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Life Imagined / Everything Turned to Color

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Life Imagined
Everything Turned to Color
Produced by Blake Morgan
2017

Brooklyn based Everything Turned to Color’s new record Life Imagined is a perfect example of letting pure ingredients shine. Delicate without ever feeling slight, the record teems with the undiluted musicality of singer Neha Jiwrajka, and guitarists/brothers Bryan and Kyle Weber.

Neha’s evocative vocals are front and center, set within production that serves the subject, significant when each track is a jewel held up to the light. From wistful opener When You Wish Me There to the eponymous Everything Turned to Color, there’s a purity on display due, in no small measure, to Neha’s soulful authenticity (think Rhiannon Giddens) and Kyle’s colorful web of gypsy jazz flourishes.

Each track is a jewel held up to the light.

If you’re taking a road trip, set the mood with Once Upon a Lifetime. Bryan and Neha trade vocals on this perfect folk-pop nugget, striking a dreamy balance between regret and delight. And there’s a real depth to the record, too, evident in the moody Love And Be Loved and the soulful lament of Somebody Loves You, one of the best songs you’ll hear this year.

Rounded out by percussive mastermind Jonathan Ellinghaus (aka Miles East) on drums, and producer Blake Morgan on bass, Life Imagined is the burnished sound of lazy afternoon sunlight cast through stained glass. If you’re an old soul feeling particularly lost in the zeitgeist of pop music, this is your record.

Life Imagined
Track Listing

  1. When You Wish Me There
  2. Something to Live For
  3. Soft in Lament
  4. Once Upon a Lifetime
  5. Invisibility
  6. Love and Be Loved
  7. Adelynn
  8. Everything Turned to Color
  9. Don’t Wake Me
  10. Hung Atop the Heavens
  11. Somebody Loves You

Links
Official Website
Buy Life Imagined 

Brooklyn's own MC Krispy E has an opinion about most things you can put in your ear, eye, and mouth holes.

Music

GANG STARR “ONE OF THE BEST YET”

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Straight out the gate we’re taken down memory lane with an intro reminding us of what Gang Starr was and still is about! The intro brought great comfort to my ears in letting me know that their main ingredients of boom bap and rhymes weren’t going to be forgotten. True to my hypothesis, the bar continued to rise and rise throughout the album.

The unmistakable cuts, clever samples and monotone flows are in full display. Exactly how you would expect to hear a Gang Starr album! The repeat again and again factor is naturally achieved from beginning to end. Thank god for technological advancements or there would be an abundance of damaged records, tapes and CD’s out there due to overuse! It was as if the album was recorded with elements of the past with intentions of the future!

With that notion in mind, DJ Premier and Guru enlisted the services of some of their familiar collaborators and recruited some worthy new friends to join the movement. The likes of M.O.P, Q-Tip, Group Home, Royce da 5’9″, Jeru The Damaja, J.Cole, Ne-Yo, Nitty Scott, Talib Kweli, Big Shug and Freddie Foxxx make up the ensemble of talent that merged perfectly in this tremendous gift to Hip-Hop.

It was as if the album was recorded with elements of the past with intentions of the future!

The cameos of his son Keith Casim Elam on the album and in the music videos (Family & Loyalty/Bad Name) brings this project full circle. His father would have been proud of the family representation and the Gang Starr extended family showing out on every opportunity in “One Of The Best Yet”.

 

At this point we can only hope that Premier has an extra stash of Guru vocals hidden somewhere that he’ll bless us with in the near future. It’s been quite evident from the reception of the Hip-Hop community that Gang Starr has done it again and will always be welcome fruit to our musical appetites!

HB aka The World Traveler is fully committed to exploring and sharing with you what the world has to offer in travel and music. Get on board and enjoy the ride!

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Music

That Dog Bites Back

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I’m gonna go out on a limb and suggest I was the only person working for a huge insurance company in 1997 with a poster of That Dog on my cubicle. They hypnotized me at Mercury Lounge and I walked home in a happy haze to my $78 a month Chinatown apartment. Different times, indeed.

That Dog broke up after releasing Retreat from the Sun, a perfect concoction of power-pop sweet & sour that holds up 20 years later. While they reunited in 2011,  the new record finds them one Haden sister short, so I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about this partially crowd-funded affair. Certainly Anna Waronker was still at the helm, with Rachel Haden on bass, and Tony Maxwell stepping away from a TV exec gig to record and tour this new record. I still had mixed feelings going in.

Fear not, Old LP is super on-brand and contains some excellent songs, as well as those honeyed harmonies we’ve come to expect. Tight and poppy and full of energy, Old LP is a return to form, albeit with some added maturity. What I didn’t expect was the emotional weight of the title track, an ode to the great Charlie Haden, who died in 2014.

Catch That Dog at Warsaw in Brooklyn tonight where they’ll be playing with string accompaniment.

 

Using a host of pen names, Eric Curran has been blogging in one form or another for well over 10 years. He's a partner at One Track Mine, and also runs the blog Jealous Foodies.

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Janita’s New Song “Bliss I Once Had This”

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Fresh from her residency at NYC’s Mercury Lounge, ECR Music Group recording artist Janita releases the new single “Bliss I Once Had This” on October 18, and we have the premiere.

The guitar-forward track, which you can hear below, is a notable change from Janita’s last record, Didn’t You, My Dear?, also produced and recorded by label owner and musician Blake Morgan.

Janita describes the song as “a declaration of joyful defiance in darkening times.” The track taps into the moment when empathy meets apathy, when we’re as likely to question “Who am I to feel happy now?” as we are to throw up our hands and say “Never mind.”

Janita and Blake share guitar duties on the track, rounded out by Miles East on drums and percussion and Justin Goldner on bass.

Janita’s last show this year is in her hometown of Helsinki at the legendary Tavastia-klubi on November 10.

Using a host of pen names, Eric Curran has been blogging in one form or another for well over 10 years. He's a partner at One Track Mine, and also runs the blog Jealous Foodies.

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