Wow, looking at the timestamp of the last entry, it seems it’s been a while, vacations and project business included, since I wrote anything here. Anyway: As a regular follower / user of jamendo, I am by now pretty much used to stumbling across new and interesting music and average quality on jamendo.com seems pretty high which is a good thing. However, even given this high level of quality, once in a while there are albums, bands that just excel, either because of being especially original, or because of being especially good at what they do, or because, for reasons unknown, their music just works out. Been browsing and searching for some darker, noisy electronica a while ago, I eventually found “Grounded” by German trip-hop-world-music-electronic-jazz-whatever “crossover” twopiece Botany Bay. Listened to it once on my mp3 player, listened to it a second and third time while in car, and eventually kinda fell in love with the music on it, although it actually seems nowhere next to what I am usually listening to, at the moment…
I don’t know… it just worked out. No matter whether talking about instrumental or vocal performance (both male and female, even though I prefer the tracks sung by Laura), production, song writing, the video clips they did so far or (cover/booklet) artwork, the album to me is on an exceptionally high level of quality – way better than just “garage band” and like some of the releases to be found “on-line” today, in some respects even better than records to be found in regular CD stores sold by major record companies.
Adding to this, however… but even more, it just works… the music sounds and feels pure to the core, one literally can hear the musicians are pretty honest about what they are doing, and they are pretty effective at creating songs and sonic landscapes reaching one even without actually knowing why: Listening to the album on a grey autumn morning, it’s not just listening to the songs but rather being surrounded by the music, feeling it, eventually breathing it, and, eventually, when Laura starts singing “Tu m’as dit” (my French is way too limited to get the meaning of the title or even the lyrics, however), one knows this album, even though it might not work out in all situations, has found its way to the shelf of all-time favorites pretty quickly. Maybe, from an effectiveness point of view, this is the best an album eventually can achieve. Knowing the album is released under CC BY-NC-ND ;), giving it a closer look (listen?) won’t hurt or cost much except for a download, so maybe this is the first and foremost thing to do in order to start discovering the world of Botany Bay.
By the way seeing the “Old Men With Ballpoint Pens” clip and reading some of the (German) blog posts related to internet culture and censorship in Germany, it is pretty good to see that, while being focused on music, the two people in BB aren’t limited to it. Really enjoyed discovering this ambitious, inspiring band.