Entries tagged with: The Congos
words and photos by Greg Cristman
The Congos & Sun Araw Band / Lee "Scratch" Perry
Once again, the Red Bull Music Academy put on an amazing one-of-a-kind presentation in New York, this time to a sold out Le Poisson Rouge crowd last Thursday (5/30). The evening was called NYC in Dub and featured performances by the iconic Lee "Scratch" Perry who was teamed up against On-U sound label head and influential producer Adrian Sherwood, the legendary The Congos, who versed experimental indie rockers Sun Araw and M Geddes Gengras (all three of who collaboratred on an album last year), and an opening set by Future Times (aka Maxmillion Dunbar and Protect-U) and Peaking Lights. An elaborate and very crowded stage set up was brought in along with the massive Sub Atomic Soundsystem that shook the building to its core with thick heavy dub bass and rhythms.
This was one of the most amazing reggae shows I've seen in quite some time and may have been the best Lee Perry performance I've ever seen. At 77 he's still going strong and is as eclectic and crazy as ever, continually igniting his disposable lighter and running his fingers, hands and even boots through the flame, whipping towels around his head and dousing himself with water. He performed many of his classics, including "War Inna Babylon," that had most of the audience singing along. The Congos vs. Sun Araw set was equally enjoyable with Sun Araw delivering an incredible dub backdrop for the three Congos singers. They delivered a set culled mainly from their first album, the 1977 reggae masterpiece Heart Of The Congos (produced by Lee Perry), including the classic tracks "Fisherman," "Congoman" and "La-La Bam Bam." Future Times and Peaking Lights combined for an approach to dub that was more rooted in electronic and techno and they often reminded me a little bit of Lee Perry collaborator The Orb.
Pictures of the show, including shots of the setlists for the Lee Perry/Adrian Sherwood and The Congos/Sun Araw sets, are in this post. They continue below...
Andy Stott/Lee "Scratch" Perry
As mentioned, tickets went on sale today for the previously announced Red Bull Music Academy events, which take over NYC from April 28 to May 31. And now that those are on sale, the rest of the lineup has been announced. In addition to the newly-added Flying Lotus show at Terminal 5, the Red Bull Music Academy events now also include...
A Bunker party with Andy Stott, Atom TM, Objekt, Octo Octa, Kloke, Smax, Bryan Kasenic, and Mike Servito at Public Assembly on May 4; Blondes, Mike Simonetti, Rudi Zygadlo, Astroboyz, CABAAL, Ale Hop, Yodashe, Harald Bjork, Alitrec, Mungo Park, Seretan, and Ada Kaleh at Cameo on May 6; and Le1f, Laurel Halo, Venus-X, and a secret guest at Glasslands on May 7.
Still more: Metro Area, Gerd Janson, and Bok Bok b2b L-Vis 1990 at 88 Palace on May 10; 'Drum Majors' with Mannie Fresh, Boi-1da, Young Chop, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League, Bangaldesh, DJ Mustard, and Drumma Boy at Knitting Factory on May 22; Afrika Bambaataa, Egyptian Lover, DJ Magic Mike, DJ Assault, DJ Funk, Scottie B, DJ Rashad & DJ Spinn, Big Freedia, Salva, Drop the Lime, and Branko & Krampfhaft at Santos on May 23; as well as Skream, Mala, and Plasitician & Hatcha on May 24 at Can Factory (232 3rd St in Brooklyn).
And even more: Oneohtrix Point Never, BIll Kouligas, Evian Christ, Kid Simpl, and ANNALOVE at Saint Vitus on May 26; Benji B, FaltyDL, Dorian Concept, Orquesta, and Somepoe at Sullivan Room on May 27; Pantha Du Prince & the Bell Laboratory with Louis Baker and Anya Kuts at West Park Church on May 28; a killer night of dub with legends Lee Perry & Adrian Sherwood, The Congos vs Sun Araw, M. Geddes Gengras, and the Raw Power Band, Peaking Lights In A Dub Style vs Future Times, and DJ Slow at Le Poisson Rouge on May 30.
Tickets for all events are on sale now.
These join the previously announced shows, talks, and other events with James Murphy, Brian Eno, Giorgio Moroder, Tony Visconti, Nile Rodgers, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Four Tet, A-Trak, Just Blaze, and more. Flyer with the updated, show-by-show lineup is below...
by Andrew Sacher
Sun Araw at BV-SXSW 2012 (more by Nate "Igor" Smith)
Sun Araw and M. Geddes Gengras took part in one of 2012's most interesting (relatively) obscure releases with Icon Give Thank, a collaborative album with reggae legends/Lee "Scratch" Perry associates The Congos. And towards the end of the year, the three collaborators released a 5-track live EP recorded with the Raw Power Band at the Village Underground in London this past June. You can download that EP (name your price) at bandcamp and stream the whole thing below.
Both Sun Araw and M. Geddes Gengras are teaming up this month for a NYC show which happens on January 19 at Knitting Factory with Ital, who toured with M Geddes Gengras (and Laurel Halo) in 2012 around the time he dropped Dream On, his second album of 2012. Tickets for that show are on sale now. It's the only currently announced date for Sun Araw but Ital has other upcoming dates, which are listed below.
Sun Araw is featured on an upcoming double album compilation from Stones Throw and Leaving Records (Matthewdavid's label) called Dual Form which drops January 22 in cassette, LP, CD, and digital formats. The compilation also features Julia Holter (covering Arthur Russell), Dntel, Run DMT, Odd Nosdam and many more. You can stream Sun Araw's contribution, "Right Off," and check out the full tracklist below. The cassette version features bonus tracks by Matthewdavid.
All streams and a list of Ital dates below...
Pitchfork just posted their Honorable Mention Albums of 2012, which they consider "20 records didn't make [their] Top 50 but they're not necessarily just Nos. 51-70." There are some similarities to their Overlooked Records of 2012 list that they posted halfway through the year. It also includes Frankie Rose's Interstellar, which did actually get Best New Music upon its release, unlike the other albums here. And it's got Waxahatchee's American Weekend and Jeremih's Late Nights with Jeremih, neither of which were reviewed throughout the year. Though they did review Waxhatachee (Katie Crutchfield)'s sister Allison's band Swearin', who also makes this list, and who (along with Jeremih) made Pitchfork's Top 100 Tracks list.
Full list below...
UK music magazine Uncut put out their list of the top 75 albums of 2012. The top ten leans pretty heavy on long-running '60s/'70s survivors who put out new albums this year, but plenty of the list-topping regulars from newer acts are on there too, along with a few interesting surprises (Sun Araw, M Geddes Gengras & the Congos!). You can check out the full list below.
by Andrew Sacher
Sun Araw, M. Geddes Gengras, and The Congos - FRKWYS Vol. 9: ICON GIVE THANK
Speaking of Sun Araw (aka Cameron Stallone), he's part of the recently released ninth installment of Brooklyn label RVNG Intl's FRKWYS series, which brings together modern experimental artists and their influential forerunners to collaborate on an album. In the past, we've seen collaborative releases from Julianna Barwick and DNA's Ikue Mori; Daniel Lopatin, James Ferarro, Samuel Godin, and composer David Borden; and Blues Control and Laraaji, among others. The newest release, FRKWYS Vol. 9: ICON GIVE THANK, sees Sun Araw and M. Geddes Gengras, who were both members of the now-defunct Pocahaunted (whose lineup also included Amanda Brown aka LA Vampires and Bethany Cosentino of Best Coast), teaming up with The Congos, who released the dub/reggae classic Heart of the Congos in 1977, produced by Lee "Scratch" Perry. That's the artwork above.
The track, "Happy Song," which you can stream below, sounds too modern for a '70s reggae band but too genuinely nostalgic for modern psych experimentalists, and doesn't really fit anywhere in between.
ICON GIVE THANK was released in conjunction with the film, ICON EYE, a film documenting the album's making. That film will be screened as part of the Unsound LABS on Saturday (4/21) at Anthology Film Archives at 1 PM. The screening will be followed by a discussion with Sun Araw's Cameron Stallones, director Tony Lowe, and project producer Matt Werth.
The movie screening is one of at least three Sun Araw events in NYC this weekend, with the first being a full band show at Le Poisson Rouge Friday night (with Pole & Marc McGuire of Emeralds), and the last being the recently-mentioned DJ set with Heat Wave at Glasslands.
Film trailer, streams, album tracklist, and all dates, below...