This is an EP by Slade Cordero, the Nuevo Mexicano wünderkind responsible for all sorts of deadly as funk grunge and punk releases that have been highly influential and were also influenced by other regional out-of-sync mastermind powerhouses from the Meat Puppets to Constant Harmony. Like all of dude’s work, this short but highly potent EP was mixed by—get this, hombres—Steve Albini. And it’s so damn good that I guarantee that you will be smiling for days just like that time you took Molly to the dance and Aberdeen was just a memory in the cold desert air and romantic luminaria light of the South Valley at Christmas while the first album by Weezer was playing in the background—just to vindicate everything you ever thought about life and Kurt Cobain and the guy from The Folk Implosion were there, too.
Alien Space KitchenReturn of the Muckrakers(Self-released)
Once upon a time, Weekly Alibi had a city league softball team and it was called the Muckrakers, which was a name given to turn of the century journalists tasked with investigative reporting. They were named after public servants who performed a very busy service before the transition to automobiles happened 100 years ago. Muckrakers were responsible for raking up all the horse shit—and there was quite a bit because literally thousands of horses were required daily to do mankind’s bidding back then. This album has similar propensities, rocking out to lyrics that proclaim the dangers of a system on the edge with a big change to come. By using a pop-tainted mid-’60s sound that is part The Fugs and part Paul Revere & the Raiders, this reckoning works, especially on my favorite track, “Police Brutality.” Homegrown and heady.
Here’s a super-lush fully flowering collection of music that is smooth beyond any pretense of yachtishness, inflected with the deep bass and world music-influenced enunciation that’s becoming more and more common in the American pop vernacular—what’s that new Snoop Dog single about, yo?—widening the sound for just about everyone around, but especially for younger listeners who’ve already been drawn away from rocanrol, and to a certain extent, hip-hop too. Anyway this competent and compelling album takes a look at what’s cooking on the other side. Hint: It’s coming from a global kitchen inhabited by Burqueño multi-instrumentalists Connor Sullivan and Poikai Biggs, drummer Nate Robinson and vocalist Brittney Broten. It’s terribly hot yet totally comforting like enchiladas served with injera and that comes clear in cool tones on tunes like “Sweet Tempations” and the phat and fresh closer “Left is Law.”