Various - Highly Recommended Chicago Vol. 1 G6 The Legalization - New LP Record 2020 Shuga Records Green Smellin' Terp Vinyl - Stoner Rock / Doom Metal / Indie / Electronic / Disco
On the latest dip into the ever-budding field of up-and-coming tune-age out of sweet home, Chicago, Shuga Records has once again compiled a solid, ziploc-ed ounce of nothing but the strongest stuff to keep ears (and lungs) buzzing oh-so-whimsically. Highly Recommended Volume 1 is a record that not only totes the many sniffs and whiffs of our Earth’s finest green, but also holsters the sounds and samples of a city flourishing with music.
Side A starts us off with a well-catered, bit-driven intro by Luca: a self-proclaimed knight of dungeon synth production. Normally under the alias of producer and DJ Millia Rage, Akeem Asani’s side project is something that could have easily been sealed away on a lost floppy disc for a Castlevania soundtrack. In true etiquette to a fantastic high, this track sparks the whole upside-down-cross-joint buzz of this record, ushering the subtle tweaks and impending existential dread of a full-circle blaze brought in by a carriage of devilish steeds.
Fading into track two, Malcolm Brown (of Whitney) throws us back to a summer less-quarantined with Thaw Meighborhood’s “Bike To The Lake”. This sweet spot on Side A captures the fleeting feelings and confidence in nabbing a six-er of Old Style before the liquor store closes and hightailing it through the pothole-ridden bike lanes towards Lake Michigan.
Chicago New Wave outfit Spun Out continue the budding common themes of a slow ascent into absolute bowl-smacking skunk-age. From the ashes of Chicago post-punk band Ne-Hi, Spun Out takes a page out of the John Hughes coming-of-age movies we’ve all grown to love. As familiar as it may sound, they manage to add a unique spin to a timeless genre. Like all good strains, there’s always a formula to build on, and with tracks such as this, there is room for something new.
Grooves continue to provide a slow burn as Track 4 ushers in even more of Shuga’s golden family roster. With Snack Town, Mary Moorey (of Shuga retail fame) teams up with Patrick Mitchell for even more fittingly synth-driven sounds fit for a solid session of smoking. Filled with all the warmth of both Chicago’s poorly-lit tungsten lights and the heat of a good blunt, this track eases pleasantly in the easing down of Side A.
With the closure of the fourth track begins a sort of golden hour for the compilation. On Caroline Campbell’s cut, there’s the oh-so-necessary calm through the head-storm that accompanies any good trip around the bowl resin. Campbell’s vocal melodies in tandem with a morning-coffee suited piano drive create a sort of glimmer reminiscent of any and every moment of reflection that can come from just being flat out stoned.
Following in perfect suit to the turn-down of the first side comes yet another project containing a Shuga team grand-slammer. Performing in the Severe Weather Warning with Wilem “Hurricane” Simmons, is Shuga’s very own Saint of Shipping, Jacob a.k.a. Rusty “Jack” Trampoline. These staples of local Chicago talent create a sort of campsite dreamscape that makes the humble endings to the first side of this compilation something of a nice sunset to a toked-up summer’s eve. These fine gents really have taken the community aspect of true-to-the-word folk and made it a big enough joint for all to appreciate.
Records flip, needles move, and Side B brings a perfect companion-in-introduction to Side A’s first track. With Dablatory, Dusty Patches, a name for the modular wizardry concocted by Chicago’s own Patrick Mitchell, stays true to the head buzz with all the dots and loops. Having recently released a collection of recordings ranging across the last few years indebted to modular synth building, Dusty Patches fits right in with all the shake and resin in between the grooves of this record.
Like a blowtorch to a true Goliath of dab rigs, Cloud Cruiser’s installment into this compilation brings the full wake to the bake. Consisting of some of the finest industry workers to Chicago’s glorious venues and packing just as much of a sonic punch to double as a suitable headliner of ear-destruction, Cloud Cruiser is a group that fits in just about any doomer’s agenda.
Taking another page out of the book for full-on bong-rippage-to-the-max on the next track is Dekalb’s own Blunt, a group well-immersed into the world of cathedral-worthy reverberation. Blending well with the scorched-out, full-on resin-hit theme for this side, this track sits well with any couch demon seeking a gravity bong hit to the ears.
High Priest handles the bottom half of side B just the same. Being both involved in the playing and behind-the-scenes of Chicago’s talent-laced music scene, these fine bearers of blazed guitar tone keep the ganja bonfire rolling. Fans of Sleep or fellow local lords of tonal sludge, Bongripper, will feel right at home on this side of the record as it winds down its theme of reverb riff-age.
Closing out the record with a nice full-circle from the first few grooves of this side comes Jordan Reyes’ “Drop of Sleep”, a technological ode to the come-down from any exhilarating session of toke-age. A humble member of Chicago’s local modular and electronic scene, Reyes produces something of an ongoing devotion to mental movement, which suits the buzz and settles this record down right where it needs to.
So there you have it. Ten joints ready to spark and a nice soundtrack to your quaran-toking. With this compilation, Shuga is really looking out for all the diverse listeners out there out for one common goal: to smoke that good, good green.
Cover Art by: Evan Miller https://www.evanart.com/
Various – Highly Recommended Chicago Vol. 1 G6 The Legalization
|Label:||Shuga Records – 420-018|
Vinyl, LP, Limited Edition, Numbered, Green Smellin' Terp Dank Edition
|Style:||Stoner Rock, Electronic, Doom, Indie Rock, Disco, Doom Metal|
|A1||Luca–||Fixing A Broken Table||3:27|
|A2||Thaw Meighborhood–||Bike To The Lake||3:24|
|A3||Spun Out–||Spun Out||4:23|
|A4||Snack Town–||Thirty Odd Years||3:49|
|A6||Wilem “Hurricane” Simmons & The Severe Weather Warning–||Took a Toke||4:20|
|B1||Dusty Patches–||The Dablatory||1:49|
|B2||Cloud Cruiser–||King Couch||4:20|
|B4||High Priest–||The Cosmic Key||5:40|
|B5||Jordan Reyes –||Drop Of Sleep||4:11|
- Matrix / Runout (Side A runout etched): SHUGA 420-418-A-2S WHEN YOU SMOKE HERB, IT REVEALS YOU TO YOURSELF dp #2
- Matrix / Runout (Side B runout etched): SHUGA 420-418-B-1S WHEN I WAS A KID I INHALED FREQUENTLY, THAT WAS THE POINT dp #2
- Matrix / Runout (Side A/B runout stamped): WELL MADE RECORDS
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