PLAYLIST: Dominic Valvona/Matt Oliver/Brian ‘Bordello’ Shea

The monthly recap and chance to catch up with all the most eclectic music that the Monolith Cocktail team has been listening to over the last four weeks (with a few additional tracks we missed back in August). Chosen by me (Dominic Valvona), Matt ‘Rap Controller’ Oliver and Brian ‘Bordello’ Shea, the September 2021 edition features a truly global lineup of the best and most interesting Hip-Hop, Electronica, Jazz, Nu-Soul, Krautrock, Post-Punk, Experimental, Pop and beyond, with musical waves from Africa, the Med, Americas, Europe, Far East and of course the UK.  

TRACK LIST:::

The August List  ‘Seams’
Monsieur Doumani  ‘Astrahan’
Ex Norwegian  ‘Thot Patrol’
The Speed Of Sound  ‘The Day The Earth Caught Fire’
Motorists  ‘Go Back’
The Crystal Casino Band  ‘Waste My Time’
The Felice Brothers  ‘Jazz On The Autobahn’
Timo Lassy  ‘Orlo’
Blu  ‘Everyday Blu(e)s’
DJ JS-1  ‘Spaghetti Park’
Lukah  ‘THE WAY TO DAMASCUS’
Jazzmeia Horn And Her Noble Force  ‘Where Is Freedom?’
Kondi Band  ‘Everything That Sierra Leone Has’
Los Camaroes  ‘Esele Mulema Moam’
Mopes  ‘Facts Machine’
Solem Brigham  ‘Couple Towns’
Gift Of Gab Ft. Vursatyl, Lateef The Truthspeaker  ‘You Gon’ Make It In The End’
Gotts Street Park  ‘Diego’
Hiero  ‘Soil’
Showtime Ramon Ft. Illecism  ‘Julius Erving’
Viktor Timofeev  ‘Portal Of Zin II’
Variet  ‘The Ancient Of Seconds’
Faust  ‘Vorsatz’
Vilmmer  ‘Fensteraus’
Late  ‘Verbal Introduction’
King Kashmere & Alecs DeLarge  ‘Soul Caliber’ Robert & SonnyJim Ft. Rag’n’Bone Man  ‘Porridge’
Niklas Wandt  ‘Lo Spettro’
Badge Epoch  ‘Galactic Whip’
Dr. Joy  ‘No Deal’
Ulrich Schnauss & Mark Peters  ‘Speak In Capitals’
Psycho & Plastic  ‘Wunsch, Indianer Zu Werden’
Sone Institute  ‘Forget Everything’
Steve Hadfield  ‘Ascension’
Headboggle  ‘Skip Pop’
Forest Robots  ‘Every Particle Of Water Understands Change Is Essential’
Wish Master & Illinformed Ft. Datkid and Gaza Glock  ‘Chefs Recipe’
Dceased, Telly McLean and Unlike People  ‘Rainey Day Relapse’
Nukuluk  ‘Ooh Ah’
Boohoo  ‘Forever’
The Legless Crabs  ‘A Saucer Is Born’
Bordello & Clark  ‘Dreams Of Rock And Roll Stars’ Santa Sprees  ‘Save Yourself’
Birthday Cake!  ‘Retrospect’
Salem Trials  ‘No York’
Helm  ‘Repellent’
Will Feral  ‘The Minx’
Sun Atoms  ‘The Cat’s Eye’
Simon McCorry  ‘Flow 04’
Group Listening  ‘Sunset Village’
John Howard  ‘Dreamland’
Andrew Heath  ‘The Healing Pt. 1’
Tara Clerkin Trio  ‘Night Steps’
Color Dolor  ‘Underwater’
Gina Birch  ‘Feminist Song’
Esbe  ‘Amazing Grace’

ALBUM REVIEW/Dominic Valvona

The August List ‘Wax Cat’
(All Will Be Well Records)  3rd September 2021

Another of those English county dreamers reaching for the expansive and more desolate plains of a distant, often imagined, Americana, the Oxford-based August List bend alt-country tastes to their will on the latest album, Wax Cat.

Led by the married couple of Martin and Kerraleigh Child, with a supporting cast of locals on drums, violin, guitar, banjo and synth effects, the band wanders an epic panorama of empowered intensity and more ethereal lush contemplation. Dreaming big with a variety of light and shade, swells and tenderer moments, there’s bowed, waned and searching duet plaints set to northwestern waterway junctions, named in honour of the late 18th century British explorer (‘Puget Sound’), and Tennessee, via Gram’s Joshua Tree and the Laurel Canyon, visions of a heart-rendering, bittersweet and mythologized country songbook landscape. Whether together or riding solo the two voices share quite a good range. Especially Kerraleigh, who can sound empowered and resolute on songs like the opening big-hitter, gnarled ‘Seams’, and like a combination of the Howling Bells, Maria McKee, Leila Moss and Emmylou Harris on the desert’s edge ‘Distorted Mountain’. There’s even an air of the paisley underground on the majestic violin straining ‘I Might Get Low’. It most also be noted that Kerraleigh also plays a most gauzy harmonica on a few tracks too.

That country vibe can be heard roaming into shoegaze, and the crushing quite to crescendo ache of Mazzy Star. Meanwhile the August List’s cover of The Diamond Family Archive’s ‘Big Black Dog’ sounds like Ian MuCulloch fronting Spiritualized, and the enervated, synth warped with flange stroked guitar, ‘God In A Wire’, reminded me a bit of R.E.M.

From the storming Bosco-Delray-wrestles-with-Charlie-Megira-at-a-hoedown ‘Wheelhouse’, to the dreamy ‘Crooked Starlite’, there’s as much quality as there is variety to the crescendo-riven August List sound. Who better to set introspective feelings and longings from the Home Counties to an alternative country soundtrack then Oxford’s very classy August List. In short: a great album from start to finish.

Hi, my name is Dominic Valvona and I’m the Founder of the music/culture blog monolithcocktail.com For the last ten years I’ve featured and supported music, musicians and labels we love across genres from around the world that we think you’ll want to know about. No content on the site is paid for or sponsored and we only feature artists we have genuine respect for /love. If you enjoy our reviews (and we often write long, thoughtful ones), found a new artist you admire or if we have featured you or artists you represent and would like to buy us a coffee at https://ko-fi.com/monolithcocktail to say cheers for spreading the word, then that would be much appreciated.

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