Instant Playlist - June 11 2009

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Jay-Z
D.O.A. (Death of Auto-Tune) (Atlantic)
It’s hard to decide what’s cooler: Jay-Z’s by-name dissing of T-Pain, or the ridiculously funky psychedelic-jazz tune sampled liberally here. (For all you trainspotters, it’s “In the Space” by Janko Nilovic and Dave Sucky.)

God Made Me Funky
Phantastik! (New Empire)
Forget funky: what you get is retro-synth-powered hip-hop so insanely old-school, Grandmaster Flash himself would be happy to take to the street to spread the GMMF message.

Spinal Tap
Jazz Oddyssey II (The Label Industry)
As great—which is to say, as hideously post-’50s-jazz wanky—as it is, just imagine the brilliance of seeing “Jazz Oddyssey II” given the freeform treatment in front of a festival crowd.

The Aggrolites
Reggae Summertime (Hellcat)
The tag says “Made in L.A.”, but the Aggrolites seem like they were raised in the ’70s by Clement Dodd, in a shack behind Studio One. Crack a Red Stripe and fire up that spliff.

Busdriver
Scoliosis Jones (Anti-)
We’ve got a hunch that you’ll love this synth-strafed jam, partly because of the reference to comb-overs and Buck Rogers, and partly because Busdriver is all codeined flow one second and cartoonish blur the next.

The Units
High Pressure Days (Community Library)
Late-’70s San Francisco new-wave pioneers the Units are finally getting a much-deserved reissue at a time when their live-wire synth-punk approach seems perfectly contemporary.

The Lonely H
Diggin’ a Hole (TCG)
Remember what Guns N’ Roses sounded like before that wig-wearing, Botox-faced fuck Axl Rose hijacked the show? The Lonely H does, and while originality isn’t the band’s strong point, this imitation is a fuck of a lot better than Chinese Democracy.

Publicist
Momma (Touching Music)
With Ian Svenonius on pleading vocals and Trans Am’s Sebastian Thompson on everything else, this electro-disco number has serious indie cred, even if the synths sound like they were ganked from Giorgio Moroder’s studio circa 1980.

What’s Up?
Harper (Obey Your Brain)
Ever wonder what a tiki party would sound like if someone started spiking the mai tais with hits of Orange Trolley? Let this dose of lo-fi weirdness bounce around in your skull and you’ll find out.

Highlife
F Kenya Rip (New High)
Sleepy Doug Shaw is about as African as Paul Simon or those preppie turds in Vampire Weekend, but damn if his spiralling guitar lines don’t make us want to open an ice-cold Tusker and watch the wildebeests migrate across the savanna.

Falcao and Monashee
Starlight (Independent)
Indisputably original post-Gregorian art-goth that starts out like something transmitted from the other side of the television set in Poltergeist, and ends up capturing the feel of Vancouver on a tombstone-grey fall day.

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