Yo. Okay. New music, new discovery, new slight obsession.
So yesterday, I spent most of the day undertaking a task, that most would not deem necessary at all, but is almost essential to my life. Cleaning and reassessing my Spotify playlists. Sometimes I lose track of how many songs I had to the streams of playlists I have created, which results in a huge build-up in songs, that on reflection, probably don’t need to be there. So I do a general clean out, spend an hour or so flicking through the playlists, and really asking myself, ‘does it suit the vibe?’.
However. This also leads to several things.
- Me just generally wasting time jamming out by myself.
- Me also questioning what was going through my head when I added a song to a specific playlist.
- Sometimes creating a whole new playlist altogether because the vibe is so unique that it requires it, and finally…
- Finding new music.
Which leads us to today’s post. Tunes Of I.
I have a special place in my heart, a deep love and appreciation for jazz, soul, big band, neo-dub, go hard shit. Like it’s my secret jam. But yeah I love it, and I somehow, praise Jesus, stumbled across Tunes Of I, a seven-piece ensemble from New Zealand. I mean, horns and all.
I was kind of subconsciously listening to one of their songs as it came up on a random jazz playlist I was listening to, before my mind registered that it was an actual slam, and I was feeling it.
I obviously jumped over to their entire Spotify profile (linked) to suss out the rest, all the while listening to their most recent single, Kiss The Sky, the first track from their 2017 album, Wicked Ways. It was the deep as heck drum groove that initially made me stay on the song and the introduction of the horns in the verse that hooked me, but it was the chorus that made me stay. It’s one of those choruses that I could 100% picture myself in a mosh pit, singing along to with a hundred other people. While the drums and the bass are this incredible skeleton for the guitar and horns to embody, the vocals are some of my favourite that I’ve heard in this style of music. ‘Yeah I’m dazed and confused, but I’m trying to see straight.’. You have to listen to Kiss The Sky, which I’ve linked for your convenience, to understand how incredible that line really is, not only to listen to, but to sing along to as well. Conway Jeune’s voice is probably my favourite aspect of this particular song.
Notable achievements include opening for The Original Wailers on Bob Marley’s 70th birthday, as well as supporting my dudes Sticky Fingers at their Wellington shows.
I love the infusion of jazz, a lil bit of calypso, fusion, reggae and blues that flesh out what’s obviously a strong fundamental background, having grown from the New Zealand School Of Music, combined with Jazz School qualifications. While the credentials are all there, it’s this sense of literal soul that you can just hear in their songs. Take The Circle, for example, the fifth song from their 2015 album, Restless. I’m listening to it as I write this, as I often do. Like I don’t know if this sounds beyond stupid, but you can almost hear how friendly and chill they are in their music? I don’t know if it’s a statement, but they seem to embody the feeling that I get when I think of the amazing roots, blues and soul music that I’ve heard out of New Zealand. The break towards the middle of the song is purely percussion and vocals, but the musicality in the drums is one that I love listening to, purely because it’s not something you hear everyday, especially on broadcasted radio.
I definitely recommend giving Tunes Of I a listen. They’ve quickly become a small obsession for me. As in I heard them for the first time yesterday, and here I am today writing this post having already listened to majority of their catalogue, of course adding some songs to the necessary playlists. Cannot wait for someone to catch me absolutely jamming to Kiss The Sky at the traffic lights.
Here’s hoping Tunes Of I come up to Australia some time soon, I’d be so keen to see them live, their reviews sound promising, and I’m sure it’d be an incredible show. Let me know what you think in the comments below!