With the sweetest of sounds coming from the speakers of the Ticket Arena office it would be mighty selfish of us to keep them to ourselves, so we thought we’d let you in on what our staff use to soundtrack a hard day’s work. Now a weekly feature with the intent of bringing your attention to wonderful new sounds every Tuesday, our Album Of The Week looks at releases from the best in the game, whether fresh new acts about to hit the big time or established artists reminding the world of their continued talent. Simply put, it’s just the best in music that we think you should hear.
When you’re the head honcho at one of the UK’s leading labels and have been for over three decades, collating a supergroup and combining some of the best artists across the genre and style spectrum must be quite a task, still, given the result of Everything Is Recorded, we’re very grateful that Richard Russell of XL Records was willing to take it on. While opening track ‘Close But Not Quite’ eases listeners in, featuring the tinkering piano and soulful vocals of Mercury Prize winner Sampha, it flawlessly flows into a funky collaboration with rapper Obongjayar and jazz expert Kamasi Washington. London emcee Giggs features on track ‘Wet Looking Road’ for a rap project unlike any other out there, with cut and clipped samples and the rappers’ staple gritty rhymes. ‘Mountains Of Gold’ combines a mixture of genres and styles layered on top of each other, as a bluesy piano riff opens the track, Sampha offers his distinct pipe to the hook, rapper Wiki spits some golden bars before Ibeyi sings a beautiful bridge and it’s all topped off with a saxophone solo from the contemporary jazz king, Kamasi. It would seem that Richard Russell is just as good at creating out music as he is at releasing it - so sit back, relax and listen to the full album below via Spotify...
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With the lengthy list of impressive collaborators featured in this album, you can bet on the fact that there’s plenty of opportunity to see them live this year:
Rapper Wiki is on a UK tour this April, hitting Manchester’s Night and Day Cafe on Wednesday 11th April and Liverpool’s Shipping Forecast venue on Friday 13th April.
Syd will be joining her band The Internet at Parklife Festival this June as well as Lovebox Festival this July.
Soulful singer and pianist Sampha is claiming a very special headline date on Friday 25th May for the first day of three of World Island at South Bank. Sampha will also be at Heaton Park’s Parklife Festival this June, as he takes to the stage on Saturday 9th June.
Avante Garde jazz musician Kamasi Washington will be at this year’s Wilderness Festival alongside Chic ft. Nile Rodgers, Bastille and Jon Hopkins between Thursday 2nd and Sunday 5th August.
London emcee Giggs has a busy summer ahead of him, as he’ll be at Parklife Festival, London’s own sold out Wireless Festival as well as Nottingham’s Detonate Festival.
Image courtesy of DJ Booth.
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