The Well-Played List, 5-16-2014: Grace Jones, Tobacco, Tim Barry, Allagoch & more

Find out what the CL Team and local tastemakers are jamming this week; audio & video included.

It’s the end of the week, which means it's time to get your groove on. The ongoing listening series otherwise known as The Well-Played List features the most listened-to, jammed-out songs, albums and artists of the week as submitted by the CL Music Team along with a rotating crew of tastemakers — local music promoters, record store and venue owners, music fans and scenesters, DJs, musicians, and a radio personality or two; check the past several week’s worth here. Audio and video included, along with any applicable show information. And on that note, what are you jamming this week? Tell us in the comments… (Click here to check out past editions.)

The Trouble with Templeton, Rookie (2014) I can't put my finger on why exactly I like this band so much. It was pretty instantaneous, after listening to "Whimpering Child," which has a sense of indie rock urgency that segues into moments of truly inspired melodic beauty. First single "Soldiers" is dark, moody and fast-chugging with an addictive breakdown of repeating vocals while "Like a Kid" is all fat aggressive guitars and howling choruses. Kind of reminds me of Plants and Animals - and singer/songwriter/visionary force Thomas Calder has a similarly huskily-soothing and emotive vocal style. The group is from Australia, signed to Bella Union this year, and this is their debut LP. Check out the video for "Soldiers" along with the rest of this week's entries after the jump...

Grace Jones, Nightclubbing Deluxe Reissue (1981 original, 2014 re-issue) Outstanding deluxe 2-CD remastered, reissue of a truly ground-breaking album. Jamaican born actress, model, fashion plate and singer Grace Jones hit her stride in 1981 when she released her amazing fifth album, Nightclubbing. Titled after her icy rendition of the Iggy Pop classic, Jones’s delivery and song selection throughout are as slick and sophisticated as the iconic album cover image. An exciting, pulsing mixture of reggae, funk, New Wave and disco exquisitely produced by legendary reggae heavyweights Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare, Nightclubbing sounds as daring, sharp, futuristic and sexy as it did upon its release at the dawning of the 1980s. This newly expanded edition adds several rare and hard to track down remixes and dance mixes; most notably the album’s very best and most timeless cut, the bass-heavy, slinky dancefloor smash, “Pull Up To The Bumper.” A previously unreleased cover of the Gary Numan nugget “Me! I Disconnect From You” is worth the price of admission alone. This jam-packed set complete with insightful liner notes and tons of intriguing photos of the photogenic and visually striking Jones is my pick so far for reissue of 2014. It’s hard to improve a classic but this set makes something great even better. "Pull Up to the Bumper" below.

ANDY WARRENER | Freelance writer, CL & TBT 
Tropical Heatwave gave my music portfolio a big shot in the arm last weekend. There were several bands I thoroughly enjoyed and a few stood out so much, I've tracked down their music on iTunes. Foremost among them is New Zealand Reggae act Katchafire, which closed out Friday's Heatwave and got me hooked. With a great horn section and jumpy, sticky, beachy appeal, Katchafire has all the flavor of a West Coast reggae group, but there's an island vibe that can't be ignored. Lead singer Logan Bell switches off with brother Jordan on lyrics. Father Greenville Bell plays lead guitar and is credited with pulling the core of the group together. The group began as a Bob Marley tribute band but evolved to the signature sound they have today. They covered one Bob Marley song during their hour-plus Heatwave set and wowed the crowd with selections like "Meant to Be" and "Love Letter," but their crowd interaction in "Sweet As" flipped on a switch for me and had me singing: "Ooo la, lala, la, laaa yeeey. Ooo la, lala, la, laaa yeeey, It just gets sweeter everyday."

The Grecian Urns, "These Shores Are My Home" (2009)
Let's be upfront — The Grecian Urns are my most adored band that has come out of the Tampa Bay area. This tune just makes me want to get out on the water and sunbathe, attempt to catch fish and dance in the friggin sand!!! Bring on the HEAT! (Reunion show May 30 at Green Bench Brewing)

SARAH GECAN | Marketing Manager, Straz Center for the Performing Arts 
Music is suppose to make you feel something, suppose to get you lost in the story. This week's selections encompass that. With Mount Moriah's stories and Dikembe's frustration of being lost in their 20s.

Mount Moriah, Mount Moriah (2011) I saw Mount Moriah on May 1, opening up for M. Ward. I have listened to their self-titled album every day since. The voice of lead singer Heather McEntire is fragile with a country feel and the band has a warm sound. My favorite tracks are "Social Weddings Rings" and "Lament." "Social Wedding Rings" tells the tale of infidelity, oOne full so full of imagery you can picture the room. On the track "Lament," she is brutally, painfully honest. "If this will be, anything, then let it be over." A place we have all been, but not always actually made the bold move. I am 13 days into listening to these eight humble tracks and still drawn to them.

Dikembe, Broad Shoulders (2012) Dikembe remind me of the band The Wonder Years, except they're little less hopeful. The song titles alone should pique your interest, with my favorite being "Librarians Kill For That Kind of Quiet." The lead singer's voice is somewhat desperate, grasping for understanding, grasping for something, just out of reach. The entire album is solid. A 20-something-year-old trying to make sense of life and not necessarily succeeding. It's honest and refreshing.    

JACK SPATAFORA | aestheticized presentsSoft Rock Renegades
This week, I can't stop listening to the amazing new single by Odesza, "Sun Models" (listen below; Odesza hits Crowbar this Saturday night) Also... the new Little Dragon is out this week and it's AWESOME!!!

NICOLE aka ELAWGRRL | Photographer, Only Music Has the Answer
It's a banner week for Americana with two fine releases from Tim Barry and Matt Woods that I've been listening to non-stop.

Tim Barry, Raising Hell & Living Cheap: Live From Richmond (2014, Chunksaah Records) "I let the greedy deal with greed / I ain't got nothing but myself / And I ain't selling that for no one else / I won't surround my emptiness with greed / Or shit I don't even need" (Excerpt from "Idle Idylist").... 

Tim Barry simply states the truth about life and love and having no regrets and living in the present. Going to one of his shows is like getting a front seat to the church of life. I've yet to see a Tim Barry performance where I didn't get chills. And that's why this album is so special — you get an unadulterated live show with awesome audio quality to listen to at home (and also without the secondhand smoke). The fact that Tim didn't know the show was being recorded makes the quality all the more remarkable. Order the CD here (vinyl coming soon) or download through the usual channels.

Matt Woods, With Love From Brushy Mountain (2014) Knoxville's Matt Woods is a mostly solo artist (lately, he's been touring with drummer Larry Fulford of Truckstop Coffee fame) who plays the Tampa Bay area frequently, including sets over the past few years at Heatwave, New World Brewery, Ale and The Witch and the Independent. His new record debuted May 13 and features 11 tracks encompassing hit single, "Deadman's Blues." No matter how loud the bar is when Matt plays "Deadman's Blues," he grabs everyone's rapt attention. I also love the melody of "Tiny Anchors" and who doesn't enjoy the humor of an analysis of a hit sing ala Lucero? You can order vinyl or CD and also download here.

KRISTIN STIGAARD | Daddy Kool, No Clubs Entertainment
I've been listening to a lot of Vampire Weekend and Modest Mouse this week! Saw Vampire Weekend at Big Guava Music Festival and I'll be seeing Modest Mouse tonight in Orlando (super excited about it, too).

THEE LIQUID JESUS DJs | Tastemakers to the Nth Degree
, Ultima II Massage (2014) Yes, it’s weird, but what else would you expect? Ultima II Massage is the first proper Tobacco full length since Maniac Meat back in 2010, and it does a bang-up job of reintroducing the masses to more of Tom Fec’s crunchy combinations of bandsaw beats and woozy psych synths and vocoder vocals dotted with the occasional bubble-gum flavored pastoral melody. The inimitable Black Moth Super Rainbow and the dirty dirty Demon Queen collaboration have filled the void in between, natch, but this one is a whole other breed of aural oddity, second to none. Listen to "Eruption (Gonna Get My Hair Cut at the End of the Summer)" below.

JERRY DUFRAIN | DJ Lazy, Orpheum co-owner
Agalloch, The Serpent & The Sphere (2014, Profound Lore)
I am in love with this album! Not just because they are coming to The Orpheum (they are, on June 25). But because Agalloch are able to accomplish the trick that so many bands never do. They have both a sound all their own, and a vitality of creativity that is equally as powerful today as when they started 20 (yes twenty!) years ago.So many bands (legit bands, some of my favorite bands!) are already starting the process of best of and/or reunion tours after 10 years.

Agalloch, instead, comes marching into 2014 with an epic (yes I get to use that hoary, ragged-out term in this instance) statement of purpose. "My work has begun!" gave me chills when I heard it screeched black metal style by John Haughm on the opening track, "The Birth and Death of the Pillars of Creation." These guys are not resting on their laurels, nor are they content to sit in the shadows of the legitimately hyped bands (Deafheaven, Alcest) who have begun delivering some of black metal's power and intrigue to a mainstream audience that has finally begun to pay attention.

I cannot endorse this band or this album enough! Go check it out.

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