Bright skies and warm(er) weather seem to call for louder, happier, dancier tunes while we work and play. We’ve been partial to a couple of compilations of world music that range from psychedelic to jazz in their sounds and leave us feeling optimistic, energized and excited for all of the beautiful, warm days to come (even if we have to suffer another few days of rain in the meantime.)
#1: Peace Love & Poetry: Turkish Psychedelic Music – listen here.
Many of our vintage and antique treasures are sourced from Turkey and the Middle East, and much of the style of the shop is based in a 1970s aesthetic, so it’s no wonder that psychedelic music from Turkey would sound highly appropriate at Eden. Similar to American psychedelic music of the 1970′s, Turkish psychedelic music took a highly roots-based approach, incorporating sounds, instruments and themes from traditional Turkish folk and blues songs. This album features a range of artists, some infamous in the Turkish music scene and around the world (including Baris Manco and Selda) and others who are decidedly more obscure (such as Ersen.) The album artwork from some of the artists featured in this compilation (easily found by Googling their names) is equally spectacular and harkens an era of bold, psychedelic graphic design.
Psychedelia fans, get excited: this album is one of a series of world psychedelic music which includes Chilean, Afrian, American, British, Japanese, Mexican and Brazilian albums.
#2: African Scream Contest: Raw and Psychedelic Afro Sounds from Benin and Tongo 70s – listen here.
We’re becoming evangelists for this compilation. We’ve played it at Eden and sister shop Flutter, told our friends at Palace of Industry about it and are playing it at home, on the way to work, running for groceries, while drinking beers in our back gardens… perfect parts upbeat without being grating, mellow and jazzy, it’s been lightening the last rainy days of the season. From a 2009 Dusted Magazine review: “The record’s name might raise hackles from some quarters, or at least questions. Is Analog Africa trying to capitalize on lurid preconceptions of dark content primitivism, or putting a lo-fi spin on the search for the exotic other, or simply suggesting that this is the work of a bunch of Africans deeply indebted to James Brown? It’s certainly misleading. First of all, this collection is no competition, but a 14-way tie for first place – there’s not a dud in the bunch. Second, far from being an African collection, everything on Africa Scream Contest comes from Togo and Benin. And while there’s plenty of Brown-ian motion, this is not a purely Africans-do-James Brown set, or even exclusively funk-oriented… If anything, the music presented here beats both ethnographic recordings and polished Afro-pop for universal, as well as visceral, appeal. These artists weren’t fringe types and these grooves weren’t rare by design, but intended to move butts on the dance floor. ” (We couldn’t have said it better ourselves.)
#3: Folk and Pop Sounds from Sumatra – listen here.
This two-volume set (sold separately, but nice when listened to together) from label Sublime Frequencies is an old favorite which we pull out every spring and summer. Featuring a range of Sumatran artists recorded over three decades, some so minor and undiscovered that they’re listed as “unknown,” these albums are full of incredibly catchy songs that range in style from dance-y to melancholic, yet mysteriously upbeat. Many of the tracks are reminiscent of by-gone pop music while others are incredibly modern sounding. The scratchy recording quality of some of the tracks (along with the aforementioned fact that many of the artists are listed as unknown) lend the sense that these songs are rare, perhaps scoured from someone’s old cassette tape found in a junk store or flea market and that we might be incredibly lucky to hear them. Worth a listen for any world music fan.
We hope everyone in Portland is enjoying this rash of beautiful weather. A few inspiring images to peruse if you’re not lucky enough to be out enjoying the warmth this week.
Hello! How are you celebrating May Day? This holiday has perhaps become a bit antiquated, but we still like to mark the occasion as the official, undeniable onset of spring. FINALLY, SPRING! We got a little crafty with some very vintage-influenced, nostalgia-heavy collages featuring vintage clip-art and May Day imagery. Enjoy!