Falling That You Know – JIM

Essential new EP from ‘JIM’ that’s James Baron of Crazy P, a move away from the dancefloor into singer / songwriter territory. Out now via Bandcamp, see link below to listen & buy.

‘Since first emerging as part of Crazy P in the late 1990s, James Baron has released a lot of great music. However, he’s previously put out very little quite like the Falling They You Know EP, his first solo outing as JIM on NuNorthern Soul.

As those who’ve followed his career closely will tell you, Baron has worked on a number of lauded projects outside of Crazy P, including Ron Basejam (his nu-disco focused solo alias), Secret Stealth (a sample-heavy collaboration with Nottingham stalwart Bob Sadler) and White Elephant (a Balearic-minded outfit featuring Crazy P partner Chris Todd and old friend Benjamin Smith).

The FALLING THAT YOU KNOW EP sees Baron exploring an explicitly stripped-back, sensatory and soft-focus sound. It features a quartet of hazy home recordings created using little more than an acoustic guitar, piano, keyboard and some toy instruments belonging to his children. The music stretched across the EP is warming, wide-eyed and picturesque, with Baron showcasing his rarely heard singing voice as well as a finger-picking guitar style he’s spent the best part of 18 months perfecting.

Those with a wide-ranging musical palette will spot subtle sonic references to some of Baron’s lesser-known musical inspirations, including singer-songwriters Ned Doheny and Nick Drake. There’s a folksy, homespun charm to the campfire-ready bliss of loved-up opener ‘Falling That You Know’, where Baron delivers his own thoughtful lyrics atop shuffling shaker percussion, layered acoustic guitar, smooth bass, synth-strings and sustained piano chords.

Arguably even more impressive is ‘Phoenix’, a swelling, simmering and sweeping semi-acoustic cover of the Cult track of the same name featuring backing vocals from Crazy P chanteuse Danielle Moore. Magical and mesmerizing, Baron’s version takes the goth-rock classic in a stunning, sunset-ready new direction.

Baron’s dedication to the finger-picking style long associated with British and American folk music comes to the fore on ‘Whisper in the Wind’, a future early evening singalong that gently builds across six spellbinding minutes. From a delicate and pared-back start, Baron layers up instrumentation including additional guitar by White Elephant’s Benjamin Smith, drums courtesy of Crazy P sticks-man Matt Klose, and his own mazy, spacey synth lines.

Then there’s closing cut ‘You Know What To Say’, an effortlessly emotive, tactile and atmospheric affair that cannily distils all that is good about Baron’s latest solo venture into three magical minutes. It offers a near perfect end to an EP of rare pastoral beauty.’

Jamu – Chris Coco

Lovely new album release from Chris Coco, file under ambient / deep listening / jazz / cosmic / balearic. Perfectly timed for the return of the sun, slow burning deepness that’ll reward some time and repeated listens, get it at Bandcamp link above and get your best headphones ready for a treat…

‘This is a new album project called Jamu. It is the second collection from Chris Coco inspired by the magical island of Bali, following on from the 2017 album Return To Good Karma. The title is the name of a drink made of local herbs sold by street vendors that is good for health and vitality. I hope we have created a musical version of that healthy juice with our particular variety of ingredients.

This project was made in collaboration with a close group of musician friends. Each person played their part separately on the simple original grooves and soundscapes, inspired by the rhythm or what the last player or singer had laid down. We built a ‘live’ sound without ever playing together. After that I used the live parts to edit and process to eventually create the finished work.’

Released March 5, 2021

Sunshine Radio – Tommy Guerrero

Tommy Guerrero has just dropped a new album – ‘Sunshine Radio‘ and it’s a belter, with timeless, dusty, summery sounds soundtracking imaginary desert journeys. Sounding like a lost JJ Cale album covered by Kruangbin and remixed by Kamasi Washington it’s a ‘must buy’ item. Have a listen via the Bandcamp link below. Tommy had this to say about the album…

“Road to Knowhere is inspired by bits and pieces of Ethio-Jazz, Afrobeat, Highlife Spiritual Jazz and dusty funk 45’s. It’s what has kept this mortal vehicle fueled. I tend to take different paths each musical outing but this one is for the long haul, the one for the blue highways and forgotten byways. It’s the one to get lost to. It’s about the journey, not the destination… [If Road to Knowhere was about the long haul, TG’s new album Sunshine Radio is all about cruising on, dropping the top, and taking in a bit of fresh air]. Sunshine Radio hopes to spark a bit of joy as well as a moment to reflect and consider the fires of the world. Take a sonic respite from the endless noise.” – TG 

Nelson – The Magic Kitten

A lovely podcast from a producer and musician much loved here at the Nearest Faraway Place, Matt Coldrick aka PAN ELECTRIC. Matt tells the miraculous story of Nelson the magic kitten, who ‘found’ Matt on the Greek island of Paros, last November and the profound impact this very sick, blind cat had on him. A lyrical, poetic story about hope, change and love. With lots of Matt’s beautiful music to accompany Nelson’s story too.

Nelson need lots of medical care and Matt has set up a fundraiser to help with his care into the future, any donation however big or small would be much appreciated. Donate here.

90s Anxiety – Jus Jam

The Broken District label brings you ‘90s Anxiety’, a maxi EP / mini album from label founder Jus Jam, who takes us on a deep exploration into his hazy musical world. His music is often described as dreamy and contemplative, with sharp beats and smooth bassline, ‘90s Anxiety’ does not disappoint in this respect. Heavily inspired by nineties underground club culture, the EP travels through UK garage to dreamy hip-hop, from early electro to new jack swing.

On opener ‘Daydream’ and its B-side sister ‘Ryoji’s Dream’, the producer delivers two dreamy compositions crafted with the forward thinking hip-hop head in mind, touching on manga soundtracks and David Lynch’s surreal cinema. ‘Neopolis Sound’ is a subtle ode to early electro and breakbeat, old sci-fi movies and 90s video games. ‘Higher Sense’ is a modern and dreamy vision of breaks and jungle with elements of jazz. Title track ‘90s Anxiety’ takes a contemporary angle on new jack swing mixed with elements of house and funk slap bass. ‘Wide’ goes full on two-step with its steamy atmosphere, syncopated beat and powerful sub.

This collection of tracks is Jus Jam doing what he does best, mixing many forms to create something completely new and visionary.

Releases January 22, 2021 – Pre order / Buy here

Peaceful Revolution EP – Simbad

Simbad makes a return to Freerange following last year’s brilliant Take My Hand EP featuring South African vocalist Brian Temba with Peaceful Revolution, a top quality deep house four tracker.

Now based predominantly in Cape Town, the French Londoner producer and DJ is one of
the most prolific artists in the scene having notched up countless EP’s,
remixes and production work for labels like Apron, G.A.M.M. Faces,
Hyperdub, Atjazz, BBE & Brownswood. His association with Gilles Peterson
and Worldwide runs deep, hosting regular shows on WWFM as well as
traversing the globe delivering his unique and eclectic sets from Africa
to Asia and beyond.

Featuring South African upcoming producer Zito Mowa & vocalist
Lwandile Zulu who brings a raw and impassioned energy to the deep and
soulful mood, this tune was recorded in support of the troubled events
from the past few months and inspired by by the work of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Next up we have a track entitled Let Go which could quite easily be the
lead track of the EP if they weren’t all as good as each other! This is
late night emotive house music at its most sublime. Drop this at the
right time and watch the floor come together in collective bliss.

Flip over for SMBD’s Shaolin Dub remix of Peaceful Revolution which pushes
the original to the outer limits of the audio spectrum. Sub-sonic low end
rumbles sitting in contrast to the ghost like whispers, glitches and
industrial noises that pierce the ethereal pads.

Closing out this special release we find the unassumingly titled Soulful
Jam, a low-slung groove which sees Simbad going heavy on fizzing analogue
synths with a serene synth solo takin centre stage amongst the lush
chords.

EP release date: 22 January 2021 – Buy via Bandcamp on vinyl & digital

September On The Island – George Solar Chris Coco

Balearic legends Chris Coco and George Solar have just released a cracking follow up to their smash October collaboration ‘Noche de San Juan‘. This time they’re celebrating my favourite month to visit Ibiza with ‘September on the Island’, a shimmering, jazzy dubwise slice of late summer soul. Best listened to from a sleepy bar with a glass of Hierbas and a view of Es Vedra I’d say, get involved via Bandcamp link below.

Release date 15/1/21