As the countdown to the end of the year approaches we take a personal look back on our familiar names, features and musicians’ top releases of the past 12 months.
This year has stood out for incredible releases and even more so for uncovering exceptional talent; most of which discovered, promoted and featured right on this site.
Continuing our Rad Releases feature is familiar talent Cheap Jazz.
Derby based 4 piece Cheap Jazz consits of Chris Marsh- Vocals/ Guitars, Jamie Cattermole -Drums, Dan Wheeler- Guitar/Vocals and Pobtej Roobish on Bass. Formerly known as “FUNfun”, made up of two former members of Younogodie and two former members of Plans and Apologies. The band have previously released Sorry If I Was A Bit Rough Demos, The Hitchcock EP and Cheap Jazz: Demos. Following live performances across the country and a European tour with Alright The Captain, their successful year has come to a triumphant milestone for the band as Cheap Jazz have also celebrated their album release which you can find streaming below-
Cheap Jazz are honestly an incredibly talented band and a band we know will provide so much more in the future months.
We were lucky enough to speak to friend Chris on behalf of Cheap Jazz-
Cheap Jazz Top Releases
Hi this is Chris from Cheap Jazz and here are 5 of our favourite albums from this year.
1. Tame Impala – Innerspeaker
These were recommended to us by a taxi driver who picked us up after a gig once. They are a bunch of surfers from Perth with a true ear for the 60’s psychedelic era, really catchy,infectious summer tunes.
For fans of 60’s Garage, Jimi Hendrix and The Beatles circa Sgt Pepper’s
If you haven’t heard ‘Let’s Wrestle’ before, go do so now!, they were one of those bands that just grabbed me straight away, the kind of band you genuinely think you could be mates with if you met them. i have a great admiration for Wes Gonzalez and his lyric writing, he always manages to give a tip of the cap to other musicians and bands that he likes in his songs, and never sugar cotes things for the sake of sounding cool or exciting. They are just a real and very raw band that make you want to sing along and clap your hands. I’m sure if cheap jazz were friends with let’s wrestle on last.fm our compatibility would be very high.
For fans of Swell maps, Mclusky, pavement.
3. Tom Waits – Bad as me
I love Tom Waits!, he is an all time hero of mine and ‘Rain Dogs’ has been in my top five all time favourite albums ever for many years.
‘Bad as me’ is a real return to form, packed with energy, most of this album is very up beat,
with his signature overtones of sinister blues and woeful tales from Wait’s carefully crafted characters he never fails to paint the picture to accompany his ever changing styles. To my knowledge this is his first studio album of original songs in seven years, the album also displays the range of tom waits’ work from the dark ballads to his more cinematic tunes. It just makes me happy that he’s still making music like this and still making me feel good after all these years, and he doesn’t show any sign of slowing down.
For fans of Captain Beefheart
I have Marty ‘Buttonpusher’ Toner from Alright The Captain \ A-Tota-So to thank for introducing me to ASIWYFA because i wasn’t aware of them this time last year but this is a brilliant album that shows that the more you put into your band the more you get out, the album as a whole is very powerful and uplifting with nicely crafted songs.
From the dynamic build ups in the track “7 Billion People all Alive at Once” to the balls out riffage in “Think:Breathe:Destroy” i cant wait to see whats next for this band.
For fans of Adebisi Shank, Mogwai, Rumah Sakit.
5. John Makay -Mon Amour Mi Amor
This album is a late comer to our best of 2011 list as we didn’t know who John Makay were until we went on tour and played with them in Leipzig(see best gigs of the year), Its a sort of instrumental concept album, an autobiographical account of a super hero, confused and staring at the world. You get lost in the way the hypnotic tapping of the guitar keeps falling away from the drums then running right up beside them, rejoining for some Latin jazz metal freak out. it was also very impressive to see that as technical as John Makay are they don’t really rely on much in the way of effects just a little reverb and a split signal on the guitar and some well placed group chanting in ‘Witch Girl’.
For fans of Cheval De Frise, Giraffes? Giraffes!, OXES.
Other albums we have enjoyed this year are Radiohead’s King of limbs, Black lips’ Arabia Mountain, Rubberbandits’ debut album ‘serious about men’.
And Death’s album ‘Spiritual, Mental, Physical’. a compilation of demos and rough cuts that predate the “…..For The Whole World To See.” recordings.
OK so, The Best gig we have played this year17th August at The Chameleon Nottingham. For many reasons really, for one the great line up, we had it on good authority from the captain boys that Aulos were the tits and by the look of ‘our helical mind’s equipment it was going to be a fun evening.
The week before we had played a load of good shows for some great people in Leicester and Edinburgh so we all felt well rehearsed and excited that evening because we were all itching to get on tour by then as it was all booked and ready to go.
First up were ‘Our Helical Mind’ a great live d&b/dub beat band consisting of drums, bass and pedal synths galore, tonight were joined by a new friend they had made that day on twitter “MC Charisma” backing them up and they did a great job everyone was loving it, they had set the bar pretty high for all the rest to follow but that’s how it went down, the night just kept getting better.
Aulos were next and after a few cranberry ciders I was getting slightly hypnotised by the soundscapes and mechanical grooves but i looked around and the rest of the audience looked lost in it too , its safe to say we were soooooo in the mood for playing a show now so next up it was our turn and we loved it, packed with smiles and more energy than your usual Wednesday night we pulled it off and all there was left to do then was stand back and watch Alright the Captain tear the place down.whoever wasn’t at The Chameleon that night that could of been truly missed out that night.a great night was had, some good friends were made.
The Best Show we attended this year was on our tour with Alright The Captain in Leipzig, The band were John Makay. What can i say but wow! these guys blew us all away, we spent most of the show turning round to each other mouthing the words “what the fuck?!” in sheer disbelief of their skill and ability they demonstrate without the songs ever sounding wanky or over indulgent
there is so much dynamics and flare to what they do it really makes them stand out from many of two piece guitar and drum outfits.
It was an honour to play on the same bill as them but to be put above them in the running order scared the crap out of us “how could we follow that?” we had to try and luckily it went down well. and Alright The Captain played a blinder that night also. As well as being a great band John Makay were really nice guys and very hard working as a band, i would not hesitate to see them again and drag everyone I know down to marvel at makay as well.
Cheap Jazz Plans For 2012:
January we want to play loads of UK gigs (if you can help get in touch), February were going on another euro tour with alright the captain again,March we should be ready to start recording some of the newer songs. and keep your eyes out for some new videos of our last tour and a live session we did for Hatch’d Magazine in the new year, Thanks.
HAPPY NEW YEAR FOLKS FROM CHEAP JAZZ X X X X
Thank You so much Chris and all at Cheap Jazz, honestly been one of the best band discoveries of the year and we can only wish you our support and good luck for next year, we know we will be hearing a lot from you in the next few months and hanging out soon.
Image by Oli Montez