It was quite the day today. A record fifteen recommenders and an unprecedented level of quality throughout. Well done to all of you. Thumbs up all round.
Djeli Moussa Diawara – Yasimika (Guinea)
This, rather lovely way to start my day, was recommended by William Mallin who is very quickly setting himself as one of the favourites for the whole competition. It’s a shame there isn’t a prize or something to make his efforts worthwhile because he really can recommend an album. Maybe when lockdown ends I could buy a little trophy? I dunno. It’s something worth thinking about.
DJ Scotch Egg – Scotch Hausen (Japan)
After his success with Boredoms, George Sandison decided to double down on the unusual Japanese stuff going weirder and louder than before. I appreciate the sentiment but I do wonder how it will end. Answering the door to somebody who introduces themself as Zoi before repeatedly beating me round the face with a keytar while shouting, “THIS IS ALL MUSIC NOW SEARCH YOUR FACE AND YOUR FEELINGS FOR ME DIGEST ME THIS IS ALL MUSIC NOW”? Maybe. I would have to give that five points, I suppose.
btw I liked DJ Scotch Egg.
Fatoumata Diawarra – Fenfo (Mali)
The third album I listened to was recommended by Kev mcveigh and was another winner. I’m not a big fan of using the word dreamy, because it is an infuriatingly vague word, but I thought this was dreamy.
Daphni – Jiaolong (Canada)
After Picky Bastards slipped up yesterday, Dave Hartley had a chance to take control of the leaderboard but, while I quite liked Jiaolong I didn’t love it. It did have something of an act to follow after the triple whammy of the first few records I listened to but thems the breaks, innit?
Eric Dolphy – Conversations (USA)
em picked a jazz record, and not the obvious ‘D’, Miles Davis, but Eric Dolphy, and not the obvious Eric Dolphy album, Out to Lunch, but Conversations. It was a bold move. Very bold. Perhaps too bold. Listening to a jazz album for the first time you will always miss stuff, always only glimpse at what it holds. I liked what I glimpsed mind you.
Dorothy Masuka – Nginje (South Africa)
Neal became the first of my three best men to suggest something (whither Plashing Vole, am I right?) by suggesting this album by Dorothy Masuka. I liked it. My wife popped up to the attic with a cup of coffee for me while it was playing and she liked it too. She says hello, by the way, and sends our love to both of you.
Dur Dur Band – Dur Dur Band of Somalia Vol. 1 & Vol. 2 (Somalia)
Is picking a two cd career-spanning retrospective cheating? I don’t think so, but I might have to introduce a limit on how long things can be at some point. I can’t have somebody choosing the complete Frank Sinatra at Capital Records boxset and just getting all the points by being fifty hours long can I? Or maybe I can. Some of those albums are brilliant.
I’m getting distracted again. I really liked this album (these albums?) – recommended by DOCTOR PRINCESS IN ISOLATION – though I confess time restrictions meant I didn’t get through all one hour and forty seven minutes. I will be revisiting it though. For realz. Because it is bloody brilliant.
The Datsuns – The Datsuns (New Zealand)
There was a sweary one early on that I was quite partial to but overall this album didn’t win me over enough to pick up any points for Adrian Slatcher. It was certainly good enough for me to completely forgive that Collage brouhaha from last week though. It’s just been a very tough day to get points.
Daniel Ingram, Meghan McCarthy and Amy Keating Rogers – My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Rainbow Rocks soundtrack (a parallel version of Equestria)
OK, so there is some controversy in accepting a parallel version of Equestria as a country but, and I can’t stress this enough, if counting a parallel version of Equestria is the sort of thing that you are likely to get your jockey shorts in a twist about, this might not be the competition for you. Because, surely, what matters most is the music (and the power of friendship, obviously)
Every fool knows that Rainbow Rocks is the best My Little Pony: Equestria Girls movie and no small part of that is down to the songs, which are great. I am aware that I may like it largely because I first saw what was for a while referred to by my daughter as ‘My Little Pony with legs’ after a period of watching a lot of Paw Patrol. I can’t help that. The heart likes what the heart recognises isn’t another episode of fucking Paw Patrol.
Nic Dalton – Babe Rainbow (Australia)
A collection of demos that would, I think, later end up as songs on a, I think, Godstar album (that Tom A, who recommended this, will be recommending in three weeks time, I think). Choosing demos is a brave choice, especially when the chump you are recommending them has never heard of Godstar and only recognises the song that was on his favourite Lemonheads album. It might have been better to recommend Godstar first and Nic Dalton second, as an ‘N’. I guess we’ll never know. Unless you recommend it again in a couple of months. That might work.
Desmond Dekker and The Aces – Intensified (Jamaica)
Thom Hammersley recommended this album, half of which I was super familiar with from various compilation cds and half of which was new to me. This gave me a perfect opportunity to investigate how my judging methods are affected by my familiarity with the records I listen to but I didn’t take it because I was too busy dancing. Soz.
Dios – Dios (Argentina)
For the second week in a row, Sam Whyte forced me to scour YouTube to find something not available on my streaming service. Well, not forced, obviously, but you know what I mean. I genuinely can’t describe what I found but I sort of liked it. Talking over music? No. That’s a terrible description. Come back and edit this bit later because it is terrible. Talking over music indeed.
Dr. Alimantado – Best Dressed Chicken in Town (Jamaica)
The controversy continues in what is turning out to be quite a controversial day. The more eagle-eyed among you will have spotted that this is the second choice from Jamaica. But I had already said yes to Desmond Dekker when expletive undeleted suggested one of my favourite albums as a possible Jamaica pick. I’m listening to it now, as I type this. It’s proper good.
Dvar – El Mariil (Russia)
There was a small debate on twitter today over whether Russia could count as Asia. It is an important argument, with many important geographical and cultural repercussions, but perhaps not one best suited to taking place during a competition run by an idiot who considers a parallel universe version of a fictional world inhabited by talking ponies as a legitimate choice of country. I’m just saying.
The point was moot anyway as Dvar have never actually said what part of Russia they are from. They are super mysterious. As for their music? Oh my. People chuck the phrase ‘otherworldly’ about willy nilly at bands like Sigur Rós but it is rarely truly earned. El Mariil is bastard utterly otherworldly to the maximum. It is otherworldly to the point where listening to it becomes almost uncomfortable. I absolutely loved it.
Dojo Cuts featuring Roxie Ray – Take from Me (Australia)
More controversy, sorry. I decided that after allowing two Jamaica choices it would be churlish not to allow two from Australia. Maybe I should limit myself to two choices per country? Something to think about at the very least.
Anyway, Ben, the actual album. What did you think about the album. Well, Ben, I rather liked it, and can I stop this talking to ourself bit now? I can after I give me my opinion on whether it was a bit Amy Winehouse-y, Ben. Fine. I can see where I am coming from but I think it is a bit of an oversimplification of both performers work if I am being honest with me, Ben. Oh, Okay, me. I’m welcome, me.
Dee MC – Dee=MC² (India)
And speaking of me, here is my choice. I don’t get nearly as many hip hop recommendations as I would like so I thought I would even things up a little bit today with this seven-song album by Dee MC. Recommended for those of you who like listening to people smashing the patriarchy in two languages.
And now the scores…
- Five points to Mark Powell for making me concurrently soothed and unnerved.
- Four points to expletive undeleted for choosing the day’s most undeniable banger.
- Three points to DOCTOR PRINCESS IN ISOLATION for gaming the system and reaping the rewards.
- Two points to William Mallin for making the start of my working day a joy.
- One point to Rachel Bentley introducing me to an album that I will be putting on the next time I cook dinner (ie tonight).
- two bonus points to Richard Jones for reminding me of the awesome power of the friendship.
- a bonus point to em for risking it all on a jazz record and almost getting away with it.
- a bonus point to George Sandison for starting a process of destroying my mind with weird Japanese bands that can only end in tears.