On the first Friday of every month since March 2020, local music platform Bandcamp has waived its fees to help support the many artists who have seen their livelihoods disrupted by the pandemic. Over that time, fans paid artists and labels over $56 million dollars, helping cover rents, mortgages, groceries, medications, and much more. If you are one of the 800,000 fans who’ve participated, shouts to you for taking action and providing support.
The next Bandcamp Friday is October 1, and 48hills will continue to make suggestions, reminding readers and fans of music that on the first Friday of every month for the rest of 2021. Your help makes a significant difference, and you get great music, too.
TELEMAKUS, THE NEW HERITAGE (RADIO JUICY)
Bay Area pianist and producer Telemakus, whose forthcoming release The New Heritage will see him expand his very talented jazz-meets-hip-hop cache to a much larger audience, grew up in Sunnyvale with his brother. According to a Bandcamp feature from 2019, both siblings would beg their parents to take them to the Monterey Jazz Festival, and in their spare time—as children mind you—they would spend countless hours checking out stacks of jazz CDs from the library.
Talk about focus.
That’s exactly what his dynamo new album The New Heritage is filled with. Multi-colored dynamism. George Duke, J Dilla, Robert Glasper-type energy flowing throughout. While Telemakus calls his arrangements “off-kilter and unique” (he plays piano, Rhodes, Wurlitzer, synths, synth bass, clarinet, while handling drum production and programming too) the record swims passionately in the “heritage of jazz-sampling artists who turned their hands to instruments,” finding unplanned strokes of genius.
You should pre-order here because it will sell out.
BORED LORD, THE LAST ILLUSION (T4T LUV NRG)
When something hits and sounds right, there is no negotiation. It’s instinctual. Formal cognitive thought gets thrown own, and it’s your own personal rhythm-meter that overrides logic.
The Last Illusion, an EP of four bass-heavy and powerfully emotional tracks by Oakland-based artist Bored Lord, brings that “proper hardcore house” feel, built from drum and bass grumble, breakbeat with color chords expanses, pushing the levels up to red. The artist states in the press release the record was “pressed loud and built out of love between queer and trans people… the same love we use to survive.”
But listen, this ep moves ANYBODY who got some soul. No matter who you be.
According to folklore, Eris Drew and Octo Octa, who run the T4T LUV NRG imprint, “fell in love with Bored Lord’s work after playing a queer warehouse rave in LA with her. Thoroughly impressed with this unique artist, they saw an energetic sibling, a DJ with the ability to use music and magic (‘illusion’ here is an ecstatic technique) to set bodies free,” they state in press materials.
For what it’s worth, upon first listening to this entire EP, which goes on sale on Oct 6, I heard Bored Lord meticulously assemble various components of breakbeat music, opening a window on numerous subgenres that have come and gone over the past 20 years.
This version of hardcore house shines real hard. Cop it. Pre-order here.
DESTROY BOYS, OPEN MOUTH OPEN HEART (HOPELESS RECORDS)
“I live a double life/ its hard to keep track/ sometimes I’m a rock star/ sometimes, I’m selling snacks.”
Alexia Roditis, Violet Mayugba, and Narsai Malik comprise the blunt-speak punk-trio Destroy Boys. Originally from Sacramento but now residing in San Francisco, they write crushing radiant anthems that capture the everyday struggle of just being human. The songs, the attitude, the message…. It makes you laugh, cringe, and groan simultaneously. But you immediately get this authentic energy.
But don’t go by my word. Green Day’s Billie Joe namechecked them in Rolling Stone. They have racked up over 60 million streams, their music can be heard in Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 game, and TikTok has embraced them to the tune of 20 thousand user-made videos and over 3.5M views.
And all of that is fine. But the real scoop? They’re just bad-ass, lighting up this power-punk sensibility around tunes that cover social justice issues, racial equality, LGBTQA+ rights, and inclusion for all. But never sounding preachy. That’s real.
“Escape,” the final single from their forthcoming album Open Mouth, Open Heart, out October 8, “is about wanting an out from the regular life I was living,’ says frontperson Alexia Roditis. “I wrote it pre-pandemic, though you might not have known that if you listened to it. It’s about wanting to go on tour and wanting to escape reality in any way possible.”
They play Bottom of The Hill on October 1. Pre-order their record here.
VARIOUS ARTISTS, KEEP ON LOVING, KEEP ON FIGHTING! A PAT THE BUNNY COVERS COMPILATION BENEFITING TRANS LIFELINE
Voluntary Hazing, our buddies, the super sweet 12-piece ska and pop-punk band from San Jose—who sometimes stumble into psychedelic, disco, and acoustic sounds—have contributed a song to a compilation of Pat the Bunny covers to benefit Trans Lifeline, a nonprofit helpline that is owned and operated by the Trans community for the Trans community. Their humble and underscored cover of “I’m Not A Good Person,” along with selections from bands Straight Line Arrival, Mx Wander, Apes of the State, and many more incredible artists hope to bring exposure and financial support to the organization. You can purchase it here.