If you need something that will shorten the journey to work/school/college, and last just long enough for you to get dressed up for a night out or dance long enough to decide that you'd now quite like to sit down and sip a cold drink, here's something for you. It's hard to describe. It's something...something like...er...let me think...
It's Something Like Jazz by Foolk (formerly Foolcut), a Slovakian jazzy/glitchy wizard capable of dismantling a jazz tune and reassembling it into a chopped-up workout with hip-hop overtones. Listening to this three-track ep, you'll find yourself nodding your head and smiling, thus freaking out all your fellow commuters with the fear that you might be concealing some C4 explosive in your delighted mp3 player. Hey, at least one person on the dawn train to work will be happy. Progress, non?
By the way, the image at the start of today's article is the result of not having an album cover to post,
and of taking the only suitable image on Foolk's website and enlarging it until it looks all pixelly and suddenly finding out that there actually were other images and eventually replacing my shoddy replica of Foolk's logo with a moody photo of the man himself and - ta-dah! - the pristine logo itself. As regular readers know, CTW is allergic to jpegs and electronic images in general. Sigh. My apologies to Foolk and Slovakians everywhere (for future reference only, because I have now redeemed the situation with the above photo. You never know when you might need a Slovakian get-out-out-of-jail-free card.) and the general public. And I love that buzzsaw/halo thing.
Still with me?
The title track, Something Like Jazz, is two minutes of saxophonic chopped-up jazz that bounces off a busy double bass, an organ and a piano. The drums are jazzy, edging towards funk and breakbeat. The whole tune has a terrific stop-start feel to it, which continues until the whole things slurs to a halt and you wonder how two minutes went by so quickly.
Glue Me features more double bass, funky drums, a staccato organ riff and a one-word lyric. It's strange how enjoyable it is to hear someone say "alright" between riffs and drum breaks. Foolk brandishes his electronica credentials mid-song by dropping a looped trumpet riff that pans from side to side and pitches up and down like a mad thing. Delicioso.
Push The Square pushes all the right buttons. It sounds as though a DJ invented a time machine and gatecrashed a 1950s trad jazz band's evening session at a club. The usual culprits appear - piano, double bass and wacky trumpet - but they get their groove on.
Foolk's style is subtle - his music is sort-of jazz, but with funky drums and a lovely chopped, jerky feel to it, with extraneous noises, a little light bit-crushing and mangled pitch and tempi to satisfy those of us who live in the early twenty-first century. The good news is that there are three other three-track albums on his website and they're all free to download. While you're there, follow the links and contemplate buying some of his stuff and/or going to one of his gigs. You'd be a foolk not to.
Oh, come on. I've been dying to say that.
Foolk - Something Like Jazz EP (link to individual mp3s at archive.org)