Archive for the ‘leila’ Category

the weather is changing

June 10, 2008

it was in berlin: m invited me for dinner – also to introduce me to his lover of the time, t. we had a great and tasty dinner, talking about god an the world, sex of course, and a lot about music. it turns out that t was actually working for a city mag, writing about new releases of the more electronic and stranger kind. so the soundtrack to the evening was of impeccable taste. after dinner, our bellies filled with tasty food, our venes filled with warm red wine, having a coffee, t kind of jumped up and said “i have to play you this track – it’s a pre-release i just got in. i wonder what you think.” m just smiled broadly and agreed that i absolutely have to hear this piece of music – he would go to the kitchen and prepare the dessert… so t cranked up the soundsystem, we both layed back on that big bed and just listened.

just listened.



before you read on i propose you download this, make sure your computer is jacked into a good system, turn up the volume, breath in, breath out and…just listen.

that’s how i got to know the wondefully strange musical world of leila. the title of her first record still describes best her music: like weather. rays of sunlight, passing clouds, heavy rain – all on one record. and then the wonderful voice of luca santucci. although leila usually gets put in the trip hop corner, i found at the time she was rather working on the future of funk, not unlike supercollider, or cristian vogel and jamie lidell on their respective solo works at the time. and it made very much sense that she published on aphex twin’s rephlex label.

but like other artists that got the label trip hop put on, she disappeared (after a second record) for quite a while. but now she’s back. the weather did change – in a first listen i actually thought it is a more subdued record. and yes, the extreme peaks might be missing, but there are still thunderstorms and the brilliant sunshine after the rain. it might be a little bit tinged by melancholia – or by maturity (ha!). it could also being described of leaving the quirkiness of a rephlex release and aquiring the smoothness of her new label, warp.

again she collaborates with different singers – of course with luca santucci, but then we also have martina topley-bird – yes, the former musical and (for a while) private partner of tricky. and then we have a singer the keeps on appearing and disappearing on likely and unlikely places: terry hall.

so let me take on a little excursion: terry hall first got known as member of the specials – yeah, when ska was still, you know, dangerous. after the specials he became more pop with fun boy three, collaborating with bananarama and having their most successfull record, waiting, produced by a certain david byrne. then it became even more pop with the colourfield and also with his later solo records. but then many of his records after fun boy three hardly got any recognition – and anyway one had the feeling that he kind of disappeared, made a couple of records and the disappeared again, just to pop up after a couple of years again with a new name, recording again, dispappearing again and so on… but then that is obviously not really true: long is the list of his collaborations, ranging from the aforementioned bananarama to tricky – the most longrunning one might be the one with the lightning seeds, and then a really surprising one on his last record released under his name, more precise under the name of terry hall & mushtaq (yes, the one from fun da mental) – and there is also a connection to mister albarn. pfuuh… and now he appears on the latest leila record. he obviously keeps himself rather busy. and yes, there are signs of a reforming of the specials, too… you might realise that i was actually planning a post about the man – but then i have been beaten by saltyka and his friends. and boy oh boy, they actually made a monster post. wow – respect! so go and have a look here.

back to leila: if you did not follow my instructions on the beginning of this post (insubordinate is the word), then i propose you either get her new record, blood, looms and blooms. by visiting her website, where you get redirected to her myspace, where you can listen to some of the new tracks. or, if you are in a more funky mood, you have a listen at her first record, like weather by getting it here. this is not my rip – so thanks to the original uploader! and now enjoy the weather!