montevallo” — Alabama Places (Innova, 2009)It’s microtonal, and it’s weird.  Sometimes microtonal music can sound pretty darned normal (Harry Partch comes to mind, especially that snippet of “Modesto” that Dr. Demento would use for the Funny 5 countdown).  And sometimes it can sound spooky and motion-sickness-inducing, as on this album. It’s a forest of keyboard sounds in microtonal mode; this track, in particular, uses a sound somewhere between an oboe and a harpsichord, for a particularly odd feeling. Atmospheric and eerie.

* Nellie McKay — “Do Do Do” — Normal as Blueberry Pie: A Tribute to Doris Day … And it’s just that, a package of Doris Day songs sung by McKay in her pretty, airy voice.  Lots of old-timey jazz/pop touches, and lots of photos of McKay in sunny Doris Day-like dress doing album-cover poses.  It’s nice, but I do miss McKay’s lyrical cynicism.  Of particular note: She did this album not just because she likes old jazz or for the surface vocal similarities, but because of Day’s work for animal rights, a pet project (oof) of McKay’s.  (Whether you agree with McKay or not, her song “Columbia Is Bleeding” just plain kicks butt.)

* Miriodor — “Bolide Debile” (“Daredevil”) — Avanti! (Cuneiform, 2009) … I can’t express how much I’m loving this album. It’s prog rock with crunchy, mathy guitars, but fleet of foot, not prog/metal but more like a grumpier Gentle Giant with a goofy sense of humor.